Palladium: This Years White Hot Metal

Palladium, this year’s hottest metal, is used mainly to cut pollution from gasoline engines. Yet anyone betting the rise of electric vehicles will curb demand anytime soon is likely to be disappointed, according to the metal’s top producer.

Hybrid-electric cars, which also require precious metals to control pollution, represent a growing percentage of future demand, said Anton Berlin, head of analysis and market development at Norilsk Nickel PJSC. The Russian miner forecasts that combined palladium use in hybrid and plug-in hybrid — or rechargeable — vehicles next year will be nearly triple that of 2016.

Norilsk’s not the only one forecasting hybrid growth, at least in the medium term. While the projected increase in electric vehicles is significant, “it doesn’t compare” to the kind of expansion expected in hybrid electrics, JPMorgan Chase & Co. said in an October report. Hybrids are forecast to grow from just 3 percent of global market share in 2016 to 23 percent of sales by 2025, it said.

Palladium Use in Hybrids to Triple

Palladium has gained 19 percent this year, and set successive records this month to at times surpass gold as the most valuable major metal. Demand is projected to exceed supply for the seventh straight year in 2018.

There’s some expectation that the rising cost of palladium may prompt automakers to look for ways to use more of its sister metal, platinum, which is used widely in diesel engines. However, Berlin said he doesn’t expect much substitution any time soon. The shift takes time and may not be economically viable, he said.

Some analysts are also forecasting a decline in palladium prices next year. The positive demand outlook is already reflected in the price, which has overshot, according to Georgette Boele, coordinator of FX and precious metals strategy at ABN Amro Bank NV.

Still, the demand outlook remains rosy. The number of cars carrying a platinum-group-metal-containing catalyst will probably grow from almost 76 million to almost 90 million in 2025, according to Carsten Menke, commodity strategist at Julius Baer Group Ltd.

“PGM demand in general and palladium demand in particular should continue to grow over the next six years.”

— With assistance by Ania Nussbaum

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375.

Is Patience Really a Virtue?

I’ve come to the conclusion that I have to work on having patience with people. I believe that I’m a patient person, but then there are people that test the mess out of me and make me want to punch things. Don’t laugh, I bet you do, too! On this self-improvement journey that I’ve been on, I haven’t seemed to come to the section about biding your time or being patient with others. For goodness sake, I have raised children and I can’t remember that being as frustrating to me as this is.

I know, at this moment, I must be hungry. I did grab something for lunch and made the fatal mistake of ordering something hot. By the time I got to it, it was no longer edible. Such a waste to some perfectly good nachos, so it looks like candy will be my lunch. So, I must carry on or this whole episode will be prolonged and that, I think, will drive me crazy. Looks like I’ll be putting in some extra, extra prayers today while remembering NOT to pray for patience!

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375.

Your NYE and More List of Things to do This Weekend

Find the perfect things to do in Houston New Year’s Weekend with our super-expanded, six-day Houston Weekend Guide for Friday, December 27, 2018, to New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1, 2019.

Pop the bubbly and ring in 2019 at one of many New Year’s Eve celebrations around town; sing and dance along to your Fab Five favorites; cheer on the Club America soccer team as they take on Santos Laguna; start your year off with tons of food, some morning meditation, or an evening hike; and more.

Check below to find great things happening around Houston this weekend, from Friday, December 27, 2018, to New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1, 2019.

Things to Do All New Year’s Weekend

  • Shen Yunat Jones Hall | Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – Discover the rich spiritual and artistic culture of ancient China as dancers leap, twirl, and glide across the stage in the annual performance of Shen Yun at Jones Hall. Tickets start at $80.
  • Panto Star Force at Stages Repertory Theatre| Thursday to Saturday – Crack up at this hilarious spoof of the original Star Wars trilogy, which follows Jed, a farm boy from the planet Cypress, who joins forces with a zany band of space rebels to take on the powerful Emperor Snorkelfish and Dark Tater. Tickets start at $25. 7pm daily.
  • Alley Theatre presents A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas| Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – Catch a performance of the classic, seasonal tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, who’s famously visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future in Alley Theatre’s annual production of A Christmas Carol. Tickets start at $37.  Showtimes vary.
  • Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experienceat the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts | Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – The magic of Harry Potter comes to life in this comedic performance that runs through all seven books in just 70 minutes at Downtown’s Hobby Center. Tickets start at $49.99. Showtimes vary.
  • Love & Makes Candle-Making Workshop in Rice Village| Friday and Saturday – Design and create a personalized wax candle with help from the team at Love & Makes in Rice Village. The BYOB workshop also features handmade goods from local artisans to shop while your candles set. $45. Times vary.
  • Register Now for Spring Classes at Watercolor Art Society- Houston| Friday and Sunday – Enroll for daytime, evening and weekend watercolor Spring Classes at the Watercolor Art Society– Houston. Learn to paint with watercolor paints and improve your watercolor skills with classes like Beginner Landscapes and Seascapes, Chinese Animal Zodiac, Portrait Painting and Crazy Cats and Mixed Up Mutts and more. Each individual class registration date varies.
  • Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experienceat the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts | Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – The magic of Harry Potter comes to life in this comedic performance that runs through all seven books in just 70 minutes at Downtown’s Hobby Center. Tickets start at $49.99. Showtimes vary.
  • Death by Natural Causesat Houston Museum of Natural Science | Friday to Sunday – Discover a range of deadly “animal, vegetable, and mineral” specimens from the natural world at this educational exhibit in the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Full price tickets are $30 for ages 12 and up; $20 for ages 3 to 11; $20 for ages 62 and up. 9am to 5pm daily.
  • Couples Cook: Celebrate the New Year at Central Market| Saturday to Monday – Bring your special someone to a couples cooking class at Central Market, where you’ll learn how to make filet mignon with wild mushroom sauce, grilled lobster tails with herb butter; bananas foster, and more. $180. 6:30pm daily.

