OK, OK, sooooo – better late than never, right? RIGHT?
This holiday season came and went so, so fast. I really wanted to enjoy the holidays and since I didn’t have school as a distraction, I had grand plans of making lots of cookies, decorating the hell out of the house, enjoying some quiet time with the family and really just soaking in the season.
For the most part, I did and it was the best Christmas ever…
Since my camera apparently has made up with my computer (although the computer still has trouble recognizing him sometimes, which makes downloading pictures take FOR-EV-ER) let’s begin with that holiday tradition that always starts the Christmas season for us – the girls’ Christmas trees from Judi and Ted!!
The girls trees seem to out do the last ones every year.
And this year was no exception.
It’s a tradition that Judi & Ted started when the girls were little (read about the past two years here and here) and the girls look forward to receiving them every year.
This year, we put the trees by the fireplace so the girls could see them every time they walked from the kitchen to the family room. I’ll admit, I selfishly wanted them there too, so we could all enjoy them and so that all of our guests at the MANY holiday parties we hosted this year could enjoy them as well.
Gratuitous pictures of my boy Baxter – the morning after our biggest holiday party (hence the 20 coolers in the background that we had just brought in from their spot outside the back door. People, I have three refrigerators and they couldn’t handle the amount of food and beer/wine/liquor that we had that night. Yes, I’m still recovering from that one)
Another tradition in our house is to open one present on Christmas Eve. And it’s always matching Christmas jammies for the girls (which were surprisingly hard to find this year!)
My babies, getting ready for Santa!!
Once the girls went to bed, it was time to load in the presents!
Santa added a little bling to the stockings this year with these ornaments.
Apparently he couldn’t find an “O” for Olivia, so he went with the “L” for Livvie”.
And then came the presents.
We finally got to bed at 1:30 a.m. For the third night in a row. YAWN.
The girls didn’t get us up until 8:00 so we were at least conscious in the morning. I should tell you that my kids are not allowed to go downstairs until they come and get us – AND they have to wait for me to go down, start the coffee and turn on the tree, etc., before they can come down. So they stand at the top of the stairs yelling
Can we come down yet?
CAN WE COME DOWN YET???
Usually I take a long time just to torture them…..
Chauncey and Baxter enjoyed their Christmas bones.
As you can see, Chauncey REALLY enjoyed his.
That night I hosted Christmas dinner for 12 people.
On the menu:
Fresh mussels in garlic and white wine
Homemade scalloped potatoes
Homemade mushroom stuffing
(with crimini mushrooms, heavy cream and brandy)
Green Bean Casserole
(with herbed red wine sauce and/or herbed horseradish sauce)
I bought some clear glass ornaments and wrote everyone’s name on them with puffy paint, put on some curly ribbon and placed them in glass tea light holders as place settings.
I loved the way it looked….
And here was the surprise of Christmas for me…
A beautiful blue topaz necklace from Brian. We rarely exchange gifts for any holiday and if we do, they’re small. But he told me he wanted to get me something special to celebrate our marriage.
And he wanted something that would go with my blue eyes.