Friday, December 9, 2011

a holiday giveaway (from me! just because!)


i am in the process of putting together gift packages for my family members and thought it would be fun to offer a little trader joe's holiday care package for one lucky reader who doesn't have a trader joe's near them. for those of you who might not know, trader joe's is a small grocery store that started in los angeles known for having the most delicious holiday treats! leave a comment with your happiest memory from the holidays (and where you live) to be entered to win. you can also like the littlest on facebook and follow me on twitter and/or tweet about it for extra candy cane trader jo-jo points. that makes it sound official! (right?) i'll pick a winner on friday december 16th. happy holidays!

*my husband thinks i'm so bizarre for doing this but he obviously doesn't have the christmas spirit!

update: kathleen by lakeland, fl you are the lucky winner! thanks everyone for sharing your great holiday memories with me. 

40 comments:

  1. Great giveaway idea! We don't have a Trader Joe's, here in Little Rock, AR. My happiest memory from the holidays is moving in with my husband (at the time, my boyfriend). We only moved our bed and the TV over to the new house. It was New Year's Eve. We drank champagne and watched the ball drop. It was really romantic, and it felt like anything and everything was possible! Thanks for the chance to win. xo.

    nicole.boddington@gmail.com

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  2. And I "like" The Littlest on FB! Thanks again. xo.

    nicole.boddington@gmail.com

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  3. I LOVE TRADER JOE'S! I've been seeing so many people post about it and it always makes me jealous.

    My favorite holiday memories always include my grandparents. This is the first year that we will be without them. They always gave us the silliest presents and hosted evening long sing alongs. No matter how hard the heart of a family member towards Christmas, they always seemed to bring the best out of everybody. I hope that I can carry their holiday spirit forward.

    Merry Christmas, Ashlee (Texas)
    ashleeg78@yahoo.com

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  4. My happiest holiday memory has got to be the year my completely unsentimental uncle sent me a HUGE jar of my favorite pickles. He's not famous for making gestures but that one was crazy thoughtful. I was 10 years old and I will never forget it.

    And, as I live in Florida, I have nothing even remotely Trader Joe-ish so I would love a treat!

    jenniferaugusta(at)gmail(dot)com

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  5. P.S. I already DO follow you on Twitter! On IG, too, for whatever points that might get me. :)

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  6. I'm at Trader Joes all the time (San Diego, home of many TJs) so I won't take a potential winning spot from someone else, but I love the idea of doing a giveaway just because you want to share the goodwill (and delicious treats!) :)

    And my happiest holiday memory is many years of participating in posadas with friends, helping the nativity travel from home to home where we'd be greeted by friends with warm drinks.

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  7. Is it ok to enter if I have a TJ's right down the road? ;) (Really, you dont' have to count this.)
    My happiest holiday memory is definitely the ones we are now making with the children. The holidays take on a whole new meaning when seen through a child's eyes, as you know.
    Happy holidays to you and your littlest.
    PS~Ah, there's your hubby's bah-humbug [smile].

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  8. Elizabeth,

    This is my first time leaving a comment. I, too, am in the Bay Area and have my pick of Trader Joes, but wanted to say that it is such a nice gift idea. I know I have friends who don't have them in the area who would love some goodies! I thoroughly enjoy your blog and perspective on mothering. Thanks for being a positive voice on the internet!

    Nadia Lee

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  9. I love Trader Joe's! One of my favorite Christmas memories is going out to my grandparent's house. They had the Elvis Christmas record playing, continually flipping it since it was the only holiday music they had. I can't hear an Elvis song and not think of them!

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  10. I live in Northern California and my best holiday memory is my first kiss on nye with my now husband!

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  11. my happiest memory is waking up on christmas morning, and rushing downstairs to be with my family. presents, of course, but coffee, pancakes & strawberries & breakfast sausage were also pretty great.
    i think there's a trader joe's the suburbs of chicago somewhere, but nowhere near mine :(

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  12. I live in Denver, CO and love Trader Joe's! I so wish we had one. I write them all the time asking them to open a store here. A gift basket would be the best gift!

