For a lot of people, Christmas is a religious holiday. It really isn't for us, so it turns into one about Stuff instead. And now, food too. Fortunately our kids are pretty cool with waiting for present-opening until after breakfast. They didn't even eat the chocolate coins Santa left for them in their stockings.
BIG breakfast first! Zucchini frittata, cranberry harvest muffins, brioche french toast, and the only fruit we have right now, apples.
Julian got two similar books -- similar idea that is, but different books (one from grandparents, one from Santa). I love these new sorts of books for kids now, they're colorful and fun to look at, and filled with interesting things about the world. Educational, perhaps, though that word is a bugaboo for me now. They're fun and the boys love them.
Gabriel really liked his book from Bonne Maman and Papa Paul too.
It isn't Christmas without Legos! Thank you Aunt Laura and Uncle Ryan!!
This is amusing: this kit says it's for ages "10+". Julian finished it in about 20 minutes without any help at all.
Katrina's first gift was perfect: another building toy. I had Tinker Toys as a kid and loved them.
Katrina got this adorable dress/legging set from Aunt Laura and Uncle Ryan. Brown dress and brown/pink striped leggings. The funny thing is, she also got a dress set from Bonne Maman and Papa Paul: brown/pink striped dress and brown leggings!! (I didn't get a photo unfortunately)
Then we add a dress-up rainbow skirt to the outfit, and we're done. Project Runway, here we come!
Katrina and I had matching Christmas bows in our hair today.
I got an awesome cookbook: "I know how to cook," a translation of a classic French cookbook "Je sais cuisiner." My mother told me later this was her mother's standard cookbook, and it's filled with fascinating, many very simple, and very diverse recipes and methods. Katrina had a great time looking through it with me, and I loved the rare cuddle time with her.
She got her own fun book to look at: you just can't go wrong with Richard Scarry.
This was Gabriel's big gift -- not the Nintendo DS he asked for, but it'll do. Not surprisingly, he loves it.
I didn't get a photo of Julian and his build-it Robo car thing, which is disappointing since it already broke.
Still, by late afternoon we all needed to get OUT. Dave took the boys to the BMX park in the last hour of daylight, and Katrina and I hastily joined. I got a few shots of Gabriel tackling the deepest drop in the park. He goes on all the hills and every obstacle on the course now, though he doesn't jump or flip or anything -- yet.
I was late starting Christmas dinner -- I have to learn to plan ahead better so that I'm not scrambling in the kitchen while kids are hungry or impatient to open presents (though again ours were very relaxed about it all and didn't make a huge deal about opening). Still, I pulled off a very simple rack of lamb that I LOVED, and I had a surprise fan for this too: Gabriel. He loves lamb!
I wonder if someday, when they're grown, the Stuff will be forgotten, but the elaborate breakfast and dinner will be what they take with them. I have to be prepared for that not to happen -- as kids me and my sister and brother were never really into food either. That's a very recent development for me. Still, I have to believe I'm setting a high bar so they will someday look forward to coming home for Christmas for Mom's cooking.
It was a really, really nice relaxed pleasant day with just us and our Stuff around the tree, a short sanity outing, lots of good food, and just being together.