It is Christmas


Oh how I love this day.? I spend time looking at the garden which is delightful:? enough snow but lots of space out there for birds to swoop in and still get berries and seeds.?

I have the luxury of a kitchen to myself and a radio turned full blast to Christmas music. Or will indulge myself in all of Bach?s Christmas Oratorio and end up with King?s College Choir by the time the family arrives.

?Friends will drop in this aft and they get Christmas cake and tea.? I?m cooking and tidying for the rest of the day but at a snail?s pace. With lots of garden gazing, and contemplative moments.?

?We spent a cheery Christmas Eve with our friends Brigid and Peter who live up the street. We?ve now been going there for this dinner for 17 years and our numbers are dwindling since this dinner was originally designed for the aged Ps, one of whom is now dead and the other reaching 102 and not traveling from Montreal these days. They are both missed.

?It was a lovely evening but because Brigid fell on the ice (?I now know why people go to Florida for the winter.?) and tore the tendons in one knee, Peter was chef. The food turned out to be delicious and we tucked in with amazing gusto.

?Home early and straight to bed.? When you hit this stage of life, it?s great not having kids around knowing that there will be a sleep in and morning peacefulness. It is very quiet. Our Christmas Day routine has not changed in all 39 years we?ve been married:? we eat a decent breakfast first and then tear into the presents.

?At this stage of love we put a limit on how much money we spend and have to be pretty creative with a small sum. Jack always does better than I do but then he cheats by spending just a ?few? dollars more.

I will spend the day cooking until the families arrived with children, noise and presents. This year I?m doing it all because I decided I would. My family thinks I?m a dope since they are willing to bring anything but the turkey. Okay, we can go back to that next year but I?ve made the cranberry chutney, the brownies, bought the pumpkin pie and mince tarts (not without a lot of testing). The turkey?s ready. I refer to this as the prechewed meal:? mashed potatoes, mashed turnips, carrot and parsnip puree; beans and peas to add a little colour to the white meal of the season.? Oh and the stuffing. Many years we?ve forgotten to remove the stuffing.? Not this year.

?Now to make trays of nibblies that even kids will eat (aka chips).

?I feel so lucky, so blessed having this family.? And so once again Merry Christmas.?