It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Whoever wrote that song was dead-on. (I just “googled” to see who wrote that song. It was written in 1963 by Edward Pola and George Wyle – fun fact of the day!) I look forward to Christmas as soon as December 26th (my big sister’s birthday!) of each year rolls around. I celebrate Christmas in July with the air conditioning turned on high, curtains draped, blankets galore, “Elf” and “The Santa Claus” in my DVD player, and a hot cup of cocoa in my hands.
Christmas is full of traditions in my family. On Christmas Eve, my mom’s side gets together at my mom and dad’s house. Tradition used to be that we would have our big, Italian, sit-down dinner loaded with pasta, meatballs, salads, breads, etc. It was Heaven. However, we have started a new tradition of each adult bringing an appetizer. We’re going on year two (or three?) of this tradition and so far, it’s not too bad. My uncle and aunt surprised us all by bringing our traditional pasta dinner in a crockpot – Christmas Eve just wouldn’t be Christmas Eve without the Italian cooking.
After everyone has settled down with their food, there is usually a lot of talking going on as well as a lot of laughter. I love my family. On a side note, often times I hear of people not getting along with their family or always having something bad to say about each other – I’m so thankful that I was born into such a wonderful family who get along and look forward to seeing each other…
Santa shortly arrives (this year Paul played Santa – we assumed the children wouldn’t notice if Uncle Paul was missing versus their Daddy or Grandpa were missing), gifts are opened and everyone goes home happy, well fed, and full of Christmas spirit. This year, my mom and dad started a new tradition of displaying a slideshow of photos from every Christmas dating back to when my mom and her brothers were very young. We all loved looking at photos of our Christmases and of family members that we miss such as my brother and his wife and children. They have not been home for Christmas in a few years – they were missed so much this year as they are every year. They live in New York which makes the holidays a bittersweet time for our family. But, they are with us in spirit and my brother, sister, and I will remind each other of funny and meaningful childhood memories we had during the Christmas season via text, picture messages (we send bits and pieces of Christmas cartoons we used to watch growing up when we watch them now…weird, I know), and phone calls.
Christmas Day is surprisingly somewhat boring for our family. We each stay home and do our own thing. However, this year, since Paul and I finally had our own house for Christmas, and I finally had a large kitchen to cook in (large compared to our old apartment’s), I invited my mom and dad over for a seafood lunch. Lobster tails, crab legs, stuffed clams, and broccoli were on the menu and it turned out amazing! Mom and Dad have never eaten crab legs so us pros had to teach them. If you’ve ever eaten crab legs without a cracker, you can understand the excitement you get when you pull out an intact, large piece of crab meat. Bliss! Dinner was just the two of us that night and naturally we had pasta. It really was a wonderful Christmas. :)
Now that you know a little about what my family and I do at Christmas, enjoy the photos I managed to take between eating, drinking my favorite wine, and enjoying my family’s company. I hope each and every one of you had a very merry Christmas!