2012: A Little Christmas Recap

Every year, I struggle to find the perfect schedule for my every day routine. Once it's found, it's a really good rhythm. This means going to bed at a decent hour, getting into work all spry, hitting the gym hard, and a relaxing evening of home-cooked food. Then... the holiday's show up.

Oh holidays, how you wreck blissful havoc to the natural order of life. I'm slowllly waning off the buzz of bountiful food and the joy of loved one's visiting. Very slowly. The snooze button must feel like it owes me money because it is getting all sorts of beat. Our tummies were in shock for almost an entire week from rich foods and hearty portions. No light veggies and tofu here! Seriously... look at the feast my 2nd mom put out. She's a culinary monster.

That, my friends, is a traditional Portuguese Christmas. And don't you dare say "holiday" because the Catholic mother back-hand will come into full effect. Octopus, paella, codfish, boiled potatoes with eggs, rebanadas, filojes, and rissois to name a few! Heavenly awesomeness.

The real joy of the season, at least for me, is being in the same room as loved ones. It was a full house! Ricky flew in from California, Susana's family drove from West Virginia, and their parents hosted. My side of the family and friends basked in festivities. That's the kind of gathering that gives me warm fuzzies of nostalgia! It's just not the same unless we're all together.

The star to my tree this year was Landon being a part of the tradition. It was magical to watch him open presents, refuse to eat food, play with toys, cuddle grandpa, say our names, and fall asleep to Susana singing. I can't even begin to explain the awe of watching her as a mother. This baby is incredibly loved- grandma even knitted him 3 baby blankets! It's enough to make you move to West Virginia.

This was also my first Christmas as a fiancee. Holy smokes. It's crazy to say that, I'm still floating on Cloud 9. Mike's family went out of their way to make me feel welcome. I deeply appreciate the kindness and warmth they exude. Dinner was delicious as usual with homemade mac and cheese, stuffing, ham, sweet potato's topped with pecans and toasted coconut. I made some dinner rolls which produced way more rolls than necessary.  It's really neat to see another family's version of tradition and become a part of it.

We wrapped the holiday up with a trip to my mother's house. There was the gift exchange and even with our full tummies, we managed to sneak in a few bites of stuffing and pie. Check out the childhood ornaments! Wild, no?

I hope you all had a very happy holiday. Abra├žos!