Different Kind of Merry

How is everyone holding up for the holidays? Has it been rough? Easy? No different than usual holidays?

Our Christmas was ok. Very very low key compared to last year. Last year we hosted a big Christmas in our new house. My parents came down from Seattle and stayed with us for a few days. We hosted Christmas dinner with Michael’s family, too, and I think there were maybe 15 of us? It was crazy and loud and wonderful.

This year? Chill. Lazy.

Christmas Eve some friends dropped off homemade eggnog (it was nuclear LOL) and Michael and I watched Happiest Season after kiddo went to sleep. Then we put all the presents out. 🙂

Christmas morning we got up at 6am (of course!) and opened presents!

Logan was ECSTATIC! He got a bunch of Star Wars, Dinosaur and Baby Yoda themed gifts. We got him a bunch of books, activity books, a spelling puzzle (that he loves).

My parents got him some games, Star Wars sheets. Santa got him a big race track for his cars (which he asked for when he wrote to Santa). My gifts had a theme: self-care. 🙂 Lots of bath stuff, which is amazing. <3

After lunch and a nap for Logan, we went to Michael’s mom’s house to just exchange gifts. Wish we could have stayed and hung out.

By the time we got home and opened the second round of presents, Michael and I did not feel up to doing a big Christmas dinner thing like we’d planned so we decided to do it the next night and instead had grilled cheese sandwiches. 😀 Delicious!

So Saturday night we made the dinner we planned to do for Christmas:

Lamb Chops with Garlic and Herbs

Green Beans with Pickled Shallots and Breadcrumbs

And I made couscous. Everything was delicious, although the couscous was a little bland–even using spices! Next time I will cook it in chicken broth instead of water. And maybe add some nuts and raisins to the couscous, too.

The lamb, however, turned out great. It was the first time we’ve done lamb. I usually just order it if we go to Middle Eastern restaurants. It was melt-in-your mouth tender and I loved the flavor.

The greens beans turned out great, too. I cooked them in the cast iron skillet we used to cook the lamb so it had the extra juices and seasoning in addition to the salt, pepper and butter I used to cook the beans. I loved the pickled shallots on top but Michael thought they were a little strong. I don’t think the green bean recipe needed the breadcrumbs on top at all, so I’d skip that next time.

Saturday I spent the day on and off packing up and organizing Christmas decorations. I usually leave everything up until New Year’s Eve and then take everything down then but I was just kind of over it all. I hope next year we can all be with our families again and have a big celebration!

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone had a good holiday!

We had a good, but busy week. We had friends over Sunday night for Yule dinner and presents. Then on Christmas Eve my parents came into town to visit for a few days. Michael smoked some chicken and I made a really delicious Brussels Sprout dish for dinner. (Cut sprouts in half, season with olive oil, salt, pepper, chopped shallots, red pepper flakes, bake for 15 minutes then top with cubes of brie cheese and chopped walnuts, bake for another 15 minutes. So good!)

This year was particularly fun. Logan understood Christmas a lot more and was SO excited! We left out milk and cookies for Santa and first thing Christmas morning, Logan walked past all the presents and went to inspect the milk and cookies to see if Santa ate them. 😉

Logan got lots of cool stuff from everyone. He got a Star Wars cape from his Auntie Rachel. 🙂 Lots of dinosaur stuff. Coloring books from us. And headphones from Santa for his very first plane ride next month!

He got Frozen PJs on Christmas Eve and LOVED them and wore them all day on Christmas.

I got some nice goodies! A tray for my jacuzzi tub (and a bathtub pillow!!)– I can’t wait to use it! My brother got me some keto chocolate and much needed new swim goggles. Michael got me a wireless charger for my phone for work. It was a really nice day.

Christmas Day was low key. Logan and I took a nap. He played with his new toys and watched movies with Grandpa. Stevie was loving all the attention. Then Michael’s family came over in the afternoon for Christmas #2 and dinner.

Lots of good food! For dinner we made a spiral ham and Michael’s mac n’ cheese. Michael’s sister made green bean casserole, deviled eggs and her famous beef and green bean appetizers. There were tons of munchies.

It was a full table!

All the food turned out great. There was tons of it, too. Leftovers for days.

More presents. Logan got a bunch of new PJs, clothes, underwear and new shoes (which were probably his favorite present!).

Christmas cookies made by Michael’s sister (she makes the best cookies!). It was chaotic but fun having a full house.

The day after Christmas we had breakfast and then my parents headed to the beach for a few days before going home to Seattle. Michael and Logan went to Michael’s mom’s house to set up some technology they got for Christmas. I went to the gym and then after-Christmas shopping.

The rest of the day was pretty low-key. Cleaning and then preparing for another dinner party with Michael’s childhood friends. This time it was chicken enchiladas (from the leftover smoked chicken) and leftover Mac n’ cheese. It was a fun night but I am so ready to have a few relaxing days this weekend!

Happy holidays!