Christmas Day 2011

Christmas day began as it traditionally does, opening gifts around 10am with me in pjs and my family fully dressed in nice clothes. I got my parents dog a santa outfit, which we forced her into.

Instead of the usual “everyone opens one gift at a time, then we all look at the gift” (aka 24hr gift giving) we tried to mix it up by having everyone open a gift at once. Thankfully this saved us a lot of time and we all still got to see what everyone was opening. One highlight from the gift giving was grandma receiving a little purse (for an ID + cell phone) and her response of “this is so when Im at the bar and pass out, they can identify the body?” hahaaa.. she’s 93 and hilarious! It gives me hope for 93 year old Bethany. Around 1p we finished opening gifts and my mom prepared a delicious brunch. After that it was nap time!

Later in the night we went to see the Hubbard Park lights, which was a great activity to do with Grandma, so we could all enjoy it from the car. They had a ton of lights, my favorite being the globe of lights.

After dinner we (minus Grandma) went into the center of town to walk. I’m from a charming Connecticut town with historically old homes all dressed for the holidays. It was a beautiful walk and thankfully the temperature was bearable.

We made it an early night, seeing as Erica and I had a train to catch to NYC the next morning.

Christmas Eve

I’m back from NYC and now in Cape Cod, where I will stay with my family until the new year. NYC was a blast and that will be explored in another post in the next day. I’m a tad backlogged, as it’s a hard balance to stay in and write as well as go out and explore. But now it’s time to get up to speed before the new year! I have told you about my “trains, planes and automobiles” adventure of getting to Connecticut, which put me in my childhood home around 2pm on Christmas Eve.

Our family Christmas Eve is very traditional, and unfortunately my late arrival meant we lost some activities (cookie baking, wrapping gifts with care, listening to Christmas songs, visiting old friends). Instead, we all rested and showered while my Mom was working hard in the kitchen to prepare the perfect meal. Around 5:30p, we gathered in the kitchen for a buffet of fruits, vegetables, cheeses, dips, and of course crab cakes and baked stuffed clams. So delicious. We also do something on Christmas Eve that is extremely special in my family, we eat by the fire in the family room. Only on this night are we allowed to eat in the family room, and I love how intimate and special it makes this meal. We sit by the Christmas tree and the fireplace (although un-lit this year due to warmer temperatures).

Our stockings were laid out around the tree. Grandma, Erica, me, Mom, Dad and the Doggie (from left to right).

I added this photo purely to show off my gorgeous grandma 🙂 Grandma Trudie (my Dad’s 93 year old Mother) spends Christmas Eve at our house so we can all wake up together and get the most out of Christmas. She is such a cutie and it’s so much fun getting to celebrate with her.

The family went off to church while I stayed home to wrap all the presents I had sent directly to the house. By the time I finished, they were home and it was time for dessert and a little egg nog. Here’s a tip, courtesy of my mother, for those of you who like egg nog but can’t handle the calories (because it’s a ton!) try buying a carton of soy eggnog which tastes the same (maybe slightly less thick), add a little nutmeg and Captain Morgan and you’ve got a great healthier nog. We put on the Sound of Music while eating our treats and before we knew it, it was time for bed. My favorite day of the year was complete, and boy was I jet lagged!