Our day started with MasterSix coming in for cuddles, but not before checking out the presents under the tree. Then we waited patiently for MisterEight to wake up. As 7:30 a.m. came and went, we were wondering what was wrong with him that he wasn't champing at the bit to see if Santa came, but he told us later that he'd already snuck out at 1 a.m. to find that Santa had left a truckload of presents under the tree, all under the not-so-watchful eye of his father who was snoring on the couch. Secure in the knowledge that Santa had indeed made a visit, he went back to bed and had a nice sleep-in, much to the frustration of his little brother.
Santa was generous this Christmas, and he was very wise in his choice of presents for our boys. Despite the ignored request of a Nintendo DS, a puppy and a mobile phone, they were over the moon with a couple of Club Penguin figurines and a Nerf gun each, and some Mighty Beanz. The biggest hit of all was the 10-in-1 games table from Mum and Dad (which is a good thing considering six months of fortnightly visits to the lay-by counter to pay it off in very small increments in order to avoid bringing it home, where curious boys could discover it).
After opening the presents from Santa, we had a quiet day in, with most of us only getting dressed late in the day, and as Will got new PJs from Santa, I don't think he ever did change into daytime clothes.
I've spent most of the last few days cooking. On Christmas Eve, I made Festive Reindeer Neenish Tarts, but have since decided that I don't care for neenish tarts as they were too sweet. Still, the boys loved the reindeer faces.
Pumpkin pie is one of my favourite foods so I decided that this Christmas, rather than pining for this delicious treat (it isn't as popular here in Australia as it is in Canada, so it's harder to come by), I would get some pumpkin and make the pie myself. I cheated and used store-bought pie and tart crusts, but the doubled recipe for the filling made two pies and six tarts. We had one pie on Christmas and brought the other to our brother-in-law's family for a Boxing Day get-together. They were a hit, and I've decided that this is our new Christmas tradition. The menu for Christmas dinner will chop and change as the mood takes me, but I'll try always to make pumpkin pie at Christmas time.
For Christmas lunch/dinner I roasted a duck, and you might recall that I was a bit nervous about cooking a duck for the very first time. I spent hours poking and turning our duck so that it wouldn't turn out too greasy, only to realise that the duck used in this recipe must have been way bigger than the one I bought, so it only made it halfway through before I realised it was getting overcooked. No matter, the gravy (I didn't use the glaze in the recipe, because I make awesome gravy), the rosemary and thyme roasted potatoes, the wild rice, the baby asparagus, the sweet potato* and the broccoli were all so delicious that no one noticed the taste and texture of the overdone duck.
For our Boxing Day lunch, I made Prawn, Avocado and Mango Salad and a made-up Wild Rice Salad from leftover this and that.
Today, we had fresh tropical fruit salad with yoghurt for breakfast and for lunch we had ham, garlic mushrooms and hash browns, made up with leftovers from Boxing Day lunch.
So after all that cooking, if I don't see the inside of that kitchen again for a few days, it would suit me just fine.
How was your Christmas? What did you do, who did you spend it with what did you eat?
*One thing to note about sweet potato done with marshmallow topping is that coloured marshmallows (the only ones I seem to be able to find here in Australia) do not look appetising when melted. They resemble swamp coloured sludge, which I had to scrape off the top so that I could salvage the sweet potato underneath. Never mind, the mashed sweet potato was delicious with its hint of maple syrup.