Monday, December 26, 2011

A picture perfect Christmas

Late last week, it looked as if we might have a green Christmas but, fortunately, five or six inches of wet snow fell on Friday (the 23rd) clinging to tree branches and power lines to create a wintry wonderland. The next day, temperatures fell sharply and stayed low preserving the picture perfect landscape for Christmas day.

Her Majesty the Cat, Husband and I arrived at our country place just as the storm abated and in time to share a meal of fresh lobster with my parents. Lobster is a favourite treat this time of year. Over the years, Husband and Dad have mastered the art of cooking it so that the soft, sweet meat literally falls from its shell. Dipped in hot butter with fresh bread and salads, and followed by Mum's homemade lemon meringue pie, nothing makes a finer meal.

Of course, that meal was merely the opening act for the feasting that's gone on in the two days since. We spent Christmas Eve afternoon with my folks, my sister and her family devouring smoked salmon, hot stuffed mushroom caps and baked brie with crisp green apples. After church, it was back to my parents' home for Mum's homemade pork and chicken pies accompanied by fresh cranberry sauce.

Is it any wonder I was in need of a run before Christmas dinner yesterday? Though the wind was bitterly cold, I reveled in running for an hour along the river - breathing in the beauty and stillness of the day, and catching glimpses of bald eagles soaring overhead in the late afternoon sunshine.

Naturally, like any conscientious runner, I fueled my body before heading out - with caffe latte, delicate melt-in-your-mouth raisin tarts made by Husband, and Mum's short bread cookies and fudge.

Christmas dinner last night was the traditional roast turkey with all the fixings - including Mum's fabulous sweet potato and pecan casserole. Husband and I were so stuffed by the end of the meal that we postponed dessert for a few hours - finally scarfing down slices of buttery Christmas cake, raisin tarts, and fudge as a bedtime snack before toddling off to sleep.

I awoke this morning to a milder, drizzly day and have been lolling by the fireplace reading a novel ever since - pausing only long enough to consume thick turkey sandwiches, another plate of sweets and a large mug of caffe latte flavoured with eggnog. I thought I might go for a long run this afternoon (goodness knows I could use it before we tackle pasta with sherry lobster sauce tonight) but, with all the relaxation, rich food and rain, postponing to tomorrow seems a better idea. Forecasters are calling for a sunny, warm day so perhaps I'll treat myself to a run along a couple of my favourite beaches if Husband doesn't object to being abandoned for a few hours.

I hope you're enjoying your holidays as much as we are! I'd love to hear what makes Christmas (or whatever you're celebrating) picture perfect for you. Is it the food? The music? Special activities? Leave a comment below and tell me all about it!

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