Favourite Holiday Snacks

I have spent so much time this Blogmas talking about beverages that I have absolutely forgotten to talk about snacks! What am I even doing here?! I think we all know that the holidays are really all about the food. Latkes at Hanukkah, that Christmas Goose that is bigger than a small boy in The Christmas Carol, fancy cheeses everywhere. And snacks! You know… your favourite holiday snacks.

Like These Bars

peanut butter marshmallow squares - favourite holiday snacks

Okay, yes, those peanut butter marshmallow squares are a classic. (I will never forget the time that my coworker Gillian made these and, for whatever reason, all the peanut butter sunk to the bottom. It left a very light glaze on the rest of the marshmallows. Absolutely delicious, but very weird.)

Anyway, despite that complete non-sequitur in the parentheses, I am not talking about the baking and snacks that we make at home. Though those are great. What I am talking about is the special, seasonal versions of snacks that brands put out. Look, I wait all year for these delicious goodies. So here they are, my favourite holiday snacks.

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Eighty-Eight Beer Advent Calendar – Day Nine

Happy Day 18, everyone! I cannot believe how fast this month has gone by. This happens pretty much every month, I think, but I’m always surprised when it’s almost the 25th. (This is when I get paid. It’s not a Christmas reference. But also it is.)

Anyway, I must admit that I am a little bit burnt out. Nothing to do with blogmas, only to do with having too many fun things to get up to. If you read yesterday’s post, you can probably read between the lines that I left my house at 7:30 am on Friday and only returned home to sleep between then and 10 pm on Saturday.

Today was a very similar vibe – I left home at about 8:30 for Pilates at Junction 9, then headed directly over to my mom’s house for the annual holiday baking tradition. I followed that up with picking up some sushi from Kinjo Express, where they are always so lovely, then finally tried to grab some veggies for Christmas. (I was not super successful. I’m not paying $9 for snap peas and $6 for a cauliflower, thank you. I will follow the flyers and find a better price.)

Rylee helping baking

But look at how cute our little baking helper was! (She was helping by tearing apart a Toblerone box.)

Anyway, when I got home for the next two hours, I just read in the bath and then laid on my bed, scrolling on my phone. Which I literally never do. Like I said, burn out.

I finally rallied, though. I did slightly more meal prep than I expected to actually achieve at – vegan banana muffins for breakfasts and lentil quesadillas for lunches. And I washed my sheets. And now I’m writing a blog post. The world is my oyster, my friends. And speaking of oysters…

Day Nine Clue

Day 9 Clue

Actually, I’m not speaking of oysters at all. I’m just too tired for good transitions. So instead, please read the Day Nine clue which states “You deserve to sleep in”. This time I was pretty sure it was not Hammer Pants…

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The Best Holiday Punch Recipe (also the easiest)

Holiday Punch image
Photo by Elena Leya on Unsplash

Oh my gosh, you guys, the holiday activities have been filling every little inch of my life recently. Which is why I’m writing this post at a casual 11 pm, very chill posting time. Normal choices. If you read yesterday’s post, you kind of have an idea of what I’ve been up to. I did, in fact, do all of those things listed in that opening spiel. Plus, Claire and I headed over to ONE18 Empire for fancy Old Fashioneds and truffle everything after our show. (This is the go to place in Calgary if you want a smoky Old Fashioned.) And then I recorded Mystery, Outsiders, and Abs. Okay, that last one isn’t festive, but still it added to the very full vibe of my life right now. I’m sure many of you are in the same place… which is why I want to share something that might make your life a little bit easier.

The Best Holiday Punch Recipe

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Eighty-Eight Beer Advent Calendar – Day Eight

It is Day 16 of Blogmas (in the home stretch no matter how many days I’m doing), and I have so many fun unexpected holiday plans this weekend. Tonight I’ll be heading out to Market Collective with my mom to hopefully finish my gift shopping and definitely buy some delicious hummus. Afterwards, Megan and I are going to hit up Cold Garden to get festive with some Kegnog (yes, it is exactly what it sounds like). And then I think Claire and I are going to try to see the Lunchbox Theatre holiday show tomorrow! 

