Hi Ladies, Elves and Mistletoe-lovers!

Tis the season. String the lights. Dust off the ornaments. Get out your fat pants. The holidays are a-comin’! And boy am I excited! This time of year, I am like a kid on Christmas eve or a pregnant lady in line for the ladies’ room – I am jumping up and down and I just can’t wait!!

I LOVE the holidays. Which is funny since I spent it as a youngster being carted back and forth between parents and later on, trying to figure out where the heck to spend them! But I am a romantic and a big softee beneath my “balls to the wall” smartass persona. I listen to Christmas songs every single moment from Thanksgiving onward and I already have cinnamon spice candles burning and homemade pumpkin ice cream in the freezer. Oh hells yeah.

So how does one take this commercialized albeit special season and make it one’s own? Here are some tips I have to making the holidays special for you and yours:

Candles are cheap and create coziness. Get a holiday scented one and turn your home into instant holiday bliss. I buy tea candle lights by the truckload super cheap at www.Quickcandles.com
Even the most domestically-impaired urbanite can light a friggin candle!

This year is the first year my hubby are man and wife for the holidays, so I surprised him with personalized stockings with our nicknames and even one for Miss Winnie! And I bought a holiday welcome plaque with our family name on it for outside the house for just $15. I am obsessed with monograms and there are so many inexpensive fun decorating ideas that you can do. Go to www.Personalcreations.com (Warning; some of the stuff is uber-kitsch so sift through the Grandma crap and you will find some great stuff. Seeing your name on stuff just makes it so special.

Spread the joy ladies!!! No, you do not have to buy gifts for everyone. But this is the ONLY time of year to really celebrate being thankful and that warm, fuzzy feeling that we all deserve. Send cards, make people some pumpkin pie. My L.A. friends and I get together every single year for an annual Christmas brunch. It is something we look forward to all year and it is very special to us. Go create your own annual holiday get together with friends. They will absolutely appreciate it.

I LOVE holiday cards – as in family portraits. When I was single, I would do a card with me and Miss Winnie and it was so great because I felt like I had a family and no longer felt left out when my friends would send a card with their husband and kids on it. I was a grown-up dammit and I would create my own family. Everyone loved our cards.
And, you do not have to spend a fortune. Now, my husband and I go to the JCPenney Portrait studio and get our picture done. It is sooo fun and easy and the lighting is actually great. It is so cheap and the turnaround is one week. Go to www.jcpportraits.com and download the latest coupon. Just WAIT till you see our Xmas card this year – it’s a doozy!

The hubby and I also create a hilarious holiday video which we post on Youtube. So easy and instant gratification. Go and make your own and remind those far away how entertaining you are!

Six blow-up holiday figures on the front lawn may be a bit much and I’m not much of figurine keepsake gal, but don’t be shy when it comes to decoratin so everyone can see that it is holiday time at your place! Candy canes in bowls, the cinnamon-scented pine cones at Ralph’s supermarket (they are the bomb.com), wreaths, etc. And Do NOT forget to watch the classic films like Rudolph and my new favorite “Elf.”

When all is said and done and the last gift has been opened and the fruitcake thrown away, get away from it all. Some may really need it depending on family (I have two that particularly push me over the edge). We are lucky in California because there are tons of weekend getaways that are drivable and relatively inexpensive. Big bear, Palm Springs, Vegas, Lake Arrowhead. Take your honey and make a plan to GET AWAY. Even if you can’t get away until February, book it now. You will have something to look forward to in 2011. When I was single, I would treat myself to the spa on New Year’s Day. It was the most heavenly way to begin the new year. Pampered, refreshed and feeling groovy. If you can’t do any of these, then SLOW DOWN and go to the movies, lunch with friends. RELAX. Life will go by fast, fast and you need to enjoy some of it.

The holidays come once a year so don’t be a bah humbug or a scrooge. And if you do want to, then STAY AWAY from people and don’t bring others down. Have quiet time, read books, hibernate like the bears. Nothing wrong with that.

Happy Happy and Joy Joy to you most wonderful Ladies in the Pink!