OOTD: Christmas Eve

There is nothing more stunning than a red dress, especially during the holidays! Today I wanted to share a Christmas Eve OOTD (outfit of the day) with you all because I recently purchased the most beautiful dress.

This is the “Dance of Romance Red Lace Cold-Shoulder Midi Dress” from Lulus.com! When I was online shopping for some holiday outfits, I came across this dress on sale for $18. If you read my Thanksgiving OOTD, you would know that Lulus has quickly become one of my favorite online stores!

I paired this outfit with these simple black block heels that I bought on Amazon last year (I am not too sure of the price, but they may have been around $20-$30 dollars). The heels are by the brand “Madden Girl”.

I typically prefer to wear gold jewelry, however I felt that silver matched the dress better! I wore a simple pair of diamond earrings and a silver bow ring. Lastly, I took this sequin clutch that I purchased at TJ Maxx to complete the look! (For a few more photos of this outfit, check out my Instagram: @sacchere14.)

It is actually an incredibly beautiful day out (65 degrees)! Although I wish it were a bit colder so that it would feel more like Christmas, I’m glad I did not freeze in this dress! I think that I have only experienced a few white Christmases in my life, and it is something I wish I could experience more often.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and I hope that you are spending time with the people you love most! Enjoy every moment, and I will be back to chat with you all in a couple days! Thank you for reading! Merry Christmas!

Christmas Music and Movie Favorites

One thing that can always get me in the holiday spirit is Christmas music! As soon as Thanksgiving is over (and even sometimes before), I’m blasting all of the Christmas music and watching some of my favorite Christmas movies! Today, I wanted to share some of my favorite holiday movies and music with you all!

First, Let’s talk movies! When I was a kid, I always looked forward to watching Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, and How The Grinch Stole Christmas! Even today I would sit down and watch those movies! I also loved a movie called Olive, the Other Reindeer and The Tangerine Bear. I haven’t seen these two in forever but I have memories of watching them all the time.

Some of my Christmas movie favorites are Elf, Home Alone (I like the second one the most), and Jingle All the Way. One of my all time favorite Christmas movies is The Holiday. There’s just something about this movie that gets me every time, and I have loved it since the first time I saw it. If you haven’t watched this movie, GO WATCH IT! It is so sweet and a perfect mix of comedy and romance.

Ever since Glee, I have been following Lea Michele’s career and this year she was in a new movie called Same Time Next Christmas. I just watched it the other night with my family and I thought it was a cute Christmas movie. Speaking of Lea Michele, her new album called Christmas in The City came out last month and I’ve been listening to it constantly! Her voice is so beautiful and some of my favorite songs on the album are I’ll Be Home For Christmas, White Christmas, Angels We Have Heard On High, and Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. If you haven’t heard her album, I recommend listening to it because it is perfect.

As some of you may know if you read my recent posts in the “Entertainment to Share” section of my blog, I love the Jonas Brothers! They recently came out with a new song called Like It’s Christmas so this one has been on repeat lately as well!

When I was little, my dad was always playing music. Around Christmas time, he would play these two albums that we continued to play every single year, and they have always reminded me of Christmas time and my family. First, he would play Amy Grant’s album A Christmas To Remember. Amy Grant reminds me of my childhood, and I feel like listening to these songs always brings me back to the best times. If we didn’t play this album around Christmas it would feel so strange. Some of my favorite songs from this album are A Christmas To Remember, Jingle Bell Rock, Christmas Lullaby, and Christmas Can’t Be Very Far Away.

The other album that my dad always plays is called Rockin’ Christmas and I have vivid memories of me, my dad, and my brother playing these songs as we decorated the Christmas tree and danced around. This album included songs from different artists, but my favorites were always Run Rudolph Run, Zat You Santa Claus, and Noel.

There are also those classic Christmas songs that everyone knows. Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You has always been a favorite, and basically anything by Nat King Cole (especially The Christmas Song). I always say it, but Michael Buble’s voice IS Christmas. Every time I hear him sing, it just reminds me of the holidays. I love listening to his version of It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas and I also love Grown Up Christmas List.

