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Christmas gifts for children

Times may change and a global crisis can throw a wrench into the steadiest machinery, but one thing that remains constant is children’s excitement over gifts — and adults’ perplexity over what those kids might really want. With the Christmas holidays coming, we examined the anonymized search queries collected parental control program Kaspersky Safe Kids collected from October 25 to November 25, 2020, to learn what the younger generation is interested in. Here are some tips based on that data.

Games and consoles

If your child doesn’t have a game console yet, it may be time to buy one. Playing video games is the most common free-time activity among children, with almost half of all searches we examined being associated with them.

Among the consoles, the Nintendo Switch is worth your attention. Despite the recent release of new Xbox and PlayStation models, this compact and multifunctional device captures more interest than the others do.

Don’t forget to include a couple of games, whether as cartridges or in digital format. For the Nintendo Switch, Mario games, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Animal Crossing are the games kids search for the most.

Sitting in front of a screen isn’t great for your child’s health, so don’t neglect the active games. For example, Just Dance 2021 delights dance lovers, makes morning exercises more fun, and diversifies family activities. The game features musical tracks for every taste, including K-Pop hits — another popular search among kids.

Merchandise

Kids will also appreciate gifts featuring the symbols of their favorite band, film, or game. For example, you might look for T-shirts, mugs, or masks with characters from the game Among Us, which search queries reveal is now very popular among the younger generation.

Children who watch anime will be delighted with gifts featuring characters from their favorite anime series. And among musical idols, pay attention to merch from popular Korean groups Blackpink and BTS. Choose other gifts related to Japanese or Korean culture for anime lovers and K-Pop fans, respectively. Local candies, a comic book, or cosmetics may be great choices.

Music and video subscriptions

Now that music comes mainly through streaming services, consider giving a subscription. Youth searches for Spotify and Amazon Prime prevailed in October and November. If your child has an iPhone, you can get them a subscription to Apple Music without hesitation.

For kids who prefer movies, consider a subscription to YouTube TV or Netflix. Cartoons, documentaries, series for teens, and educational programs brighten up long winter evenings.

You can’t put that kind of gift under the tree, but it is both enjoyable and useful — not to mention a deterrent to piracy. After all, downloading pirated copies of songs and films or frequenting sites where you can watch or listen free are very common ways to get infected or ripped off.

If you have already paid for a subscription to one of these services for yourself, you can share it with your child. See this post to learn how to do it right.

Legos

Legos haven’t gone out of fashion. Kids adore them, and new themed sets are constantly joining the party. For example, Lego Christmas sets set a festive mood, and children often search for sets based on their favorite games and films such as Lego Among Us, Lego Harry Potter, Lego Mario, Lego Star Wars, Lego Ninjago, and Lego Minecraft. Realistic Lego Technic, Lego City, and Lego Friends sets represent popular searches as well. Some — such as Lego Among Us — have not come out yet, so if you want to buy it as soon as it goes on sale, follow the vote.

Video blogger starter kit

Another popular query is TikTok. Many children love to shoot short videos, and some dream of becoming stars on this particular social media platform. For them, look for a circular lamp, a tripod for a camera or smartphone, or unusual backdrops. Those things won’t cost you a fortune. And to protect your budding stars from scammers and trolls, help them set up TikTok properly.

Listen to your child

Our stats shed some light on general trends among children, but they can’t tell you much about your child specifically. Maybe they collect stamps or baseball cards, or they’re fond of photography or drawing. The best gift is one related to their interests, not just trends. As with cybersecurity for kids, the best approach to making great gift choices is to watch, listen, and generally stay involved all year, not just around Christmas.

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Albero di Natale, decorazioni green per festività ecologiche

Feltro, carta, cartone. Ma anche nastrini, perline e bottoni. L’imperativo per un albero di Natale green con decorazioni ecologiche è senza dubbio il riciclo creativo. Sì perché, nell’ottica dell’ecosostenibilità, nulla è meglio che riutilizzare e ridare nuova vita a vecchi oggetti, scarti di cartoleria e persino vegetali. Ma cominciamo dal principio, scoprendo se è meglio utilizzare un albero di Natale vero o di plastica.

Albero di natale decorato

Foto di Євгенія Височина / Unsplash

Albero di Natale: vero o di plastica?

Il primo passo nella realizzazione di un albero di Natale ecologico è decidere se acquistare un albero di Natale finto o un abete vero. Se già se ne possiede uno finto, ovviamente, la scelta più green è quella di riutilizzarlo fino a quando sarà possibile.

Solo in caso di nuovi acquisti, la scelta più sostenibile è senza dubbio quella di un albero vero a patto che sia da filiera controllata. Come sostiene anche il PEFC Italia, l’ente normatore della certificazione della buona gestione del patrimonio forestale, le emissioni di produzione e smaltimento di un albero in plastica sono pari a 4 volte quelle di un albero vero. A incidere maggiormente è il trasporto, che mette in luce l’importanza di acquistare alberi e prodotti legnosi che provengano da una filiera corta e locale.

La provenienza dell’albero di Natale è importante: infatti più è vicino il luogo di coltivazione o il bosco dal quale è stato prelevato, minore sarà l’impatto sull’ambiente per il trasporto. Senza contare il fatto che gli alberi finti derivano dal petrolio e devono essere smaltiti come rifiuti speciali.

Addobbi per l’albero di Natale: come sceglierli (o realizzarli)

Passiamo alle decorazioni per l’albero di Natale: se vogliamo una casa natalizia sostenibile, la parola d’ordine è riuso, upcycling e riciclo. Siete pronti a decorare?

decorazione originale per albero di natale

Foto di Zui Hoang / Unsplash

Addobbi per l’albero plastic free o con plastica di riciclo

Detto questo, la sostenibilità di un albero di Natale passa anche dalla sue decorazioni. La parola d’ordine è senza dubbio plastic free. Bando alla plastica, quindi, a meno che non si tratti di riciclo e riuso e di ridare nuova vita a vecchi oggetti riposti in soffitta.

Un albero di Natale, infatti, ha bisogno di colori e allegria, quindi basta la creatività per realizzare il proprio albero di Natale originale con un occhio sempre attento all’ambiente. Qualche esempio? Si possono utilizzare vecchi bottoni o persino pennarelli colorati ormai in disuso e, perché no, i vecchi giochini di gomma dei bambini, per un effetto vintage che parla di riutilizzo ed estro.

Carta e cartone per decorazioni ecologiche

Un altro modo per decorare l’albero di Natale in modo totalmente green è quello di utilizzare carta e cartone da riciclo. Oltre a realizzare un vero e proprio piccolo albero di Natale riciclando i giornali, si possono creare festoni, palline e addobbi con vecchie riviste.

Basta accartocciare la carta per creare palline di tutte le dimensioni, da colorare e immergere nei brillantini, oppure incollare lunghe strisce di carta di giornale per un effetto pop, e persino creare un catena di omini, farfalle, alberelli o pupazzi di neve con il tradizionale sistema della fisarmonica.

E poi, ancora, stelle di cartone, o persino formine e pupazzi a partire dai rotoli di carta igienica. E per chi ha più pazienza e manualità, c’è sempre l’arte degli origami che possono trasformare l’albero in un trionfo di arte ed ecologia.

Stoffa e nastrini dai vecchi cassetti per decorazioni “circolari”

Non solo carta. Tante altre idee per creare addobbi e decori sostenibili vengono sempre dai cassetti di casa. Tra feltro, nastrini, fiocchi e persino stoffe recuperate da vecchi vestiti sgualciti, un albero di Natale può riempirsi di colori e magari anche di un tocco di famigliarità.