Friday, December 28, 2018

  • Love & Make’s DIY Macramé Wall Hanging Workshop in Rice Village– Craft a gorgeous macramé wall hanging out of simple cord and twine in this DIY workshop led by designer Tanya Bagashkawill at Love & Make in Rice Village. BYOB and snacks are welcome. $65. 2pm.
  • Funfetti Fridays on The ICE at Discovery Green– Skate around The ICE at Discovery Green while jamming out to a colorful light show with beats from DJ Mohawk Steve during Funfetti Fridays. Tickets are $11. Skate rentals cost $4. 7pm to 9pm.
  • Intro to Fabric Painting at Plate & Bottle + Mercantile– Learn the art of fabric painting as an experienced artist leads you through his personal technique and shares his favorite products. After the class, you can mix, mingle, and network with local designers and like-minded individuals at a business mixer. $25. 7pm to 9:30pm.
  • Lettuce in Concert at The Ballroom at Warehouse Live– Hit the dance floor when Boston-based funk group Lettuce brings their groovy tunes to The Ballroom at Warehouse Live. Tickets start at $22. 8pm.
  • Avery in Concert at Satellite Bar Avery, also known as the pop act -Us. and as the drummer for indie band, Wild Moccasins, headlines at Satellite Bar along with special guests, Corbin Dallas, and Yawn Fresno. Tickets are $5 in advance and $10 at the door. 8pm.
  • The Tontons and Black Pumas in Concert at The Heights Theater– Local group The Tontons joins Austin’s Black Pumas for an upbeat and intimate concert at The Heights Theater. Tickets start at $16. 8pm.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

  • Beatles Tribute Band the Fab 5, with Diamond Jack at House of Blues– Hear the iconic music of the Fab Five when a lineup of Beatles tribute bands gets the crowd going at House of Blues. Tickets are $15. 8am to 5pm.
  • New Year’s Eve Historical Bash at George Ranch Historical Park– Gear up for New Year’s Eve festivities when George Ranch Historical Park welcomes visitors for a fun-filled day of crafting. You’ll make masks and noise-makers, then learn the do’s and don’ts of “first-footing” before a noontime countdown and holiday feast. Tickets are $15, seniors are $12, and children’s tickets are $10. 9am to 5pm.
  • Discs and Donuts at Eureka Heights Brew Co| No Cover – Kick back and watch retro Saturday morning cartoons, while eating baked goods from Hugs & Donuts, sipping craft brews, and listening to vinyl records when Eureka Heights brings back its BYO-Vinyl event, Discs and Donuts. 10am to noon.
  • Love & Make’s Bath Bomb Making Workshop in Rice Village – Create your own luxurious, scented bath bomb at this DIY workshop, hosted by Love & Make in Rice Village. The family-friendly activity allows crafters to incorporate essential oils and experiment with fun colors. $45. 11am.
  • Goat Yoga Houston at NettBar– Challenge your strength and stability during a 45-minute session of goat yoga at NettBar Houston. As the name suggests, yogis will practice with assistance from adorable baby goats, followed by 15 minutes of play time. Tickets start at $35. 11:30am to 12:45pm.
  • Little White Oak Night Market at Sideout Volleybar| No Cover – Shop ‘till you drop at The Little White Oak Night Market, which features local farmers, craft vendors, and local artists at Sideout Volleyball. 4pm to 8pm.
  • Club America vs. Santos Laguna at BBVA Compass Stadium– Cheer from the stands during the last game of the 2018 Tour Águila, where Club América will face the current Liga MX champions, Club Santos Laguna, at BBVA Compass Stadium. Tickets start at $35. 4:30pm to 6:30pm.
  • Skate with Spider-Man at Discovery Green– Lace up your skates and head onto the ice to skate alongside one of Marvel’s most popular superheroes at Discovery Green. $11 admission. $4 skate rental. 5pm to 6pm.
  • Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker at Smart Financial Centre – The Moscow Ballet returns to Smart Financial Centre for the Great Russian Nutcracker, featuring world-class artists, hand-painted sets, and jubilant nesting dolls. Tickets start at $33. 7pm.
  • Toadies in Concert at White Oak Music Hall– Sing along to hits by the Fort Worth-based rock group, The Toadies, at White Oak Music Hall. You’ll hear old favorites as well as newer jams from their September 2017 release. Tickets start at $37.50. 7pm.
  • A Selena Tribute With Son de Rey + DJ Soloces at The Continental Club– Bust out your best Bidi Bidi Bom Bom looks for a tribute concert honoring la reina de la cumbia, Selena, at The Continental Club. You’ll hear music from Son de Rey of Austin and Houston’s DJ Soloces. Tickets cost $12 online; $15 at the door. 8:30pm.
  • Cash Cash: NYE Resolution at Stereo Live– Slip on your dancing shoes for a pre-New Year’s Eve concert by The Roseland, New Jersey EDM DJ trio, Cash Cash, at Stereo Live. $33. 10pm to 1:55am.
  • Princess MononokeMovie Screening at River Oaks Theatre – Watch an epic story of conflict between humans, gods, and nature in the 1997 animated film, Princess Mononoke, based on stories from Japanese folklore. $11. Midnight.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

