Cool Yule Newsletter: November 21 – 27

Hello, everyone! How are you? Well, I hope. I am doing great! The temperatures are dropping, so are the leaves, and it’s beginning to look a lot like …Thanksgiving!


Breaking News!
  1. Today is the last day to register for Dulles Town Center’s shopping wish list contest. Register by 4 pm and you could win up to $200 in holiday shopping dollars. Visit the website and see “Events” for details.
  2. Today is the last day to donate food and hygiene items for the food drive sponsored by the Reston Community Center.
  3. Tickets for The Nutcracker ballet at the Reston Community Center go on sale at 10 am this Saturday, November 26.

Mary and her son with vegetables at farmer's market

At the Farmer’s Market in Falls Church City this past weekend with my son, William. Grateful for leafy greens!


In the Shopping Cart

Here are some bargains to get ready for the holidays…

  • Safeway has Pepperidge Farm holiday cookies and Trio crackers on sale for $2.99
  • Target has an adorable felt turkey for $3 and pumpkin-pie essential, Reddi-Whip for $2.99
  • Bath and Body hand sanitizers are 5 for $8 and the holiday scents are William-approved.
  • Walmart has 2023 planners on the shelf and I am loving my new 6″ x 8″ MintGreen one ($7.43). Fits in my purse with plenty of room for notes. Organized all year! A good gift, too.


Thankful for Thanksgiving

If you are planning to cook a frozen turkey, today would be a good day to put that bird in the refrigerator and let it thaw. The Macy’s Day Parade airs on NBC at 9 am or Peacock TV (online)

A Thanksgiving Service at Washington National Cathedral will be broadcast live online on YouTube at 10 am. I love this because I can cook and still hear the service. Well, theoretically…I’m not actually cooking this year (and I’m thankful for that, too!) You may also attend in person.

Ready to hit the town? It’s going to be about 55 degrees on Thanksgiving Day so if you’re inclined to drive into our nation’s capital, check out the Seasons Greenings exhibit and model trains at the U.S. Botanic Gardens. All the Smithsonian Museums and the National Gallery of Art are also open on Thanksgiving Day. You can even eat Thanksgiving “dinner” at the National Gallery cafe!

The holiday lights are shining at The Winter Walk of Lights at Meadowlark Gardens in Vienna and the Bull Run Lights and Holiday Village at Bull Run Regional Park in Manassas. This week, both are open nightly, including on Thanksgiving Day. If you’d rather stay warm in your car, pick Bull Run. If you’d like to take a stroll, pick Meadowlark! Night-time temperatures are going to stay in the 30s this week, so bundle up. See the Calendar.


Black Friday Ready!

Black Friday or the Reston Town Center Parade? Well, that’s a tough decision, but personally, my vote is for the charming Reston Town Center Parade, which travels down Market Street at 11 am on Friday, November 25.

Now, if you would rather shop, here are those super-early opening schedules:

  • 5 a.m. – Best Buy, JC Penney, Walmart
  • 6 a.m. – Bath and Bodyworks, Bed Bath and Beyond, Big Lots, Home Depot, Kohl’s, Lowe’s, Macy’s, Sears, Ulta
  • 7 a.m. – DSW, GameStop, Michael’s, PetSmart
  • 8 a.m. – Barnes & Noble

And if you are not too tired, there are 3 tree lightings this Friday!

  • Reston Town Center. In front of the ice skating pavilion on Market Street. 6 pm with Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus.
  • Mosaic District Tree Lighting. 4:30 pm – 8:30 pm. Fairfax. Outdoor screening of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Fire Truck parade with Santa Claus. Free parking.
  • Old Town Alexandria Tree Lighting. 6 pm – 8 pm. City Hall Town Square, King Street. Features holiday performance.

Advent arrives

Sunday, November 27 is the first Sunday in Advent. Whether you are religious, non-religious or spiritual, Sunday evenings are a good time to pause, reflect and be mindful, especially after a busy week. The first Candle of Advent represents Hope. Many people light a candle tonight and I will have a special reading in the blog about the Virgin Mary for your contemplation. The Washington National Cathedral will offer an Advent Service with carols at 4 pm, which you may attend in person or watch live online. Would you like to learn more about the traditional celebration of Advent? Read about how Advent is celebrated with candles.


Thanks for reading! I wish you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving! — Mary

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