Two days of Christmas really add up in the ole stomach.
I mostly grazed and didn’t have full meals but I am still full after all the foods that come with Christmas.
Since our little family hasn’t really gotten to the point where doing Christmas morning at home would be much fun we still go to each family for a Christmas morning. One on Christmas Eve, the other on the actual Christmas morning. I’m not sure how much longer we’ll do this since we’ll have two kids next Christmas and Avery will be over two years old so we cherished this year.
First we did my in-laws on Christmas Eve and of course everything was really overwhelming for Avery. He didn’t really focus on any of his presents because of all the people, wrapping paper and noise. He basically grabbed a couple little toy cars (not new!)and ignored the craziness. I was excited to open some of his presents because they were clothing and things that I am grateful for but all the toys were a little much for both of us. He is definitely a first grandchild on that side of the family! Grandma knew better than to get him a noisy toy (THANK YOU!) so that was cool.
We spent a bit opening gifts (I got some cool stuff like a rice cooker and a box of Turkish delight!) my in-laws hit the kitchen hardcore. My Father-in-law is quite passionate about cooking and it certainly showed in the meal. We started out with a lovely savory/sweet soup combination.
On the right was a subtly sweet roasted butternut squash soup with toasted pumpkin seeds on top and on the left was a savory broccoli soup with a parsley garnish.
Both were surprisingly light and refreshing.
Next we had ham, seared asparagus with lemon zest and mashed potatoes with parsnips and a crusty Parmesan crust.
I went heavy on the asparagus…..because I’m obsessed with asparagus. Everything was wonderful though. The gravy was insanely delicious…..but I can’t even describe how it was made. Let’s just say that it involved hours in the making.
My Mother-in-law made the pies but I forgot to photo them:( Apple, chocolate and the best pumpkin pie I’ve had in a long time. I don’t have the recipe yet but it involves cream cheese.
We got home late in the afternoon and I tried to nap unsuccessfully (Avery had just gotten up from a two hour nap) because of all the noisy toys…..gotta get rid of most of those, seriously. Or at least remove batteries.
And then we spent the evening with A Christmas Story and Chinese food….because that’s just how we do.
It was awesome. Such a great movie and such a great meal….so much food we’ll be eating it for days I’m sure.
On Christmas morning we drove down to my family’s house for our Christmas with them.
Something you should know, I have a huge family (two parents, seven kids, three spouses and three grandkids plus my grandma who comes for the morning too…and two more grandkids on the way) so let’s just say their amazing and massive tree couldn’t contain the gifts.
They filled the tree space and spilled out over the floor and across the room there was another big stack. We spoil eachother, it’s just how it goes!
We eat a big breakfast (biscuits and gravy, cinnamon-apple muffin bread, mimosas, and more) and got to presents pretty late.
Our general tradition is that we open all the gifts, clear up all the wrapping paper and then open our stockings. Along with the usual fun stocking stuffers, my Dad puts tons of yummy cheeses, canned seafoods (smoked mussels, sardines in hot sauces, caviar, etc), and exotic fruits. Once the stockings are empty we prepare a feast using our stocking foods.
The cheeses and seafoods are eaten on crackers with garnishes like pickles, olives and different hot sauces. Then we eat all the fruits like it’s our job.
Pomegranates, mangoes, persimmons, star fruit, African horned fruit, kiwi, mini red bananas, pears, etc. All this is enjoyed with more mimosas, homemade flavored sodas, tea and eggnog.
After that we literally all go laze and chat, nap or, if you’re my younger sisters, you play wii dance games for hours and make us all giggle sleepily.
Then we head off to see all the aunts, uncles, cousins and Grandma and Grandpa for more food, more socialization and gifts. All this was quite exhausting for the little buddy but he’s one of those kids that stays happy but just gets drowsier and drowsier.
He just lays on the floor and plays with his toys and then toddles clumsily everywhere giving grins, kisses and hugs to everyone. It’s adorable. Fortunately his little cuz was sort of the same way and they were playing together for the first time. Usually they just sort of ignore eachother and play with their toys or stare and point at eachothers toys. I think they’re old enough now that they recognize eachother’s presence a little better. During the morning festivities they were still standoffish but by night they were more warmed up.
He slept solidly through the night after all the activity but this mama did not. I think being away from home, minimal sleep, tons of activities and festive foods are the culprit for my restless sleep. We’re all suffering from a cold around here again too so that may also be why I’m headachy. Hopefully my holiday detox plan helps get rid of it. Fruit, water, tea and plenty of relaxing.
Question: Did you have a fantastic holiday? What do you do to detox?