Christmas tends to be party time, doesn’t it? Christmas and summer, both big on parties. I suspect that the Christmas party idea extended at least back to pioneer days, when neighbors got together for one last hurrah before the winter weather had them all penned in at home.
I can’t imagine Christmastime without the people I love the most. I love to entertain, although entertaining need not be fancy. A mug of hot chocolate and storebought cookies with a friend can be just as wonderful as a full meal with appetizer and dessert with the full extended family.
I like to try at least one new recipe each year, as something special for my friends and/or family to try. So far so good! We haven’t had a dud yet. Last year we made these little savory thumbprint cookies that were almost like little egg and cheese souffles. They were SO good – I got the recipe out of a Martha Stewart magazine, I sure wish I could remember which one.
My most important "entertaining" of Christmastime is a special dinner just for Chris and I. It’s pretty simple, and usually enjoyed for Christmas eve. In my house, we called it "bits and pieces." We go to some fancy grocery store we don’t normally shop at, like Central Market, and wander the isles picking out "fancy" finger foods to enjoy. Usually this consists of a couple cheeses, fresh bread, flavored olive oil, a selection of choices from the olive bar, dried figs and dates, nuts, a pomegranate, salami, turkey breast, and I don’t even know what else. All I can say is yum.
Some of our best moments together are spent over food. Did you ever notice that? We’re intoxicated by the yummy flavors, tantilizing smells, the pretty table set before us, and we’re all seated, facing each other, giving our full attention to one another, rather than TV or radio. We just get along better. Shortly after I started college, I got really into formal entertaining, specifically tea parties. Throughout the years I’ve learned more and more about the balance between making the event extra special for my guests so that they feel pampered, and spending less time in the kitchen and more time at the table. I enjoy cooking so much, and I also enjoy expressing to my loved ones how important they are to me, but I also want to actually spend the evening with them too.
I’m not sure what we’ll do this year, now that we have Ben. I imagine a lot of entertaining will be involved, whether it be at our home, or at someone else’s. As this is a time of celebration to us, we find it best to spend with others. We want Ben to be able to spend time with people that love him, and for those people to get to hold him and love on him.
Its been a while since we posted a photo. Here is one of him last night. Daddy put a toy on his head.