It was traditional on one hand, but also very different than past holidays on the other. This is the first year where I realized that everyone is getting older and that Christmas is changing because it is no longer just our own family unit. My cousins have significant others (pretty serious ones) and they have to split up between their family and that of their significant others. It isn't a bad thing...it is just different.
Christmas Eve for our Italian family involves something called the "Feast of Seven Fishes". Basically it means that on Christmas Eve, no meat (other than seafood) is served or eaten. Instead, we serve at least 7 different types of seafood. Which if you love seafood like I do, it is a fantastic occasion. If you are allergic to shellfish in any way, shape, or form...you will not enjoy yourself.
My menu contribution was Crab and Cream Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms:
My Dad pretty much made everything else. Rhode Island Clam Chowder.
Baked Stuffed Lobster
That isn't my plate. My cousin Vinnie housed his lobster and stuffing...
I went all out with the sparkly jewelry...hello Christmas bling
Christmas Day I made breakfast. I made Pioneer Woman's Cinnamon Baked French Toast. Let me tell you...that was straight up heaven in a pan. And EVERYONE, my brother and father included (who mind you are like, steak and eggs-kind of dudes), loved it and wanted more! It was super easy to make.
We didn't quite have a white Christmas, but we had a little dusting so I counted it...ha
I had gotten a little sick overnight (I wasn't sure if my stomach just couldn't do the rich foods or if this Sangria punch that I made had something wrong with it), so I needed a little nap...wrapped in my brand new Cincinnati Bengals blanket (did I mention they made it to the playoffs?)
After Christmas Dinner (which I forgot to take pictures of and consisted of Antipasto, Prime Rib, Mushrooms, Baked Potatoes, etc), we passed around some old photos. Below is my maternal grandparents with my mom (the one in back) and her sister (the one in the striped shirt).
We had some good laughs over the fashion and all. This one below was my fave though. It is my parents circa 1981. My father was 19, my mother was 21. They are still together, and will be married for 30 years in April.
Other than getting sick on Christmas Eve, it was a good, low-key holiday. Some years it is crazy with lots of dancing, this year was a bit subdued. I hope everyone else had a great holiday as well and a Happy New Year!