    My favorite Christmas memory is our annual soup buffet on Christmas Eve. We cook up several big pots of different kinds of soup and make a bunch of different sides - homemade breads & rolls - and then sample and share all of them. After soup we always have my Grandma's French Cream cake (which I now make). This ritual started my love of soup and is something I hold dear to my heart!

    I follow you on Twitter and Facebook so I'll be sure to say hello on there too!

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  13. we moved to colorado from california and we miss trader joe's so much.
    this is a great giveaway!
    thanks for the chance to win.

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  14. ohhh i miss living near a tjs!!! my favorite holiday memory might be my first christmas in vermont, singing and waiting for snow. i live in flagstaff, az.

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  15. My happiest memory is last year, my son had his first Christmas.

    Renee, Florida, aka where we don't have Trader Joe's!!!

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  16. oh man...a care package from TJs?! best idea ever. i gift myself with one every summer that we go home...half of my luggage when i come back is small glass bottles of sea salt and 21 seasoning salute and rum vanilla and chocolate chips and and and... ;) i'm from san clemente, ca and did all my shopping at TJs before i moved across the pond...now i'm married to a tall swede, living in uppsala and missing it daily! what we do for love ;)
    as for a favorite christmas memory...it's nothing spectacular, but it's a memory that has always stood out among the rest for me. my older brother (+15mo) and i have been so close since the day i arrived...love him. one year...i think we were 13 and 14...my parents were going through a divorce and i (the girl) probably was the most emotional about it all. anyway, neither of us had a lot of money at that age to buy elaborate gifts, but i remember we were driving home from my grandpa's birthday dinner on christmas eve and he gave me a ball of tin foil (nothing's ever a surprise with my brother ;))...i opened it to find an orange...then found a little square at the top carved out and put back in...like a lid. i opened the lid and found a small plastic bag, wadded up...inside was a tiny folded up $50 bill. that was my present. we never gave (or give) each other money...for for some reason that was something so special...undoubtedly because of the giver, the age i was and all that was happening that year, and the way he packaged it all so creatively. we both sat in the backseat of the car on that dark car ride home on christmas eve as a few little tears rolled down my face. just a really sweet moment and a really special memory. crazy what sticks 15 years later.

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  17. absolutely love this!
    xo

    -C

    {www.cait-flightlessbird.blogspot.com}

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  18. This is so lovely... I don't expect an entry cause I live in Ireland and that's one loooong way away from LA but it'd be sweet!
    Last Christmas was one of the best, it was snowy (for the first time ever!) and we shook a whole tree of snow over my sister (who's travelling and won't be with us this year, so sad) and went sledding with the dog. It was simple and near perfect. I hope you're enjoying the run up to the day itself :)

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  19. Awesome! I live in Knoxville, TN. There have been rumors for YEARS that we're getting a TJ but it hasn't happened yet. Would LOVE to win this giveaway!

    (and as a sidenote, even if we get one, can't buy their 2 buck chuck because TN does not allow wine to be sold in grocery stores. boooo)

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  20. This is so thoughtful and lovely. I’ve been hearing about TraderJoe’s for years and sadly living in Florida our closest one is in Georgia, a little too far of a trek.

    My happiest holiday memory is from when I was 12 and my brother was 6. Living in Florida, it’s sometimes hard to get into the full Christmas spirit when the weather in December reaches a muggy 88 degrees. We would spend our Christmas Eve in our pajamas, watching A Christmas Story, baking and decorating messy gingerbread houses and cookies. It was nearing bedtime and my Mom called us outside to put out the “reindeer food.” Once we stepped out onto the patio, my brother and I noticed white flakes falling from the sky. We ran around in disbelief. At that moment I remember looking at my brother and seeing the happiness in his face, it was the first time he had ever seen “snow.” He ran around trying to catch the flakes on his tongue until he realized it didn’t taste like ice but had a similar flavor to soap. (My mom had gone onto the roof and set up a foaming bubble machine.) To this day, no present has ever come close to the happiness and love we felt that night.

