A Very Chill Christmas

Ahhh… getting out early on Christmas Eve and then having two days off in a row is rather unprecedented in my world, so I was prepared to thoroughly enjoy a lovely, relaxing weekend. Christmas Eve started off with a breakfast meeting with my college roomie and her mom, as well as their holiday sweater-clad dogs. After work, I raced over to City Square Steakhouse to meet some friends. Knowing that I could grab a quick drink with some friends before heading to my folks’ for dinner truly made my day. My parents had a delicious dinner waiting for me – fried catfish (which looked delicious, but I did not partake), deep-fried mushrooms, mashed potatoes, roasted butternut squash and apples, and . To accompany it, we enjoyed a 2008 Oregon A to Z Pinot Noir and a Shooting Star Blaufrankisch from Washington State. The former was a bit light with basic cherry flavors, but food-friendly, and I really loved the latter, which was a shout-out to Central Europe. In Hungary, the grape is known as Kekfrankos. We topped it off with an out-of-this-world White Chocolate-Raspberry Cheesecake – wow! We all opened a gift that night, per tradition, and I received a very useful straightening iron, which I am hoping I will continue to have to patience to use on a daily basis.
We started Christmas Day fairly early – 9:00 – as I brought over freshly-baked Cherry Banana Muffins with White Chocolate Chips (mmm!). I inadvertently left out the canola oil, but you couldn’t even tell! We then proceeded to toast with our Christmas Cocktail – a Champagne Cosmo. No better way to start the holiday! The nephews – well, Olley at least – were thrilled to tear open their gifts, although we discouraged them from ripping open ALL the gifts. Sadly, Lilly and her fam had to leave for Christmas dinner at her in-laws’, but I stayed all day at my parents’, barely moving from the couch. I would highly recommend the 1938 The Christmas Carol and The Godfather as an ideal holiday movie combo. :-) We eventually dug into a late lunch/early dinner. My parents prepared the traditional duck, and we also had a Fennel and Parmesan Gratin I had made, soup that had been cooked with the duck’s leftover parts, braised red cabbage and apples, and some leftovers from the previous day. With the meal, we opened a 2009 Cline Viognier, which is a steal at $9.99! It has the unctuous and peachy qualities of a Viognier twice the price.
I’m always a bit down when Christmas is over, but I have a feeling that 2011 has a lot more fun in store!

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