Sunday, December 1, 2013

My Holiday Survival Kit

O.K., Ladies, we’re off and running.  We survived Black Friday, but there’s still an entire holiday season to get through.  I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t do it without a Holiday Survival Kit.  Everyone needs one.  Here’s what’s in mine.

When I need to get the red out of my morning-after, cocktail party eyes, a few drops of Visine works like a charm to refresh and lubricate my dry, tired eyes.  A few drops before the party makes them and me feel as bright as a new Christmas penny. 

Visine Soothing Wipes works wonders at night to cleanse and soothe the sensitive area around my eyes before I apply my eye cream. 

After a hard day’s Christmas shopping, there’s nothing like Lavender Epsom Salt to soak tired, achy feet or sprinkled in my bath to soothe away a stressful day of NOT finding anything for that person on my list who is IMPOSSIBLE to buy for.  Aaaaah! 

Chicpump in pyrite nocturne – Stuart Weitzman
This is my absolute favorite walking shoe.  It’s not cheap ($325), but with its 2 ¼ inch heel and ultrasuede footbed with hidden foam padding, I can shop all day in complete comfort.  And it’s stylish enough to take me from day to evening.   Every year they add a new color (or two), and I snap them up.  You know what they say.....if the shoe fits, buy it in every color. 

Watercolors Color Maintenance & Enhancement Shampoos by Tressa
Sometimes my hair color just needs a little boost for that special party or holiday event in between visits to the hair salon, which is why I love Tressa’s Watercolors shampoos.  It’s sulfate-free, and cleanses, conditions and refreshes my hair color all in one step.  I use Liquid Copper on my red hair, but there are 12 other shades to choose from.  One of them is sure to be perfect for you, too. 

But, there are those days when no matter how nice I’ve been to it, my hair decides to throw a hissy fit.  When there’s no time to argue, I simply pull it all up or pin it back and add a decorative hair ornament, like these cute petal chiffon bobby pins with rhinestones prongs.   I have also used them as pins on scarves, wraps and dresses.  And you can’t beat the price. 

When I want an extra dollop of glam for my Up Do, I add a dramatic hair clip like this stunning spray of feathers anchored by a sparkly gem.  You may not believe this, but I’m actually a very shy person (M-T’s Note:  Ignore my husband laughing himself silly over there.), and I find wearing an interesting accessory to be a great way to break the ice at a party where I may know only the host and hostess. 
Christmas Pudding, Hand Knit Tea Cozy
As my British Grandmum would say, “There’s nothing like a hot cuppa to set the world to rights.”  How right she was.  After a long day of Christmas shopping, a pot of Holiday Cheer tea from my favorite on-line tea merchant, SerendipiTea, warms the body and soothes the soul.   Their Holiday Cheer tea is a blend of cardamom, Chinese black tea, cinnamon, clove, ginger, orange peel, peppermint and spearmint.   Oooooh, I feel all warm and yummy just thinking about it!   
Of course, I always try to sneak in a catnap whenever I can.   Must get my beauty rest. 

By far the most important things in my Holiday Survival Kit are the Christmas traditions that I cherish, one of which is to celebrate the Christmas season every year with something old and something new.
Something Old
While I love watching the many wonderful versions of A Christmas Carol on film, every year I make time to settle into a comfortable chair and read from my grandmother’s edition of Charles Dickens’ most beloved novel.   Some call Dickens “the man who invented Christmas.”  Whether or not he did, for me, it wouldn’t be Christmas without him. 

Something New

And now for Something New – a tech take on a favorite Christmas carol.  Enjoy. 

What’s in your Holiday Survival Kit? 


  1. Dearest Marie-Thérèse,
    Since we never have celebrated Christmas the commercial way, there are not many tips I can give you. We adhered to St. Nicholas and that is December 5th for adults and December 6th for kids... So our Christmas is the religious holiday and with good food, more like you celebrate Thanksgiving in the USA.
    BUT I do love the catnap the most; cutest picture. As for those comfy shoes, I found them right away at about $ 100.00 less via the Inernet. That is my favorite shopping method at all times; via Internet, you can compare while you sip a cup of tea or hot chocolate. Your feet will not hurt and you have no problems with parking, whatsoever! My favorite is Neiman Marcus.
    Hope you do fare well yourself.
    Hugs and enjoy the Advent Season.
    We'll be off to a Christmas Cantata shortly...

    1. Mariette, that's terrific! Where did you find the chicpump for $100 less? I sometimes get lucky and catch a sale, but because I wear a size 4B, I can never find them in my size on discounted sites and always have to order directly from Nordrstrom or Stuart Weitzman.

      I do do a great deal of shopping via the internet; but sometimes you really need to "see" and "touch" a product before you buy it.

      We lit the first candle of the Advent wreath at Mass today. It was lovely.

      Enjoy your Christmas Cantata.

      Hugs, M-T

    2. Marie-Thérèse, well that was in a size 7...
      Wow, I can see your dilemma with a size 4B as that will be very hard to find at all at discounted sites.
      So sorry for you. Having small feet is one of the beauty marks but that comes at a price!
      We did enjoy our Christmas Cantata and had a nice visit afterwards with dear friends.

  2. Not sure how I missed your post here!! We all need a survival kit this time of year. Mine usually contains a sense of humor. I could not survive the holiday without it. BTW, I hear your husband laughing from all the way in CA:-). Have a beautiful holiday gorgeous. xoxoJennifer

  3. Wow!! I knew my husband had a hearty laugh, but I had no idea it had bi-coastal reach. I always LOVE your comments. They're every bit as wonderful as your posts.

    Yes, yes, yes......a sense of humor is an absolute necessity if one is to survive the holidays.

    xoxo, M-T
    P.S.: I think I owe you a nice long e-mail. Promise to send one soon.


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