Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Wow. After weeks of planning, plotting, purchasing, stressing, listening to the whining choruses of, "I want it right now," and , "But what if I don't get any presents!" Christmas is over. Bjorn made his Julia Child beef borgonionne for everyone on Christmas Eve, and damn, it was amazing. Bjorn was a champ in that the recipe calls for about 25 different steps, including cutting and drying about 100 different pieces of meat, and takes about eight hours to make start to finish. Damn it was worth it though. I consider that one of the Christmas presents to me!

We had 12 people all together for dinner, including four children. It was awesome to get to use the full range of our house for entertaining, complete with using every dish in the house. It took four loads in the dishwasher to get everything clean. So fun to have room to get out all that wedding stuff and entertain on such a grand scale.

Dallas did get like two inches of cold rain that day, the first precipitation of any kind all month. I was insanely jealous of all the snow throughout the rest of the South and blizzard warnings on the eastern seaboard. Fortunately good wine, good food and good family eased my jealousy.

It was a lot trying to keep our family traditions from Virginia and merging them into the new world order here complete with my cousin from Sydney, my sister on crutches from knee surgery and my uncle in a wheelchair. Like I made the mistake of hauling all our presents to my parents which meant Christmas morning was more bare with just a few Santa gifts. We also tried rushing over to their house to open presents after stockings and Santa, but we managed to annoy them by being late and I annoyed my own family by rushing them. We'll figure it out.

Of course, what works this year most certainly won't work next as we are thrilled that Bjorn's two brothers, his mother and all the kids are planning to come for the holiday. That would be the five of us (plus or minus Jennifer who isn't sure), four siblings and their spouses, four kids aged four to 15, plus Bjorn's mom. I am glad to have a year to get enough sheets and towels for everyone, but that's a good problem to have!

So far, winners for the holiday:
Bjorn's homemade Swedish glogg
Meg's new Yo Gabba Gabba bath toys
Andy's Nerf basketball hoop
Bjorn's beef stew
This iPad from Dad (Bjorn is insanely jealous)
Mom's egg nog
Dad's wine selection
Meg's dress up clothes (Andy also uses the shoes for "tap dancing"
Meg's new kitchen
Super Mario Galaxy
All the new puzzles

Surprisingly, the biggest duds are what I considered the biggest presents for the kids. Andy got a remote control helicopter that's harder to operate than it seems. Meg also got a cool "balance bike" that she can't figure out at all.

P.S. I have discovered Boardwalk Empire. Damn you, HBO. That's good stuff.

The bike I spent weeks researching. I was so excited to see her take off on it and she just can't figure it out at all right now. They did spend an hour fighting over my uncle's stocking stuffer, an old school magnetic toy. Typical. I am so getting these kids a box next year instead of the toy that goes in it.

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