I cassetti di casa possono essere uno scrigno enorme di materiali e ispirazioni. L’albero di Natale, in fondo, è un simbolo e la creatività può essere la soluzione ottimale, anche per chi ha poco spazio in casa o preferisce soluzioni alternative come la sagoma di un abete costruita su una parete  con le semplici lucine o piccole sculture in 3d in cartone ondulato (basta incollare due sagome di abete insieme).

decorazioni per albero di natale

Foto di Pexels da Pixabay

Dal bosco e dalla campagna, gli addobbi vegetali

Un albero di Natale originale può essere ricco di pigne raccolte nei boschi o di foglie secche e cangianti collezionate nei mesi precedenti. A Natale il vegetale è gradito per i regali e quindi anche dai rami dell’albero di Natale.

In passato l’albero di Natale veniva addobbato con agrumi e frutti di stagione. Un’idea sempre attuale: si possono utilizzare fette di agrumi essiccate, magari anche aromatizzate alla cannella e allo zenzero, oppure creare delle formine (usando gli stampini per i biscotti) con la buccia degli agrumi.  Fino alla soluzione più verde di mandarini, limoni, arance e frutta secca da appendere direttamente con i loro ramoscelli o con l’aiuto della colla a caldo.

Biscotti e caramelle per addobbi golosi

Dopo la Guerra, la festa per i bambini era trovare biscotti e dolcetti pendenti dai rami dell’abete di Natale. Una soluzione ecologica e di sicuro amata dai più piccoli, può essere quindi quella di addobbare l’albero con biscotti fatti in casa (con le classiche formine di Natale) o con caramelle e cioccolatini da scartare giorno dopo giorno.

Rosa Oliveri

 

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Christmas 2020: Here’s how countries celebrate this festival with different traditions

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Global Celebrations of Christmas

Christmas 2020: Here’s how countries celebrate this festival with different traditions

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Christmas is one of the grandest festivals of the world which is generally celebrated on December 25. But some countries have slightly different celebration style. They have some other traditions and a different time to celebrate it.

This is the most popular festival during the winter season and people love to indulge in it. So, if you want to know more about Christmas and its traditions according to regions, then read below.

Christmas celebrations all around the world:

Christmas Celebration in France

In many regions of France, Christmas starts with the St. Nicholas Day on 6th December. Children are given sweets, chocolates and gifts on this occasion. They also love to open the 24 windows of their Advent calendar. Decorating Christmas trees, family outing, gifts exchanging, etc. are part of their celebration.

 

Christmas Celebration in Italy

In Italy, the nativity scene is set in churches and in homes as well. “Babbo Natale”, the Father of Christmas, gives presents to children on Christmas day in the country. Gift exchanging in families is done on January 6th, which is known as the Day of Epiphany.

Christmas Celebration in Germany

Many festive markets are set up on the town squares of the country. Christmas trees are decorated in homes on 24th December. In Germany, Christmas celebration begins on Christmas eve, 24th December.

Christmas in England

In England, Christmas decoration starts from the mid of November where house owners decorate their house with several ornamental things. They sometimes collect donations from the visitors of their decoration also for charity. On 26th December, friends and family visit each other house to exchange gifts.

 

Christmas Celebration in Norway

Children of Norway eagerly wait for “Julenisse”, Norwegian Santa Claus on Christmas eve to get presents. People of this country call Christmas as “Jul”. People wish each other God Jul, which means Happy Christmas.

Christmas Celebration in Australia

Christmas picnics, singing carols are some of the major parts of the celebration of this region. They celebrate Christmas during the summer season so people gather mostly at the beach.

Christmas Celebration in Portugal

People of Portugal celebrate Christmas on 24th December. People decorate their home and set up nativity scenes and exchange gifts with each other. Christmas markets are very popular here along with artificial Christmas tree of Lisbon.

 

Christmas Celebration in Brazil

Christmas tree decoration, fireworks, gifts are an integral part of this festival in Brazil along with the nativity scene. It goes on for the entire month of December leading up to Christmas and often the end of the year.

Christmas Celebration in South Africa

Here, Christmas is celebrated on 25th December and it is summer season in the region during the festival. People gather on the day for “braai” or barbeque.

Christmas Celebration in the U.S.A

Christmas is celebrated here on December 25th when people get together for a festive meal and to exchange gifts. They decorate their house with Christmas trees, lights and other ornaments. They send Christmas cards to family and friends.

 

Also Read: 5 Christmas special recipes to ring in the festive cheer

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Christmas 2020: Here’s how countries celebrate this festival with different traditions

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2020 Living Room Christmas Tree

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Welcome back to my Holiday Home! Today I’m inviting you back into my living room to show you my second Christmas tree of 2020. Grab a cup of tea or coffee, nestle in, and enjoy the tour.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

2020 Living Room Christmas Tree

It’s always a fun day for me when I get to share one of my Christmas tree designs with you. If you can believe it, this is my 12th year of blogging during the Christmas season. It blows my mind. If you’ve been following along since then, you’ll know I’ve shared a newly designed tree (or often times two) every year. I put together a post HERE with 16+ of my best Christmas tree designs.

For the 2020 season, I have two new tree designs: My Red and White Christmas Tree, which I shared with you HERE, and today I’m back with my Living Room Christmas Tree. (Yes, I couldn’t really decide on a name for this one, so we’re going with 2020 Living Room Christmas Tree. So creative! Ha.)

Last week, you might have caught a teaser of my 2020 Living Room Christmas Tree design when I shared my mantel and bookcase decor. (You can see that HERE if you missed it.) And today I’m finally prepared for the big reveal. Without further suspense, let’s take a look!

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

I couldn’t be more pleased with how this tree came together and how beautifully it works in this space. It’s actually quite interesting because this was not the tree I had planned to do in this room.

Originally, I wanted to bring back my rainbow gradient tree while giving it a more traditional look. I tried and tried, but something in my gut told me it just wasn’t going to work in this space. I think I was right. So, I switched gears and this is what I came up with instead. I’m so glad I did.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

I also wanted to make a quick note about sources and links for items on this particular tree.

Living Room Christmas Tree Sources:

Typically I get a lot of questions about where to find certain ornaments or decorative items. However, for this tree I don’t have many links to share with you. This tree came together with a lot of things I already had on hand or things that I found locally that aren’t available online. I will link whatever I can. If it’s not linked, it’s safe to assume I do not have a source.

Also, if you’re curious about my cabinetry / mantel decor you can check out this post HERE. You can’t see much of the living room, but if you’re looking for general living room sources / paint colors, check out the end of this post HERE. I hope that helps!

Living Room Christmas Tree Details:

After my failed attempt at the rainbow gradient tree, I pulled inspiration for my color palette from the artwork above my mantel which just so happens to work lovely with the rest of the room. I stuck with greens, blues, and aquas, and grounded everything with white, sliver, and just a touch of gold.

As I mentioned above, I used a lot of the ornaments I had on hand. The ribbon and the big white stars are new and I found them at a local store in Pittsburgh.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

From there I added in large mercury glass ornaments that I tucked deep into the tree to create depth.

I wanted this tree to have a pop of color so I filled in sporadically with the green, blue, and aqua ornaments. A lot of these ornaments came from the navy blue tree I did several years back. (Yes, the actual tree branches were navy blue. It was so fun! Check it out HERE.)

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

When I shared my mantel decor last week, you could see I used a lot of pinecones in the design. Therefore, I decided to pull that same theme into the tree. I have a fairly large collection of glass pinecone ornaments (a lot them are from last year’s Woodland Glam tree), so I filled the tree with those. I even included mini versions of the large white-tipped pinecones used on my mantel. I just sat them on branches throughout the tree.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

I also like to add a few quirky elements to my tree. This year I included a felt merman, because I thought he was just the cutest.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Although this tree is completely different from my Red and White Christmas Tree in the other room, I like to have some element that ties the two together. Did you notice which ornaments were the same?

