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Tag Archives: Home Alone

Family Gift Guide

Here at RetroFestive.ca, we are very proud to offer a wide variety of nostalgic gift ideas. Whether it is a gag gift for Secret Santa at work, or something sweet for your Grandparents, we truly offer something for everyone on your Christmas list.

Here is an A&W burger-style family gift guide to help with shopping this season!

Baby
Family gift guide

Everyone know that babies are the cutest, but for some reason they do not remember the gifts they receive during their first Christmas. But if they are wearing a cute Santa Baby outfit, there will be lots of family photos to keep the memory alive for years to come.

 

 

 

 

 

Mama
Inspired by National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, The Jelly of the Month Club gift set is the gift that keeps on giving the whole year with 12 jars of delicious jellies and jams made by Greaves Jams and Marmalades in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario.

Family gift guide

 

 Papa
Your papa will look pretty sharp this season when you give him a Toronto Blue Jays Ugly Sport Jacket, or Winter Wonderland Ugly Christmas Suit!

Teen
Wondering what the shell to get your teen? Well, it’s a historical fact the coolest teenagers that ever lived are the Ninja Turtles. Give your teen this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles mug and they’ll think you’re totally tubular, dude!

Grandpa
When the kids, and grandkids, are all grown up and out of the house it gives grandparents more time for their hobbies. This Santa’s New Sleigh is a Harley is a great trinket for those who live to ride!

family gift guide

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uncle
Just like Cousin Eddie, it’s the Uncles in the family that are the jokesters, the clowns, the ones . . . that say something in appropriate at dinner. Consider giving them the “Your Mom Likes My Package” long sleeved tee,  a Jumbo Bacon Flavoured Candy Cane, or a “Merry Christmas – Shitter Was Full” ugly Christmas sweater to suit their sense of humour.

Buddy
Your bestie will love this Buddy the Elf mug,  and these Turtle Dove Friendship Ornaments from Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.

“Turtle doves are a symbol of friendship and love. Keep one, and give the other to a very special person. As long as each of you has your turtle dove, you will be friends forever.”

Double Buddy
If they really are your best buddy, they won’t mind sharing a sweater with you. Get cozy in the 2-person Christmas sweater!

family gift guide

 

If these ideas don’t work, just offer to take the whole family out to eat to the Chop Suey Palace like The Parkers, or Denny’s like The Calvins!

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Practical gift giving

By Liisa St-Aubin

When it comes to gift giving, we all have that one family member that likes to throw a few caveats into the mix. Whether it be simple practicality or ratio of bedazzlement, it can be hard to stay within their parameters.

Don’t be afraid to think outside the traditional Christmas gift box.

Jelly of the Month
What can be more practical than feeding a loved one for a full year? Bonus: it comes with a monthly checklist where they can jot down notes about the taste and what they like about each jelly. Win, win!
jelly

Weeping Angel Tree Topper
For the perfect balance between traditional tree topper and an object of bowtie-quivering fear, you’ve got to go with the Doctor Who Weeping Angel Tree Topper. Why have a tree if no one looks at it, right? This will keep them staring…forever. Just Remember: Don’t blink. Don’t even blink.
tumblr_n3zpo5fbru1sgclato1_r1_500

Friendship Doves
Who doesn’t want to have a friend for life? Next!
friends

Christmas Toilet Paper
Give the only practical gift this Christmas that will help with the clean up…and because everyone forgets to decorate the bathroom. Also, if your neighbour is being a Grinch, why not spread some holiday cheer and TP the heck out of their house!
tp-neighbours

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Handmade Holiday Cards
Save them from having to do the work of making cards next Christmas (or this one if you gift it to them early enough). Or, you know what? Just write them a sweet message and send them a homemade card in the mail. Everyone loves snail mail. Plus, these come in a big enough bundle you can check 24 people off your list at once.
xfjnxra

 

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I Heart XMAS with Clara Venice

Welcome to the I Heart XMAS Q&A, where Retro Festive asks notable Canadians about their own Christmas traditions and what they would like to find under the tree!

Clara Venice
Musician
Theremin Space Pop Music for Lovers and Dreamers
@claravenice

Clara Venice
Photo by Katherine Holland

 

What is your favourite holiday movie or TV special? 

That’s so hard – I’d say it’s a toss-up between Home Alone, Elf and Gremlins – with Gremlins coming out on top because Gizmo is just too adorable.

Does your family have a special or quirky holiday tradition?
Yes – my family actually invented our own holiday that we celebrate on December 23rd called “Wondermas”. Each year we create a Wondermas “Tree” usually involving fairy lights, LEDs, tulle, Unicorns, and plexiglass. Then on Wondermas Eve, we are visited by Rollerbear who brings us gifts! We think it’s the most wonder-full holiday of the year.

 Which do you prefer: to give or receive?  

I wish I could say that I genuinely preferred giving to receiving, but let’s be real: they’re both pretty awesome. I do love giving gifts, and I put a lot of thought into what I give people. In the past I would get so stressed out around the holidays to find the “perfect gift” for everyone on my list, so now when I see something that I know a friend would love I just buy it and save it for the holidays. It makes things so much easier, and I feel a lot better about the thoughtfulness of my gifts. I highly recommend this strategy to everyone!