  • Houston Texans vs Jacksonville Jaguars at NRG Stadium– Watch the Houston Texans play the Jaguars on their home turf at NRG. Tickets start at $41. Noon.
  • Sunday Funday Axelmarket at Axelrad| No Cover – Head to Midtown’s hammock-laden patio bar, Axelrad, for this weekly market with local farmers, artists, makers, drink specials, and food trucks. Noon to 11:55pm.
  • Skating with the Stars at Discovery Green– Skate alongside skilled professionals when they take to The ICE at Discovery Green every Sunday evening throughout the winter season. Tickets are $11; $4 skate rental. 6pm to 6:45pm.
  • Washed Out in Concert at White Oak Music Hall– Hear the mellow, hip-hop-inspired production of Georgia’s Washed Out at White Oak Music Hall. Tickets start at $20. 7pm.
  • Mannheim Steamroller Christmas at Smart Financial Centre– Grammy Award winner Chip Davis brings to Houston his seasonal show, which features Mannheim Steamroller Christmas classics, along with a selection of compositions from his Fresh Aire series. Tickets start at $55. 7:30pm.

New Year’s Eve, Monday, December 31, 2018

  • New Year’s Eve Celebrations Around Houston– Ring in 2019 at one of many New Year’s celebrations happening around Houston. With ball drops, fancy feasts, champagne parties, and family-friendly festivities, we’ve got you covered this NYE. Prices, times, and locations vary.
  • Noon Year’s Eve at CityCentre| FREE – Bring the kiddos to CityCentre’s Noon Year’s Eve celebration for face painting, a balloon and caricature artist, and a magic mirror photo booth. You can also dance to music from a DJ and countdown to noon with an explosion of bubbles. 11:30am to 1pm.
  • Havana Nights 2019: New Year’s Eve Extravaganza– Spice up your last night of 2018 with live Cuban music, a gourmet dinner, a giant dance floor and plenty of champagne at the Havana Nights 2019 New Year’s Eve Extravaganza. VIP tickets cost $99. 7:30pm.
  • New Year’s Comedy Jam at Smart Financial Centre– Check out a lineup of knee-slapping comedy when Cedric The Entertainer, DL Hughley, Arnez J, and Nephew Tommy take the mic at Smart Financial Centre. Tickets start at $59.  8pm.
  • Eli Young Band in Concert at House of Blues– Jam out to Texas country music at a concert from Denton’s own Eli Young Band, known for hits like “Crazy Girl,” “Even If It Breaks Your Heart,” and “When It Rains.” Tickets start at $35. 8pm.
  • Houston Rockets vs. Memphis Grizzlies at Toyota Center– Cheer loud for the Rockets when they hit the court to play the Grizzlies at Toyota Center. Tickets start at $29. 6pm.
  • NYE Nash Bash at The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa– The 16th Annual Nash Bash New Year’s Eve, held this year at the Houstonian Hotel, will include hors-d’oeuvres, specially crafted gourmet food stations, a champagne toast, music provided by a DJ and live duo Bill and Kim Nash, and lots of dancing. Tickets and reservations are $200 per person. All proceeds benefit Champions Kids Camp. 6:30pm.
  • Gatsby New Year’s Eve at The Sugar Refinery– Travel back to the roaring ‘20s with this Gatsby-themed party at The Sugar Refinery in Sugar Land. You’ll receive a champagne toast at midnight, party favors, a DJ, a dance floor, and one free drink. A dinner buffet is available for an additional cost. Tickets start at $25. 7pm.
  • Topgolf’s Big NYE Bash at Topgolf Houston-Katy– Say hello to 2019 with live entertainment, a chef-inspired menu, and a midnight celebration with fireworks at the Big NYE Bash, hosted by all three Topgolf locations in Katy, Spring, and Webster. You can upgrade to VIP for exclusive access to an all-inclusive feast with a carving station and a bottle of bubbly to share with friends. Tickets start at $200. 9pm to 1am.
  • Baroque Razzle-Dazzle at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts– Start 2019 on a high note at Ars Lyrica’s annual New Year’s Eve concert, which showcases violinist Adam LaMotte and the music of the first and third of Brahms’ “Brandenburg” concertos. Tickets start at $130. 9pm.
