After a few hectic weeks, we just today got around to decorating the tree that we put up the day after Thanksgiving. I told the kids we were going German-style this year, where the tree does not get put up until Christmas Eve. Waiting this long may have for the better, anyway, as we already shattered four ornaments today. Totally worth the trade-off of not having hideous plastic ornaments (euphemistically called "shatterproof"), but there are not enough of them to make it through the whole Christmas season at that rate of breakage.
We finished up a few last minute tasks, such as wrapping the last of the presents. I also made these gifts for the little kids while they were all playing outside and later, napping. I am still ***so*** enjoying the embroidery machine I received as a gift a year ago.
Aprons for the girls in each of their colors. They love helping in the kitchen.
Sweater/shirt for the little boys. All designs courtesy of Planet Applique.
After dinner, we had a little Christmas sing-along, and baked cookies (the first of the season - like I said, it's been unusually busy).
Cute cookie thief wanna-be
Tomorrow, we will be opening gifts in the morning. With any luck, I can get the breakfast made up tonight, so it will be leisurely. I'm thinking eggnogg, and a strata made with scrambled eggs, peppers, and bacon. Keeps well in the fridge overnight, and can be baked fresh while we celebrate.
The five youngest kids are getting the joint gift of a new wooden playhouse, so I'm guessing most of the morning will be spent building that in the backyard while I cook in peace in the house. Muahaha!
Our big lunch will consist of brined, smoked pork loin baked in puff pastry, gravy, mashed potatoes, and steamed peas and carrots. Then, we traditionally spend the afternoon playing board games and watching a movie while the little kids nap, so I'm sure that's how it will play out again tomorrow.
Dinner will be hot cocoa and desserts, as has been our tradition. I'm thinking about making three different kinds of gelato (peppermint, cinnamon, and tiramisu). Not sure how well that goes with hot cocoa, though, so we'll see.
What a wonderful time of year this is, when we celebrate the birth of Christ with our loved ones! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!