I remember when me and my siblings were little, on Christmas Eve, my dad would read us ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas before we went to bed. Once he was finished reading, we were all still wide awake of course. We were always too excited to fall asleep. Every year, my mom would make us a cup of raw oats and glitter and we would go outside to our front yard and throw it around so that “Santa’s reindeer would see it and make sure to stop by”. One year, my brother and I swore we heard something on the roof. As we’ve gotten older, we do not take part in these little traditions anymore, but it makes me smile when I think back, and I hope to continue them with my own children one day.

Thank you so much for reading! Leave me a comment below and tell me what some of your favorite Christmas movies and songs are!

Indulging Over The Holidays

Today I wanted to share an important message with you all. I think that this is something people should hear more often, especially around the holidays. Living a healthy life is not always easy. Luckily for me, I enjoy working out most of the time, so this is not much of a problem for me. What has been difficult however, is healthy eating. I made the decision to start eating healthier in January of 2018, and while I would say that I have done pretty well and stuck to that decision, I have definitely gotten off track this year, and I have mentioned it on my blog before. I have never struggled with any kind of eating disorder and for the most part I would say that my relationship with food is pretty healthy, however it is not perfect.

Even when I first started to change my diet and eat healthier, I always allowed myself to indulge once in a while. I would eat mostly healthy during the week and then on the weekends I would allow myself to go out and enjoy lunch with my family and when I got home I would try to snack on healthier foods for the rest of the day. This is a plan that I decided to stick with and I am still trying to go by it today (I found that this is what works for me, but it may not work for you, so find what works for you and stick to it)! Even though I feel that I got off track with food and even the gym at times this year, I deserve to enjoy the holidays, and so do you.

Whether you have been working extremely hard in the gym and the kitchen this year, or you got off track like me, it is 100% OK to let yourself enjoy those holiday treats. Obviously, you should still try to eat healthy and workout during this time of year, but having some Christmas cookies or missing a few workouts will not derail your progress. For me personally, I don’t workout on holidays and around Christmas time especially, I want to spend time with my family so this means skipping my workouts  a few times. Even if you feel like you didn’t make a ton of progress this year, you shouldn’t be too hard on yourself. This is something that I am still trying to learn, so if you are feeling the same way, you are not alone.

You do not necessarily have to avoid foods that may be described as “unhealthy” or “fattening”. Yes, you should remember to eat these foods in moderation, but avoiding them completely is somewhat unrealistic, and you shouldn’t feel guilty for enjoying them from time to time. If you are trying to eat healthier, remember that changing your diet is a process and it is one that takes time, so allow yourself that time.  

This isn’t just a message that I am sharing with athletes, this is for EVERYONE: let yourself indulge every once in a while. If you know that you are going to want to enjoy the sweet and delicious foods around this time of year, leading up to the celebrations, just do your best to eat healthy and when the time comes, enjoy yourself. I personally feel that the food is one of the things that makes the holidays complete. Don’t feel guilty for wanting to eat what you want to eat. Living a healthy life is important and I am working hard to get back on track, but trust me when I say that this holiday season I am going to enjoy all of the hot chocolate and cookies with no shame because I deserve it, and so do you!

I hope that this message sticks with you today and every day, and I hope you are all having a great December! Christmas is coming so quickly and although I am excited, I also don’t want it to end! I have some exciting blog posts coming up before the New Year, so stay tuned for those! Thank you so much for reading… now I am going to go find some chocolate!

The Holidays in My Home

There is no denying that this is my favorite time of year! I love it for so many reasons, but one of the biggest ones is that I get to relax and be with the people I love the most. I get to enjoy fun holiday treats that I may not eat at any other time of the year, and my room is decorated with Christmas lights and garland. Today, I wanted to chat a little bit about this time of year, my family’s traditions, and how we celebrate the holidays in my home!

I’m not going to lie; it can be difficult for me to get into the holiday spirit when I am still in school! I am in my third year of college and I am currently studying for finals, which can be pretty stressful. I am trying to get into the holiday spirit, but I feel like I will fully get into it once the semester is over (2 more finals to go)! During the holidays, I love to just be at home, watching Christmas movies and wearing cozy pajamas. I used to drink hot chocolate almost every day because I was so obsessed with it. Now I really only drink it occasionally, but even more so around Christmas time!

