O Christmas Tree

Its that time of year again, when Dad & I head out together in search for the perfect tree! It has been a family tradition now for several year. When I was still living at home, we would put the tree up the day it was brought and I would be the one to decorate the tree.

As Matt & I moved out December last year, we just had a little tiny tree as we weren’t really set for Christmas. However, this year, we are set! We have some decorations up, lights in the windows and I put aside money to get a decent sized tree. Matt is a bit of Grinch when it comes to Christmas, so told me that I should get a tree that was a little bigger than last year, but no where near what my dad gets.

I headed out with my Dad and he was telling me that he had seen some really nice trees at our local Tesco Store with my mum at the weekend and he felt we should head there first. So we did, an unusual place to purchase a tree! The lad that was out in the cold carpark surrounded by trees was really friendly and was happy to get out as many trees as we wanted to find our perfect tree.

When he pulled out a smaller tree for me, as soon as he stood it up I noticed there was a wonky bit at the top and I knew then it was going to be our tree. For those of you that remember last year, our tree was a little wonky then, its only right that we keep on that tradition! I got the tree home and with some help from dad, got it up and watered. After Dad headed out, I hoovered up the stray needles and then got out all of my Christmas Tree decorations. Most of them I brought last year, but some I took with me from my parents and others have been brought for us.

With The Santa Clause playing in the background, the tree started to become alive with twinkling fairy lights, shades of gold, red and & white. After about an hour, the tree is complete and Christmas has definitely arrived!

I love that our tree is now up, it certainly feels like Christmas has arrived! We have so many decorations on our tree and most of them have a special meaning or have been given to us by special people in our lives. Although all my decorations match to some extent, they are all unique and individual and for me that is the best thing about a Christmas Tree!

So, have you got your tree up yet? What is your favourite decoration?

Emma xx

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Blogging To Christmas Part IV

Tradition

Every family has their own unique way of celebrating Christmas & getting the house ready. There are 3 traditions that we have done for as long as I can remember as a family and I would like to share those with you tonight.

Carols By Candlelight
My mum and dad have taken me and my brother to church on Christmas Eve ever since we were babies, my grandparents always come with us too. One of my first memories of Christmas is coming back from church in our old house and getting my tray ready and showing my grandparents what I was leaving for Santa! As the years have gone by, I have learnt it’s my grandad who eats the mince pie and my mum drinks the milk! Over time my godfathers mum has joined us and Matt now comes along too, we all love a singsong and come home for Chinese food, unfortunately we no longer leave a tray out for Santa!

Christmas Tree’s
When we moved into our current house I believe we started to buy a real Christmas tree each year, it’s not a massive memory, but definitely over the last 6/7 years it’s been me and dad that go and get the tree. We used to go to the same place, but they closed down 2 years ago, so we are looking at different places. I love a real tree the smell is amazing! It’s always my job to decorate our tree and all of our decorations apart from a few have been sent over by my godparents in the states! This year, because we have got a new sofa we had to be careful what shape tree, it couldn’t be too busy and I think we got the perfect one!

Christmas Eve Breakfast

This started when my brother was about 4 maybe younger, my mum dropped us at McDonalds Christmas Eve and ever since then we have generally always tried to have breakfast. Unfortunately this year I have to work so Matt is going in my place! I normally go for Eggs Benedict and Joe will normally have a massive fry up! Either way, we fill our bellies ready to help prep the veggies before going to Church!

So those are 3 of my favourite traditions this time of year, what are yours??

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Revisiting Number 20

20. Experience Christmas In New York

As you know when I came back from New York this year, I was in 2 minds as to whether I wanted to go back again, I felt that I had done everything I wanted to do in new York and that the only reason I wanted to go back is to see the Rockefeller Tree at Christmas. Now it got me thinking, is that a good enough reason to spend potentially £800+ for a long weekend in New York?? Each time I ask that question, I have 2 little people on each shoulder, 1 saying “yeah go for it, you only live once” and the other says “ you have been to New York 4 times now, do you really need to go again?!” Even now as I am writing this I am thinking I am going to keep it in the list! But it’s a no from me, yes I want to travel, but I don’t want to keep going back to the same place all the time.

20. Have A Make Over At A Makeup Counter & Buy The Right Make Up For Me.

So this is a bit of an unusual one, I am not a big make up wearer and the make-up I do have has been recommended to me by Steph (My Bestie). So I know I wear good products and I pretty much can make a bottle of foundation last a year. But I have no clue what I am doing, I don’t know how to work out what the right colour is for me, I don’t know what brushes to buy, what eye shadow will compliment my eyes and my skin tone. Don’t even get me started on what Primer is and when is the best time to apply it. When I put make up, it’s literally foundation bit of powder, bronzer or blush, eye liner, maybe some eye shadow and then mascara – and that’s if I am going out! If it’s just a normal day, I chuck on some mascara and that’s me done! But I would really like to have a box full of make-up that I know A) how to apply & B) suits me! So I am going to do some research on quality make up brands that you can find in department stores or Boots that offer make up sessions etc. There are 2 that have caught my eye so far, MAC and Benefit, I don’t know too much about them so I am going to do a bit of research and see what I can find out.