I was in love with these beaded snowflake ornaments from Balsam Hill, so I decided to use them on both trees. Fun fact: When I went to order more for this tree they were sold out (and still are). For a solution to my problem, I decided to purchase the matching beaded snowflake garland, cut the snowflakes off of it, and then just use the snowflakes on the tree. I made it work!

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

My tree topper is new and it’s from CB2. It’s actually still in stock and reasonably priced. You can find it HERE.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Underneath the tree I used a chunky knit tree skirt which I found at HomeGoods last year. I also wrapped some faux presents to act as decor.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

As per usual, I like to add some unexpected treasures under the tree. I’ve been loving picnic baskets under my tree, so I added in another one here. I also used a spool of chunky yarn and this vintage black lunch box that I found while antiquing earlier this year. I love how the black ties in with the hardware and lights on my bookcase.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

I also wanted to share another fun feature of this Christmas Tree. This is the 7″ Silverado Slim Twinkly Light Show Tree from Balsam Hill. With this particular model I can control every single light on the tree from an app in my phone. You can also create light shows like twinkles, moving patterns, etc.

I often get asked how to decorate a tree with colored lights so I thought it would be fun to show you this tree as an example.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Here I’m using the «rainbow setting» from the app. The rainbow gradient slowly moves up and down the tree. It’s so fun! (It’s difficult to show the light show here, so be sure to follow me on Instagram HERE. I will be showing you how it works there.)

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

My answer on how to decorate a tree with colored lights is to do it the same way you’d decorate a tree with white lights. I’m traditionally a white lights person, but I think the colored lights in this tree are just as beautiful. You can see how beautiful the tree looks with white or colored lights. You do you!

And with the presents tucked under the tree, I’d say that’s a wrap on another Inspired by Charm Christmas Tree!!

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

As I mentioned above, it’s always such a joy to share my trees with you. I have to say that coming up with 2-3 new designs every year can be a bit much (not to mention expensive), but I know how many of you enjoy seeing something new every year, so I do it for YOU.

I sincerely hope you enjoy the design and that it inspires you to get creative and have fun with your own tree.

See more of my 2020 Christmas decor here:

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

And as a final treat for you, meet Leo (aka Little One). He’s a new addition to my little fur family. I couldn’t be more excited to show him here.

This little spot on the back of the couch is one of his favorites so I couldn’t resist snapping a couple pictures. Bonus points to you if you happened to have spotted him hiding out in one of the posts above.

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Blue, Green, and White Living Room Christmas Tree #christmastree #christmas #holiday #tree #decor #decorating #livingroom #christmasdecor

Thank you for joining me once again for more holiday and Christmas inspiration. I feel like the season is just getting started, but it also seems like it’s nearly over. Anyone else feel that way?

Regardless, I have lots more to share with you in the days leading up to Christmas, so be sure to check back often. If you want to be sure you don’t miss anything, you can subscribe to the Inspired by Charm Mailing List HERE.

Happy Tree Trimming!

 

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Mariah Carey’s Apple TV+ Christmas special hits No. 1 in 100 countries

All we want for Christmas is more Mariah Carey!

Apparently, all we want for Christmas is more Mariah Carey! After debuting her new Apple TV+ Christmas Special last week, Carey is back to breaking more records 30 years into her already impressive career.

In her hit special, Mariah Carey’s Magical Christmas Special, Carey is called upon by Santa to help with a “holiday cheer crisis” in the North Pole. According to sources close to AppleTV, the special is already No.1 in over 100 countries.

Mariah Carey thegrio.com(Credit: Mariah Carey)

Read More: Mariah Carey’s Christmas special premiere date, guests revealed

Not only does the special have Carey’s signature hits to help with viewership, but it is filled with star-power, with appearances from Jennifer Hudson, Ariana Grande, Billy Eichner, Snoop Dogg, Tiffany Haddish, and more.

The soundtrack is doing well for Carey as well. The album includes new versions of Carey’s original Christmas songs and interpretations of other Christmas classics. In true MC fashion, the soundtrack broke an Apple Music record, capturing the largest number of first-day streams for a Holiday album.

The lead single, “Oh Santa! (feat. Jennifer Hudson & Ariana Grande) has already become a viral hit. Featuring a much buzzed about whistle tone section with Grande and Carey, the song has topped the Apple Music charts, while the music video just passed 15 million views on YouTube.

Her signature hit, “All I Want for Christmas is You”, is also doing well, already reaching No. 2 on the Hot 100 charts this week.

Read More: ‘Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey’ is the fun, holiday flick to watch this weekend

It’s been a landmark year for Carey, as the fall also saw the release of her best-selling memoir, The Meaning of Mariah Carey, which debuted to rave reviews. She also dropped her album, The Rarities, to coincide with the book, featuring previously unreleased songs from her massive catalogue.

30 years in, Mimi does not seem like she is stopping anytime soon. Now, she’s here in December to do what she does best: Spread Christmas cheer in her signature and classic M.C. way.

Have you subscribed to theGrio’s podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!

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The post Mariah Carey’s Apple TV+ Christmas special hits No. 1 in 100 countries appeared first on TheGrio.

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Christmas Gift Guide – 5 Best Gifts & Souvenirs from Southwest Germany

Travel blog by Travels of Adam (Hipster Blog) – Travels of Adam (Hipster Blog) –

For most of the past decade, I spent nearly every Christmas holiday in Germany. Living in Berlin, I loved the Christmas markets and all the holiday displays and of course the shopping. Germany sometimes feels like it invented modern-day Christmas!

My Christmas holidays in Berlin were always really special, but I was also lucky enough to travel Germany pretty frequently during the holidays. It’s one of my favorite times of year to be in Germany! Every German city and town with its varied Christmas markets and unique holiday traditions, Christmas in Germany has always been special.

Southwest Germany’s Baden-Württemberg region is one of Germany’s most picturesque regions, home to some of the most special sights and things to see in Germany. Explore this special region’s Christmas spirit through these selected gifts & souvenirs from the region.


Schmalkalden Weinachtsmarkt (Christmas Market)Schmalkalden Weinachtsmarkt (Christmas Market)

5 Best Christmas Gift Ideas from Southwest Germany

It may not be possible to visit Southwest Germany’s beautiful Christmas markets this year, but you can still go shopping and find delicious and beautiful items to put under your tree or wrap for a favorite friend. While nothing really beats the experience of wandering a local Christmas market, there are still plenty of ways to shop for those special Christmas gifts online.

These are items that are made in Southwest Germany and contribute to the culture and the economy, the taste and feel of the country. Included in this
German Christmas list are products you can actually order from the USA.


Schwarzwald Schnapps

A Surprising Liquor – German Gin

Most people associate Southwest Germany with its delicious wines as it has two extensive, award-winning wine regions—or with beer as the region has many of its own breweries. Many people think of Schnapps, too, because much of the fruit Schnapps are produced in over 14,000 distilleries across the Black Forest.

What many people do not know is that Southwest Germany is an emerging gin producer and a very creative one at that. There are a wide range of extraordinary gins that stand out due to their aromas, the method of production or their design.

In Heidelberg, there is 315 Upstairs Gin referring to the 315 steps it takes to get from the Old Town to the famous castle and the ingredients include blueberry and bergamot. Stuttgart has two gins (GinSTR): 0711, the city’s area code and only 711 bottles are hand made each year and Circus gin which has a 1920s label resembling a circus tent. But it’s not just the label: the special taste of cinnamon and rosemary delights fans.

Mannheim, the chess city, has a gin now called “144 Square gin” and in the Swabian Alb, a quadruple distilled apple brandy, complemented by 78 local botanicals is called “Don’t Call Me Gin.”