    Happy Holidays to you and your family, Elizabeth!!

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  21. Oh my goodness. The nearest Trader Joe's to me (DeKalb, IL) is a 45 minute drive away, and with a new little baby it is pretty much impossible to get there. This sounds like heaven!

    Favorite holiday memory: when I was in 9th or 10th grade, my brother and I saved up to buy my mom a beautiful, luxe, monogrammed bathrobe from Nordstrom's. She would always wander around the house in this ratty old plaid thing and she insisted that she "didn't need a new one," just like she did with everything else (a little bit of a martyr complex, but a very giving and loving mom who sacrificed a lot for us!). We were so excited and proud to give it to her on Christmas morning -- I will never forget the look on her face when she opened that big, beautiful box. She has worn it every Christmas morning since :)

    Thanks so much -- it's fun to read about everyone else's happy memories too!

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  22. Christmas Eve at my grandmother's house. South Alabama.

    Nissa
    nagpony68 {at} yahoo {dot} com

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  23. I'm so jealous of all you Trader Joe havers! We have none in Dallas TX :-/

    I've enjoyed reading all the memories. My favorite is the last Christmas w my dad. We went to visit my aunt, uncle & cousins and stayed up late playing charades, eating & laughing. Sounds simple but I remember how much we laughed tha night & I will hold the sound of my father's laughter in my heart forever. I can't wait to make new memories w my new little one!

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  24. My fondest memories are of waking up Christmas Morning to the smell of mom's orange rolls in the oven! I live in Oregon and the nearest Trader Joes is 3 hours away! I would love this!

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  25. Living in Australia I am not sure if I can enter but if I can I would love to.
    My favourite memory is going to my cousins house for Christmas where my brother and I and our 5 cousins would all put on a Christmas concert for our family.
    I usually involved dressing up, dancing, bad make up and a whole lot of laughing.

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  26. Mine is when we used to beg and beg and beg until we convinced our parents to let us open gifts on Christmas eve instead of the next morning. Or maybe my first Christmas with my boyfriend, when I had planned to cook an elaborate meal but ended up with only the biscuits and green beans being edible, and he had to bring takeout. Columbia, SC--our nearest TJ's is about an hour away.

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  27. My very favorite holiday memory (and the only one we have on camera) is when i was 4...we lived in portland and were going to my grandmas house in san diego and my parents pretended that a secret elf (elfie) knocked on our door and delivered the big presents that santa "couldnt fit on the sleigh" (aka the car ride back) and i believed every word they told me! oh the joy of ignorance -which we only now value as adults!

    Kathleen
    Lakeland, FL
    (not even a tj's in the state! a crying shame)

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  28. Amazing giveaway! So sweet of you to think of us poor unfortunate souls who don't have a Trader Joe's! I live in England so we don't have any, although i have been in stores in New York & San Francisco a few years ago. My happiest Christmas memory is when i was growing up my parents used to have Christmas parties every year - with all of our neighbours and family friends. Besides helping my parents in the kitchen making mince pies & chocolate truffles (yum!) my brother & i were always in charge of glueing together paper collages for the quiz! The grown ups always used to try wheedle the answers from us on the sly!

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  29. okay first up I live in Canada & we sadly have no trader joes. I keep reading about it in various blogs & it appears that we are missing out in a big way. My favourite holiday memory is tromping off through the snow to seek out, cut down & bring home the "perfect" tree. The most magical day of christmas every year- shouting out "this is the one YES!!!" carrying it home singing songs. I may live far from a trader joes but i am happy to live where i can carry on this tradition with my own children. My 10 year old son is the official wood cutter, my mother & i quibble over balance & aesthetics, my husband rolls his eyes & my four year old gets cold hands. Then home for hot chocolate & warm grown up drinks while we decorate. Thanks for the give away I would love a change to try some of Trader Joes seasonal bounty. cheers, ERIN

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  30. this is not bizarre... I don't know if I can participate because I live overseas, in Paris... Anyway, I'll give it a try 'cause nothing beats the Christmas spirit !

