Well, our Christmas turned out to be a little bit different than we had planned. This year, we finally had plans to host family (Jon’s mom) for Christmas. We had been looking forward to have company over the holiday for once, but as previously mentioned, her travel plans were thwarted by the holiday travel chaos across the country. We had hoped that a short 1-hour flight within California would not be impacted, but alas, we were proven wrong. I am sure she was as frustrated as we were about returning home and having to postpone the visit.
But hey, we’re used to making Christmas as festive and wonderful at home as possible, even if it’s just the two of us. So, here’s a little summary of our holiday weekend.
I started Christmas Eve morning off by running the Virtual Snowman 10K organized by my Peloton Streakers group. It was awesome to get a workout in first thing in the morning.
After a hot shower and some coffee, my sister called. My family was gathered at her house and they were just between the main course and dessert of their Christmas Eve dinner when I ‘joined’ them via FaceTime. I spent two hours with them and I must say, if it hadn’t been for the fact that I wasn’t able to get a taste of that delicious dessert that was passed in front of my face, it was almost like I was there. I am so thankful for the technology that makes it possible to virtually sit at your family’s dinner table.
Oh, it was nice to see them all… and what made me the happiest was the fact that the photo book from our family vacation, which I’d been working on for the last few weeks, had been delivered on time and was such a great surprise for my parents. They really hadn’t expected it (and my sister said there might have been some tears of joy). I am so glad I got it done. It took two whole weekends, but it was really good that I had a deadline of finishing and ordering the book by December 12th… otherwise it wouldn’t have gotten done anytime soon.
I also unwrapped a a small present that my sister had sent (even though we had agreed to not exchange gifts, tsss) and which had been delivered earlier that week. A personalized ornament – so sweet. I was very touched and instantly found a spot for it on our tree!
We usually make a fancy dinner on Christmas Eve, but since we were expecting Jon’s Mom to visit for a few days, we moved our Christmas dinner to the next day and just enjoyed a simple plate of pasta on Christmas Eve. I also watched one of my all-time favorite movies, The Holiday.
I started Christmas Day with another Peloton workout with Tanja and then took a shower and enjoyed some gingerbread coffee from one of my few Christmas mugs (isn’t it cute?).
In the morning, I set our table and prepared our dinner. As you know, I always make a point to plan a nice meal, print a menu card, and decorate our table. This time, I set the table for three because Jon’s Mom was supposed to join us later in the afternoon.
Yes, it was a huge bummer when we found out she wasn’t coming. Jon had really looked forward to spending time with his mom (and me, too). We still made the best of it because what else was there to do? The apartment was clean, the food was almost ready, and we were hungry ;)
This year, we made Argentinian Red Shrimp in garlic butter as an appetizer, followed by Chicken ‘Zurich Style’ with mushroom gravy, homemade bread dumplings (my Mom’s recipe!), and red cabbage.
For dessert, I prepared tiramisu. I hadn’t had it in ages. It was all very good, just… a little bit too much for only two people. We had so much food that I didn’t have to cook for two days.
We moved over to the couch later and enjoyed the fake TV fireplace for a bit. We also watched a couple of holiday movies, one of them being “It’s a Wonderful Life”. We watch it every year and I always look forward to it.
The 2nd day of Christmas
On the “2nd day of Christmas” (which is an official holiday in Germany and which we take very seriously around here), we mostly just hung out at home. I allowed myself to sleep in, I then settled on the couch with my coffee and a book in front of our TV-fireplace. It was so cozy. I might have taken a little nap, too.
I could have stayed on the couch all day, but we went for a walk around our neighborhood in the late afternoon to see all the Christmas decorations before they were taken down. Usually we take this walk sometime during the week leading up to Christmas. There are organized carriage rides through our neighborhood and people come from near and far to see the decorations. We had waited to go this year because I thought it was something that Jon’s Mom would enjoy. Oh well. I was glad that most decorations were still up though. Aren’t they cool?
As always, last but not least, the holiday cards that I received over the last few weeks put a huge smile on my face. Thanks so much to everyone who sent out cards this year. It’s been so nice to hear from all of you. It truly made the holidays that much brighter.
I hope – and already know from some of your recaps! – that you also had a nice Christmas.