“What am I going to get for…” has to be the most asked question during the holiday season. Although presents underneath the tree are a welcome sight, and the anticipation when untying the ribbon cannot be matched, the pressure of giving the ideal present is also sky high. You don’t want to be the one in the family who has the reputation for making bad gift choices; trust me, if you do it once it’s a reputation that will stick. However, when you do get it right, the moment you see the smile on your loved one’s face is priceless. A satisfaction and joy that can last until the next yuletide. And that, is the very power of giving.
Gifts don't have to be expensive, as we at Urban Family are not fans of excessive consumerism. And don’t get put off by the high expectation and pressure either, because we have put together a ‘cheat sheet’ in our Cover Story (p16) for you to borrow a couple ideas from. You can go green with our eco gift choices, go far with our winter holiday trip ideas and ‘do-it-yourself’ to give your gifts that special touch. We have also created a top-selling toys timeline (p24), so you can relive your childhood and reminisce about your favorite toys.
Our Life & Wellbeing section welcomes a new column My Shanghai (p8), a popular online series where we ask a Shanghai-based ‘somebody’ to tell us about their life. In this edition, we talk to Marie Amiand, the founder of Lu Ming Tang, a tea-based skincare brand that sources the natural goodness from the small green tea town of Longjing, Hangzhou. Plus, on page 14, we have selected boots and socks to help your kids stay in fashion, and stay warm – it’s not cool ‘getting cold feet’ during winter.
On the education front, we have always liked to talk academia, but this time we decided to delve into the more human-interest issues. We look at different areas of health management from five international schools in Shanghai, to give our readers an insight into the state of health at school (p26). On a more timely and festive note, we have prepared a fun spread where we asked students in Shanghai to talk about their 2018 resolutions (p32). After reading their submissions, we have to say, we are very impressed.
Another thing that excites us during this season are the festive treats, we have rounded up a turkey-to-go list (p40) to save you from roasting yourself and the turkey in the kitchen. To help you add a personal touch to your turkey feast, our Food Editor, Betty Richardson, has prepared two delicious and easy side-dish recipes (p36). Then we have a simple ginger cookie recipe from our 5 Ingredients series (p38) that you can have fun making and decorating with your kids.
What do you do with a full belly of goodies? A Christmas movie session with the family of course! Additionally, we’ve also thrown in a movie quote quiz as we are in a playful holiday mood – don’t be sneaky and go looking for the answers. You can also enjoy the many entertainment options this city has to offer, our theater and arts expert Zoey Zha has recommended three events for those looking for something different.
I really could keep going with what this jam-packed winter issue has in store, but I won’t spoil the fun. I will leave you alone to relax for a while, and flip through the pages with a nice warm drink.
Finally, happy holidays to you and your family from all of us at UF!
P.S. Go easy on the eggnog!
Editor in Chief