    My fondest holiday memory was when I first joined my mom in all the DIYing. I made us our first Christmas wreath to hang on the door : it took me several hours and owed me many scratches (I had used Christmas tree branches) but I was so happy to help get the house into the holiday spirit... I've never stopped creating a new wreath each year, and since then I've added the confection of chocolate truffles, chocolate madeleines... All the while my family is not far, attending to their own holiday buzz... I also loooove to go Christmas shopping with my mom !
    Merry holiday season !

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  31. NOW I'm finally in the Christmas spirit! I live in Montreal Canada (no Trader Joes here) and my fondest Christmas memory was the year I got one of the much coveted Cabbage Patch Dolls. I think this was one of the first toy phenomena that had moms punching each other out in the shops just to get their hands on one. My mom had already prepped me not to expect one that year, so I really just sulked around for the weeks leading up to Christmas. Somehow my folks managed to snag one at the last minute through some black market connection through my dad's assistant's hairdresser. It was a magical thing indeed. So many amazing Christmas memories (and we're still making them as we raise our own family) but there is nothing like thinking back to the year when you got what you wanted more than anything - and then realizing later on as an adult how hard your parents worked at getting it for you. Those first edition dolls were the best - likely toxic with all that baby powder scent they were infused with, but to a little girl - they were really special. Happy Holidays to the Antonia family. Thank you for asking us all to share these special times with each other.

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  32. Oh, how I miss TJ's and hope for one near us soon in Austin.

    my fondest holiday memory is being very little and going to see the huge lit up tree in Zilker Park. over 3,000 lights are strung around a moonlight tower. we would get underneath the bright tree, look up and spin around and around. They would burn a yule log, have visits with Santa and hot chocolate. I'm looking forward to taking my little boy for his first Christmas this year.

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  33. We are deep in georgia (near savannah) and not a trader joe's in sight! My favorite memory of the holidays is giving birth to my second boy lucas on december 26th. He was supposed to come on the 24th so we savored every moment as a little family of three as we waited for his arrival (my oldest was 18 months at the time and loved the attention!)we happily greeted lucas the next day!

    I love your blog and also follow you on twitter.

    erica.taylor77@hotmail.com

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  34. Oh gawd, I miss Trader Joe's so much! We live on an Island outside Seattle and can't make the trek with the toddler. When I lived in San Francisco I loved those peppermint chocolate dipped cookies they had for the holidays!!!

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  35. What a fabulous and thoughtful giveaway! Not sure if those of us abroad are eligible, but the idea of sending someone a trader joes holiday treat is so sweet. The holidays are my favorite time of year and this is the first Christmas in my life to not celebrate with my whole family in California as we are spending the holidays with my husband's family here in Germany. I can't think of one particular favorite Christmas moment, but every year is pretty amazing with my family. We spend Christmas day in our pjs, eat a big breakfast, drink mimosas and open presents, enjoying eachother's company. It really is the most wonderful time of the year :)

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  36. Well.. This is all the way from India and I don't celebrate Christmas. But I do love this season. It's really a great weather here. And I am sure I am not supposed to enter here but I just felt like leaving a message. I have been reading your blog for quite sometime now :)
    And those b'day wishes are the sweetest. Happy Birthday Elodie!
    mrunmayee(dot)cool(at)gmail(dot)com

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  37. Wow, how wonderful of you!

    Im in culinary school & all the foodie blogs I read are always raving about Trader Joes!!

    My favorite holiday memory has been this year. I recently had a very large tumor removed (it was benign, praise the lord), it opened my eyes in so many wonderful ways. I've been enjoying ever single moment this season with my 3 year old girl baking, crafting & giving. I feel extremely blessed <3

    Xox - Erin

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  38. Sorry!! I've never left a comment on a blog before!! This is Erin, from above. Lol My email is acreativemum@gmail.com

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