Back in the Black Forest, needle gin is made out of handpicked pine needles along with 10 botanicals.

I’ve always thought a gin & tonic was the best Christmas cocktail because it’s earthy flavors always remind me of Christmas trees.


ritter sport

Germany’s Best Chocolate Candy Brand

You can buy the Rittersport chocolate bars (with or without nuts) in 70 countries around the world. Alfred Eugen Ritter and Clara Ritter founded the chocolate and confectionery factory in 1912 at Innere Moltkestraße in the Stuttgart district of Bad Cannstatt and this is where the first Rittersport chocolates were made.

As the company grew, it needed more space and so it moved to the charming town of Waldenbuch in 1930, where Clara invented two years later the unusual square shape. The story goes that she wanted to give her son some energy that would fit in his pocket and would not fall out while he played soccer.

From that simple motherly gesture grew a chocolate square and then an empire that is still based in the same small village. Today there is not only the manufacturer but also an enormous chocolate shop and a really cool museum featuring square art objects that I’ve had the chance to visit in the past.

Look for Ritter chocolate squares around the world. They make a great stocking stuffer!


Weihnachtsmärkte (Christmas markets Berlin)

Käthe Wohlfahrt’s Iconic Christmas Decorations

Unbeknownst to many, Käthe Wohlfahrt, the epitome of all Christmas stores, started in Stuttgart, the capital of SouthWest Germany. The Christmas shop started when Wilhelm Wohlfahrt brought his Saxon music box to Stuttgart. The music box was admired by his American army friends, so the enterprising Wilhelm bought ten music boxes and then sold them to the wives of the American officers.

From then on, Käthe Wohlfahrt become synonymous with Christmas. The brand started selling the music boxes in holiday markets and then eventually established their own gallery outside Stuttgart and finally moved to Rothenburg ob der Tauber in 1977.

Today you can visit the Kaethe Wohlfahrt Christmas Shop and Museum on the Herrngasse in Rothenburg, as well as countless pop-up shops in Germany Christmas markets.

Of course, nothing replaces the experience of visiting and shopping in person, but if you are keen to enhance your holidays at home this year, you can order Christmas ornaments and gifts online.


sock monkey

Steiff Stuffed Animals are the Perfect Children’s Presents

The founder and creator of the first teddy bear, the “button in the ear bear,” Margarete Steiff was last month elected to The Toy Association’s TIA Hall of Fame in recognition of her significant contribution to the toy industry and the positive impact she has had on the lives of children. Stricken by polio at 18 months, Margarete Steiff had only the use of one arm and was paralyzed from the waist down but she was determined and cheerful and she skillfully and adroitly turned to her sewing machine to make a living.

Margarete Steiff founded her famous eponymous company in SouthWest Germany’s Giengen an der Brenz in 1874 when she made a pin cushion shaped as an elephant. She gave this to friends and families as gifts and the children turned them into toys.

Her talented nephew came up with the Teddy Bear, named after U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt. Margarete Steiff was one of the most successful women CEOs in Germany and to this day, the company invokes her memory in all of its efforts. Families and children can visit the shop and the museum and the playground and petting zoo.

For people looking for a perfect keepsake for young children this holiday season, Steiff toys can be ordered online.


Mercedes-Benz Museum

Luxury Cars from Germany 

One of Germany’s best exports has always been its luxury cars. In Southwest Germany, you can find one of the world’s Most Unusual Car Museums which has a lovely history of the automotive industry and Germany’s place in it.

Many Americans come to Europe for pick-up of custom-made luxury cars, often at more affordable rates than what you’d find at a car dealership in the USA. While you may not be able to do European pick-up at the moment, if you do purchase a car for from Mercedes or Porsche this holiday season, you get access to photos, videos, and online tours of both museums.

Save the dream of owning a German car for later, and plan a car-themed trip to Germany for the next safe time to visit. You can stay at car-themed hotels, visit vintage car shops, the original Daimler studio, the Porsche Museum and Mercedes Benz museums, and of course plan a German road trip along the Autobahn!


Germany has so many great souvenirs and its rich culture and history is a great match for the holiday season.

The post Christmas Gift Guide – 5 Best Gifts & Souvenirs from Southwest Germany appeared first on Travels of Adam (Hipster Blog).

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Lucky Charms x KITH Treats Team Up On Unisex Holiday Collection

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With Christmas right around the corner, KITH is set to drop its new «Kithmas» collection, along with a special collaboration with Lucky Charms via its KITH Treats line. The duo has worked on a lineup of apparel and accessories for adults and kids.

The unisex range consists of 29 styles featuring Lucky Charms motifs throughout. The hoodies boast an all-over print of the cereal‘s signature marshmallow charms, while the puffer jacket arrives in shades of pastel. Other garments include the gradient long sleeve tees and co-branded vintage T-shirts.

As for accessories, a beanie, cap and gloves have been added to the line, as well as pint glasses, cereal bowls, puzzles and more. In addition, KITH Treats and Lucky Charms have created a limited-edition version of the cereal called Lucky Kithmas. The product’s packaging features the iconic leprechaun mascot on a redesigned co-branded box.

To coincide with this launch, KITH will also release its first «Kithmas» collection highlighting 19 holiday-inspired designs. Standout pieces include the knit sweaters, tees, Capita snowboards, skate decks and more.

KITH will host a special pop-up shop at the Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park where you can get your hands on the KITH Treats for Lucky Charms range. The shop will be open on December 4 until December 6 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. EST daily.

The «Kithmas» 2020 collection and KITH Treats for Lucky Charms launches on December 7 online and at all KITH shops.

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park
42nd Street and 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10018

Click here to view full gallery at HYPEBAE

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Ask Catherine: Christmas Gift Ideas

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“I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” ~ Charles Dickens

By Catherine Austin Fitts

A Solari Report Subscriber asked what I would recommend for Christmas gifts. Here are some of the gifts I like to give.

CASH, CHECKS, OR SAVINGS

I find that many people, particularly young people, love receiving cash or a check. Whatever really clever ideas I might have for presents, people often know what they most want. Some unexpected cash makes it easier for them to get their heart’s desire.

I also often encourage parents to open a college savings or brokerage account or plan for their children, and then invite all the relatives to steadily fund it at birthdays and holidays.

COINS

A sovereign silver or gold coin is a great way to give money in a form that encourages young people to save or helps their parents save for college. I also like to give children coins from other countries from around the world to help them learn about countries and currencies.

STORE CREDIT AND GIFT CARDS

Someone can always use a credit at their favorite store. A gift card or credit at someone’s favorite butcher, wine shop, or food market may also make for a more lavish Christmas dinner.

Some favorites I use:

Body Deli – This Palm-Springs-area store offers intriguing fresh, organic “superfood” skin care. Consider a body lotion that is nutritious too!
Lehmans – This Ohio store was created to serve the Amish. It has grown into one of the premier catalogues for gardening, country, and non-electric living.
LL Bean – This Maine store has been keeping the feet of outdoor lovers and hunters dry and warm for decades. Here is my review: “Why I Love LL Bean”

BOOKS

One of the best presents I ever received was from a business partner. She gave me a detailed write-up of her favorite books. It was fascinating. Her write-up came with a gift certificate to her favorite local book store. She had arranged for the store owner to spend time with me to help me pick out the books I wanted. All I had to do was make an appointment.

I recently received a gift card from a client for an online book store. I have always wanted a hard copy of the complete works of Aristotle. Sure enough, the card inspired me to buy something I had always wanted but kept putting off as a luxury (given the 400+ books that are sitting in the “must read” pile).

