My Family Lights Up My Life! Fun at the Philadelphia Zoo’s Luminature

Yesterday, my daughter, mother, sister in-law, nieces and I arrived at the Philadelphia Zoo in the evening ready for some amazing sights. While the animals slumbered, the beautiful lights and decorations lit the night’s sky at their annual Luminature event. There was a huge light-up penguin show, a big flamingo tree, shimmer just about everywhere we turned, a sea display and gorgeous Christmas trees, and we were enamored by it all!

What made this evening extra special was watching my daughter and niece’s faces light up as they walked and even raced to the next light display letting out joyous giggles. I’m so grateful for these moments and am glad Quinn expressed interest in going for a third time.

All the best,


On the Second Day of Christmas, My Daughter Gave to Me…Too Much Fun Decorating

On the second day of Christmas, my daughter gave to me…too much fun decorating and one great outing selecting our Christmas tree. Whether purchasing a real Christmas tree  or digging the artificial one out of the attic or basement, the hope is that it will be a fun time for all decorating the tree and that it will not be just one person doing all of the work.

Luckily, my four year old loves decorating and wanted to start putting ornaments on our tree as soon as it was erected in our dining room corner. We waited one day in the event that the tree expanded some after being tied up to our car and in the cold, and that Sunday after Thanksgiving we got to work.

Last year, Quinn wanted a rainbow tree and asked for the same this year. While she handled the lower colors: green, blue, purple and pink (I know pink is technically not in the rainbow, but Quinn loves the color), I handled the upper colors: red, orange and yellow. This was such a great activity because Quinn loves sorting the colors as she did last year. This year, she even asked if her doll’s could help. How could I refuse? “Sure, the more the merrier,” I told her.

After we finished decorating, she asked me, “Do you think Heavenly Brownie (That’s what she named our tree) likes the way we decorated him? Do you think he’s happy to be in our home?” I responded, “Absolutely!”

All the best,


On the Twelfth Day of Christmas, My Little Girl Gave to Me…Fun Activities for Christmas Eve

“So today is Christmas Eve?” my daughter inquired. “Yes, it is!” I responded. Christmas Eve can be such a busy and even stressful time, but I truly did enjoy the fun activities we did this year.

We started out by catching a 9:30 am showing of the movie “Sing,” which was a fun movie that my daughter and I both enjoyed. Later on in the afternoon, we baked cookies for Santa with Quinn sneaking a handful of sprinkles every so often. After dinner, my husband suggested that we drive through our neighborhood to take a look at some of the homes decked out in beautiful Christmas lights. One home really stood out from the rest, so much so that we parked our car and got out to take a look. The people were so kind and even offered a candy cane to my daughter and said that she can take a picture with the big teddy bear they had on display. I’m already thinking about how we can improve our own Christmas lights for next year as a result of seeing theirs.

Before bed, I presented Quinn with a snowflake that illuminates letting Santa know to stop by our house for her. She was eager to get to bed just to hang it in the window.

Now that she’s sleep, it’s time for my husband and I to get ready for Santa’s visit. Here’s to a great Christmas Eve.

All the best,


On the Third Day of Christmas, My Little Girl Gave to Me…Being Mesmerized by Christmas Lights


On the Third Day of Christmas, My Little Girl Gave to Me…Being Mesmerized by Christmas Lights.

“Is it dark enough to see the lights, Mommy? Can we go outside to see them now? Is Santa in the window too?” My little girl excitedly inquired. Looking at the twinkling Christmas lights is a simple activity, yet it’s something I’ve always enjoyed doing because it brings me joy and puts a smile on my face. Quinn loves looking at the lights too and wanted to go outside with me with no coat (I convinced her to put one on) just to see the light decorations on our house.

This year, we added Santa and Mrs. Claus in the downstairs windows, the nostalgic leg lap from “Christmas Story” on our front porch, a snowman and Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer in the front yard and moved the reindeer and sleigh with gifts that light up to the side yard. Another feature that’s not exactly lights is a digital decoration where Santa is busy placing presents, going into his red sack or eating cookies in our the second floor window using the special projector by the company AtmosFX. It is so realistic that my three year old along with some guests at our annual holiday party really thought Santa was upstairs in our room.

While there will be a little bump in our electric bill, having those beautiful Christmas lights twinkle and having Santa greet us in the window makes it feel a lot like Christmas.

Here’s a little clip of us looking at Santa in the window.

All the best,


On the Second Day of Christmas, My Little Girl Gave to Me…Fun Decorating Our Christmas Tree

On the second day of Christmas, my little girl gave to me, fun decorating our Christmas tree.

“Next year, let’s do a fun tree, Mommy!” my little girl suggested back in 2015. For the past few years, even before Quinn was born, our tree could be classified as sophisticated, so when Quinn asked about a fun tree, it was right on time because I was eager to break up the monotony of the same decorations year after year. Shortly after Christmas last year, I started googling “fun Christmas trees,” but the types were vast. So I thought, why not ask my daughter what she thought would be a fun tree, and she immediately said, “How about a rainbow tree just like my playroom!?”

I was instantly on board, told my husband, and we were both on the hunt for after Christmas discounts on ornaments since quite a few would be required, especially with the tree in previous years just having blue, silver and gold ornaments. Then, in September, I saw a commercial for a Christmas tree light called “Tree Dazzler.” I did a little research and found that it was a knockoff of the original “Geek My Tree,” from Shark Tank which comes with an app, unlike the Tree Dazzler, and far more color sequences to set the lights to do just about whatever you want. Though much pricier than the “Tree Dazzler,” it goes perfectly with our rainbow theme, and I was able to set the lights to be in accordance with the color order of the ornaments.

Not only was it fun decorating our tree together, it was a wonderful way to reinforce sorting, color recognition and the order of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. The decorations are certainly more fun and playful now, just like my little three year old wanted. Quinn is very happy with the new tree decorations, and so am I.

All the best,