Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

We would like to take a moment to say thank you for your support of our blog and our other projects over the past few months!  We love sharing with you and we have lots of cool stuff planned for 2018!

Nathan Susie & Hudson.jpg
Damian Eva & Cru.jpg

While celebrating and enjoying ourselves this season, we also like to take a moment to think about others.  We have a designated plan for giving back and our support this year is going to two very worthwhile causes.  If you haven't made your plans for giving, consider:

The Hospital for Sick Kids in Toronto

Fort York Food Bank

A video call from Santa - from Portable North Pole (PNP)

We had an early Christmas gift delivered to the house from our friends at Portable North Pole (PNP).  

The gift included the Do-Good Elf, the Twenty Four Sleeps 'til Christmas book and access to a personalized Video Message from Santa and the crew at the workshop up north!

We've incorporated Hudson's video into the latest episode of Hudson's Haul: 

I am impressed by the cinematic quality of the video!  They've created a rich and authentic world upon which to build a customized experience.  Having Santa be able to speak to Hudson by name, know his age, and be able to reference pictures from our real life made this a magical experience.  The build-up to a reveal when Hudson could have been on either the "Nice List" or "Naughty List" had him on the edge of his seat.

We will make a new annual tradition of creating a personalized PNP video every year!  This up-close look at the inner workings of the North Pole village is such a treat.

The Elf was immediately given the name "Snowflake" and has been a constant companion for Hudson this week.  She even came to watch Hudson perform at his school Christmas concert.

Finally, I really appreciate that Portable North Pole donates 5% of all online sales to children's hospitals around the world. PNP has donated over $300,000 since 2012.   

Toronto Christmas Market

Since 2013, Damian and I have made a point of going to the Toronto Christmas Market together with our families.  We book a date that will make sense and head down for an afternoon of fun and Christmas cheer.  A typical visit includes a visit to Santa, some shopping, a few snacks, lots of photos, and a sit-down bite to eat.

This year, Susie and I had taken Hudson to see Santa earlier, so we came up with a new way to enjoy the market: a photo scavenger hunt!   We made a list, checked it twice, and made our way down to the market.  Here is our list of must-have shots to finish the scavenger hunt:

  • Shot of the big Christmas Tree

  • An ornament bigger than your head

  • Pink trees

  • A gingerbread house

  • A photo with a smiling elf

  • A photo with soup

  • The Big Heart

  • A shot with the Werthers display

  • A shot with the Ferrero booth

  • The #TCM17 hashtag

  • A picture of lights

  • A shot of an oversize present

  • A cask

  • A picture of some people carolling

  • The Ferris Wheel

  • The Carousel

  • A shot of an old vehicle

  • A picture of a disco ball

  • A shot with one of the performers

  • A picture on the "merci" bench

Of course, you can mix up the above with any of your favourites.  We made up a prize for Hudson if he could find all of the shots on the list ... a $10 prize that he could shop for as we were on the hunt.

Here is a Flickr album with some of our favourite shots from 2017:

Toronto Christmas Market 2017