New York Or Texas??

Since I have come back from holiday, I have been thinking about New York and if I really want to go again just to see some Christmas Lights and the Rockefeller Christmas Tree, now I know some of you will be screaming at your screens saying “yes, go!” and others will be thinking “new York – again?!” and I have to say I am one of the latter….

Don’t get me wrong I LOVE New York, every time I have been I have seen different things, but I feel like I am done and need to explore else where. On bucket list is number 20 is Experience Christmas In New York I am thinking about changing it to:

Have Fun In Texas

I have been wanting to go to Texas sometime now and several times I have written up a list of things to do and even blogged about it in my Sunday Wunderlust blogs earlier this year….. https://butterflybucketlist.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/sunday-wanderlust-part-ii/ Its just getting there and doing it that seems to be a problem. Realistically I need to start saving properly to move out, and with the next 3 holidays booked and paid for, I am thinking about celebrating my 30th in Texas?

What do you think?? Why not cast your vote in a comment below:

New York Or Texas???

Em xxx

Christmas In New York

I changed my desktop photo at work today to the Christmas Tree at The Rockefeller Centre in New York, for me that is a beautiful Christmas scene. Whilst working through all our Christmas movies, I have noticed that the majority of Christmas films are set in New York, now I LOVE New York and all it has to offer, but there most something extra special about it for so many Writers/Producers to pick it as their location for their Christmas Movie.

Now, as you know on the bucket list I have to experience Christmas in New York. Mainly to see what all the fuss is about AND to see that tree! So I have been doing a spot of research to see what sort of things I can get up to when I go. At the moment I haven’t decided if I will go over Christmas or just in the lead up to the big day, so if your planning to spend some of the festive season in the Big Apple, why not check out some of these idea’s!

Top Of The Rock One of 2 places to view the famous New York Skyline, of course the other is Empire State Building. Top Of The Rock is open 365 days a year and is $27 per adult. Personally I prefer Top Of The Rock as you can see the Empire State Building and Central Park, there is 3 floors to view and no extra cost to do all 3 either. I have been up here 2 times on previous visits and I would definitely love to do this Christmas Eve! If you are in the area of Rockefeller Plaza then you MUST see that tree and watch the ice skaters!

Radio City Christmas Spectacular This show has been running since 1933 and I can remember when I first visited New York in 2005 and we did a tour of Radio City – this was one of the things they really told us about. Each year, I see people getting excited on twitter about going to see the show! I imagine it to be a bit like our version of Panto but 10 times better! I would definitely love to see one of the shows! I have looked and tickets for 2013 range between $45-$115, I guess it is like any show and depends where you sit!

Store Windows I have heard that the stores in New York really go to town at Christmas with their window displays. Macys in particular keeps popping up and also their Santa land! I would imagine that the store windows and their Christmas Departments get VERY busy, so I would recommend going as soon as the store opens to avoid the rush! The store windows I would like to see are; Macy’s, Bloomingdales, Tiffany’s, Dylans Candy Store, Saks, Barneys, FAO Schwartz. Now whilst you can walk round the stores I have found a bus tour that I would love to do called Holiday Lights & Movie Sites Tour through City Sights NY, it is $38 for an adult and $28 for a child. It looks to be a really good tour!

Horse & Carriage Ride Through Central ParkI would love to do this especially if there is a layer of snow, getting all cosy with a loved one under a blanket and perhaps a hot chocolate in a Red Starbucks Cup! I know the horse and carriage rides are expensive, but its only Christmas once!

Christmas Shopping If you are shopping for yourself or for others, I would always recommend a trip to Woodbury Common Outlet. It is approx. 45minute bus ride from Port Authority, but it is a massive outlet. unfortunately it isn’t under cover – so I would recommend you wrap up warm. I have always brought my ticket through City Sights NY (they are the tour guides that wear the yellow jackets!) and I think it is about $42!

Christmas Train Show For anyone who knows my boyfriend, you will know that he has a love of trains, not in a train spotting way, but he just likes trains! So as I can imagine I will be going to NYC with him, I have found 2 places with Christmas Trains! The first is at New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex which I believe is free and boasts a 34-foot-long display! The second is at New York Botanical Garden and this is definitely one that we will be visiting! It includes scaled versions of iconic New York Buildings and lots of other exciting things!

So as you can see I have found a few things to do, the only thing I need now is some suggestions of places to eat on Christmas Day! So if you have any recommendations PLEASE get in touch!

Happy Holidays!

Emma xxxx