Jackie and Marilyn’s Holiday Survival Kit!

‘Tis the season to become a survivor! Whether you are beyond thrilled to see your family and friends, or shaking in your boots at the thought of hearing another story from your crazy uncle, the holidays are definitely a turn from our day-to-day existence! How will we survive this new territory?

Below we each share our five must-have for the holidays!



1. Spotify.

I cannot sit in silence. Ever. I have music playing from getting ready in the morning, the car ride to work, while working at my computer and back home again. I have been a Spotify premium member since it was possible in the U.S. and now I don’t know how to live without it. Many long car trips to go to everyone’s Christmas party demand specially curated playlists and the fact that I can download the playlists to my phone to listen offline means I won’t be without it when I spend a couple days without service in the boonies!

2. Onesie PJs

This is more of a general must but especially important on those nights where you get a little too merry with the dessert tray. No one has eve felt uncomfortable in a fleece tiger suit – and if you’re going to be in your PJs around your extended family, you might as well go all out.

3. Plants vs. Zombies 2

What happens when you have already seen the whole Internet because your day is full of nothing but lounging? This game is seriously addicting. I spent a couple Christmas breaks ago defeating the first one but this version has seemingly endless levels. I welcome the challenge.

4. Elf (The Movie)

Not only a holiday staple, I am willing to watch this movie in the middle of July. That being said, you are more likely to get people to watch it with you during the holiday season. Blonde Zooey Deschanel and Will Ferrell in tights? How could you go wrong? They have Elf-themed Facebook stickers now, so I have been communicating with those exclusively and will continue to do so until someone intervenes.

5. Fuzzy Critters

A great thing about going house to house and visiting everyone is knowing there is (most likely) a furry animal for me to snuggle wherever I go. I’ve never met a dog or cat that I don’t want to incessantly annoy with my love. Bonus points if they snuggle with you while watching Elf 🙂



Kit_Brianna1. DSLR camera

Having my camera on me at all time is a huge must during the holidays. It’s more of less my statement necklace 🙂 Taking photos of the joy on my nieces’ faces not only helps me document these moments forever but it also reminds me that the holidays are about happiness, even when I am at my Grinchiest.

2. Roasted Chestnut tea

TeaSource, a local tea shop in Minnesota, sells the most delightful chestnut-flavored tea and it is the perfect morning cuppa during the holiday season. “Chestnuts roasting in a Santa teapot…” Doesn’t have quite the same ring but it warms my heart in the best way.

3. Sweater tights

Just because it’s frigid in Minnesota doesn’t mean I am going to NOT wear a dress to every holiday gathering we attend! Therefore, sweater tights are a necessity.

4. Annual viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life

Two words: Jimmy Stewart. The man is more or less Christmas personified (excluding religious themes from the holiday). My husband and I have had a Christmas tradition since we began living together that, in the middle of the five Christmases we attend, we take at least one night to spend as “a family.” I make a roasted chicken, we open presents and we cry into our cocoa when George Bailey’s neighbors start singing “Auld Lang Syne.” Of all of our holiday traditions, this one is my favorite!

5. Onesie PJs

I didn’t know Melissa was going to choose these but ultimately I should have. But when a girl’s right, she’s right. I get really into the holidays so I have to go for penguin-themed pajamas. Have I waddled around the house while wearing penguin onesie pajamas to delight myself during the holidays? Of course.


As long as we both have our kits, we can make it through any holiday season! But what do we get the guys in our lives? What kit would keep them happy? Luckily, there’s Man Crates! Man Crates will send the fella in your life a gift-themed kit that he gets to open with a crowbar! This is a perfect gift for the picky guy in your life, which is great for some of us who have husbands that every other year decides they “don’t need anything!” Not thinking of anyone in particular… 🙂 And now the recently-engaged Melissa (check out her ring on our Instagram account!) will have a go-to gift option for her husband-to-be!

Happy Survivor Week everyone! May the odds ever be in your favor!

What is in your holiday survival kit?