Christmas at Home
I planned the menu last week and grocery shopped Monday morning along with everyone else in town.
Caroline and I were the first to wake Christmas Eve morning and we quietly hid out in the laundry room, ironing placemats and napkins and dressing up dolls.
I spent the day polishing silver, prepping food, making place cards, setting the table so everything would be just so. We served dinner on my nana's Christmas china and dessert on her candlewick plates. My silver is the same pattern she chose all those years ago and the one my mom uses so regularly.
Brian and I bustled in the kitchen while his mom kept the kiddos entertained. I was amazed that the timing all worked out and we sat down to a delicious and cozy dinner of perfectly roasted beef tenderloin, caprese salad, roasted chick peas + pistachios, green beans, and rosemary potatoes (recipe from The Pioneer Woman's new holiday cookbook) with fabulous pies from my mother-in-law for dessert.
Brian said a beautiful Christmas Eve prayer and my mom cried so I felt like we were doing something right!
After dinner we all filed into the family room around the tree, and the kids opened their one present for the night, new coordinating pj's.
Except Andrew's were too big - they were out of his size and the size up were about six inches too long, but he didn't care one bit. He was so excited because Santa was coming! and his family was there! and it was Jesus' birthday! Christmas for a four and a half year old is so very awesome.
And it was pretty awesome for me too. It made me so happy to work hard to create a beautiful table and a tasty dinner to celebrate this holy holiday with our families. This was the first time we have successfully hosted a holiday without my mom having to come rescue my meal - I tried the first Christmas after Caroline was born and it was SO BAD.
This Christmas dinner though, this, made me feel like a real grownup. I have the very best memories of Nana and Pop's and those easy Christmases of my childhood surrounded by our extended families, but the chance to spend a relaxed Christmas at home, in our new home that feels so very us, was really special too.
And I think the kids thought it was pretty special on Christmas morning.
I will never look at this photo and not smile, right?
As per our usual, I will take down the tree and pack away all the Christmas decorations on New Year's Day. It's always a little bittersweet, but I think it may even be more so this year. We've had a really beautiful first Christmas in this house.