Here are links to the Solari Report Best Books for 2020 to inspire your efforts. See also:

2019 Annual Wrap Up: Deep State Tactics 101

HEALTH

Christmas is a time when we often eat rich foods and large meals. My current favorite New Year’s book is The Complete Guide to Fasting by Jimmy Moore and Dr. Jason Fung. My church in Washington practiced fasts in January. Now, without a church to inspire me, I dive into The Complete Guide to Fasting. Here is my book review.

For a more expensive present, you might want to introduce someone to the benefits of deuterium-depleted water. Here is my source: Qlarivia. Give it time, as it ships from Romania.

Good health starts with nutrition. However, many people are busy, and it takes time to sleuth out the best food sources in your area. Dig up a good list and information on the best farmers, ranchers, farmers markets, and CSAs in your area—as well as the best butchers, grocers, and restaurants—and give the information as a gift, along with a little something from one of the identified sources. One of the magazines from Edible Communities and the shopping guide from the Weston A. Price Foundation may also be able to help.

A copy of our 2nd Quarter Wrap Up: The Injection Fraud – A Sane Person’s Guide to the Pandemic can provide a great summary of people and sources to help busy people understand the pandemic health issues. These are including in our Holiday Gift Packages. Individual copies will be available to subscribers before Christmas.

MORE LAVISH GIFTS

Now is a good time to bring the spa to your home. How about giving a gift of health equipment desirable to and appropriate for the person receiving your gift? Options include items such as a sun lamp, an ion cleanse machine, a QRS machine, or an infrared sauna.

If travel restrictions lift, how about funding visits to the amazing museums that Your Culture Scout has reviewed over the last two years in her amazing column Food for the Soul?

Or, how about purchasing a share in a local CSA (Community-Supported Agriculture) for loved ones? Or consider refinancing out their debt at a lower interest rate—thereby keeping the income in the family instead of the banking system.

One of my favorite Solari Reports is Coming Clean – Transforming Lives Through the Power of Cleaning with Eunice Boston. When I lived in New York, I would buy a spring cleaning by Eunice’s company for a really special friend or colleague. This was a multi-day, intense experience. Yes, your home got super clean beyond what you could imagine—and super organized. The field changed. As one partner who received this gift said, “You should have warned me that this would be a spiritual experience.” Eunice and her company literally saved my life; we tell the story in the Solari Report. If your recipient is near New York, hire Eunice and her team to do their complete, transformative deep-clean. If not, find a team of high integrity locally.

Another gift that is a little less lavish than travel or the world’s finest home or business cleaning is a vintage typewriter—a great tool to have to preserve free speech and classic communications like personal notes. You can find a good selection at Etsy. I now have a vintage typewriter, and I am very glad I do.

ON A BUDGET

If you are on a budget, there are plenty of great gifts that will work for you.

Downsizing

During my “Enemy of the State” period, the team harassing me used to steal one possession of financial or sentimental value whenever I left home. This pattern is not unusual in such cases. I decided that no one would use my possessions as weapons against me. So I made a list of my valuable possessions and then steadily gave them away at Christmas and birthdays over the subsequent years: Hermes and Cartier watches and scarves, Italian handbags, custom-tailored coats, good silver and china, and paintings. One lucky relative got a Renoir etching.

I am not suggesting you give away all your possessions. However, if you look around your house and are honest with yourself, there are undoubtedly things that you have that you don’t use or value that could bring great joy to someone you love. And some that will bring great joy to families that could use a helping hand.

Let’s Go to the Movies

Everyone loves a good movie. Play the same game with movies as with books. Here are lists I like to use:

Here is the list of all the movies and documentaries we have recommended and reviewed in The Solari Report from 2008-2019. There will be an updated list in the 2020 Annual Wrap Up published in January. Until then, you can find out which movies we recommended this year by clicking on the Let’s Go to the Movies logo under Culture on the Solari Report home page.

Give the Gift

Solari subscribers can give one gift of a complimentary 2-month Solari Report subscription each December. Our hope is that this allows you to introduce The Solari Report to someone likely to enjoy and benefit from the Annual Wrap Up and other Solari Report materials in a manner that is kind to your Christmas budget.

“Give The Gift” Note: Please log into The Solari Report to access subscriber content.

For those who would like a great stocking stuffer, you can get copies of the Solari Prayer Book while they last.

Solari Report subscribers are always welcome to share The Solari Report with their immediate family. Print out Wrap Up PDFs and transcripts from your favorite Solari Reports and share them with a personal note telling how they helped you, and why you recommend them.

Decorating the Ancestors’ Graves

Christmas is a time to honor our ancestors, whose lives and accomplishments contributed to the many blessings we enjoy. Visiting ancestors’ graves with someone you love and sharing time to celebrate family and the “meaning of the season” is a wonderful thing to do. You can acquaint young people with their heritage or celebrate memories with those who are older and might have difficulty making the trip on their own. Send pictures of your visit to family and friends who are far away or not able to come, so they can participate from a distance.

FOCUS ON KIDS

In 2010, I wrote a small book, Gifting to the Children We Love, to assist my clients. I kept talking with families. Some people had money. Some people had time. By pooling resources, they could do a lot more for the children in their extended family. I was hoping this collection would help.

What I would most like to give every child I know for Christmas is a course in creating their own encryption systems. This is Bill Binney’s great idea. If we teach all the young people how to make their own proprietary encryption systems and to create businesses making encryption systems for local businesses, we can start to rebuild local economies. I am going to ask Bill help us figure out how to do this. Invite your ideas as well. Let’s figure it out!

Other great ideas for young people include a garden kit or course to teach them how to start growing food from a very early age or explore and teach them the great traditions of Christmas like the lighting of the Advent candles each evening or where candy canes came from (see the short video on our Christmas Culinary Traditions.)

THE SOLARI REPORT

BIG NEW THING: We are offering Solari Wrap Up Gift Packages just in time for the holidays! Gift-wrapped to send as a gift or add to your own collection.

This collection includes The State of Our Currencies – this is excellent intelligence on the “reset.” For those who want to give the gift of intelligence that will serve your networks well in the New Year, we also have options at the store to purchase five or ten copies of The State of Our Currencies. You can even buy by the box (23) by calling Customer Service. These make great gifts for colleagues and business associates.

If you want to give a Solari Report subscription as a gift, the information is here: Paid Gift Subscription. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Customer Service:

By Phone:
(906) 643-6263
(866) 311-2543 Toll Free
During Eastern Time Zone business hours

By Mail:
Solari, Inc.
Post Office Box 157
Hickory Valley, TN 38042

DONATIONS

Every year, Solari makes a donation to groups that help us honor the spirit of giving and Peace on Earth. In 2010, we donated to a food bank in every country and state in which we had subscribers. Consider a donation to your local food bank this Christmas. Give donations in the name of other people as a gift as well. You can see our 2010-2017 Christmas donations at our Holiday Greetings website.

This year in our holiday greeting we announce our Christmas donation to our TAKE ACTION CROWDFUND. We invite you to join us in supporting the people fighting fearlessly to protect your human and property rights.

We post our weekly donations in News Trends & Stories and then publish a master list in our Annual Wrap Up and selected Quarterly Wrap Up web presentations. The world is full of great groups worth supporting, starting with excellent documentary filmmakers and members of the independent media. Truth is a great investment at Christmas and throughout the year.

MORE!

I will post more ideas during the Christmas Season if I have them. I know our subscribers also have great ideas, so post yours in the comments section!

Most of all, make sure you take time for you and yours during this special time of the year. The best present of all is Peace on Earth, Good Will toward Men!