My family has quite a few little traditions that we follow every single year. Most of them are small, but they’re meaningful to my family. Every year, my mom will get us Christmas pajamas and fuzzy socks on Christmas Eve (they’re usually matching in some way), and we have a little party for my immediate family. We always do our own version of “The Feast of the Seven Fishes”. My Grandma and Mom will always make clams, shrimp, and sometimes lobster tails and we will also have cheese plates, fruit and vegetable plates, bowls of chips and dip, and all of the desserts including cookies, ice cream, and pie. We’ll play some Christmas music and just hang out in the dining and living room for a bit. After this, a few of us will sometimes play a bored game like Pictionary (my uncle and I are always a team and we always win). This is actually a more recent tradition, but my siblings and I will also play Mario Kart or Mario Party before we all go to bed on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.

Even though I am getting older and some of that Christmas magic is no longer with me, I still end up waking up early on Christmas Day. I still get excited. My parents have actually told me that before me and my siblings were born, they used to open presents on Christmas Eve, but I never really liked the idea. On Christmas, once everyone is awake, we will start to go through our stockings and open gifts. Christmas music will be playing in the background as we open our gifts one by one. Every year we end up laughing so much because my family will sometimes write “To: (insert embarrassing or random nickname they call us here)” on our presents. There’s nothing better than seeing your loved ones reactions when opening gifts that you picked out for them and with my family’s sense of humor, there is bound to be some weird/funny gift exchanges!  I feel extremely grateful to receive gifts on Christmas from my family members.

After this, we will just spend some time together and I’ll definitely be eating all of the chocolate in my stocking! Every Christmas dinner has been the same for us for quite a while now: stuffed shells (because you can never go wrong with pasta)! My Mom usually makes the shells with ricotta and mozzarella cheese with marinara sauce. It is so delicious and I always look forward to having it! Then a little while later we will take out some of the leftover cheese plates, fruit, chips, and desserts from Christmas Eve! We also have a variety of drinks out on the table.

For New Years Eve, we celebrate later on in the day. Once again, we will put a few snacks out on the dining room table, and we will have the TV on to watch the ball drop in New York City at midnight. We’ll take some photos and get our noise makers and whistles ready. At this point, I am already in my pajamas. We also follow another tradition on this day: before the stroke of midnight, my family needs to eat 12 grapes for the 12 months ahead, and if you finish all of your grapes before midnight you will have good luck in the New Year! I am not sure where this tradition really came from, but we’ve been doing it all our lives. Once midnight hits, my family goes around the room to hug each other and say “Happy New Year”.  On New Year’s Day, we always go to one of our favorite Italian restaurants for lunch, and after this, the celebrations come to an end and we begin the New Year with each other, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

I hope you enjoyed reading a little bit about me and my family and how we celebrate the holidays! Leave me a comment below, and tell me how you celebrate the holidays or if you have any traditions you follow! Thank you for reading!

How to Keep the Magic of the Holidays Alive

Today, I wanted to chat about this time of year and how the holidays can feel somewhat bittersweet as we get older. Don’t worry; this is not going to be a completely depressing post! I want to share the ways that you can still keep the magic alive during this time of year as well.

There is nothing like waking up as a kid on Christmas morning and seeing that Santa Claus stopped by. It is such a magical feeling and nothing can really compare to it. As children, we believed in so many things; Santa, The Easter Bunny, and if you were in my family, maybe even a leprechaun and the Sandman. Sadly, this magic doesn’t last too long. We end up finding out that all of these magical creatures do not actually exist and it can be very upsetting. I remember my first Christmas when I found out that Santa wasn’t real. Even though I was happy and excited on Christmas day, it just didn’t feel the same. The holidays have always been important to me and I have always enjoyed this time of year, however as I am getting older I feel like the magic of all of it is disappearing. I am a full-time college student and sometimes, even though I am technically on “break”, I may still have work to do. I want to be able to relax and participate in fun holiday activities, but I am not done with the semester just yet, so it can be a bit stressful. If you are a college student like me, or it is a really busy time at work right now, try to manage your time. Every day, I make sure to get a good amount of school work done, so I can somewhat enjoy my weekends. Weekends during this time of year are usually when I can feel a bit more festive!

