Holiday Greetings from the Empowered Pros

Cactus Garden Holiday Lights

Cactus Garden Holiday Lights

We’d like to wish a Merry Christmas to all who celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth today.

For our friends, family and readers who celebrate the Festival of Lights, Happy Hanukkah!

For those who don’t celebrate either during this time of year we wish you all the best and a Happy Festivus!

To ALL our readers we wish a Happy, Healthy, and Prosperous New Year.

This year we’re celebrating the first holiday season in several years where both our sons and their families here in Las Vegas. Needless to say we’re pretty excited about spending Christmas with our family and enjoying this special season together.

This is a magical season for children and our granddaughter has been pretty excited about the sights, sounds, and smells of the season. She’s had the opportunity to watch her first Christmas parade and late last week we introduced her to a local tradition in Henderson, Nevada, the Ethel M Chocolate Factory’s Cactus Garden Lights.

Ethel M Chocolates

Ethel M Chocolates

Ethel M was the matriarch responsible for teaching Forrest Mars, Sr. the art of chocolate making. Yes, the same Mars who brings us M&M chocolates, Snickers, Dove, and TWIX bars. Ethel M Chocolates was created after Forrest Mars retired in the local area and is a tribute to his mother.

Ethel M’s is a great place to visit while in Las Vegas if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of Sin City. The factory is just a short drive from The Strip and Fremont Street.

Ethel M’s Botanical Cactus Garden covers about three acres and is the largest in the state of Nevada. It’s also one of the largest cactus and succulent gardens in the world. During the holiday season cacti and succulents are decorated with thousands of lights and displays.

A special treat for our 2 year old was a visit with Santa Claus. We waited in line so my granddaughter could tell Santa she

Santa Claus!

Santa Claus!

wanted “presents” for Christmas. Attempts at getting a bit more detail led nowhere so Santa is going to bring Rose “presents” for Christmas this year. Fortunately Grandma and Grandpa have a lot of “presents” for our one and only grandchild.

Christmas eve we’ll spend time with our daughter-in-law’s family making tamales. A family tradition we don’t like to miss because not only is it great fun being with her family, tamales always taste better when you make them yourself. Mmmmmmm!

We’ll spend the last couple week of the year up in Tacoma, Washington visiting my father, brothers, my baby sister and their families. My youngest brother just got married and we’re excited about attending the wedding party next week along with greeting 2015 family style.

One of our goals while up in the Pacific Northwest is to do research on one of the trends we learned about on our Alaska cruise this summer—craft distilling. It seems the Seattle area and Washington state have seen quite a surge of craft distilleries in the past couple of years and we plan on visiting a few, to get the small business perspective, naturally!

All-in-all it’s going to be a nice holiday season for us and we’re thankful to be blessed with wonderful family and friends to share our happiness with.

Again, we wish all of you peace, joy, and prosperity this holiday season.

Here’s to your success!

Keith is the resident writer and troublemaker at Empowered Pros.
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