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V.A. – Merry Christmas Baby! Christmas Blues Rock (4 CD)

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V.A. – Merry Christmas Baby! Christmas Blues Rock (4 CD)

Vol. 1

01. John Lennon,The Harlem Community Choir,The Plastic Ono Band,Yoko Ono – Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
02. Ramones – Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want to Fight Tonight)
03. Queen – Thank God It’s Christmas
04. Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run
05. Kermit Ruffins – Jingle Bells
06. Tori Amos – Winter’s Carol
07. Lou Reed – Xmas in February
08. Louis Armstrong – ‘Zat You Santa Claus?
09. Gaspard Royant – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
10. Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run (Single Version)
11. James Brown – Santa Claus Go Straight To The Ghetto
12. Jamaica All Stars – We Wish You A Merry Christmas
13. Stevie Wonder – What Christmas Means To Me
14. Grady Champion – What Would Christmas Be Without You
15. Sugar Chile Robinson – Christmas Boogie
16. Claude Fostin – Douce nuit
17. Diana Krall – Jingle Bells
18. Sheila – Les Rois mages (Remasterise en 2006)
19. Dean Martin – Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
20. Michael Jackson – Little Christmas Tree
21. Lightnin’ Hopkins – Santa
22. James Brown – Santa Claus, Santa Claus
23. Chuck Bevin – Sleigh Bell Rock
24. Jamaica All Stars – A Holly Jolly Christmas
25. John Lee Hooker – Blues For Christmas

 


26. The Alarm – Happy Xmas [War Is Over]
27. Charles Brown – Let’s Make Every Day A Christmas Day
28. James Brown – Merry Christmas, I Love You
29. Chuck Berry – Run Rodolph Run
30. Bessie Smith – At The Christmas Ball
31. T-bone Walker – Cold, Cold Feeling
32. Lionel Hampton And His Orchestra – Merry Christmas Baby
33. Jeremy Lister – Santa’s Lost His Mojo
34. Cathy Cooper,Lem Tally – Happy New Year, Baby!
35. Johnny Preston – New Baby for Christmas
36. Sammy Kershaw – Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer (Album Version)
37. Mabel Scott – Boogie Woogie Santa Claus
38. Jan,Dean – Frosty the Snowman
39. Bobby Helms – Jingle Bells Rock
40. The Ronettes – Frosty the Snowman
41. Sugar Chile Robinson – Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
42. Julia Lee And Her Boyfriends – Christmas Spirits
43. John Lee Hooker – Christmas Time Blues
44. Brenda Lee – Rocking Around the Christmas Tree
45. Trisha Yearwood – Santa Claus Is Back In Town
46. Al Hibbler – White Christmas
47. Louis Armstrong – Christmas in New Orleans
48. Victoria Spivey – Christmas Without Santa Claus
49. Louis Jordan – Santa Claus, Santa Claus
50. Eddie South – Snowfall
51. Elvis Presley – Blue Christmas (Remastered)
52. The Oscar Moore Trio – The Christmas Song
53. The Platters – We Wish You A Merry Christmas

Vol. 2

01. The Swing Cats – Christmas Tree Boogie
02. Ella Fitzgerald – Good Morning Blues
03. Joe Bonamassa – Santa Claus Is Back In Town
04. The Honeydippers – Silent Night
05. Canned Heat – Jingle Bells
06. Count Basie,Jimmy Rushing – Good Morning Blues (I Wanna See Santa Claus)
07. Michael Buble – Holly Jolly Christmas
08. Jackson 5 – Little Drummer Boy
09. Joe Bonamassa – Lonesome Christmas
10. Ray Charles – Mess Around
11. Eagles – Please Come Home for Christmas (2013 Remaster)
12. Elvin Bishop – The Little Drummer Boy
13. Marguerite Trina – The Rocking Tree
14. Santo & Johnny – Twistin’ Bells
15. Eels – Christmas Is Going To The Dogs
16. Victoria Spivey – Christmas Morning Blues
17. Louis Armstrong – Christmas Night in Harlem
18. Alan Jackson – Let It Be Christmas
19. Canned Heat – Santa Claus Is Back In Town
20. Charlie Musselwhite – Silent Night
21. Bob Dylan – The Christmas Blues
22. Johnny Cash – The Little Drummer Boy
23. Willie Nelson,Norah Jones – Baby It’s Cold Outside
24. Louis Armstrong – Cool Yule
25. Ella Fitzgerald – Frosty the Snowman
26. Cuba L.A. – Jingle Bells
27. B.B. King – Merry Christmas Baby
28. Gary Twinn – Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree
29. Little Bobby Rey & His Band – Rockin’ «J» Bells
30. Jamaica All Stars – Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
31. Larry Darnell – Christmas Blues
32. Jamaica All Stars – Deck The Halls
33. Katie Webster – Deck The Halls With Boogie Woogie
34. Bob Dylan – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
35. Darius Rucker – Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow
36. Bing Crosby – The Little Drummer Boy
37. Marc Broussard – Almost Christmas
38. Charles Brown – Blue Holiday
39. Mable John – I’m a Big Girl Now
40. Bob Dylan – Must Be Santa
41. Katie Melua – O Holy Night
42. Paula Fuga – Winter Swell Blues
43. Booker T. & The MG’s – Blue on Green
44. Foy Vance – Hope, Peace & Love
45. Victoria Spivey – I Ain’t Gonna Let You See My Santa Claus
46. Jackson 5 – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
47. Bobby Helms – I Wanna Go To Santa Claus Land
48. Battalion Of Saints – Jingle Bells
49. Roomful Of Blues – Santa Claus, Do You Ever Get The Blues?
50. Fats Waller & His Rhythm – Swingin’ Them Jingle Bells
51. Elvis Presley – Santa Brings My Baby Back to Me
52. St. Martin’s Symphony Of Los Angeles – What A Wonderful World
53. The Del-Rios – Just Across the Street

Vol. 3

01. The Hives,Cyndi Lauper – A Christmas Duel
02. Angela Strehli – Boogie Woogie Santa Claus
03. Julian Casablancas – Christmas Treat
04. The Como Mamas – Count Your Blessings
05. Canned Heat – Deck The Halls
06. Mahalia Jackson,The Falls-Jones Ensemble – Down By the Riverside (Remastered)
07. John Prine – Everything Is Cool
08. The Pogues,Kirsty MacColl – Fairytale of New York (feat. Kirsty MacColl)
09. Jose Feliciano – Feliz Navidad
10. Bob Dylan – Here Comes Santa Claus
11. Dent May – I’ll Be Stoned For Christmas
12. Status Quo – It’s Christmas Time (shortened edit)
13. Brian Setzer – Jingle Bells
14. Frank Sinatra – Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
15. Jimi Hendrix – Little Drummer Boy/Silent Night/Auld Lang Syne
16. The Beach Boys – Little Saint Nick
17. Crazy Cavan & The Rhythm Rockers – Lonesome Baby Blues
18. Koko Taylor – Merry, Merry Christmas
19. Mina – Old Fashion Christmas
20. Brenda Lee – Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree
21. George Strait – Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer (Album Version)
22. Samantha Fish – Run Run Rudolph
23. Eartha Kitt – Santa Baby (Remastered Version)
24. Nate Dogg & Snoop Dogg – Santa Claus Goes Straight To The Ghetto
25. Elvis Presley – Santa Claus Is Back in Town
26. Bruce Springsteen – Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town (Single Version)
27. Sufjan Stevens – Silent Night
28. Brook Benton – Soul Santa
29. JD McPHERSON – Twinkle (Little Christmas Lights)
30. Ernie Halter – All I Want For Christmas Is You
31. Joe Bonamassa – Bring Back My Cadillac
32. Carla Thomas – Gee Whiz, It’s Christmas
33. Solomon Burke – If You Need Me
34. The Barberettes – Jingle Bells
35. B.B. King – Lonesome Christmas
36. Charles Brown – Merry Christmas Baby
37. Gary Twinn – Rock, Santa, Rock
38. Brenda Lee – Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree
39. Dwight Yoakam – Run Run Rudolph
40. Elvis Presley – Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)
41. Jamaica All Stars – Silent Night, Holy Night
42. JOHNNYSWIM – The Christmas Waltz
43. Daniela Andrade – The Perfect Christmas
44. Louis Armstrong – When the Saints Go Marching in (Remastered)
45. Elvis Presley – White Christmas (Remastered)
46. Gnarls Barkley – Who’s Gonna Save My Soul
47. Jamaica All Stars – Jingle Bells
48. Lead Belly – Christmas Is Coming
49. Frank Sinatra – One Hour Non-Stop Swing and Big Band Mix
50. Canned Heat – Christmas Blues
51. The Honeydippers – Jingle Bells
52. Little Willie Littlefield – Merry Xmas
53. Otis Redding – White Christmas

