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Celebrating Holiday Traditions With Target

I was thrilled when the folks at Target asked me to write a post about one of my favorite Chicago area holiday traditions. After they provided me with a gift card to purchase items that I thought could enhance the fun, they just turned me loose and let me do my thang. (Thanks, Target! This was fun!) All words and opinions are mine, as usual! Oh, and stick around for the end: I’m giving away a $75 Target gift card to one of you lucky readers!

Chicago has all kinds of special activities going on during the holidays. The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival is a biggie, as are the New Year’s Eve fireworks from Navy Pier. I found a great list that details holiday activities in this area “From A To Z”; we certainly can’t complain of boredom this season, that’s for sure! My family’s personal favorite? The Christkindlmarket.

The Christkindlmarket, which has taken place at Daley Plaza every year since 1997, starts right after Thanksgiving. It is an open air Christmas festival inspired by the Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany. Visitors enjoy entertainment, traditional German food and drink, and great shopping. This is no “wannabe” German Christmas festival, either; most of the vendors actually fly in from Germany and spend the month selling their authentic products to excited (and cold) Chicagoans.

I absolutely adore visiting the Christkindlmarket in the city every year but I admit it’s a little bit of a haul, not to mention the crowds, which Jim despises. We got some great news this year, though. For the first time, a suburban extension of the festival was planned for the middle of Oakbrook Center. We jumped for joy! I mean, fifteen minutes from home, fewer people, AND free parking? SIGN US UP. In fact, I’ve been there twice already! That was unheard of in past years when I had to make the trek all the way to the city.

The Oakbrook Christkindlmarket is much smaller than the Daley Plaza version, but I prefer it that way, especially since all of my favorite vendors are represented!


Here’s how I recently took Target to the Oakbrook Christkindlmarket with me:

You know how I love lists, right? Well, I have three MUST-DOs for a Christkindlmarket visit, and I kept track of them (along with a gift giving list) in my Molskine notebook, which is sold at Target in lots of colors and sizes.

Molskine notebook at Target

If you know me at all you know that I am nearly always connected. If I’m not on my laptop, I’m on my iPad. If I’m not on my iPad, I’m on my phone. The problem with Chicago winters and texting or emailing (okay, or Facebooking) is that well, your fingers could freeze and fall off. I picked up some Impressions by Isotoner gloves (guess where?), and they pretty much saved the day–and my fingers.

Impressions by Isotoner at Target

Lastly, I picked up a super cute bag by Toms in which to carry all of my purchases.

Toms bag at Target

The Toms for Target Collection is awesome because for every Toms + Target gift you buy, they’re giving shoes, a blanket, or meals to those in need. Getting something for yourself AND someone else? Hard to beat.

If you live anywhere near a Target store, you probably already visit on a regular basis.

I actually have three within a few minutes’ drive of my house so I’m there CONSTANTLY OMG.

If you haven’t visited in a while, go back and check it out: it really is one-stop shopping for your holiday needs and your year-round needs. But I bet I don’t have to convince you, do I?

Now, let’s have some fun. I’m giving away a $75 Target gift card to one of you lucky people! It’s super easy to enter, too. Just leave me one comment telling me that you want to win. That’s it! You have until 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, December 23 to enter and I will pick the winner from a random drawing. The gift card won’t help you for the holidays but it’ll certainly improve your January! (P.S. Target sells mittens, hats, scarves, shovels, hot cocoa, warm blankets, and all kinds of other dead-of-winter stuff, of course!) Good luck!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Deanna December 18, 2014, 4:10 pm

    I WANT TO WIN!!!!! πŸ˜€

  • traceybecker December 18, 2014, 4:11 pm

    Dude. I need to buy the kids boots! I would greatly appreciate winning.

  • Sara December 18, 2014, 4:13 pm

    Target is my happy place!

  • Colleen December 18, 2014, 4:14 pm

    I prefer to shop after Christmas sales too & Target is my second home! Thanks!

  • Toni December 18, 2014, 4:25 pm

    With having to cut our budget due to insurance increase, this would sure sure help alleviate some stress next month. thanks for the chance!

  • Meghan December 18, 2014, 4:28 pm

    Awesome, love Target!

  • Mari December 18, 2014, 4:38 pm

    I would very much like to win this! And considering the checker at Target recognized me from earlier in the week and asked me about how my purchases worked out for me, it would go to good use.

  • Erica R December 18, 2014, 4:41 pm

    I want to win! I have been to Target 6 times in the last 4 days!

  • Shannon December 18, 2014, 4:41 pm

    I practically have my own parking spot at Target. I’m surprised they haven’t put up a sign yet. I would totally like to win!

  • Ruth G December 18, 2014, 5:21 pm

    Awesome bag and fabulous way to shop! I may just have to cheat and take the kids to the Oakbrook Christkindlmarket instead of downtown! Thanks so much for the tip!!!

  • Sandi Zwinklis December 18, 2014, 5:35 pm

    Hi Melisa,

    I started reading your blog this year and btw, I love it! I could be going to Target for shampoo and spend $100 easily. Of course I’d like to win!!

  • Bev E. December 18, 2014, 5:52 pm

    Great article integrating both subject matters! I could sure use the $75 to get something for my son who just had knee surgery. Have a great Christmas!