How to keep the magic alive:

  • Decorate

This is my first tip because it is such a simple thing to do, yet it can really get us into the holiday spirit. Decorate your home for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas! If you do not celebrate one of these, just decorate for the season! Even when I am drowning in school work, being surrounded by a string of lights or holiday scented candles can really boost my holiday spirit.

  • Bake or cook holiday related recipes

You do not have to be a professional chef or baker to make some fun holiday treats. If you are not very experienced in the kitchen, go out and buy holiday themed cake mix or those ready to bake holiday sugar cookies! If you do have some great cooking/baking skills, try googling a recipe for something pumpkin spice, apple cider, or cinnamon flavored, or come up with your own recipe and share it with your loved ones!

  • Spend time with children

If you have younger siblings or cousins, take them out to go trick or treating, or bring them to meet Santa at the mall. Even though you may not believe in Santa or monsters anymore, they do, and it is still a very precious thing to see the look in a child’s eyes when they see Santa Claus, or when they get home from trick or treating and pour out their giant bag of candy. Don’t ever ruin the magic that children feel , and let them enjoy it as long as they can!

  • Attend or throw a party

It doesn’t have to be a big party, and you could just invite friends or family. I love to plan small parties for my friends and family, and it gives you a moment to be with the people you care about during the holidays. You don’t have to spend a ton of money to do this either. You can also try DIY (Do It Yourself) decorations or holiday clothing if you wanted to. (Pinterest can be very helpful when planning a party!)

  • Spend time with the people you love the most

 I feel lucky to say that I have the most incredible and loving family, and I always love spending time with them. They are the most important thing to me. I always spend the holidays with my immediate family, and that is all we need! I know that not everyone is close with their family, or sometimes you may have to see family members that you’re not incredibly close to at this time of year. If you can relate to this, spend time with your friends or just the people that matter most to you, whoever that may be!

  • Watch holiday themed movies

As a college student, I feel like there are times when I don’t even have a minute to breathe, but if you’re not on break and you manage your time well, you can definitely fit a couple holiday movies in your schedule! There is nothing better than sitting down with family to watch a Halloween or Christmas movie. At Christmas time, I absolutely love putting on Christmas pajamas, making some hot chocolate, and sitting by the lit up Christmas tree while watching movies.

  • Follow your traditions (or make your own)

My family has little things that we do every year during the holidays. One of my favorites is on New Years Eve, before the stroke of midnight, you have to finish eating 12 grapes (I think I may have finished mine only a couple of times)! I am not entirely sure where this tradition came from, but I am pretty sure we’ve done it my whole life. If you don’t really have any traditions, make some new ones to follow!

  • Go out and find holiday related events in your area

By simply googling events in your area, you are bound to find some kind of holiday event. You could go ice skating, visit haunted trails, get lost in a corn maze, go to a pumpkin patch, go apple picking, or go sledding. Also, there are many things that you can do for free such as driving around to see Christmas lights. Find an event that interests you, and show up with your friends or family.

  • Do something kind for others

Whether this means buying your family gifts or giving back to those who have less, a small act of kindness can really go a long way. Nothing beats the anticipation when your loved ones are opening gifts that you picked out just for them. If you can’t afford to buy gifts for your loved ones, tell them you love them and let them know just how important to you they are. Since I love to write, sometimes I will write my family cards that simply remind them how much I love them. Sometimes, it’s the little things that matter the most.

As we get older, the holidays can feel bittersweet. I think every adult and teen misses being a kid and experiencing that magic again, but it doesn’t have to disappear. I hope that this post was helpful to you, and I hope that you fight to keep that holiday magic alive no matter how old you get! Thank you for reading, now go make the most out of the last few months of the decade/year!