Vol. 4

01. Elvis Presley – Amazing Grace
02. AC/DC – Mistress for Christmas
03. B.B. King – Back Door Santa
04. G. Love – Christmas Blues
05. Jamaica All Stars – Here Comes Santa Claus
06. Tha Dogg Pound – I Wish
07. Ramones – Merry Christmas (I Don’t Wanna Fight Tonight) (2002 Remaster)
08. Chuck Berry – Merry Christmas Baby
09. James Brown – Merry Christmas, I Love You
10. Johnny Winter – Please Come Home For Christmas
11. Laura Pausini,The Patrick Williams Orchestra – Santa Claus Llego a la Ciudad (with The Patrick Williams Orchestra)
12. The Ronettes – Sleigh Ride
13. She & Him – Snow Queen
14. LeAnn Rimes,Aloe Blacc – That Spirit of Christmas
15. Ray Charles – The Snow Is Falling
16. Otis Redding – White Christmas
17. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – White Christmas
18. Joe Bonamassa – Christmas Date Blues
19. John Prine – Christmas in Prison
20. Louis Armstrong – Christmas Night in Harlem
21. Brenda Lee – Jingle Bell Rock (Album Version)
22. James Taylor – Jingle Bells
23. Billy Fury – My Christmas Prayer
24. Kermit Ruffins – O Christmas Tree
25. Perry Como – O Holy Night
26. Elvis Presley – Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)
27. Bumble Bee Slim – Santa Claus Bring Me A New Woman
28. Elvis Presley – Santa Claus Is Back in Town
29. Canned Heat – Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
30. Meaghan Smith – Silver Bells
31. Vandaveer – The Little Drummer Boy
32. The Honeydippers – Under The Christmas Tree
33. Ella Fitzgerald – What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?
34. Lionel Hampton And His Orchestra – Boogie Woogie Santa Claus
35. The Band – Christmas Must Be Tonight
36. Cocoon – Christmas Song
37. The Pogues,Kirsty MacColl – Fairytale of New York (feat. Kirsty MacColl)
38. The White Stripes – In The Cold, Cold Night
39. Jacques Dutronc – La fille du Pere Noel
40. The Staple Singers – New Born Soul (Remastered)
41. Joe Bonamassa – O Holy Night
42. Trisha Yearwood – Reindeer Boogie
43. The Moods – Rockin’ Santa Claus
44. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – Silent Night
45. Shemekia Copeland – Stay A Little Longer, Santa
46. Jamaica All Stars – White Christmas
47. Brian Setzer,Ann-Margret – Baby It’s Cold Outside (Duet with Ann-Margret)
48. Canned Heat – Christmas Boogie
49. Mary Harris – Happy New Year Blues
50. Joe Bonamassa – Christmas Boogie (One Little Kiss)
51. Louis Jordan – Santa Claus, Santa Claus
52. The Platters – I Saw My Mummy Kissing Santa Claus
53. Louis Armstrong – Jingle Bells

 

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Countdown to Christmas: 25 ways to create the holiday home of your dreams

As this year draws to a close (finally), it’s only fitting to want to make this a holiday to remember with seasonal décor that warms the heart.

The festivities may be different in 2020, but that doesn’t mean you can’t pull out all the stops. Many of us are keen on celebrating something — anything — after all these months, and there are a fair number of newbies endeavoring to deck their halls for the first time because of limited travel and gatherings, according to Pinterest and other trend watchers.

“2020 has been a nightmare; I say, embrace it,” said Melanie Sweeney, who decorates homes specifically for the holidays and offers year-round design services through her Long Beach-based company, Olivia & Elle. “We are not canceling Christmas — but that doesn’t mean I’m getting my girls dressed in their Sunday best for greeting cards. Bake, decorate, but do the Instagram vs. Reality challenge. Do it all in sweats. Go old school and make popcorn garland, and let it get everywhere.”

Sweeney’s approach alludes to the fact that decorating this year is likely to be more of the “main event,” as Etsy puts it in its 2020 Holiday Trends report, instead of just a chore to get your home entertainment-ready. This dovetails with another newer role for seasonal décor — that of the backdrop for the ever-growing number of social media postings and online meetings that are keeping us in touch with family and friends.

The key consideration to holiday décor? “Always think outside the box,” Sweeney said. “It doesn’t have to be red and green. You don’t have to use every ornament in your bin. You do what you want. Treat it like you would treat your home interiors.”

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    Personalized velvet stockings, like these from Pottery Barn, are as traditional as the holidays get. (Courtesy of Pottery Barn)

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    You can sign off on your tree with a personalized wire tree topper like this one from the Letter Loft UK available on Etsy. (Courtesy of Etsy)

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    Jewel tones mixed with gold or silver is a popular color palette for this year’s holidays. (Courtesy of CB2)

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    One unique wrapping option from Ikea features a kitchen towel, which becomes a bonus gift. (Courtesy of Ikea)

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    A nontraditional approach to holiday decor works when it blends seamlessly with your everyday decor. (Courtesy of Annie Sloan)

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    The simplicity of grouped like objects, a green-and-white scheme and wisps of greenery make for a standout mantel. (Courtesy of CB2)

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    Gold becomes the main attraction in this tablescape, mixed with creams and whites and highlighted by candles and greenery. (Courtesy of Pottery Barn)

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    It’s not just candles that can add light to your indoor holiday decor; these light-up birch trees from Pottery Barn cast a glow on the scene. (Courtesy of Pottery Barn)

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    A red camper van holiday ornament from Cream Cornwall fits in with a California coastal vibe. (Courtesy of Cream Cornwall)

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    Mini and tabletop trees can be placed around the home and are just the right size for kids’ rooms. (Courtesy of Ikea)

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    A chandelier becomes its own holiday centerpiece with greenery and ornaments. (Courtesy of Garden Trading)

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Here are 25 specific ways to create the holiday home of your dreams.

1. Choose a theme: I grew up on the notion that holiday décor required a yearly theme, whether it be angels, teddy bears, gold and silver or plaid … and the tree ornaments matched the gift wrap, front-door wreath, etc. There is no reason for such extremes, as a color itself can also serve as a theme. “Choose a variety of materials for each ornament that are in the same complementary color family — glass, wood, small, large, to create interest,” suggests Audra Wrightson, the principal and lead designer at Audra Interiors, with offices in Corona del Mar and Arizona. “Beautiful ribbon ties all your colors together.”

2. Surround yourself with collected treasures: It doesn’t happen but once a year, the chance to revisit and reflect as you go through your boxes of holiday décor. In that sense, you unpack memories as well as decorations. “There are ways you can mix different things in and they all still come together,” Sweeney said. “[For example,] I love Old World Christmas ornaments. These glass-blown beauties come in so many colors, you can add as many as you want and it just fits.”

