This is our first Christmas in our own home and we don't any family visiting. My mom is coming out on the 27th, but she won't be here for any actual Christmas festivities. I thought I would be sadder about not seeing my family this year, but I'm looking forward to a quiet Christmas morning with our little family for a couple hours before we visit with friends and have brunch. And when I say quiet I'm anticipating chaos and an over-stimulated toddler. I thought we would be having a low-key, less-gift Christmas this year but our little downstairs tree is practically dwarfed by the mountain of gifts around it. And that isn't even including Parker's play kitchen. It's a bit overwhelming.
Because we're doing a Christmas morning brunch we opted to do turkey Christmas Eve. Karl's work gave us a free turkey this year so I decided to go all out. I have never in my life cooked a turkey. I'm not even sure how big the turkey we have is, but I'm hoping not too big to defrost in the sink tonight. Karl and Parker are excellent eaters, but I doubt the three of us can polish off a whole turkey this weekend so we've invited a friend to join us. I bought a roasting pan. I bought brussel sprouts and turnips for the first time in my life. I'll be making my mother's traditional stuffing (Stove Top) and trying my hand at gravy. (I've got a Swiss Chalet mix in the cupboard in case of emergencies.) I am ready. I am capable. I am borrowing a meat thermometer so I don't kill us all.
Parker surprised us with an early Christmas gift this week and now we're all getting over colds. The only surprising thing about it is that it's the first cold I've had since the summer, and my son likes to lick shopping carts and gives the occasional open mouthed kiss. We were well overdue, but it looks like we'll be healthier for Christmas. I decided to give in to the cold and have spent the week taking it easy and staying hydrated the best I can. It's helping, but has kind of done a number on my Christmas baking. I've been meaning to try my hand at dairy-free butter tarts (as per Karl's request) all week, but I blinked and now it's two days before Christmas. This is probably a good thing. Christmas baking is my weakness.
I love our church, but they always add modern lyrics or choruses to traditional songs and it kind of drives me crazy. I don't mind updating traditional songs once in a while, but sometimes I just really want to sing about the joy of Christ's birth without getting distracted by the other song randomly spliced in there. I love Christmas music and I know that sometimes the same songs get tedious year after year, but there's a reason they still resonate as true. Nothing reminds me more of why we celebrate at this time of year than O Holy Night or any of those traditional songs. "Truly he taught us to love one another." Those words really convicted me last year. Non traditional Christmas music is great, too, though. I Celebrate The Day by Relient K is one of my favourite Christmas songs. When you listen to the words it just blows my mind. "The first time that you opened your eyes did you realize that you would be my saviour?"
Merry Christmas, friends.