It has been two years since I was last home for Christmas so I was really looking forward to the annual Christmas dinner at my parents' house. Before dinner though there was a lot of cooking and cleaning to be done. I baked up a storm on Christmas Eve, making sugar cookies, snowball cookies and pumpkin pie while Mom made tiramisu. When my aunt Chrissie and cousins Leilani and Meinani arrived we had the cookies along with cheese, dip and crackers for hors d'oeuvres as well as my favorite holiday drink- mulled cider. As is the case most years, my brother had to work so he was unable to join us. Simi, her parents, Logan and Kylie were running late, so by the time they arrived and settled we were ready to sit down for dinner.
As requested Mom and Dad made some of my favorites for dinner. We started off with vegetable soup, and then had turkey, stuffing, scalloped potatoes, green beans and biscuits for dinner. Lei brought one of the sparkling wines from our little wine country adventure- the Gloria Ferrer Va de Vi, which everyone enjoyed. Logan was pretty well behaved throughout dinner, but the lure of presents under the tree became too hard to resist, so as we finished we headed out to the living room to open presents. All my gifts were Aussie themed this year as I bought nearly everything before I left Melbourne. We were also treated to a photo slide show of Chrissie and Lei's trip a few months ago to Sicily and Italy during dessert. It was a lovely evening, and the kids were very well behaved.
Today Mom, Dad and I headed up to James and Simi's for lunch. It was good to finally see their new place, which they moved into a couple months ago. We also got to give James his presents and finished up opening the rest of ours. It was a bit sad to say goodbye to everyone as I have had such fun spending time with my niece and nephew on this trip. Tomorrow afternoon I head back to the airport for the long flight to Australia.