3. Know where to begin: For those just starting out in the holiday décor realm, “ball ornaments and ribbons are the easiest way to start fresh on a new idea; they’re inexpensive and go a long way,” Sweeney said. “It can take years to collect decor, and trends are always changing. But the base of every tree is the ribbon and the ball ornaments. Find a color that goes with a lot, like cream or gold. As you keep adding, you’ll find things that automatically go … green picks and sprays, red nutcrackers. Treat it like a blank canvas and go for it.”

4. Set the social media stage: Instagram, Snapchat and other social sharing apps are great ways to show off your seasonal décor skills. Think of what catches your eye when you’re scrolling and look to re-create what you like while avoiding the too-staged look. “Photos matter the most right now,” Etsy’s trend expert Dayna Isom Johnson said in a podcast about this year’s holiday shopping trends. “Not only do shoppers want to share the beautiful pictures and the creative pictures, but they also want to show off how creative they’ve been.”

5. Don’t forget the holiday “shelfies”: You can take a cue from Twitter’s Room Rater and seasonally curate your own book and kitchen shelves for those online meetups with family and friends. By mimicking the items that score high style points among TV news guests — like pops of color, greenery, pillows, uniquely shaped objects and good lighting — you can earn a 10/10 with your loved ones.

6. Stand on tradition: There’s something to be said for surrounding yourself in familiar motifs like Santas, bells, reindeer, snowflakes, candy canes, gingerbread men, angels, snowmen, pine cones and berries. Even the traditional can trend, such as this year’s parade of Nutcrackers and gnomes.

7. The power of pop (culture): If the traditional doesn’t ring true, maybe nostalgic and current references do. Hallmark, which launched its Keepsake Ornaments collection in 1973, is a go-to place for more than 8,500 past and present pop culture finds with themes like movies and TV, video games and childhood favorites. The picks include multiple Star Wars, Star Trek, Marvel and Disney and Harry Potter items, the “Friends” couch, a “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” musical ornament, a yellow Tonka truck and mini Lionel train cars.

8. Make it personal: Maybe you scored the box of handmade dough ornaments you and your siblings made as kids, or you’ve been amassing a collection of ornaments from your travels or special milestones: These make your own décor unique. You can also play up special interests like your pets and hobbies or go with a traditional element with a personal preference twist like a coastal Santa or farmhouse-style snowman.

9. Make it really personal: “I think this is going to be one of the biggest years for Etsy in terms of personalization,” Johnson said. This goes far beyond names on stockings: For example, the Letter Loft on Etsy features family-name wire tree toppers, Qualtry offers custom-text holiday throw-pillow covers and Johnson mentions personalized recipe cutting boards among the options.

10. Pick a color, any color: It is not written that red and green must be used. Blues are also associated with the holiday season, jewel tones conjure up images of gems and treasure, and gold and silver can be used together or separately with whites or creams and still invoke the spirit of the season.

11. Think outside the (wrapping paper) box: More people are striving to reduce waste (Etsy reported a 70% increase in searches for eco-friendly gift wrap), sparking interest in environmentally friendly options like traditional Japanese furoshiki fabric cloths and kraft paper and twine. Ikea shows a kitchen towel as wrapping in its 2020 Magical Moments holiday collection, and other reusable items to use as wrap include newspapers, grocery store bags, scarves and maps.

12. Group like items together: This is a tried-and-true interior-design tip that works well for anyone with a holiday collection. For example, your vintage Santas or sequined mini-trees have added impact if you gather them in one space as opposed to scattering them around with the other seasonal décor.

13. Repeat and repeat again: Applying another key design principle, the rule of three, is an easy, low-maintenance way to make a statement. With three seen as the “magic number” when it comes to groupings, you can, for example, display three stacked mini-wreaths, three modern red votive glass candleholders or three snowy mosaic tree cloches together, as Pottery Barn did in its 2020 holiday offerings.

14. Small spaces can have big impact: Apartments in some ways are harder to decorate for the holidays because you don’t want to overwhelm the place. One trick is to take advantage of one-dimensional wall space — Ikea’s tree wall hanger with shelves could make for a substitute tree, and holiday-themed removable wall murals and coverings take up zero space. Other smaller-space solutions include pencil trees and subbing existing pillows and throws with seasonal ones.

15. Set the table: As people used their time at home these past months to develop their culinary skills — dubbed “procrasti-baking” by trend watchers — it has led to a move toward “elevated home dining,” Etsy found. Buffets are a no-no, but even if you’re hosting a small group for the holiday meal, you can go upscale. “Dress your dining table with beautiful linens and place settings,” Wrightson said. “Make each place setting uniform. Place an ornament or small gift for each guest on their dinner plate.”

16. Bring it out to the curb: Outdoor spaces are expected to get special decorating attention this year. Pinterest reported a 125% increase over last year in searches for “Christmas door decorations,” for example. For its part, Etsy reported a 52% increase in searches for “outdoor holiday décor” and a whopping 851% increase in searches for “lawn signs.”

17. Get the outdoor lighting right: With so many lighting choices — from white to multicolored string lights, icicle lights, projected images, net lighting and more — it becomes a matter of personal preference. Looking for the latest technology? Christmas Designers is a popular website among pros and holiday light enthusiasts that features upscale, animated RGB Christmas lighting from brands like Twinkly and Minleon. These app-controlled lights can be set to music and customized by color and movement.

18. And don’t forget the indoor lighting: Battery-operated LED lighting and flameless candles have transformed where you can easily and safely add brightness throughout your home. Light strings, pre-lit mini trees, and the candles can dress up mantels, tabletops and more, as well as serve as counterweights to the main light attraction — the Christmas tree.

19. Make use of your everyday furniture and decor: There’s nothing stopping you from adding wreaths to framed art, replacing year-round accessories with holiday ones in your bookshelves or hanging stockings from front windows or even a furnace if you don’t have a fireplace. You can also search your cabinets for things like vases, trays and candleholders to help stage your holiday décor.

20. Know what you don’t like: There’s no reason to force it. Thoroughly modern, space-age ornaments will look out of place when you prefer the rustic vibe, or traditional cardinals and berries (which are hot trends this year) won’t cut it when urban cool is your jam.

21. View trends as suggestions, not rules: Speaking of what’s hot this year, you’ll also see the holiday décor catalogs and sites are full of vintage red pickup trucks, as an example. The trucks might not be your style, but a red camper van ornament could fit right in with your California casual vibe.

22. Make it yourself: As Etsy points out in its 2020 Holiday Trends report, many have given in to the DIY craze these last several months, and this is your chance to show off your newfound creative skills. Maybe you can knit your own stockings, make your own candles or create your own wooden sign, and earn bragging rights as well as décor points.

23. Spread the joy around: Holiday touches throughout your home’s spaces help lift your spirits as you go about your day. A canopy bed in the 2020 Pottery Barn Holiday Lookbook is made festive with garland, while holiday-themed towels bring the merry into the bathroom. And don’t forget the kids’ bedrooms; mini-trees are the obvious pick, but you can add twinkly lights, garland, wreaths and even a few wrapped gifts if the little ones can be trusted.

24. Take some things out of context: Sweeney says she’s decorated trees with wooden signs, lanterns and “even used album cover printouts, slapped them on some canvas and nestled it in my jazz-themed tree one year.” It’s not just the tree: a collection of snow globes or a light-up Christmas village set can be used in low-profile centerpieces, or you can hang a decorated wreath like a chandelier.

25. Simplify: This year has been enough — give yourself the grace to find shortcuts. This may mean getting the artificial tree and garlands with the lights already strung or choosing larger but fewer ornaments. “Buy at least eight to 10 of the same ornament and spread throughout your tree evenly to create uniformity,” Wrightson suggests. Simplifying can also mean lightening your load by getting everyone in the family involved in the decorating, ensuring one more way to create memories this season.

OCR L HOL DECOR 1126 FEATURED 1 NOS CUENTAN + DE ESTO AQUÍ

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