Friday, November 22, 2013

2013 St. Louis Holiday Events Guide

* picture courtesy of St. Louis Daily Photo Blog

I scoured the internet and compiled a list of all the fun holiday activities around St. Louis. I broke up the events into 4 categories: Events, Light Displays, Shows & Concerts and Dine with Santa.  Some are free, some are not - click the links for more details.  And feel free to add any other activities that you know of in the comment section.


Gardenland Express
MO Botanical Garden
Saturday, Nov. 23 to Sunday, Jan. 5

Holidays at Eckert's
Saturday, Nov. 23 - Sunday, Dec. 22
Eckerts Belleville Farm

Holiday Magic 2013
America’s Center
Friday, Nov. 29 at 11 am to 6 pm
Saturday, Nov. 30 at 10 am to 6 pm 
Sunday, Dec. 1 at 12 pm to 5 pm

St. Charles Christmas Traditions
Nov. 29 - Dec. 24

Big Joel's Winter Wonderland
Open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Nov. 29 through Dec. 15

Museum of Transportation - Visit Santa and see the 'Macy's Train' on display
Opens at 9 am on Friday, Nov. 29

Christmas Wonderland of Alton, IL
Nov. 29 - Dec. 29
Rock Springs Park in Alton, IL

Light Up the Loop
Nov. 30th at 11am - 7pm

Snapshots with Santa @ The Boathouse
Sunday, Dec. 1 at 11 am to 2 pm

Photos with Santa
Thursday, Dec. 5 and 12 at 5 pm - 7 pm
Friday, Dec. 13 at 11 am - 1 pm
Kirkwood Train Station

All That Glitters
Downtown Clayton
Friday, Dec. 6 at 6 pm - 10 pm

Christmas in Kimmswick
Friday, Dec. 6 - Sunday, Dec. 8

Friday, Dec. 6 at 6 pm - 8 pm
Wildwood Town Center Plaza

Candy Cane Hunt
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 9:50 am SHARP!
Faust Park

Ginchmas on South Grand: Grinch Spread Holiday Cheer
Saturday, Dec. 7

CWE 4th Annual Window Walk Festival
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 1 pm to 7 pm

Skate with Santa at Steinberg Skating Rink
Saturday Dec. 7 at 1 pm to 3 pm

Holiday Boutique and Elves Workshop
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 9 am - 2 pm 
The Pointe in Ballwin

Ballwin's 4th Annual Holiday Tree Lighting
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 5 pm - 6 pm
Olde Towne Plaza (14810 Manchester & Ries Rd. across from Vlasis Park)

21st Annual Kristkindl Markt at Stone Hill Winery
Saturday, Dec. 7 to Sunday, Dec. 8

Cookies with Mrs. Claus
Saturday, Dec. 7 and Sunday, Dec. 8 at 11 am to 3 pm
Museum of Transportation

Santa Arrives on a Fire Truck
Sunday, Dec. 8 at 5 pm - 6 pm
Affton Community Center

Family Holiday Evening
Wednesday, Dec. 11 at 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Foundry Art Center

Pet-acular Holiday Bazaar
Saturday, Dec. 14 - Sunday, Dec. 15: 11 am - 4 pm daily
Purina Farms

Holiday Express Train
Saturday, Dec. 14: 1:30 pm  - 7:30 pm
Union Station

Pint Size Christmas Party
Tuesday, Dec. 17: 10 am - 11:30 am
Crestwood, MO

Lighting up the Winter Sky
Saturday, Dec. 28 at 5 pm
Downtown Kirkwood Station Plaza


Santa's Magical Kingdom
Jellystone Park Resort, Eureka
Open daily at 5:30 pm through Jan. 5

Anheuser-Busch Brewery Christmas Lights Display
Opens Friday, Nov. 16 through Friday, Jan. 4, visitors may view the lights from their cars at 6 p.m. until midnight.

