In the spirit of the holiday season, I proudly present a Christmas-themed Belle’s Weekly Reading. Happy Holidays!
1) Every year, NORAD tracks Santa’s present-delivering progress on the Internet. Last week, a friend sent me an article detailing how NORAD got into the business of tracking St. Nick, and the story is truly charming. Let’s just say, it all started with a Sears ad and a typo.
2) I typically wear a sweater dress to Christmas dinner. It’s enough for a dinner with family, but not so much that I feel out-of-place in a small, casual town. For a casual celebration, I like this $23 Fair Isle sweater from Old Navy (it’s cotton, for those allergic to wool). If you need something a bit dressier, I like this marled sweater dress from LOFT with a tapered skirt (also in petites). And should you need something suited for a cocktail party, try this snug dress from Guess with sequin embellishments.
Plus-size? Try this inexpensive Mossimo dress in eggplant, which you can dress up or down. Petite? Check out this pointelle sweater dress from Ann Taylor that is so chic you could wear it to work. Tall? This color block v-neck dress from Ann Taylor is lovely.
3) And a partridge in a pear tree! This infographic tracks the cost of purchasing the items from the 12 Days of Christmas song, you’ll never guess what 11 pipers piping will set you back.
4) The Neiman Marcus Fantasy Gifts Guide is always good for a laugh. Obviously, everyone needs a $150,000 bespoke falconry companion and an $11,000 spin cycle. Also, the Neiman Marcus food catalog puts Williams-Sonoma’s selection to shame. I wonder what a $175 cheesecake tastes like?
5) “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” Still one of my favorites.
6) 45,000 people participated in Reddit’s global secret santa gift giving. One of the participants was shocked to discover that her Secret Santa was Bill Gates. His gift? A travel book and a donation to Heifer International, a charity which helps people in the developing world escape hunger and poverty through agriculture.
If you’re still hunting for a last-minute Secret Santa gifts, you can choose an old standby like a set of coffee mugs with Marvel action figures or a pen that doubles as a flash drive. Or, you could go for a silly gift, like a Shake Weight, a pack of Krazy Straws or a head massager.
7) Given the recent controversy over comments about Santa’s race, the Associated Press put together a wonderful article about the different faces of Santa in America. Proving that the spirit of the holiday is not limited to one ethnicity, creed or color.
8) The water at my parents’ home in Montana has a really high mineral content. So high that it turns hair green. Awesome. Luckily, Redken makes a shampoo that removes mineral deposits from hair. Otherwise, I’ll be colored up like The Grinch by Christmas morning.
9) There is one street in my hometown where every house decorates for Christmas. The display always impressed me, until I saw this CNN article chronicling the world’s most detailed Christmas light displays. Whoa. Talk about a spike in your power bill.
10) Last New Year’s Eve, I spotted several women walking down the streets of D.C. barefoot after a night of revelry. Just thinking about it makes me gag. Avoid this embarrassment by asking Santa to fill your stocking with a pair of Footzyfolds, flats that fold up to fit into your purse. This crystal and black pair is perfect for evening attire, or go for the beige leather pair styled to look like a pair of Chloe flats.
11) If you’re planning to do some baking this week, Cupcakes and Cashmere has some delicious-looking treats to share. Personally, I’ve always been partial to chocolate-peppermint pie over cookies, but to each her own.