  • Year of the Bo$$ 2K19 NYE Celebration with Slim Thug at House of Blues Roll into 2019 in style at the Year of the Bo$$ 2K19 NYE Celebration with the legendary Houstonian rapper, Slim Thug and friends at the Foundation Room at House of Blues. Enjoy chef-created á la carte items, a lounge menu, and drink specials all night. Along with Slim Thug, the party will be hosted by comedian Jeff Shelly and sounds will be provided by DJ Staso. Tickets are $75 and $150 for VIP. 9pm.
  • Black Swan New Year’s Eve Celebration at Omni Hotel Wave goodbye to 2018 in style with an evening of dancing, entertainment and bubbly at the luxe Omni Houston Hotel in the Uptown area. Spend the night at the Omni Hotel with overnight accommodations include tickets for two to The Black Swan night club’s Private New Year’s Eve event, and a bottle of champagne delivered to your guest room. The late check out party will feature a midnight champagne toast, a balloon drop, party favors, a photo booth, and live DJ. 9pm.
  • New Year’s Eve at Hotel ZaZa Memorial City Wrap up 2018 and ring in the New Year in extravagant style at Hotel ZaZa Memorial City. Dance the year away while enjoying hors d’oeuvres, an interactive photobooth, and a champagne toast to cap off the midnight countdown. Come dressed to impress in your best cocktail attire and Hotel ZaZa will send you into 2019 with complimentary party favors. 10pm.

New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1, 2019

  • All you can eat Menudo, Birria & Pozole New Year’s Day at La Calle Tacos– Recover from the previous night’s festivities with all-you-can-eat menudo, birria, and pozole, all known for their hangover-curing abilities, courtesy of La Calle Tacos. Prefer the hair-of-the-dog approach? Sip a bloody mary, mimosa, or michelada made with the restaurant’s extensive Mexican beer selection. Menu prices vary. 7am to 10pm.
  • 2019 Run Houston! at Sam Houston Race Park– Get started on your New Year’s resolutions at the 2019 Run Houston, which offers a 10K, 5K, and Kids 1K race at Sam Houston Race Park. Registration includes free, high-resolution race photos; a T-shirt; a finisher’s medal, and access to the post-race party with food, drinks, and awards. The 10K and 5K are $50, while the Kids 1K costs $30. 8:30am to noon.
  • Rise & Run 5K at Memorial Park| FREE – Lace up your sneakers and start 2019 on the right foot at this free, 5K walk/run at Memorial Park. This event is family- and pet-friendly. 9am to 11am.
  • New Year’s Day Hangover Cure Brunch at B&B Butchers– Kick off the new year with live music on the rooftop patio and a decadent brunch at B&B Butchers. You can eat your way to a lucky year with black-eyed peas and greens, and wash it all down with oversized “Manmosas.” Menu prices vary. 11am to 3pm.
  • New Year’s Day Crystal Bowl Meditation at Rothko Chapel– Start your year with intention, as Rothko Chapel presents a New Year’s Day crystal bowl meditation, led by Bayou Bliss Yoga founder Dana Shamas. Suggested donation of $10. Noon to 1pm.
  • BCO & HTXO New Year’s Hike at Memorial Park| FREE – Hike your way into 2019 with the crew at Bayou City Outdoors, who will lead you through some of Houston’s best inner-city outdoor trails. Hikers will meet in Memorial Park’s Rugby Field Parking Lot on Picnic Lane. 6:15pm.

 

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375

What Are Your Burning Desires in Life?

One of the most consistent themes in these books, is that you have to believe in order to achieve. You have to have a deep, burning desire to get whatever it is that you want. For me, that means that I have to overcome these silly fears. So yes, I will be getting on a ladder, but that’s not even the best part. I will also, for my birthday, be jumping out of a perfectly good airplane. I’ve done this before also, and I did slightly twist my ankle the last time I did this, so I know that there’s a real possibility that I can really get hurt. With that said, I already booked my jump for March 2019. Once I conquer these two fears, it’s time to get onto the next one. These are minor in comparison that’s why it’s important to remove these potential excuses.

