This weekend was the kick start to Christmas for me. For most, it’s tradition to get their Christmas tree and set up Christmas decorations the weekend of Thanksgiving, but for me, that’s just too soon.
My wonderful weekend started off on Saturday with going to Sono Market Place, a European Style Indoor Market. This is the first year they’ve started it and it is absolutely beautiful. My husband and I didn’t exactly know what to expect. All we knew was that there was going to be a lot of local artisan’s setting up shop and we loved that idea. When we arrived, the parking lot was filled and long lines of cars down the street. This place had to be something great. As we walked up to the building, we were greeted with the smell of fire wood burning – I love that smell. It definitely says “winter is here.” As you come up to the walkway, you see Christmas tree’s hanging from wood structures and pretty wreaths to purchase. When you walk in, it looks like a beautiful renovated barn. It was absolutely gorgeous inside. You have samples of granola treats at one of the first booths as you walk in. It’s nice and warm and cozy inside. There’s over 45 local merchants, showcasing and selling their creations. You can eat, shop and learn all at this market place. I love that this is one more step in the direction of giving people the opportunity to buy products from local artisans. The awareness of how important this is, is growing and that makes me very happy to see so many embrace it.
As you walk around the market place, you’ll see local artists, jewelry makers, bakers, fresh olive oil, seafood and more! You can see who’s at the market and their hours and location on their website – sonomarketplace.com. My husband found out about the market from a friend of our's, Lisa. Lisa mentioned that she and her husband were setting up a booth for their clamming business. The Bloom Brother’s sell fresh clams and oysters from their booth - all farmed in Connecticut! Go by and check them out! You can even go to their website for more information – normbloomandson.net. For food, there’s also Wise Guy’s Pizza Pie, Gotta Nibble! Fish and Chips, Up the Creek Wine and Beer Bar, Flat White Coffee and so much more. This is definitely a great place just to walk around with a cup of hot chocolate from Flat White Coffee and see all the beautiful products that make great gifts. Everything is so natural and earthy in this market place; you'll definitely want to go back with your friends to have a nice lunch somewhere different. I hope you’ll visit sometime in the near future, especially before Christmas so you can enjoy the Christmas Caroler’s at the front door and all the pretty Christmas decorations everywhere. You could feel the Christmas season in the air.
Sunday we continued that Christmas feeling with going to cut down our Christmas Tree. A tradition my husband and I started when we were dating eight years ago. We met my brother, sister in law and our two nieces at Jone’s Tree Farm in Shelton. I love my family and any time we get to spend time with our nieces is the best! Jone’s Tree Farm is kind of special because it’s where my husband proposed to me, so we go back each year. If you’ve never gone to cut down your Christmas Tree, I highly recommend that you do, at least once in your life time just for the experience. You grab your hand saw and go searching for your perfect tree. We both wanted the Douglas Fur Tree. “It smells like oranges,” my sister in law said and it really does! My nieces were so cute smelling the branches. It smells so nice and the pines are soft so they won’t scratch my arms when I put the lights on. I’ve learned my lesson in the past! My nieces were excited about picking out their tree and I know we're all making memories for year's to come. My youngest niece, Alyssa, got to help her Uncle Mike cut down our tree. It’s such a great experience for the kids.
Today was the perfect day to go Christmas Tree shopping. It was 50 degree’s out and no wind blowing, which was as perfect as we were going to get. In the past, we’ve gone when it was raining, snowing and freezing outside and trust me, it’s not fun. You just want to go, pick your tree and get in your car to be in the heat as soon as possible. But because it was so nice out, we were all able to take our time and really enjoy it. This year our tree at Jone’s cost $63.00, which I think is a little steep, but if you wanted you could continue straight on Route 110 past Jone’s Tree Farm to two smaller farms, where you’ll spend less money and still have the same experience of cutting down your own tree. If you happen to go to Jone’s Tree Farm, you could also stop by their wine shop and do a little wine tasting. Many people also bring their dogs with them and even tailgate in the parking lot. As we left the farm and paid, we got our annual 2012 Christmas Ornament that Jone’s Tree Farm gives out with every purchase of a tree. It was a good day for sure.
Later that evening, while it was still nice out, I started our Christmas lights outside. They came out so pretty along our front steps and over our door and some bushes. Our Santa sign sits outside letting everyone know in bright red lights that there’s 23 more day’s left until Christmas. Now it’s starting to feel more like Christmas time! If it would only snow on Christmas Day, then it would be perfect!
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and I hope you will check out Sono Market Place and support our local artisans. It really is something special to see. Whether you cut your tree down yourselves or buy it already cut, it’s about doing it as a family or with friends and creating fun memories. The Holiday’s are about being thankful and being around people you love and enjoy. I hope everyone has a wonderful Holiday and considers shopping local for gifts this year. www.BuyLocallyCT.com. Please "Like" us on FB to stay updated on new blog posts and locally made products - FB - BuyLocallyCT.com.