The holiday season tends to bring forth a sense of magic and nostalgia. Multicolored lights frame old farmhouses, bringing back cozy childhood memories. Plump snowflakes drift slowly to the ground as Hallmark movies play on TV. The Christmas tree’s warm glow embraces rosy cheeked friends and family in the living room like a cozy hug while children build snow forts outside in the yard.
The holidays can be a heartwarming time of year with quality time spent with those we love the most. Enjoying rum and egg nog by the fire and laughing until your stomach hurts while the family cat snoozes peacefully on the rocking chair. Christmas music playing softly in the background and children in their festive pyjamas sipping on hot chocolate.
When Christmas shopping this year, I strongly encourage buying from the incredible local businesses of Eastern PEI. Recently I saw a quote that stood out to me, “big companies won’t notice your purchase over the next couple of months, but small businesses will and it might even change their lives.” Ultimately, the season is about cherishing time with loved ones, but thoughtful gifts are a welcomed bonus, especially when they are purchased locally from our talented community members. If you’re looking to shop local this holiday season, here are a few ideas to get you started!
There is something so special about opening a small box from someone you love and discovering a beautiful piece of shiny jewelry inside. The best part about shopping locally is it can be handmade and customized for your loved one to fit their personality and style or provide special meaning.
If you’re looking to pick up a special piece of jewelry this holiday season I recommend checking out Shoreline Design located in Georgetown with an incredible view of the water and shelves of jewelry ready to be explored. The charming Galla Designs Studio in Wood Islands will not only provide you with beautiful handmade jewelry but also friendly farm animals, arts and crafts from so many local artisans and to top it off you can bring your mail with you because it’s also the local post office. Gosh, I love PEI.
Who doesn’t love receiving a gift over the holidays? It’s so nice to be thought of, but when someone gifts me a moment rather than a physical package it just feels like it touches my heart on a deeper level. Experiences are what life is made up of, whether they are good experiences or bad. Why not create some spectacular memories over the holidays or into the new year for those you love? Here are a few experiences that will leave loved ones feeling inspired.
Bring your family to the Souris Ski Lodge this winter season, where the snow-dusted trees sparkle in the golden sunlight and the cold air kisses your cheeks. Strap on your snowshoes or skis and explore the wooded trails. Afterwards, pay a visit to Evergreen Cafe, where steaming mugs of hot chocolate and local craft beer fill your bellies with warmth.
Book a day at the tranquil Mysa Spa located in St. Peter’s Bay. Allow your loved one to unwind the way they deserve with luxurious spa treatments designed to soothe the body and mind. Give the gift of relaxation this holiday season.
Step into a winter wonderland and experience the magic of a sleigh ride through snow-dusted forests at Red House Stables. Snuggle under cozy blankets as your horse-drawn carriage glides over the glistening trails of eastern PEI, the jingle of bells filling the crisp, cold air. Afterwards, continue the magic in the cozy, heated cabin with cups of delicious hot chocolate warming your hands. Meet the sweet farm animals in the petting pen and create some lifelong memories together this winter on a sleigh ride adventure.
Catch a show at The Fiddling Fisherman Lookout this winter season! Enjoy some delicious local beverages and dancing with friends and family as the sound of fiddle music fills the air and gets your toes tapping!
At Messy Crow Studio, Lisa invites you to try your hand at needle felting. As you sip a warm cup of coffee and enjoy feel good conversation, she guides you step-by-step through crafting a one-of-a-kind piece of artwork you can be proud of, no experience needed! The studio brings all the materials to you and your group. Leave with a handmade treasure and memories that will last a lifetime. Let Messy Crow Art Studio spark your creativity through a shared experience of learning and laughter. Contact Lisa to book a workshop today.
Messy Crow Studio will be open December 16th for any last minute Christmas shopping. Also pay a visit to the Charlottetown Farmer’s Market on December 10th and 17th to catch her selling her beautiful work.
There’s nothing quite like a Maritime kitchen party to warm your heart on a cold winter’s night. Gather around the table with family and friends and fill your cups with local craft beer from Bogside and Copper Bottom Brewing. Clap your hands and stomp your feet as talented local artists fill the brewery with their beautiful melodies.
If you’re gift hunting for more of a homebody, pick up a few tall boys to fill their stockings this holiday season. Perhaps something a little stronger from the beautiful Myriad View Artisan Distillery in Souris, PEI which currently offers a lovely online selection. Whatever you choose, I know your loved one will not be disappointed.
The holiday season just wouldn’t be complete without the smell of freshly baked cookies, cakes, and pies wafting through the house. This year, gift your loved ones the treat of holiday baked goods without having them spend hours in the kitchen. Local favourites like MacDonald’s Bakery, Maroon Pig, and Country Taste Kitchen & Bakery offer up delicious, homemade baked goods to fill up your fridge and your bellies. Be sure to stock up before the holidays!
Book A Stay
You follow a trail through the woods until you spot the little wooden cabin welcoming you with open arms. You open the door and bring in your things as someone brings in firewood and begins to stoke the fire. You pour a drink into your thermos and head out on a quest through the forest with your loved ones. The trees are covered with snow that sparkles in the golden sun, the dark green contrast of the pines against the snow. You know the weekend is just beginning. So many memories to be made.
There is something so magical about getting away for the weekend with the people you love the most. These little adventures are like a mini vacation, even if it’s just right outside your front door. The chance to step back from the daily responsibilities that come with being home and enjoy some much deserved relaxation time.
Eastern PEI is home to a wide variety of charming and cozy accommodations. Each one offers a unique experience of its own, from magical forests to main streets, there’s something for everyone.
If you’re looking for something a little different this winter season check out these unique accomodations, something a little different than the rest! Why not gift a cozy winter getaway this season?
Who doesn’t love a night out at a beautiful local restaurant or cozying up under blankets with a delicious take home meal as you watch your favourite movie on Netflix? Consider a gift card to one of the tasty local restaurants along Points East Coastal Drive this holiday season. With options like 21 Breakwater, Strait Goods, Bar Vela Pizzeria & Mercato, Celebration Station and The Deck, your friends and family are sure to be grateful.
Artwork & Crafts
This winter, give a gift from the heart with a handcrafted treasure from our talented Island’s artisans. Messy Crow, Galla Designs Studio and Adrianna’s Apothecary offer a wide variety of unique and thoughtful gifting options for everyone. Handmade felted ornaments, pottery, artwork and organic salves made with locally foraged plants. Gifting something handmade always feels like a touch of magic was sprinkled within them.
Looking for some one-of-a-kind vintage Christmas decor to brighten up your home this holiday season? Look no further than Second Time Around Thrift Store in Souris, PEI! This charming thrift shop is filled with hidden gems just waiting to add a touch of festive cheer to your space. Local and secondhand, you can’t get much better than that.
Ashley MacDonald is a Nova Scotian born freelance writer who began using her love for writing and photography as a form of therapy during her son’s cancer treatment. She continued to write after he passed away in October 2019 as a way to help keep his story alive, heal her heart and share her experience with grief and sorrow with others who may be struggling. She graduated from Dalhousie University with a Bachelor of Science Recreation in 2014 and moved to Prince Edward Island in 2020 in search of comfort and simplicity.