Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Tips for Slowing Down this Holiday Season on the North Shore

Anticipation is growing as Christmas is less than a week away!  For many of you, this means taking care of last minute shopping, party arrangements and preparing your North Shore home for out of town guests.

It can be easy to become busy this last week before the biggest holiday of the year, but it’s also important to take some time to reflect on the past year and the true meaning of the holiday season.  

As a North Shore Real Estate agent, I enjoy providing helpful home tips, buying and selling advice and updates on the current North Shore Real Estate market.  However, I also know that a large part of living in a North Shore home is enjoying the excellent quality of life the North Shore has to offer.  Here are just a few ideas that you can do to slow down the pace and truly soak in this festive holiday season with loved ones.

1. Candlelight Night- There’s something very calming about candlelight.  Why not get together with friends or family, light a few candles and have your fireplace glowing and take time to share your favorite Christmas memories!

2. Slow Down- Feel that you have a million thoughts running through your head and a long list of things to do before Christmas Eve?  Sit down and just take a minute to relax.  Find a quiet place in your home, enjoy the coziness of a fire in the fireplace in your North Shore home and just block out all the noise.  Being able to take a few minutes to do this will help you to enjoy the holiday more as you feel relaxed and more focused on the true meaning of the holidays.

3. Potluck- Instead of trying to do it all and take on hosting a large Christmas dinner in your home on the North Shore; have a potluck!  Whether you’re gathering with your neighbors or are expecting a large group of family and friends; sharing the cooking will take the pressure off of you!  This also gives others the opportunity to share their favorite holiday recipes!

4. Movie Night- Looking for something to do for a fun holiday event?  Host a movie night with holiday treats and your favorite holiday movies!  This inexpensive gathering will be fun for children and adults alike!

5. Cocktail Party- Try hosting a cocktail party in place of a sit down dinner.  If you want to keep things simple, and don’t have an entire evening free- this can be a way to gather with friends over a little Christmas cheer.  Have an under $10 gift exchange for added fun!

6. Hot Chocolate Tasting- This classic winter drink is loved by many and with all the new flavors out there, a hot chocolate tasting may be just the thing for a fun holiday idea!  The tasting can take place for the children while the adults enjoy their cocktail party, or can become part of your Christmas Eve traditions!

7. Winter Walk- The North Shore is beautiful this time of year!  Even though the leaves on the trees are gone, the Pine trees offer that touch of green and holiday spirit.  You’ll also enjoy taking in the sights of the beautiful Christmas decorations adorning North Shore homes. The fresh air will be invigorating and discovering your favorite shops and restaurants around the North Shore is always a great idea!

8. Give Back- Whether it’s your time, money, or donations… give back this season!  There are many who aren’t able to experience the holidays to the fullest due to illness, loneliness or lack of resources to buy gifts for loved ones.  Why not take the time to give back in some way?  Gather your North Shore neighbors or family and come up with creative ways to give back to Winnetka, Deerfield, Highland Park, Glencoe, Northbrook or any other of the North Shore communities! You’ll enjoy seeing the smiles on others faces!

I hope these ideas inspire you to step away from the busy schedule of this final week before Christmas and to appreciate the time with family and friends!

If you have any questions about living on the North Shore or are interested in beginning your North Shore home search after the holiday season; please feel free to contact me!  I would be happy to help you through the home buying process!

Happy Holidays!

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert

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