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375

What Limits Someone Is…

Prior to the accident, I was a risk taker of sorts. I enjoyed high speeds, jumping from planes and loved heights. I didn’t fear the consequences of falling because, hey what’s the worst that could happen? A bad enough fall for me now could land me in the hospital or worse, back in a wheelchair or paralyzed, so I made the choice not to take those risks anymore. The thing is, that altered many things about the person I was and became. No longer would I even go up a ladder in fear that if I fell, the consequences would be dire. That big “if” is what I placed in front of me to limit what I could, would and should do. I know you must think this is funny, but they were small things that I could control. Heck, it took me nearly a year and a half before I drove again after the wreck.

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375

Overcoming Fears: How I Got Here

On this journey, I’ve discovered that I have some fears that I need to eliminate in my life. They’re silly little things, but the changes were as a result of some life altering events in my past. So, I have challenged myself to do two very specific things and I have announced it to all my friends and family. The first thing is to get up on a ladder. Yes, I know it’s stupid sounding, but let me explain. 11 years ago, I was involved in a 5-vehicle accident. This accident shattered my knee, broke my leg and severely injured my back causing me to me in a wheelchair for six months as the doctors told me that I could lose my leg (complications from the surgeries) and possibly never walk again. Once the swelling went down in my back, the paralysis decreased and I began to regain feeling and movement began to return. However, my body was rejecting the metals they used in my leg and knee that reconstructed everything and had to be removed and replaced with other materials. This…absolutely…sucked…big…time! I had a tube inserted into my leg that was to drain the fluids and assist in the healing process. That was gross, but it was necessary in order for my leg to begin to heal and it did for the most part. 

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375

Is There Really a Secret to it?

I can completely understand now how a lot of the books that are out there dedicated to self-improvement have to almost chew it for you. It can be intimidating, but if you take it step by step, it’s not all that bad. Maybe you do have to understand what the secret is. No, don’t ask me, I’m not telling you. You see part of this journey is discovering yourself and the desire that burns with in you. It one thing to say that I want to be rich, it’s another to state that and the manner in which you’re going to do this. I feel like I could write a book about this but instead, I’m just going to blog about the progress and how it’s going.

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375.

What Do You See When You Close Your Eyes?

What I want you to do is close your eyes. Envision what you desperately want in life. It can big or small, but it has to be meaningful and specific. Many lose the specificity of what they want, which turns into noise and never comes to fruition. They add it to the other noises in their lives and never accomplish what they really want. Are riches what you seek? Can you see yourself rich? Can you see yourself living the lifestyle that you deserve rather than the one you can get by with? Is the picture of what you desire crystal clear or is it fuzzy? You want to focus on that imagine so intensely that it is seared into your mind. Just like those optical illusions that as you stare at a page with an image on it, when you look away, the image is still present. Don’t let this image fade away and if you’re doing this with a burning desire, that image will become manifest.

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram

Your Extended Christmas List of Things to do This Weekend

Find the perfect things to do in Houston Christmas weekend with our super-expanded, six-day Houston Weekend Guide for Friday, December 21 to Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25, 2018. 

Make your way through four interactive Christmas installations, lace up your skates to hit the ice at Discovery Green, treat the family to one of several holiday-themed productions and concerts, feast on an indulgent brunch buffet; kick back with discounted drinks and live jazz music and more.  

Check below to find great things happening around Houston this weekend, from Friday, December 21 to Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25, 2018.

Things to Do All Christmas Weekend

·         Last Minute Gift Ideas on the Houston Experience Marketplace | Daily – Give Houston to your loved ones this holiday with museum passes, 90-day brewery passes, Magical Lights experiences, and more. Experiences start at $12 and can be delivered directly to your giftees’ phones (or to your own.

·         Spring Classes at Watercolor Art Society Registration-Houston | Daily – Enroll for daytime, evening and weekend watercolor Spring Classes at the Watercolor Art Society– Houston. Learn to paint with watercolor paints and improve your watercolor skills with classes like Beginner Landscapes and Seascapes, Chinese Animal Zodiac, Portrait Painting and Crazy Cats and Mixed Up Mutts and more. Individual class registration dates vary.

·         Sportsmonkey’s Winter League Registration | Daily – Register now for the Sportsmonkey Winter League Registration and receive 10% off when you use the 365HOU promo code. Form a team with as many players as you want and join a league of basketball, bowling, kickball, indoor and sand volleyball, softball, flag football, or soccer.

·         Get Anything Delivered with Favor Gift Cards | Daily – Order Favor Delivery gift cards for you or your loved ones this holiday and score two free deliveries for yourself per card.

