It turns out I’m not terribly good at documenting Christmas festivities. At least not this year. I expect this is for one of two reasons:
- The still-present childhood delight of Christmas Eve — gathering with the family, eating too much sugar, opening presents — distracted me beyond measure.
- The inclination to unplug and just enjoy quality time with loved ones kept the camera mostly at my side instead of in front of my eyeballs.
- Or this sneaky extra one: A combo deal incorporating both of the aforementioned reasons.
For the first time in, I think we decided four years, all of my siblings were in the same place for Christmas. This meant four times the excitement, four times the glee, four times the sarcastic jokes. We have a number of traditions that we enjoy each year for our family Christmas celebrations and it was great to share them with the whole crew again.
Up first, we have Christmas Eve dinner at my dad’s house, on top of a mountain just off the interstate.
This usually entails Himalayan food (and sometimes sushi). Lots of it. Some dishes are monumentally spicy, and if you’re feeling brave you can mix some into your bowl for a fun surprise that will clear your sinuses right out. Guaranteed.
After dinner with Pop, we head to my mother’s house for gift exchanging and general merriment. For my entire life we have opened family presents on Christmas Eve, leaving Christmas morning for Santa gifts. Though we are all well into adulthood now, we still follow this tradition. What is Christmas if not a time for magic?
My mother went all out with the tree this year. It’s at least twice as tall as I am and magnificent in its Charlie Brown aesthetic.
But before we opened all those gifts, Chris and I concocted some beverages.
“Chris and I” here meaning that he made the beverages and I hovered around taking pictures and driving him just a little bit crazy as I jumped around searching for the right angle.
I call this “Still Life with Orange Peels.”
By this time, everyone was ready to get to present unwrapping. Even my sister’s dog, Bailey, got in on the action. (Thanks, Grandma!)
I told him he looked like Indiana Jones. He didn’t believe me, but I daresay the evidence speaks for itself.
The before picture. Which doesn’t work quite as well when I fail to get an “after” picture as well. What kind of documentarian am I here? (Is documentarian even a word?)
Shortly thereafter we gathered up our coats and thoughtful treasures and headed to our respective homes to dream dreams of sugar plums dancing through our heads. Our Christmas Day brought a few more traditions — Muppet Christmas Carol, dinner at mom’s, a stop at my uncle’s house — and of course, to kick it all off, cinnamon rolls for breakfast.
I hope that your Christmas weekends were warm, jolly, restful and fun. Happy holidays one and all!
SIGNED, anya elise