Getting the Christmas post in just under the wire here . . .
We always put up our tree on December 23rd and decorate the next day. Getting the living room ready for our tree required some rearrangement of the furniture and looking for places to set our Christmas decorations required some cleaning. After living in our house for almost five months it finally felt like we'd finished unpacking and I snapped a few shots of our main living area for those of you who haven't been to visit yet.
This first shot is taken from the living room--about where the tree ended up--into what we've called the "play room." The futon is usually down in "bed mode" for guests and also because the kids like to play on it that way. The room was pretty trashed and uninviting but for Christmas became a lovely second sitting room.
The other corner . . .
And the other corner. The "fireplace" is fake and extremely ugly. We removed the linoleum "hearth piece" and the "logs" but that is as far as the landlord would let us go so we're living with it for now.
Then from the playroom to the rest of the house . . . You can just see the tree poking out where the rocker usually is. To the left of the hutch is the basement door. The beautiful french doors lead out to a large entryway and Eric is looking at me from the kitchen. The staircase goes up to two large, railroaded bedrooms.
So, there is the bulk of our home. Sorry to be tedious but I know some have been wanting some pictures.
All three kids helped decorate the tree.
William was actually great with the tree and has been spotted the last couple days pulling down a favorite golden star, sucking on it a moment, and then trying--in vain--to rehang it. So cute.
Christmas Eve we attended Mass at our parish down the street and then came home for cookies and eggnog.
Christmas morning we had our traditional Caramel-Pecan Rolls and pomegranates. The kids love pomegranates and found some in their stockings this year. That day we were on our own and decided to go into Manhattan. We had thought that some of the touristy Christmas attractions would be less crowded on the 25th. We were wrong. It was a very nice day anyway but we had a very brief visit to St. Patrick's Cathedral and a very brief glimpse of the tree at Rockefeller Center alongside thousands of our closest friends. We returned home in time to make a simple but spectacular dinner and then proceeded to get ready for a fun weekend of hosting. Eric's Dad and his wife came for most of Saturday and my whole family was here Sunday. We just love being close to family.
We stretch out the gift-opening through the whole Twelve Days of Christmas because the kids get very overwhelmed by endless gifts all at once. Epiphany (today) is when we exchange gifts for each other. Here are the kids enjoying their new game of Chutes and Ladders. Joseph and Margaret have gotten really excited about games over the last month and they are well-matched. Margaret has a better sense of the big picture--how to win--and Joseph remembers the rules and can read numbers better.
Eric and I gave each other books and William is so excited to dive right into mine:
I am a little too proud to say that I first conceived of the idea of getting this cookbook and cooking my way through it early last summer before I'd ever heard of Julie and Julia. I first learned to cook at all that way: by getting a cookbook and making everything in it. That had been a vegetarian cookbook and I've been anxious to do more with meat and learn about traditional sauces. If only I'd come up with this amazing idea a few years ago and started a blog about it . . . Anyway, I'm looking forward to working with this book although I won't be sharing the results here. Maybe we'll finally see that movie now that life has calmed down a bit as well.
A very happy Epiphany to all!