Merry Christmas to us!
And Merry Christmas Eve to everyone else!
I am pleased to say that yesterday’s pouring rain is just so yesterday. Today dawned bright and clear, so we will be able to use the outdoor living room during, and more importantly, after the party, when Megan and I like to sit by the fire and talk about the evening after everyone else has gone home.
I was spectacularly unmotivated yesterday, and it took a while for me to leave the comforts of my cat-strewn bed to start Christmas-related chores. I first went over to my brother’s place with the remains of the Jack Daniel’s left over from Thanksgiving’s cranberries. JD will be using the JD to glaze the Christmas ham, combining it with huckleberries we picked this summer and honey from our bees, then smoking it all day over apple wood from our trees.
Arriving back at the house, I lit the oven and started making pastry for the mincemeat tarts. I was up to my elbows in flour when there was a knock at the door. It was Jennifer, one of my siblings’ land partners, bearing an enormous bag of mandarins:
They were the last of the harvest from her former neighbor’s farm in Grass Valley. They are organic, though not certified so (it’s a huge hassle getting certified). Jennifer also brought a little gift for me and one for the cats: a hand-knit, organic (certified) wool catnip toy*. She is so thoughtful! She went on her way with a hug and a kiss. I love my friends.
While the tarts were baking, I figured I might as well prep the pears for the salad and roast them in the oven after the tarts were done, which I did. And since I already had the cutting board out, why not mince up the shallots and make the dressing?
While I was slicing and dicing, Megan and Rob were retrieving his car from the Big Town and bringing it to our brother’s place for repairs. Good thing they built that mechanic’s pit over there!
Last night, Megan came over and we put the stockings together:
We think we did a creditable job this year. Our brother is getting the large gifts you see under the tree. Someone always gets something extra each year, and this year, it’s his turn. We left a couple of empty boxes out for the cats to sit in.
After the stockings were done, we watched the Sex & the City movies and drank wine until 1:00 am, even though I knew I had to get up and get the house and Self ready for tonight’s party, not to mention making cheese biscuits. It was so fun!
*Audrey went insane with the catnip toy. She came to sit on my lap and was soaking wet from drool, all over her neck and head. Gross! Everything she does is extreme. Clyde, on the other hand, ignored the catnip toy in favor of climbing on Megan’s shoulder and lying there as he does with me. He has never done this before. He purred and slept his way through the movies.
A YEAR AGO: Getting ready!