I kept putting off this post as I've been feeling a bit lazy of late, and been somewhat busy eating, catching up with family and friends, getting heatstroke playing tennis, driving, braving the city for some bargain hunting and constructing an anti-sunlight device for my bedroom consisting of sheets sewn together in a umm.. rustic manner. As you might possibly be aware, today is New Year's Eve, so I thought I should get this written up before the new year is upon me and I'm nursing a hangover and hair of the dog on top of being busy and lazy.
I hadn't spent Christmas with my family for a few years, as Christmas 2007 was spent with my (now ex) boyfriend's family, and Christmas 2008 was spent driving between Montreal and New York city (we did manage to pull over on the side of the road for some delicious goat cheese and turkey sandwiches for lunch), so it was really nice to spend it with them and get some stocking action after two years of missing out. This was also our first Christmas with a baby in our immediate family, and my nephew's involvement seems to validate our continued stocking tradition. Do other people still do stockings? Will I ever outgrow it?
After spending Christmas eve building a gingerbread house and catching up with family, it was soon time for the traditional Christmas Eve seafood gorging extravaganza. This year did not disappoint, with some fine dishes on offer - South Australian oysters with Cointreau, coriander and sweet chilli, smoked salmon, smoked albacore, mango & spinach salad, prawns, crays (ok, technically they're Western Rock Lobsters but we're on a nickname basis), herb crumbed fish and scallop & chorizo rosemary skewers.
Although I haven't outgrown my need for Christmas stocking treats, I'm glad to have mostly outgrown my inability to get to sleep on Christmas eve and next thing I know it's the big day and Santa has been!
After opening presents and stockings, and possibly enjoying a Bertie Beetle and Red Skin or two, it is time for real breakfast. Dad gets out the ham and slices off some nice thick pieces which my sister fries up with tomato and spinach, I poach some eggs, we put on some toast and soon we're enjoying a nice stomach stretching breaky to prepare us for the day ahead.
After some family visiting (making sure to avoid running over small children trying out new bikes and scooters) we're soon preparing for the main event - Christmas lunch. We had three types of meat this year - pork, turkey and ham - and a selection of sides - greens sautéed with almonds, roast veges, broccoli & cauliflower cheese and of course my Mum's famous stuffing. All delicious, and noone could help but go back for seconds of everything. I'm lucky to be part of such a family where gluttony is celebrated, and my eating prowess surely proves that I'm actually not adopted, like my sister used to tell me when I was little (well, that and my Dad's nose sitting in the middle of my face and my Mum's weird little toes sitting on the ends of my bony feet).
Christmas lunch was of course followed by much clutching of stomachs and moaning, followed by naps all round. Extended family then began arriving in the evening for more eating, bringing a selection of leftover meats, tasty salads and freshly baked bread.
Thanks to all for your support and comments over the past nine months, and here's to a top start to the new decade! I wonder what 2010 has in store for us?