Cheer Du Jour

A little cheer to forget your troubles, and better yet, to toast with a glass of bubbles!

Free Chicago Holiday Souvenir Photo

If yfree photo oppou happen to find yourself walking along Michigan Ave during the holiday season, be sure to stop at the Walgreens free photo kiosk. It’s located between the Tribune Tower and where the Marilyn Monroe statue flashed her knickers, just north of Wacker Dr. There are two tall screens (at first glance, they look like any other advertising billboards) – one facing north and one south. Choose the direction you prefer and press the “take a photo” option on the screen. You’ll see a countdown appear, giving you a few seconds to strike a pose. If you don’t like the photo, you have a chance to try it again. When you get the perfect picture, simply enter your e-mail address and the photo will be sent to you, with a Happy Holiday greeting and snowflake background. Festive and free!

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Feeling Seasonal Stress? Try this…

Stylized snowflake

Are the holidays leaving you holi-dazed? Take a few moments and visit Snow Days for some soothing (and addictive) seasonal fun. Remember when you were a kid and you cut (with safety scissors, of course) out snips of a carefully folded cone of paper? I remember always trying to make the most delicate, lacy flake, but ending up cutting too much and getting chunky strips of paper instead. Forget the homework, I would have to pretend that the dog ate my snowflake. Well, that’s all in the past! With this website you can make as many cuts as you want, see the effect, and undo any over-eager clipping. Plus, you can add a message on the snowflake, which floats with the flurry of thousands of other flakes on the screen. Click on one to admire it, to read a random holiday thought, search for a loved one’s handiwork, and spread a blizzard of cheer!

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John Taylor Trashes Hotel Room?

Cover of "Diva's Christmas Carol"

Cover of Diva’s Christmas Carol

No, that would never happen in the real world! …but as an actor, you can see JT in lush glory in A Diva’s Christmas Carol. Click here to see a clip of John as the ghost of Christmas Present on YouTube. This movie, in my humble (and completely unbiased Durannie) opinion, is a must-see for the holidays. Vanessa Williams is brilliant as the Scrooge Diva, and instead of the usual Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, the diva watches a foreboding episode of “Behind the Music” to glimpse her future. Plus, a glimpse of 80’s fashion with the Ghost of Christmas Past. A word of caution – “Heart Quake” will burrow itself into your brain, dooming you to sing the one or two lines you remember over and over again.

VH1 usually runs this movie throughout the holiday season, but since we cut our cable cord, I bought a copy from Amazon. It arrived today and I enjoyed watching it as much as I have for the past 12 years.

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