·         Alley Theatre presents A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas | Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – Catch a performance of the classic, seasonal tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, who’s famously visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future in Alley Theatre’s annual production of A Christmas Carol. Tickets start at $37.

·         Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experience at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts | Thursday to Sunday and Tuesday – The magic of Harry Potter comes to life in this comedic performance that runs through all seven books in just 70 minutes at Downtown’s Hobby Center. Tickets start at $49.99. Showtimes vary.

·         Pride and Prejudice at Studio 101 | Thursday and Friday – Watch the literary classic, Pride and Prejudice, come to life in Kate Hamill’s adaptation of the famous play that follows the love story of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy. Tickets start at $17. Showtimes vary.

·         Hansel and Gretel at the Rec Room | Thursday to Saturday  Engelbert Humperdinck provides a sweeping score for this micro-opera, which follows a young duo, Hansel and Gretel, who venture into the woods in search of food for their family. During their search, they discover an enchanted cottage made of sweets, along with its unfortunate occupant. Tickets start at $30. Showtimes vary.

·         Small Paintings Show: In the Spirit of the Season at Watercolor Art Society-Houston | FREE – WAS-H opens its doors for a free exhibition showcasing artists’ seasonal works. The exhibit it open daily from Tuesday to Saturday each week through Thursday, January 3, 2019. 10am to 3pm.

·         The Ultimate Christmas Show (Abridged) at Stages Repertory Theatre | Thursday to Saturday – Follow along as three quick-witted church members are forced to perform an impromptu Christmas pageant after none of their scheduled acts arrive. Tickets start at $25. 7pm daily.

·         Panto Star Force at Stages Repertory Theatre | Thursday to Saturday – Crack up at this hilarious spoof of the original Star Wars trilogy, which follows Jed, a farm boy from the planet Cypress, who joins forces with a zany band of space rebels to take on the powerful Emperor Snorkelfish and Dark Tater. Tickets start at $25. 7pm daily.

·         Blanco Tacos & Tequila Opening at The Galleria | Thursday to Sunday –Celebrate the opening of Blanco Tacos & Tequila by enjoying creative and vibrant tacos on handmade tortillas, alongside refreshing margaritas, house cocktails, tequila flights, and mezcal. Times vary.

·         Christmas Village at Bayou Bend | Thursday to Sunday – Discover an immersive Christmas experience at the Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens. The garden turns into a winter wonderland featuring thousands of lights and activities for all ages throughout the 14-acre estate. Tickets range from $8 to $15. Times vary.

·         Houston Symphony presents Handel’s Messiah at Sugar Land Baptist Church and Jones Hall | Thursday to Sunday – Hear the ever-exuberant choruses of songs like “Hallelujah” and “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain” in Handel’s Messiah, a powerful and timeless production performed by the Houston Symphony, chorus, and guest soloists at Jones Hall. Tickets start at $58. Showtimes vary.

·         Love & Makes Candle-Making Workshop in Rice Village | Friday and Saturday – Design and create a personalized wax candle with help from the team at Love & Makes in Rice Village. The BYOB workshop also features handmade goods from local artisans to shop while your candles set. $45. Times vary.

·         Cirque Joyeux Noel Dinner & Show at Moody Gardens | Friday and Saturday; Monday and Tuesday – Bring the family to dinner and a show as Moody Gardens Hotel & Spa hosts a holiday spectacular, which features a stellar cast of international cirque and variety performers from around the world. Tickets start at $53. 6:30pm daily.

·         The Nutcracker at the Wortham Theater Center | Friday to Sunday – The Sugar Plum Fairy, Clara, and all of her magical toys return for the beloved Christmas classic, The Nutcracker, presented by the Houston Ballet at the Wortham Theater Center. Tickets start at $30. Showtimes vary.

·         Death by Natural Causes at Houston Museum of Natural Science | Friday to Sunday – Discover a range of deadly “animal, vegetable, and mineral” specimens from the natural world at this educational exhibit in the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Full price tickets are $30 for ages 12 and up; $20 for ages 3 to 11; $20 for ages 62 and up. 9am to 5pm daily.

·         Winter Wonderland Pop-up Experience | Saturday and Sunday – Browse an interactive Christmas experience featuring four themed installation rooms at the Winter Wonderland Pop-up. You can sit on Santa’s sleigh at the North Pole, watch clips of your favorite Christmas movies on the big screen, have a snowball fight with your pals, and more. Tickets start at $20.88. 9am to 8pm both days.

Friday, December 21, 2018

·         Saint Arnold Naughty List Tap Takeover at Conservatory | No Cover – Local favorite Saint Arnold will take over all 32 taps at downtown’s Conservatory, featuring a range of creative brews (think Nitro Raspberry AF aged in Whistlepig whiskey barrels with vanilla beans) in the third annual Naughty List Tap Takeover. 11am to midnight.

