Friday, December 28, 2012

Sicky Christmas Break

Our house has been full of family, friends and festivities this week. We've had various guests staying with us for the last 5 days, and I always love playing hostess.

My sister and her boyfriend came from Philly for a few days, as well as a few of Matt's cousins from PA and south Jersey. Matt's cousin Chris came down from Boston as well, whom we don't get to see very often, so it was a treat. Love that bow tie of his. ;-)

This year I unfortunately was not the charming hostess I'd hoped to be since I came down with a nasty stomach virus on Monday. It came on slowly throughout the day, but by late Monday night it was here with a vengeance. I spent most of Christmas day and the last few days in bed or laying on the couch rather than being merry with the rest of the clan, which was a bummer since this is my favorite week of the year. :/ Ah well, it'll be here again next year. At least I got to enjoy most of Christmas Eve before I crashed!

Matt and I host Christmas Eve each year, and I love spending the day cooking and entertaining. We usually only have immediate family on that night, which means we have a small enough group for a sit-down dinner. Love getting to break out my china. :)

We start with cocktails and apps in the bar, which I kept simple this year - a nice variety of nibbles, but very little cooking: Greek olives, sharp cheeses with crackers, shrimp cocktail, mozzarella/tomato/basil skewers, salami wrapped breadsticks, and cheese fondue. We also had rice balls and marinara (made by the Italian deli, not me - those things take 18 years to make, spoken from experience one Christmas Eve when my sister embarked on the rice ball journey - never again, let the pros handle them!).

Dinner started with a mesclun green salad with cranberries and candied pecans. Everyone's fave. For our entree, this year Matt tried making Beef Wellington (Salmon Wellington for me) for the first time. It was quite a hit! We used my favorite standby cookbook, The Joy of Cooking, which never lets me down. The recipes come out perfect every time.

I didn't taste the beef of course, but everyone said it was delicious.

As were the cookie plates and frozen chocolate amaretto bananas my sister's boyfriend brought from Philly. Yum.

Wonderful night indeed!

I got to do presents with my sweet pea and the family on Christmas morning before crawling back into bed, and did make it to the annual big family party at Matt's mom's house later that day, but I spent most of the time snoozing on the couch or his parents' room. Lame.

I'm fiiiiinally feeling back to my old self today, thank goodness. Time to start enjoying the rest of this vaca! Starting with dinner & a movie with Matt - think we're going to see Django Unchained. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little scared of what Tarantino has in store, but I'll take my chances. Hope you're having a wonderful holiday week!

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