Funny how when you are a kid it's all about Santa and presents. As you age it's more about the little things during the holidays that make you happy. For me it's cooking for loved ones, going to midnight mass, and just spending time with the family. We had such a nice and laid back Christmas eve and Christmas day. We cooked and baked a lot on Christmas eve, then had a simple dinner of Italian Wedding soup, before we jumped in the car on a frosty night to midnight mass. We were all so tired on Christmas morning, that we slept in till close to 10 am! It's funny to look at Instagram during the day, and see other families that are far into the day's celebration, and we were just eating brunch and opening gifts! We always eat Christmas dinner much later too, so the day seems slower paced and goes later into the evening for us.
For dinner this year we had confit de canard, with French green beans and cast iron roasted potatoes. I loved making those potatoes! The pinterest recipe was a Martha one, and it had bacon. I left out the bacon because of the duck. I made a nice little salad with striped beets, arugula, fennel, and hazelnuts. I have made confit de canard before, but this year I opted to buy some that were already done, to make my life more easy. I got them from here. For dessert, I strayed away from the Buche de Noel that I usually get from Whole Foods. It tends to be a bit too big for our family, and lingers around for too long. This year I made a gingerbread cake instead. We really liked it for its peppery, spicy flavors. It had half a cup of fresh minced ginger! I topped it with fresh whipped cream.
Usually around this time, I get a bit sad that it's all over, but this year I didn't. It isn't because I wanted it all to end, but more so that it was a nice time and it felt complete. I'm looking forward to the new year. Planning a wedding, and I just found out my niece is having her first baby, along with her sister welcoming her second in the spring. Lots of beautiful moments to look forward to.
I've got some cleaning up to do, as we will have some friends coming over for New Year's Eve.
Hope everyone had a beautiful Christmas and a wonderful new year ahead!!!
Oh, forgot to mention, that in the second to the last picture, you can see the new picture ledges that we put up this past Sunday. That wall has been blank far too long! It feels so much more cozy in this room now. My little birdie Riki, isn't so sure he likes that clock above his cage though hahaha!