·         Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s The Ghosts of Christmas Eve at Toyota Center – Take a seat a powerful performance by the renowned Trans-Siberian Orchestra as they play their Ghosts of Christmas Eve concert at Toyota Center. Tickets start at $48.50. 3:30pm and 8pm.

·         Christmas Carol Sing-A-Long at Sugar Land Town Square | FREE – Spread Christmas cheer by singing Christmas songs of new and old at Sugar Land Town Square. 6:30pm to 8:30pm.

·         Funfetti Fridays on The ICE at Discovery Green  Skate around The ICE at Discovery Green while jamming out to a colorful light show with beats from DJ Mohawk Steve during Funfetti Fridays. Tickets are $11. Skate rentals cost $4. 7pm to 9pm.

·         Robert Earl Keen in Concert at House of Blues – Catch a country music concert by Robert Earl Keen, a native Houstonian known for his long-standing career in bluegrass and his magnetic stage presence, when he takes the mic at House of Blues. Tickets start at $47.50. 8pm.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

·         Midtown in Motion at Bagby Park | FREE – Get moving as instructor Roz Jones leads you through a High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) class, followed by a Yoga Flow class at Bagby Park. All fitness levels welcome. 9:30am.

·         Farmers Market at Elizabeth Baldwin Park | No Cover – Shop fresh produce from local farms and prepared foods from a range of vendors at this weekly farmer’s market in Midtown’s Elizabeth Baldwin Park.10am to 2pm.

·         Frozen Over at Children’s Museum of Houston – Join, Elsa, Anna, Olaf and Kristoff for a sing-along show inspired by Disney’s Frozen at the Children’s Museum of Houston. You can watch the movie throughout the day, play in real snow, and craft your own LED snowflake ornaments. $12. Sing-along show is from noon to 2pm.All other activities are available from 10am to 6pm.

·         Young Writers Workshop at Discovery Green | FREE – Bring your little aspiring writers to this free workshop, where they will learn the basics of storytelling and language skills. Led by the Houston Public Library, the weekly workshop takes place at Discovery Green. 10:30am to 11:30am.

·         Love & Make’s Bath Bomb Making Workshop in Rice Village – Create your own luxurious, scented bath bomb at this DIY workshop, hosted by Love & Make in Rice Village. The family-friendly activity allows crafters to incorporate essential oils and experiment with fun colors. $45. 11am.

·         HMNS at Levy Park | FREE – Explore the science of sound with interactive demonstrations that delve into vibration, frequency and more as the Houston Museum of Natural Science presents its monthly educational exhibit at Levy Park. 2pm to 4pm.

·         Skate with Santa at Discovery Green – Lace up your skates and prepare your Christmas wish list to skate alongside Old Saint Nick on The ICE at Discovery Green. Tickets are $11. Skate rentals cost $4. 5pm to 6pm.

·         Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt at Rob Fleming Park – Bring your flashlight to hunt for candy canes at Rob Fleming Park. Following the candy cane hunt, you can enjoy hot cocoa and Christmas cookies or snap photos with Santa. Tickets start at $10. 5:30pm to 6:30pm.

·         Houston Rockets vs. San Antonio Spurs at Toyota Center – Cheer loud for the Rockets when they hit the court to play the Spurs at Toyota Center. Tickets start at $20. 7pm.

·         Anomaly: The Magic of Robby Bennett and Other Curiosities at The Wortham Center – Marvel at magic tricks and amazing illusions in Anomaly: The Magic of Robby Bennett and Other Curiosities at The Wortham Center. With appearances on Good Morning America, Inside Edition, and SportsCenter, Robby Bennett has professionally captivated audiences since the age of thirteen and has earned many awards throughout his career. Tickets start at $20. 7:30pm.

·         Playboi Carti in Concert at Revention Music Center – Jam out to a live show by Playboi Carti, formerly known as Sir Cartier, when the “Broke Boi” rapper takes the stage at Revention Music Center. Tickets start at $35. 8pm.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

·         Sunday Brunch with Santa at Hotel Galvez  Bring the kids to share their Christmas list with Kris Kringle before enjoying a delicious brunch at Hotel Galvez. After eating, check out the hotel’s annual holiday gingerbread display while listening to a pianist play traditional holiday favorites in the lobby. Menu prices vary. 11am.

·         A Charlie Brown Christmas Live on Stage at The Grand 1894 Opera House – Watch Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus, and the rest of the Peanuts gang come to life in a delightful production of the Christmas classic at The Grand 1894 Opera House. Tickets start at $22.50. 1pm and 4pm.

·         Caroling at Market Street in The Woodlands | FREE – Head to Market Street in The Woodlands to sing along to all of your favorite Christmas carols and spread holiday cheer. 3:30pm to 5pm.

