Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's Thursday.

Woo. I have gotten most of the Christmas presents for my kids. Yesterday we mailed off the packages we need to mail.

Have done no Christmas cards at all yet. Not a single one done. Guess that's this weekend's job.

And I bought something for my husband, and promptly misplaced it. It's flat and small and I could have tucked it in many places. I have a few days to find it...I think I stuck it somewhere downstairs, which means it could be in the kitchen cupboards, the computer cabinet, the several bookcases and cabinets with books and dishes. Sigh. I stuck it somewhere and then instantly forgot about it.

Classic me. I cannot tell you the number of times that I have misplaced something. My kids have gotten presents a couple days after their birthdays because I just found something. And a couple times I have stuck whatever I just found back in its hiding place so that I could give it to them for the next big giftie day.

We have Christmas Day food taken care of. I do not cook on Christmas Day. Christmas Eve is our big crazy day. We go shopping during the day, pick up last minute tiny little gifts, the whipping cream or other indispensable food I have forgotten, wrap the last few presents, and make a big meal. This year I think we are gonna do steak and potatoes. Never ever turkey, because once we finish eating, EVERYONE helps clean up, as fast as possible, because once the kitchen in clean, we get to open the presents. It's the way my family has always done it.

Christmas Day starts early, because the kids dig into their stockings, but they have to do it together, and Mark and I have to be there to watch too. The stockings just have small things in them, little goofy toys and gum, candy, maybe some socks and underwear.

Christmas Day is spent hanging out. We play the new games, check out our gifts, watch the new DVDs. Food is our favorite appetizers and deli sandwiches, soup I made a couple days earlier. Anything that does not require me to spend my time in the kitchen preparing a big meal and then cleaning up again. It's my day off too.

The Christmas Eve menu is still way too vague...Steak and potatoes. The kids would be fine with this idea, because they don't want a big meal with lots of clean up after. Less we eat, less we serve, the faster we get to the presents. But it's so much more fun to torture the kids with the reality that we must sit and eat and chat and laugh and spend some real time over the meal, and every single thing -- every fork, every glass, every bit of food, must be put away and taken care of before they are even allowed to touch a present. It's a family tradition.

And as always, the photo...

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  1. Christmas sounds like fun in your home!!Hanging out, opening presents, everybody helping to clean up after dinner ... Nice!

  2. I love Christmas traditions. We vary each year, but it is always loud and always hectic. Meals range from chili to ham and all the trimmings. Presents are sometimes before and sometimes after. That is now.
    When the kids were little and home we had rituals that seem to have disappeared. I miss them.

  3. Forgot to say I love the Mr. Potato Head Santa! Way too cute to not be commented on.

  4. Sounds really nice to be where you are on Christmas. Lovely, Julie. You and your family are very fortunate.

  5. That sounds like a lot of fun! I'm making a KILLER beef tenderloin recipe for Xmas Eve, just Gray and his mother and I, and whatever other sides I feel like preparing. Possibly my pomogranate salad?

    My family tradition (as a kid) was we got to open ONE present on Xmas Eve, and that's it. Then Xmas morning we get the stockings right away (once mom is up and we're all together) while we wait for grandparents and other misc family to arrive. Then presents after breakfast. I loved saving everything for Xmas day!

  6. It's no wonder we're friends! After reading about lost gifts and christmas cards written at the last minute, I realize we are so much alike it's scary.
    When the boys were little, we let them open one gift on Christmas eve, Mom's choice. It was always new pajamas to wear that night, so when the morning came, I get gift opening pics with them in new jammies. They eventually caught on. Stockings were free game in the morning. They were allowed to check them out and open up the little gifts inside, and let dad and mom sleep in a little longer. The rest of the presents had to wait at least until the sun came up. Thinking of that, we really could have slept in if we lived then were you are now!

  7. My mom always loses gifts too. Just a few days ago she told me she just found a gift she'd bought for Ellen in one of her drawers. She'll send it along when she gets a chance.

    Sigh. I am not quite as bad as that...yet.

    Nice Mr Potato head pic. Cute.

  8. I LOVE that Mr potato head :)

    Steak and potatoes sounds lovely. I think we're having a simple spaghetti or pasta dinner.

    p.s. I think I've misplaced a few gifts this year already, too :(

  9. I love hearing about different little twists of tradition people have, and I love yours. Very cool. It kind of reminds me of in Japan how the housewives start cooking in advance of the new year so that they, too, will have a few days to just relax and enjoy. I also think that it's genius to make clean up happen before gift opening. May I borrow your kids after our little feast? Cleaning up kind of isn't so fun. ;)


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