This year was amazing. I never knew how different Christmas would be with a child. Last year Mae was one month old, and that was sure different, however this year – where she took an active role in the festivities – was worlds away. We went to three family parties throughout the month and two work parties. My parents had everyone over to decorate gingerbread houses (mine was the best), open presents, and eat so much food. My mom reserved a private space at Zucca Trattoria, a fine Italian restaurant in South Ogden, and we had a four course meal, opened gifts, and riotously enjoyed ourselves. Adam’s extended family had a large scale, fiesta style potluck at a church house. I made wanton tacos – they were super fun. For Adam’s work, they had the company go to Boondocks, an arcade/bowling alley/laser tag/go carts/pizza type place. I was worried it’d be geared too much towards a 14 year old boy, or my pregnancy would have the better of me. But for some reason, we had an amazing time and did everything (except me on a go cart, I don’t think a pregnant woman should have an engine between her legs racing on a slick track.) My work rented out a little golf course house for a dinner and music kind of night. It was nice to see all my old friends.
All that wasn’t even close to Christmas.
On Christmas Eve, I prepared a lovely meal that I have been stewing over for about a month. I chose to do lamb, since celebrating the birth of a Jew with ham seems a bit strange to me. And since Christ is the Lamb of God… I don’t know. That is all I’ve come up with so far. I had the lamb ordered for weeks. The day before I started the bread that needs 18 hours to rise. I also made the cake the night before so it could sit overnight in the fridge, as per the recipe requests. I had cleaned like crazy for two days. Then I got a text from my mom in the afternoon telling me that she decided not to come. Without her there, and my brother in Idaho, then it’d just be Adam, the little girl, and I. Not really the evening I had planned. Just my luck, my dad and step-mom had plans that weren’t too set, so they managed to come let me entertain them. They rode the train over and we had our dinner. Good times rolled out at the Smith home. Here is my Instagram of the place setting:
The menu was my favorite. One time I made a fancy Valentine’s dinner for Adam, and after the first course of roasted artichoke he looked really worried, later I realized he thought that that was all we were eating. Also, I feel like I am constantly reminding my guests what we are eating, and what is to come next. Not that I don’t like talking about my food… but I figured that this would be a nice addition. T’was! I used my font of the season – Jane Austen – and some paper I had left over from Mae’s birthday invitations, and voila! Menus.
Adam and I opened a few presents that night. We let Mae open her awesome block set, which she loved, then I opened my ceramic egg holder (which I love), Adam unwrapped a shirt, and then we busted out the Blu Ray player from its wrapping, and let Mae unwrap our first Blu Ray – The Fantastic Mr. Fox. Mae passed out shortly into the film, but we stayed up to finish it out.
Christmas morning could have come sooner. I was up, bright eyed and bushy tailed, way before the rest of the people in the house. I had breakfast all in mind, my awesome wheat dough cinnamon rolls, but I was extremely sick, and chose a few glasses of water instead. Poop. The little one was down as hard a rock, and I feared she would never wake up so I could see her open the rest of her prizes, so I convinced Adam to start waking her up, which is always a bad idea. She gets real whiny when we do that. We still did, and at least had a solid hour of happy Mae. She opened her blue piano, and instantly started playing it, totally ignoring the awesome box and packaging it came in. Adam opened his new running shoes and I opened my awesome skillet and new cook book.
Here is Mae rocking out while Django sings along. Needless to say, Adam pulled the piano apart attempting to tune and discovered it may be a bigger project to tune than anticipated. But he will!
Later we went to Adam’s parent’s home for Christmas lunch. It was such a great time. Then we drove to Salt Lake to see my mom, then went to my dad’s for Christmas dinner.
This was a very special year, and I loved being able to make it special for the little lady. She was so tired she slept in this morning, and went back down for a nap only two hours awake. As I type she has been napping for an hour now. What a precious sweet heart.
Merry Christmas everyone!