The Holiday Season is a lively one at the Pugliano House.
We take full advantage of opportunities to celebrate and spend time together. While we do some of the traditional activities like visit Santa and Light up Night, we also have some cool activities that help to enrich, give back and support our city.
Where will we go?
Spend an evening (or 2!) in Downtown Pittsburgh. There's so much happening in the city during this time of year. Our favorite stop is the the "Santas Around the World" exhibit at PPG Place followed by the pop-up Holiday Shops in Market Square, all while sipping on hot chocolate and peppermint mocha!
Have Breakfast with Santa. We love this event at St. Bernadette Church. The event includes breakfast, treats, prizes and a complimentary photo for every family! Sunday Dec 4, 10am - 12pm.
Make Holiday Art. We love to give handmade gifts. Open Studio at ZeffiroArt will give my girls a chance to make some art - one of their favorite activities. Dec 3, 10 and 17, 1-5pm.
Shop Small. I know it's hard to resist steals and deals relentlessly advertised by big retailers, but you must, at least a little. We make it a point to shop small and shop local. The holidays are also a great time to check out neighborhood shops and new restaurants. These businesses need our support.
What will we see?
Would it be the Holiday Season without seeing at least one show? Whether it's The Nutcracker or A Musical Christmas Carol we love dressing up in our holiday best to see a great show and have dinner at one of our favorite downtown restaurants. This year we'll also enjoy Holiday Pops with the Pittsburgh Symphony!
What will we do?
Give a Gift. Nothing makes someone smile more than an unexpected gift. Every year my girls and I spend an evening preparing treat bags. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, we hand them out to everyone from the crossing guard to our friends in the neighborhood.
Spend Some Time. We also participate in Presents for Patients. This program provides a wonderful opportunity to give back and spend time with someone that may otherwise be lonely over the Holidays. We always have great conversations and enjoy our time spent with the residents.
For a Good Cause. I'm no model but I'll do it for charity! My daughters and I will walk the runway in a fashion show hosted by the organization GIFT. The event will collect toys and funds for 5 local charities and is held on Saturday, Dec 10 at 7:30pm.
There's so much to do but it always seems like this time of year goes by so fast. My suggestions to make the most of it are:
Make a list and check it twice - check out all of the events and list everything you'd like to do
Get the whole family involved in the planning. Let each person pick an activity.
Make everything fun! Turn up the music and dance! Whether you're baking cookies or wrapping presents, enjoy every minute!
Leigh Solomon Pugliano is a wife, mother, musician and entrepreneur. Her work varies from assisting startups with business development strategies to management training and community engagement initiatives. She loves Pittsburgh, and loves that her work contributes to making our city better. Find her on her website properleigh.com and Twitter and Instagram @properleigh.