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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas 2013

Christmas always comes and goes too fast. All of this insanity for one day, then it's done and we fall into the frigid winter months with nothing to look forward to until Spring. And living in New England, that doesn't guarantee a significant climate change.

End rant. Cue Christmas recap.

I believe it's true that we learn something new everyday. I spent my entire Christmas Eve prepping food, baking up a storm, and attempting to clean up before church. I cooked quinoa, baked gingersnap cookies and peanut butter cup cookies, baked gingerbread protein bars (I followed Peas and Thank You's amazing recipe), and diced veggies, all while intermittently cleaning up after myself, from 9am straight through 3:15pm. What did I learn from all of this, you ask? I learned that when my family insists at 3:10 that I attend Christmas Eve mass starting at 4pm and I'm a flour-covered mess still in my pajamas, I transform myself into a presentable human being in less than 15 minutes, makeup and all. 

Pretty impressive if I do say so myself. And a valuable lesson learned.

P.S. Is my sister gorgeous or what? I wish I had half her looks.

The end results of my morning chaos:
Gingerbread bars unpictured, they just aren't attractive desserts when your best camera is on your iPad.

Needless to say in my mad rush, I never even thought to wrap my Christmas gifts. So that meant returning home from work to run to the basement and discretely wrap everything before my family arrived. Barely got it done.

Now that we're all older, my family just does all of the gifts on Christmas morning. It's cute that my mom still writes "from Santa" on our gifts. I really hate when people buy me gifts, honestly. I'd rather see them use the money towards themselves or someone else. I have everything I need already; however, I was not at all disappointed in my gifts.
Rocking my festive Santa pjs, my gifts spread on the floor (don't mind the dog bed haha), and my new boots
Crappy pictures, but we had to hurry to get dressed and head to the cemetery to spend some time with Dad on Christmas. Christmas sure is different without him here. He had so much Christmas spirit, he was like a little kid. I love and miss him so much...

What a goon. 
Our family is pretty small now. Including the four of us, we had 10 people for dinner. At least it gives me the chance to be a little more creative with side dishes knowing there are less people to please.
This year's experiment was a recipe I threw together on the fly. Red quinoa, red cabbage, sugar snap peas, mushrooms, and scallions lightly sautéed in a wok with a dressing of sesame oil, soy sauce, Ginger, Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, pepper, and garlic. I had three servings of that shit, no shame. Along with two small sweet potatoes, tons of roasted asparagus, and fresh green beans. I hate that ham is the traditional protein for Christmas dinner, I just can't eat it. It grosses me out.

We spent the rest of the evening playing Who's on my Head and just hanging out enjoying each other's company. We ended the night watching Just Friends.

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