·         Jingle & Mingle Christmas Party at Capitol Bar in Midtown – Celebrate on the build-up to Christmas Eve at a mixer in Midtown. Patrons can grab green, red, and gold wristbands that indicate whether their relationship status is “Single”, “Taken”, or “It’s Complicated.” 5pm to 2am.

·         Skating with the Stars at Discovery Green | FREE – Skate alongside skilled professionals when they take to The ICE at Discovery Green every Sunday evening throughout the winter season. 6pm to 6:45pm.

·         Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis: Holiday Shindig at The Heights Theater – Husband-and-wife duo Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis bring their musical skills to the stage for a holiday shindig at The Heights Theater. Tickets start at $22. 7pm.

·         Sunday Theatre Karaoke at Guava Lamp | No Cover – Belt out your go-to showtunes when the LGBTQ-friendly nightclub, Guava Lamp, hosts a theatre-themed karaoke night every Sunday. 9pm.

Christmas Eve, Monday, December 24, 2018

·         Breakfast with Santa at Downtown Aquarium – Meet Santa Claus for breakfast under the sea as the Downtown Aquarium presents a Christmas Eve breakfast buffet with plenty of photo opportunities. Tickets cost $19.99; children ages 3 to 10 can get in for $13.99. 8am to 1pm.

·         Christmas Eve Dinner at Backstreet Cafe – Dine in style this Christmas Eve with a sumptuous three-course meal prepared by the chefs at Backstreet Cafe. Choose from delicious dishes like braised lamb shank, charred cauliflower with shishito peppers, and a Christmas sundae with eggnog ice cream, hazelnut, orange pralines, salted caramel, and almond crunch$54, plus beverages and gratuity. 6pm.

·         Bingo in the Biergarten at Karbach Brewing Co | No Cover – Try your luck at a round of bingo while sipping craft brews on the patio at the family-friendly Karbach Brewing Co. 6pm to 8pm.

·         ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Comedy Show at The Eventure’ – Laugh with your loved ones at a holiday-themed comedy show featuring a lineup of local talent at The Eventure’ in Spring. They’ll also have drinks, live music from Sean David and Greg Paul, and food from Sonya’s Edible Empire. Tickets start at $22.50. 6pm to 10pm.
Christmas Party with Jubin Nautiyal at Ayva Center
 – Celebrate Christmas Eve with an Indian music concert and party, featuring the mesmerizing voice of Jubin Nautiyal, as well as food trucks offering desi delicacies at Ayva Center. Tickets start at $55. 7pm.

·         Harry Sheppard at Brasil Houston | No Cover – Sip $4 frozen margaritas and relax to the soothing sounds of jazz vibraphone player Harry Shephard, who has played alongside legends such as Roy Eldridge, Charlie Shavers, and Ben Webster, when he plays a set at Brasil Houston. 7pm to 10pm.

·         Bollywood Xmas Eve Bash at Club Z – DJ Dholi Deep gets the party started this Christmas Eve during the Bollywood Xmas Eve Bash at Club Z in Midtown. Tickets start at $5. 10pm.

Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25, 2018

·         Christmas Day Brunch at Hotel Galvez & Spa – Hotel Galvez hosts its annual Christmas Day Brunch, which features all of their traditional entrees, along with special additions created by the executive chef. Menu prices vary. 10am.

·         Christmas Day Brunch Buffet at Radio Milano – Feast on dishes like mini crab cakes, Hong Kong fried toast, vegetarian lasagna, and panna cotta at Radio Milano’s three-course Christmas Day brunch. $45. 10am to 3pm.

·         Houston Rockets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder at Toyota Center – Cheer loud for the Rockets when they hit the court to play the Thunder at Toyota Center. Tickets range from $62 to over $900. 2pm.

·         Scrooged Movie Screening at Axelrad | FREE – Catch Bill Murray’s hilarious take on Ebenezer Scrooge as he stars in the 1988 seasonal comedy, Scrooged, playing Christmas night on the big screen Axelrad. They’ll have heaters, fire pits, and blankets to keep warm. 7:30pm to 11pm.

·         30 Foot Fall in Concert at Fitzgeralds – Rock out at Fitzgeralds’ final Christmas concert featuring Houston’s own 30 Foot Fall, a punk band that’s drawn crowds across Texas since 1993. Tickets start at $10. 9pm.

·         Molly & The Ringwalds in Concert at The Continental Club | FREE – Keep the festivities going into the night with a free concert by Molly & The Ringwalds at The Continental Club in Midtown. 9:30pm to 11pm.

Until tomorrow, if you want to chat me up, follow me on Facebook @woodlandsgoldwiser , on Twitter @IamGinaOlson or on Instagram @HoustonGoldwiser or visit me in person at 24910 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball, TX 77375.