But before I can do any of that? It’s time to talk about Beer Eight…

Day Eight Clue

Day Eight Clue

The Day Eight clue read “The gift we always wanted but never got”. Is this one Hammer Pants!?

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Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra (Theatre Thursday)

On Theatre Thursdays, I discuss topics related to theatre. I also write about local productions that I think #yyc should see. Today I’m talking about something tangentally related to theatre that I absolutely loved – The Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra.

Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra - A Rocky Mountain High Christmas publicity image
A Rocky Mountain High Christmas (image lovingly stolen from: Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra)

This week on Theatre Thursday, I want to share something just a little bit different. Normally I’m right within my comfort zone with these posts. I know the theatres, I know the artists, I know what to expect when I walk into the space. But this time? This time was something very new to me. On November 29, we braved the cold, bundled up, and headed over to the Grey Eagle Casino to take in an experience that I didn’t even know existed in Calgary… The Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra!

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Home Alone Taproom Pop-Up at Eighty-Eight (and Day 7 of the Advent Calendar)

What’s up, y’all! It’s T-minus 11 days until Christmas, Hanukkah is starting at nightfall on Sunday, Kwanzaa in 12 days, and numerous other celebrations are popping up all over the place. Time is just racing now and, here in the holiday of Blogmas, we’re already at another beer on the beer advent calendar.

I don’t have a particularly interesting story about what I did while drinking this beer (and it’s one that I’m familiar with, so no fun beer facts to discover)… so instead I’m going to talk about something super cool that is happening at the Eighty-Eight taproom during these upcoming busy 11 days. 

Home Alone Taproom Pop-Up at Eighty-Eight Brewing

Home Alone Taproom Pop-up

Yesss, that’s right! Kevin McAllister, the Wet Bandits, and all your favourite Home Alone easter eggs have settled in at Eighty-Eight and it is truly epic. The amount of work they must have put in to transform this space (which is always pretty stunning) is truly incredible. Like… look up there! They re-created the flight board! 

Every inch of the space is covered in wrapping paper, presents, and other Home Alone related Easter Eggs. I mean, there are cardboard figure cutouts up against the second floor windows, so that when you are outside it looks like there is a party on, in classic Kevin McAllister fashion. And if that’s not enough, there is a full-on Home Alone Easter Egg scavenger hunt to keep you busy!

Home Alone Taproom Pop-Up Menu

Oh yeah, they’ve also made some little changes to the menu. The Wet Bandits – not just movie villains, but also a super intense beer. It’s a Triple IPA, with a 10.1% ABV and an 88 IBU. Yes, I am scared of it, thank you. For those like me who can’t commit to a full 10% beer, they are also offering Marv and Harry pre-set flights. 

And they’ve really committed to the bit by giving their menu a little visual makeover too. Look! The cheese pizza is renamed. We love commitment to a theme. (As a quick note, I hit up Eighty-Eight with Claire and Megan the other day to enjoy some brews and pizza. The cheese pizza is amazing.)

Omg, I still have a whole beer to reveal here! I promise, I’ll keep it quick. 

Day Seven Clue

Day Seven’s clue read “Relax, put down the work, it’s holiday time”. Hmmm..

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Festive Kindle Unlimited Books

Festive Kindle Unlimited Books for this holiday season banner

We’ve officially hit the halfway point of Blogmas (unless I’m going to continue it until Dec 31), and it’s time for another book post. Because y’all love book posts and I love book posts and the holiday season is all about love. And festive Kindle Unlimited books. And also cheese. (Will there be a cheese post forthcoming? Who knows?! Actually… that’s not a bad idea…)

In my Best Books I Read in 2022 post, I briefly mentioned the Wild West of Kindle Unlimited. This is a wild and uncontrollable land that I have definitely gotten deeply lost in over the past six months or so. Like many people, I was tempted with the offer of two free months and the fact that most of the Percy Jackson-verse books are available through it, which made my re-read this summer a snap. And then I realized so many of the books you hear buzz about online are also available on Kindle Unlimited. So here I am… writing about Kindle Unlimited, lol.