Macy's Festival of Lights
Kiener Plaza, Downtown St. Louis
Opens Friday, Nov. 22

Way of Lights
National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, Belleville
Opens Friday, Nov. 22 through Jan. 3 from 5 pm - 9 pm every night except Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas

Garden Glow
Missouri Botanical Garden
Opens Saturday, Nov. 23 to Jan. 4

Winter Wonderland
Tilles Park, Ladue
Opens Wednesday, Nov. 27 through Jan. 1 from 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm

Wild Lights
Saint Louis Zoo, Forest Park
Opens Friday, Nov. 29 through Monday, Dec. 30

O'Fallon's Celebration of Lights
Fort Zumwalt Park, O'Fallon
Opens Friday, Nov. 29 through Monday, Dec. 30

Candy Cane Lane
6500 block of Murdoch


Santa vs. The Snowman
Friday, Nov. 22 through Tuesday, Dec. 31. Closed on Thanksgiving and  Christmas.
St. Louis Science Center

A Christmas Carol
Thursday, Dec. 5 - Sunday, Dec. 8
Fox Theater

UMSL Classic Holiday Concert
Thursday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 pm -- FREE
Touhill Performing Arts Center

The Story Hour
Thursday, Dec. 5 at 7 pm
Family Arena

St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra Holiday “Pops” Spectacular
Friday, Dec. 6 at 8 pm
Purser Auditorium, Logan College

Moscow Ballet's Great Russian Nutcracker
Sunday, Dec. 8 at 5pm
Peabody Opera House

The Nutcracker presented by Carol Bowman Academy of Dance
Sunday, Dec. 8 at 2:30 pm and 4:30 pm
Chesterfield YMCA Theater

Silhouettes of Christmas
Wednesday, Dec. 11 - Sunday, Dec. 15
St. John Church

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas
Saturday, Dec. 14 at 7 pm & Sunday, Dec. 15 at 2 pm
Powell Hall

The Nutcracker
Saturday, Dec. 14 at 7 pm & Sunday, Dec. 15 at 2 pm
The Purser Center at Logan College

Straight No Chaser 
Sunday, Dec. 15 at 7 pm
Fox Theater

The Nutcracker 
Sunday, Dec. 15: Francis Howell Central 
Friday, Dec. 20 - Sunday, Dec. 22: Edison Theater at Wash U.

Tuesday, Dec. 17 - Sunday, Dec. 29
Fox Theater

The Nutcracker
Friday, Dec. 20 - Sunday, Dec. 29
Touhill Performing Arts Center

White Christmas presented by SCC Young People's Theatre
Friday, Dec. 20 - Sunday, Dec. 22
Donald D. Shook Fine Arts Building

Holiday Celebration at Powell Hall
Saturday, Dec. 21 - Monday, Dec. 23

Trans-Siberian Orchestra
Monday, Dec. 23 at 3 pm and 7:30 pm
Scottrade Center


Supper with Santa at the Butterfly House
November 30, December 1, 7, 8, 14 and 15 from 4:30 pm to 7 pm

American Girl Brunch with Santa
December 1, 8, and 15 at 9:30 am

Milk and Cookies with Santa
Tuesday, Dec. 3 at 6 pm - 8 pm at the Chesterfield DoubleTree Hotel
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 1 pm - 3 pm at the Sheraton St. Louis City Center

Saturdays and Sundays at 9 am and 11 am from Dec. 7 to Dec. 22

Brunch with Santa at The Ritz-Carlton
Dec. 7, 14 and 21 from 9 am to 1 pm

America’s Incredible Pizza Company
Saturday, Dec. 7 at 9 am - 11 am

The Magic House
Sunday, Dec. 8 at 8 am, 9:45 am, 5 pm; 
Sunday, Dec. 15 at 8 am, 9:45 am, 11 am

Breakfast & Craft Workshop with Santa at Purina Farms
Saturday, Dec. 14 and Sunday, Dec. 15 starting at 9:30 am 

Dinner with Santa at the St. Louis Zoo
Friday, Dec. 20 – Monday, Dec. 23 at 5 pm and 7 pm 

And in case you haven't seen the Holiday TV programming guide circulated on Facebook, click here.

Happy Holidays!!

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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Thanksgiving Leaf Placemats

Ava and Sidney love collecting fall leaves.  And they insist on saving all of their nature "treasures".  Normally, I wouldn't mind a rock or pine cone or a leaf or two.  But the way Clara has been eating all of our art projects (and anything she can get her hands on)...I have to restrict what comes in our house these days.

As a compromise, I found this fun project to do with the girls and all their fall leaves:

The girls made all of our placemats for Thanksgiving dinner!  All it required was a bunch of colorful fall leaves, 12" x 18" construction paper and a roll of contact paper.

