Ah, the magic of the holiday season. The glitz, the glamour, the sparkle, the smell of pine, marshmallows roasting on an open fire and hot chocolate galore. I love the holiday season. Growing up holidays have always been a big deal. We celebrated everything! Even the opening of an envelope! I remember all of the beautiful New Years, Christmas and Hannukkah celebrations we enjoyed as a family. This is why the season is so important to me and I want it to be just as important to my kids. We have had the tradition of going to the Illuminate 900 at the 900 N. Michigan Ave. building for the past 5 or 6 years. I took Kalista there when she was just a little munchkin and now Thalia gets to go! It has always been a family tradition to kick off the season. watching that tree light up, all of the excitement, the snowflakes, and confetti coming from the ‘sky’ of the 900 building. It’s all so magical and I was so honored that they invited me to be one of the hosts this year. As you can imagine the kiddos were so excited as well. We were standing there right next to Santa as they lit up the tree. I wanted to write this post so that I can share some of the magic and the moments with you in the hopes that next year, YOU will be there to celebrate with us! I’ll be there hosting again and I can’t wait!

There were activities and something happening on every single floor.

Can we talk about this 50 ft Christmas tree? That thing is a beauty!

You haven’t missed your chance to go see Santa! He is on the third floor of the shops from 12-6pm Monday- Saturday and 12-5pm on Sundays. You can find more info here!

It is such a special event because not only does it kick off the holiday season but it is so important because the $10 ‘ticket’ is actually a donation benefitting Make-A-Wish Illinois. The event raised $15,000 for the foundation! The Make-A-Wish foundation is extremely special to me, especially because I am a mom. It really tugs on my heartstrings thinking about the children out there that are so ill they may not make it to the next day. Seeing the children’s faces light up with joy meeting Santa and seeing the tree reminds us all the real reason why holidays are so important. It is important to remember our loved ones, our many many blessings, and to hang on to those moments we do have together.

I hope you all have a fabulous holiday season and I can’t wait to share more holiday fun with you!

* Photos by the extremely talented Ben Ramos