Quick Kindle Unlimited Details

  • After your intro trial, it costs $10/month in Canada.
  • You can borrow up to 20 titles at once and can switch them out at any time.
  • It’s a real grab bag between bigger names (such as Rick Riordan, as alluded to above) and indie or newer authors. There are tons of self-published books. I think that’s what makes it wild and fun!
  • Because of this, a lot of the book blurbs will actually identify which tropes are going to appear in the book. I also think that’s fun.
  • You don’t need a Kindle to read – you can download a kindle app onto your phone or tablet, or even just read in an internet browser.
  • You can cancel your membership and then re-sign up at a later time, just like all of your favourite streaming services.

And now to illustrate my point, here are a few festive kindle unlimited books I’ll be reading this holiday season. I’m diving head first into the book version of Hallmark Christmas movies this year!

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Eighty-Eight Beer Advent Calendar – Day Six

Another day, another blogmas post coming in just under the wire. I’m going to have to do a round up post on the social medias of all these late night blogmas posts, I think.

Today was a really great day, though. I have a holiday tradition of taking a day off work and going shopping with my dad to help him pick out gifts for my mom. I do a weekday morning workout class, my dad buys me a tea, we hit up a few stores, and then my parents and I go for a fun late lunch. This year, I took a Strength and Sweat class with the incredible Nicole Bouwman – I don’t get to take her class often because she teaches when I work. You should 100% take advantage of the thing I can’t do and take her Monday 0930 or Saturday 1030 class. I got my favourite Cardamom French Toast tea from David’s Tea, we bought my mom some very exciting gifts. And then we headed over to one of my local pubs, Penny Black, and I had a restaurant burger for the first time in ages. Delicious.

And now I’m going to write about a beer I was afraid of.

Day Six Clue

Beer 6 Clue

The Day Six Clue read “Did you say night-cap??” and I will be honest that I had no idea what this clue was leading up to. I also still might not know what it was referencing. Maybe the drink knocked that smart part of my brain out of my head?

Because once you follow me through the cut, you’ll understand why I say this.

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Santa Gifts Hot Takes

Santa Gifts Image

Happy Day 11! I am actually quite surprised to be writing this post tonight. I had something else vaguely in mind and it isn’t a topic that I particularly thought I had opinions about. But today was a busy day (as alluded to yesterday) and I saw something on social media that made me incapable of keeping my mouth shut. So here I am… a single lady without kids… talking about Santa gifts.

The Santa Gifts Hot Take That Triggered Me

Okay, so I literally just stumbled upon this on the wild west of the internet… but someone anonymously shared an opinion that when parents don’t want the “big gift” to come from Santa (slash, they don’t get the credit from it), it’s gross. Well, I think they are gross!

Okay, maybe that is an overstatement, but I do think it is a fairly narrow-minded and not nuanced point of view. Allow me to explain.

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Eighty-Eight Beer Advent Calendar – Day Five

Let me say, y’all, I have never been more glad that I have a beer advent calendar to fall back on during Blogmas. I know a lot of people pre-write their posts, but that isn’t for me, fam. I prefer to share my life as it is unfolding and also I prefer to live in a state of utter chaos. Because I make healthy choices. 

Anyway, today has been super full and tomorrow suggests it will be the same. Classic Saturday – working at Movelology, doing some Pilates, gluing a carpet back together, going to Rylee’s Christmas concert, buying bras… Tomorrow will be equally busy, full of barre, the Saskatoon Berry Farm holiday market, some crib, and recording MOA. I also have to watch the Shadowhunters episode by tomorrow and three movies for Academy versus Audience by Tuesday. So, as you can imagine, I’m very glad that I can write a short little post about beer today!

Let me take a minute to talk about Rylee’s Christmas concert first, though. Adorable. Toddlers are the cutest. But it definitely reinforced for me how young she is (she turns 3 at the end of the month). When I’m playing with her, I feel like she’s such a big kid and has grown up so much, but then I saw, like, the 4 year olds in her class and they were so much bigger. She’s very cute though. 

Also- parents of toddlers? Y’all should stop talking when the emcee is. Even if she has a microphone. Man, did the amount of people who kept talking give me anxiety… Anyway! Onto the beer!

Clue Five

Day 5 clue

Clue Five read “One toot is all you need”. I didn’t have a good immediate guess, but once again the Eighty-Eight website gave me a fairly good guess… 

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