 Which Peanuts character do you think your friends and family would say reminds them of you? (Charlie Brown, Linus, Lucy, Snoopy etc)?
I have to say Schroeder – like him, I’m always lost in lost in my music, and Beethoven is also my favourite composer. Also, I think his artistic philosophy is pretty great (via Wikipedia):

In 1971’s Play It Again, Charlie Brown, Lucy asked if pianists make a lot of money, and Schroeder flew into a rage: “Who cares about money?! This is art, you blockhead! This is great music I’m playing, and playing great music is an art! Do you hear me? An art! Art! Art! Art! Art! Art!” However, when Lucy asks the same question in the movie A Boy Named Charlie Brown, Schroeder admits: “Some do, if they practice real hard, I guess.” 

Personally, I think these are both great answers and I definitely relate.

 What is your favourite Christmas song?
Christmas Don’t Be Late (aka the Chipmunk’s Christmas Song) because it sounds the best on the theremin!

Ugly Christmas Sweaters: Not a Chance – or – The Uglier the Better?
I believe that people should be able to wear whatever they feel like wearing any time of the year, so I fully support anyone’s choice of sweater. Personally, I like cute sparkly sweaters so that is what I wear during the holidays (the more glitter the better.) But I’m sure some people would consider those ugly, so to each her own!

Come down to the Toronto Christmas Market on Saturday, December 19 at 7 and 8pm to see Clara Venice’s magical performance!

 

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Tips for Stuffing Stockings

Christmas morning in my family is a ritual. It always goes the same way.

Someone (me) wakes up about an hour too early, and putters around the house not-so-quietly in order to wake everyone up. We put the coffee on and crack open the largest bottle of Bailey’s the liquor store sells. Then we start with our stockings.

Opening my stocking is my favourite part of Christmas, which is bitter sweet because it is the first stage of present time. The stocking is popping at the seams, full of sweet surprises and awesome necessities.

When I reached my adult years, I took on the responsibility of stuffing stockings. Stuffing my mom’s stocking for Christmas morning – don’t worry Santa, I got this – was stressful the first year because my mom is very good at stuffing stockings. I wanted to bring her as much joy as I get when I open my stocking. I quickly discovered making a list is the best way to plan.

stuffing stockings

 

 Here is a Beginner’s Guide to Stuffing Stockings:

Chapstick
Everyone needs a good tube of Chapstick or lip balm to get through winter. We are a Lip Smackers family, but they can be difficult to find in Canada now!

Gift Card
Tim Hortons. iTunes. Shoppers Drugmart. A gift card is a great stocking stuffer because they are easier to fit in a stocking than an XL double double.

CD
If you have a family member who doesn’t know what an iTune is, popping a good ol’ CD in their stocking works just as well. This is a good chance to throw in a new Christmas album, like A Jann Arden Christmas, or a top seller like Adele’s 25.

Clementine
Every year my family would go to the children’s Christmas party at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 160. My Uncle would sit in for Santa, and my Grandma would give out small stockings for all the kids. It always had a cane cane, a small toy and a clementine in the toe of the stocking.

Lotto Ticket
Every stocking must have lottery scratch ticket. If you win big, you can take the whole family on a long Christmas vacation – somewhere warm!

Chocolate
You must supply them with something to eat with their Bailey’s and coffee on Christmas morning!

Tooth Brush
You must supply them with something to clean their teeth after having chocolate and coffee for breakfast on Christmas morning!

stuffing stockings

A Big Thing
Stuffing a stocking may seem simple, but they are always bigger than you think they are! It is wonderful to pack a stocking with small treasures, but remember to stuff the stocking with a Big Thing like a Big Grinch to help fill it out!

Gag Gift
Stockings are great opportunity for a gag gift. A bag of Snowman Poop hidden among festive treasures is good for a laugh!

Candy Cane
A beautiful candy cane hooked on the top of a stocking is the perfect Pièce de résistance to the fireplace mantle on Christmas morning. Plus, they can use it to stir their hot chocolate!

Stuffing stockings

Once the stockings have been stuffed, and hung by the fireplace, all you need to do is wait!

 

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I Heart XMAS with Rebecca Lau

Welcome to the I Heart XMAS Q&A, where Retro Festive asks notable Canadians about their own Christmas traditions and what they would like to find under the tree!

Rebecca Lau
@RebeccaLau
Global Halifax Reporter & Anchor

Rebecca Lau

What is your favourite Christmas movie or TV special?
I’m not sure if this is considered a classic Christmas movie (it is now!), but I’ve always loved Home Alone. It brings back memories of watching it with my family as a kid and who can resist that heart-tugging scene when Kevin hugs his mom at the end? Ah, I’m getting teary-eyed just thinking about it.

Does your family have a special or quirky Christmas tradition?
In my family, Santa Claus is the one who gives practical presents. One year, he gave me a heavy duty rechargeable flashlight when all the other little girls received Barbies. I thought it was pretty cool.

Which do you prefer: to give or receive?
Why not both? Especially if the gift is food. Then we can share. Yummmmmmmm.

Which Peanuts character do you think your friends and family would say reminds them of you?
I’d like to think I’m lovable like Charlie. But I’d bet my mom (and husband?) thinks I’m more of a bossy Lucy.
Lucy Charlie Brown

 

Ugly Christmas Sweaters: Not a Chance – or – The Uglier the Better?
The uglier the better! Nothing gets you into the spirit quite like a bright purple acrylic sweater featuring Rudolph’s face with a red pom pom nose. (This is something I may, or may not, actually own)

What do you want Santa to bring you this year?
I’d love an all-inclusive trip somewhere warm. A new rechargeable flashlight would be nice too. My old one broke, Santa.

 

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