  • Jennifer E. December 18, 2014, 8:20 pm

    Target is my happy place. Great shopping ideas!!!! Love the TOMS bag – super cute!

  • Liz December 18, 2014, 8:22 pm

    I just got home from Target! Truth! But I’d be more than happy to go back! Also true! I’ve been eyeing a set of stemless wine glasses. Thanks for the chance of actually gifting myself wit-em πŸ™‚

  • Lisa December 18, 2014, 9:51 pm

    Gosh…I really miss Daley Plaza, especially during Christkindlmarket. Once upon a time I spent my lunch hours there. Pick me!

  • Lisa December 18, 2014, 10:18 pm

    Oh yes, I want to win! To help with diapers, don’t us k ow? πŸ™‚

  • Christina December 18, 2014, 10:38 pm

    Of course I want to win! It’ll help subsidize the $50 I spend on products every time I walk in there for a single item under $5. (HOW DO THEY DO THAT?)

  • Kristin Shaw December 18, 2014, 11:49 pm

    Me me me me me! I love Target. LOVE.

  • Tabatha December 19, 2014, 12:02 am

    Hi, I would like to win very much please and thank you.

  • Toni December 19, 2014, 8:35 am

    I left a comment yesterday but it didn’t show up, so here it is again. LOL

    Because of medical insurance increases, we have to cut our budget starting next month. Winning a gift card would help relieve a little bit of budget-stress! Thanks for the chance!

  • Samantha December 19, 2014, 8:48 am

    Pick me, Life Twin! I love me some Tar-jay.

  • Elaine A. December 19, 2014, 10:37 am

    Of course I want to win, I mean it’s Target! πŸ˜‰

    That market looks so cute!

  • Heidi Sloss December 19, 2014, 10:54 am

    When we live in Vienna Austria in 1990 I loved the xmas markets that sprang up during this season. Great fun to wonder and see all the treasures for sale. Would live it if our local target would have one, but I don’t think they are doing this in northern California. Even so, I would love to win a card and would use it to buy my daughter kitchen things as she is setting up her first apartment when she goes back to school in January.

  • JJ Blandford December 19, 2014, 10:29 pm

    Oh Target, how I love thee! I could always be practical and buy groceries or I could buy any large assortment of gifts for myself. πŸ™‚

  • Barb December 21, 2014, 11:08 am

    I want to win!

  • Sheryl December 21, 2014, 7:55 pm

    I love Target and could really use the $75 there. I would love to win the gift card!

  • Deb December 22, 2014, 11:57 am

    I want to win!!!!

  • Carla December 22, 2014, 3:55 pm

    I want to win! Will put it to good use buying necessities for my kids! πŸ™‚

  • Deb Nies December 23, 2014, 11:36 am

    I want to win…yes. Yes, I do.

  • Stacey @ The Scenic Life December 23, 2014, 11:48 am

    Our target is 1/2 mile from my house. SO dangerous! I would probably use the gift card to buy more Wii U stuff for my family, since we spend a ton of time playing (and yelling, and smack-talking, etc…) together on it. πŸ™‚

  • Phyllis Kim Myung December 23, 2014, 11:49 am

    I soooo want to win!!!!!

  • Stacey December 23, 2014, 11:57 am

    I very, very, very much want to win. Thanks for the chance.

  • Ashley Garrett December 23, 2014, 12:01 pm

    Pick Meeeeeee! I was at Target until 10:30 last night!

  • Serena December 23, 2014, 12:03 pm

    I “live” at Target as well and just picked up a new Moleskin for myself :). I definitely want to win as we’ll need to replace the lost gloves and mittens soon enough!

  • Hope December 23, 2014, 12:23 pm

    I wann win! Great post.

  • Natalie December 23, 2014, 12:26 pm

    I totally want to win this! I almost always have a Target list on the side of my fridge! I go pick up the stuff on my list (and let’s be honest…more stuff that wasn’t on my list) and then as soon as I get home, I remember something I forgot so I start a new list! A gift card would be amazing!!

  • Kari December 23, 2014, 1:14 pm

    I had no idea this was going on because I haven’t been reading my blogs via Bloglovin bc holidays.
    I wanna win.
    I will buy 75 dollars worth of fun things and take pictures if every single one.
    PICK ME!!!

  • Rachel W December 23, 2014, 1:59 pm

    i’d like to win πŸ™‚

  • Meggan S. December 23, 2014, 2:30 pm

    winning a gift card would be a great way to cap off my birthday.

  • Kim/TheMakerMom December 23, 2014, 2:45 pm

    I’d like to win! I finally made it the the Christkindlmarket the other day, but it was the Saturday before Christmas and super crowded, so I mostly just saw peoples’ backs. I’ll have to make it there earlier next year.

  • Stephanie December 23, 2014, 3:15 pm

    I want to win!! I love target so much that we’ve been to two different Targets this morning alone on our way to Seattle LOL!


  • Erica C December 23, 2014, 3:15 pm


  • Natasha Nicholes December 23, 2014, 3:58 pm

    Of course I want to win. This giveway is awesome. Also, did you know that I have a Target that is kind of within walking distance from my new home. The people already know me there. I’m not sure if that is good or bad, either way, I’m awesome. I should win.

  • Cher December 23, 2014, 3:58 pm

    I would love to win this to buy something for myself….just me!

  • Karen zatz December 23, 2014, 4:08 pm

    Me me me

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