Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Recap

We've had the loveliest of Christmas holidays.  Thanksgiving can be kind of nuts around here - I always feel like we're driving around to a zillion different gatherings, and in the meantime I'm usually having one of my busiest work weeks of the year.  Christmas, on the other hand, is different.  I've usually hit a lull at work and am taking a deep breath and relaxing, and we don't travel around nearly as much.  We do Christmas Eve with my family, and then we host a Christmas morning brunch for any family and friends that want to come over, and then usually we don't much of anything else.  It's the best, and here's how it all went down:

Christmas Eve we started what should be a new family tradition.  We headed out to Richmond Hill Park and played in the woods together.  Clark ran, and Sam went with me and ran while I rode my uni.  It turned out to be FREEZING, and I was feeling kind of bad for dragging Sam out in it.  The kid has no body fat, and he looked like he was turning blue even after I added a bunch of layers of bike clothes to him from my stash in the car.  But then it started snowing and all was forgiven.  Snow on Christmas Eve = fabulous, no matter the temperature.

Somewhere out there Sam and I ran into Clark, and we took some pictures.

This is one my favorites.  If you look closely you'll see Sam peeping out from behind the tree. 

Once we got ourselves out of the woods we started prepping the brunch we were going to serve on Christmas morning.  We procured sausage at the new Katuah Market  - it just opened, and is owned and largely staffed by the same folks that ran Greenlife before it sold to Whole Foods.  It was like old home week seeing all of the familiar faces, and is beautiful.  Of course since we live within a 2 block walk of Greenlife/Whole Foods, Trader Joes and Harris Teeter, our grocery cup overfloweth and we don't usually need to get in a car and go looking for yet another grocery store.  But I did like Katuah and will no doubt be back.

Lots, and lots, and lots of sausage balls.  And a few other things.  French toast figured prominently.  And some hash brown/egg cup things that seemed to take about 400 times longer than promised, but were actually pretty good.

Christmas Eve with my family - woohoo!  

Our tree on Christmas Eve night.  It looked basically the same on Christmas morning, except it wasn't dark outside and the pictures therefore looked kind of weird with all of the lights.

Let the present opening begin!  Moose was really fascinated by the poodle ornament.  Strangely perceptive, or strangely delicious smelling?  I'm going with the latter.

 Yes, that's my cat in a military portrait.  I cannot stop laughing.  Thanks to Clark and Sam and Skymall, this now has a place of honor in my studio.

Christmas brunch with the family and friends - all of that sausage-ball making pays off.

Bumper pool tourney after the brunch.  Family competitiveness never takes a break.

And after brunch. . .  more uni in Richmond Park.  Like Groundhog Day.

And then Christmas dinner with Leslie and Ed - for which I made my very first ever cake.  Seriously.  I had so little idea of what I was doing that I had to watch a youtube video to figure out how to properly prep the pans.  But the cake itself was (and I'm loathe to toot my own horn here, but…) AMAZING.  I attribute this entirely to (1)  Ina Garten and (2) my ability to follow directions, because as I've mentioned. . . I have no idea how to bake a cake.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.  (and a good beer.)

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