To make the placemats, we first cut the stem off of the leaves and pressed them between books.

 I also cut the contact paper and flattened it under books to make it easier to work with.  While we waited for the leaves and contact paper to flatten out (a few days), I cut the centers out of fall-colored construction paper to make frames for the placemats.

To assemble the placemats, remove the backing from one piece of contact paper and place it sticky side up on a flat surface.  Lay the construction paper frame on the contact paper and then begin placing leaves inside the frame.

The tricky part is applying the top piece of contact paper.  After two failed attempts, I figured out the's my best attempt at explaining it.
1. Remove the backing from a piece of contact paper.
2. Fold the contact paper in half with the sticky sides facing out.
3. Carefully place the rounded sticky side of the contact paper on the middle of the leaf placemat.
4. Smooth the contact paper as you press it onto the leaf placemat.

They turned out so cute!  And the girls love having placemats with all their meals!  So fancy!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Fondue Dip

I love holiday get-togethers!  It gives me a chance to try out some new dessert recipes without feeling like I have to eat it all myself ;)

I haven't used my Little Dippers in years so I knew this recipe was THE ONE.  It combined two great things: the Little Dipper and pumpkin!  Anyone who followed my blog last year knows my obsession with pumpkin treats.  I was worried about trying out a new recipe on people other than my family, but not to worry - this little gem did not disappoint!

If you don't have a Little Dipper, don't worry.  There are other ways of making this tasty treat.  See the Notes below the recipe.

1 cup canned pumpkin pie mix (NOT 100% pumpkin)
4 oz cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
Walnuts (optional)

Things to dip:
Apple slices
Graham crackers
Ginger cookies
Vanilla wafers

1. Add the cream cheese to the Little Dipper then top with sour cream.
2. Pour in the pumpkin pie mix.
3. Cover and cook for an hour, then stir well.  If the cream cheese isn't fully melted, cook a bit longer.
4. Garnish with chopped walnuts if desired.

If you don't have a Little Dipper, you can put an oven safe dish in a crock pot and cook on high for an hour or cook on low for two hours.

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Kindergarten Halloween Party

Ava's Kindergarten party was a success!  Take a look below if you need party ideas!

The party was broken into three parts.

Part 1
To start the party off, one parent read the book, "The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything" by Linda Williams while the other parents set up and decorated the room.

We set up 4 tables: two tables for the craft, one table that held the snacks and drinks and one table for eating / drinking.  We decorated the tables with orange plastic table cloths and paper pumpkins.

Part 2
After the story, we split the kids up into 3 groups: Ghosts, Vampires and Witches.  One group went to the snack table, one group went to do the craft and one group went to play the game.  Every 10 minutes, the groups rotated to a different table.

For the snack, we had 5 Halloween bowls with:
- Skittles (Cat Eyes)
- Mini Marshmallows (Ghost Guts)
- Raisins (Bat Brains)
- Pretzel sticks (Witches Broom Sticks)
- Candy Corn (Chicken Toes)

We labeled each of the bowls with their Halloween name on a paper skeleton bone.  The kids scooped out their snacks into Halloween baggies labeled with their name.  Click here for more Halloween snack food ideas.

For our craft, the kids made spider hats.  We also added googly eyes on the spider.

For the game, we played Mister Bones Relay Race.  
We split the kids into two teams and the first team to correctly assemble Mister Bones won. Click here to download the printable skeleton template.  I cut out all the pieces and then laminated them.  I also put together and example for the kids to follow.  Some of the leg and arm pieces are tricky!

We played the game twice and everyone won a prize (from the Dollar Store) at the end. While the kids waited to move on to the next station, they did a Pumpkin Connect-the-Dots and a Pumpkin Maze and then colored them in.

Part 3
For the last activity, we brought all the kids back together for a game of "Hot Pumpkin".  
To play "Hot Pumpkin" the kids sit in a circle and pass a small pumpkin as Halloween music plays.  When the music stops, the child holding the pumpkin is "out".  When they are "out" they get to come pick a Ghost Lollipop from the pumpkin.  The kid that wins gets to keep the "hot pumpkin" and pick a ghost lollipop. Click here to see how to make the Ghost Lollipop pumpkin.

I hope you all had a Happy Halloween!

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