Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanza. Whatever your personal holiday is, I hope it is filled with love, peace and personal fulfillment. May the reason for your season fill you with hope.

We are celebrating this year at home-alone. For the past 20 years we have spent Christmas day with my husband's family. When my father and stepmom still lived in MN, we would go out for pizza with them on Christmas Eve and then see my siblings and Mom around New Years. There are 4 kids in my husbands family (as in mine) and we each take turns hosting, so we host every 4 years. We hosted last year. It was a terrible Christmas. I had lost my paternal grandfather at the end of November and then my grandmother on December 21st. My Dad made two trips 3-1/2 weeks apart, and while it was wonderful to see him, it wasn't on those terms. We had pizza with Dad on the 23rd last year, an ode to our old ritual and then he was off to sunny Florida again. I had to work part of the day Christmas Eve, then fix dinner for 14 people on Christmas and be at work at 4 am on the 26th. My hubby and I decided that enough was enough. We wanted to start traditions for our girls, most importantly being to be able to stay home to enjoy whatever Santa brought us and not have to open gifts, take 4 showers, hop in car and pray for good weather to travel for an hour to two hours depending on who was hosting. We decided that we would rather see family when we do family fun night. It is potluck, no stress of decorating and doing all the cooking and it was all about fun. It didn't sit well with some members of his family and I'm pretty sure I am taking the fall for it, but the hubby is the one who said last Christmas night-'we are not doing this anymore'. And today was wonderful. We got up later, opened gifts (while the girls texted boyfriends and best friends about what was under the tree), had a nice leisurely breakfast, and then took naps. Now I have dinner in the oven, some are still napping and I'm going to finish the Prosecco I used for mimosa's this morning and read one of the 3 new cookbooks I received today. Note-the lemon potatoes for last nights dinner were not a success. There was too much lemon flavor for the family and the eye of round roast didn't have much flavor. The girls said that since they were Greek potatoes that must be why they didn't care for them. I told them that if we had a traditional Scandanavian dinner (which is a large part of our DNA) I would have had to make lutefisk. That shut them up right quick! Next time, I will marinade the roast for better flavor. But the ham that is bubbling away smells awesome and I usually never screw up mashed potatoes, so I think tonights dinner will be a sucess. Plus, we will have movie time afterwards. Last night we watched "That Thing You Do" which was one of our favorite movies when the girls were young. Our youngest's boyfriend was here. He might have thought I was (am?) a little nuts as I sang along with songs and Randy and I recited most of the lines of the movie. We are a little wacky that way.

Tonight it is Mamma Mia and maybe Forgetting Sarah Marshall-which is not appropriate for Christmas, but makes me laugh out loud-a lot.

Warm wishes and full stomachs for all.

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