I don’t know if you noticed, most of the pictures I posted on Instragram over the holidays were hashtagged #quietchristmas, because that’s what it was. Quiet.
We’re used to traveling over the holidays and seeing a whole lot of people in a very short amount of time, so staying put this year and not seeing anyone for Christmas was a very different experience.
Honestly, I wasn’t quite sure how I would feel on Christmas Eve. I had been pep-talking myself for the last few weeks that it would be fine and that we would make it a great Christmas. Different, but great. And you know what? It was.
I am not saying that I didn’t miss hugging everybody on Christmas Eve (and I definitely missed my Dad’s exquisite cooking), but besides feeling a little down directly after my Skype session with my family on Christmas Eve morning (when they were all gathered at my sister’s house), I actually was able to enjoy our quiet Christmas. Sometimes not having any plans IS the plan and it’s not the worst plan one can have.
I decorated our little tree in the morning, I drank copious amounts of gingerbread coffee, I watched “The Holiday” (my favorite) in the afternoon and I put together a “Weihnachtsteller” (Christmas plate) as we would find at my parents’ house and because clearly Christmas is not Christmas without After Eight (and Christmas cookies, Dominosteinen (gingerbread cookies filled with marzipan, apricot jelly, covered with icing of dark chocolate) and toffifee).
I set our dinner table (menu cards included — that’s one of my duties for every Christmas Eve dinner) and we cooked ourselves a delicious three-course meal.
We unwrapped some presents after dinner (because we open presents on Christmas Eve in Germany) and then watched “It’s a wonderful life”, one of our Christmas movie favorites!
We had coffee out of our new mugs on Christmas day morning and then emptied our Christmas stockings that we had filled for each other. Originally we didn’t plan to exchange gifts this year, but I thought it would be nice to combine traditions and have some stockings! We watched more Christmas movies and then later went for a walk through the close-by neighboorhood to enjoy the Christmas decorations. Honestly, I find nothing more festive than seeing the decorated and illuminated trees in other people’s windows!
We had a cozy “second Christmas holiday” on Friday. (J thinks it’s one of the best things about the ‘German Christmas’ that we get a second holiday off (the 26th)and that we should clearly – in the spirit of combining Christmas traditions – acknowledge the 26th as another holiday. Fine by me!
I spent most of the day on the couch reading, knitting and just enjoying the time off.
Last but not least I’d like to thank all of you who sent Christmas cards (and even little presents!) this year. They honestly made this holiday season extra-special. I did send cards, too, of course, but in case you haven’t gotten it yet… I’ve heard that the postal service is taking its sweet time this year (or they are hopelessly overwhelmed with the amount of mail this year — which, I guess, considering the fact that the postal service has been struggling to stay afloat, would be a good thing after all). So maybe you’ll still get a little surprise after the holidays!
I do apologize though that I forgot to snap any pictures of us. Maybe I’ll remember this next year!
I hope you had a lovely Christmas as well, friends.
Thanks for being, in one way or another, part of mine.