Happy Holidays!

I’m on day four of what I am calling my 12 Days of Christmas: 12 days off from work over the Christmas and New Year’s holiday. Yipeee! I’m incredibly thankful to K-Bear’s daycare mom for taking a well-deserved break and gifting me this first-ever, extended holiday staycation.

Our first three days were spent baking and delivering goodies to the neighbors, gathering with friends for our annual Zoo Lights excursion, wrapping gifts and snuggling with K-Bear. There is something about the peace and beauty of these days leading to Christmas that make me forever happy and grateful for all we have.

I’ll be busy this week with a painting project in the house, and a snowshoe or two thanks to a winter storm coming our way just in time for a white Christmas. I’ll see you back on January 1 with a surprise!

Until then, from my family to yours, I wish you a holiday week filled with peace and love, fresh air adventures and a multitude of smiles and surprises that only a fat man in a red suit can deliver. 😉

Daly Family

xoxo

 

 

Yoga and Ski Retreats

Yoga Ski RetreatWow, can it be that the holidays are already here? We’ve finally been getting some snow here in Colorado which always makes Christmas feel that much more special. But the white stuff has put just one thing on my mind: skiing! It’s the reason I moved to Colorado 15 years ago, and it still puts a smile on my face all these years later. As does yoga!

Finding a retreat that combines time on the hill with time on the mat would be a dream! So as I bid adieu to you until January 1 (with a special surprise or two!), and set off to enjoy my time away from work and with the family, I am happy to welcome Matt Candelaria, a friend of mine from Gaiam TV, with this guest post. 

Happy holidays, my friends! I hope you all get a little yoga as well as a little skiing or other outdoor playtime over the holiday break! xoxo Continue reading

Two Gifts that Give Back

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Wow, it’s been a busy few weeks on the Soulicious Life for gifts! In addition to my 2012 Gift Guide featuring affordable fair trade, handmade and eco-friendly items, I’ve talked about ideas for thinking outside the proverbial gift box and gift giving etiquette tips.

You see, I was actually on top of shopping this year! (For the record, I also got holiday cards out this year. NOT that there is anything wrong with my Happy New Year cards of the past few years, but I am total relishing in the fact that I have my act together.)

I’m sure this is because K-Bear is getting older. But I digress.

With Christmas just a week-and-a-half away, this is my last post on holiday gift-giving. Two of my favorite national non-profit organizations have fabulous opportunities to donate to their cause in your loved ones name. Whether the guy or gal on your list is a foodie, environmentalist, animal lover, or child advocate there is a donation ready to melt their heart while helping to make the world a better place. Continue reading

Savory Fig and Walnut Stuffing

Stuffing is hands-down my favorite holiday dish. This past Thanksgiving I ran a 5K just so I could eat a whole lot of this particular version that I discovered new this year and adapted from A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa. Truth be told, I would’ve eaten the whole pan myself, 5K or not. It’s so simple to make and is the perfect mix of not-too-sweet and savory.

I hope you can find room for it on your holiday table. You won’t be disappointed, I promise! Continue reading

10 Ways to Think Outside the Proverbial Gift Box

I love the holiday season! That includes scoping out the neighbors’ holiday lights on the way home each evening; listening to holiday music in my office; gathering with friends for our annual HoliDaly party; sitting in the glow of the Christmas tree each night; and introducing K-bear to Santa, There is simply so much to enjoy!

What I don’t enjoy? The commercialism; the onset of Christmas in stores before Halloween candy has been handed out; the endless ads luring us to buy this and spend on that. I enjoy choosing gifts for my friends and family, but I prefer that those gifts that enhance our local community, celebrate local talent, provide to hard-working folks, or upcycle items in some special way, rather than simply put money into the pocket of another large corporation. Continue reading

2012 Soulicious Gift Guide: Eco-Friendly, Fair Trade, Handmade

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Eeek! I’m so excited! When it comes to gifts, I love to seek out the unique, the useful and the fun. I also feel best when I spend my money on products that make the world a little bit better.

So move over Oprah’s Favorite Things! In the Soulicious spirit, I’ve scouted ten gifts for you that are eco-friendly, handmade or fair trade. They are all unique, affordable items you can feel good about giving, and those who receive them will be delighted. It was a tough job, but I’ve tested each and every one, and I hope you love them as much as I do. You might even find yourself buying yourself a special something for yourself, as of course you should! 🙂

Happy gift giving … Fa la la la la, la la la la! Continue reading

Festive Beverage: Iced or Hot Pumpkin Pie

Hot chocolate and iced lattes, move over. Pumpkin is here.

If you do nothing else this week, you must try this recipe. If there is an easier way for a festive, delicious pumpkin fix, I have yet to find it. And frankly, I’m done searching. This. is. it. Doesn’t matter if you live in Des Moines or Daytona.

That’s because you can enjoy it hot or iced. You won’t be disappointed, and neither will any guests. This recipe makes one serving; multiply as necessary. Maybe even toss it in your slow cooker for a Thanksgiving day warm-up or holiday tree-trimming treat. Brilliant! Continue reading

Fresh Pear and Toasted Walnut Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette

PearWalnutSaladThe apple cider vinaigrette on this salad really pulls the flavors of cheese and fruit together. It originally came from foodnetwork.com where it was the companion to a roasted butternut squash salad. However, because saying the word “squash” sends SoulDaddy running for the door, I happily dished up another accompaniment for the flavorful vinaigrette.

Light and full of flavor, this salad is a perfect match for cooler weather when apples and pears also happen to be at their peak. It pairs beautifully with heavier cheese dishes such as fondue or homemade mac and cheese, but stands up just as well to a hearty soup or stuffing at your next table. Continue reading

A Holiday Challenge

It’s one week before Christmas and I’m failing miserably. My holiday card is going to be another New Year’s card. My child’s holiday photos – which still need to be sent across the country – will not be ready for pick up until five days before Christmas. We have not yet gone to visit Santa despite the Groupon I purchased. And I have done nearly no shopping.

Of course, this is completely my fault. I challenged us this year. I’m so tired of the consumerism and excessive buying that Christmas has become that I challenged Eddy and I to buy nothing brand new. It can be second-hand, handmade, or an experience, i.e. a massage or yoga class punch card (hint, hint, hubby).  Continue reading