Monday, December 27, 2010

One Very Chill Christmas Day With A Twist

fThe big day started off as expected....... The trees lining the Lorentz's property were beautifully snow-covered on this white Christmas morning. The kids, decked to the nines, burst through their parent's door following church and were nearly over-the-top with anticipation. The aromas of their Dad cooking breakfast filled the kitchen. Sierra and Tanner had to manage a few bites of breakfast before the big moment. The rest of us savored the morning meal a bit more, to say the least....delicious country ham cooked in Worcestershire and a French Toast Bake with real maple syrup. The Lorentz's friend Steve Harrison taps local maple trees to create this amazing syrup.

The kids were let loose and they dove into the presents under the tree. As Keith, in Santa's hat, passed out the gifts, the paper was torn and tossed in the air as they delighted over their presents....Legos, Wii and DS games, Zubels and sewing kits, oh, my...... Sometimes, long pent-up anticipation breeds creativity as Tanner proved with his new Christmas song in the video....Hi Ho, The Mistletoe. The song is sweet in it's simplicity and when performed with his particular brand of enthusiasm, it was frequently hilarious. Check it out at the bottom of this post.

We moved on to coffee sipping and game playing and enjoying each other's company. I called Mom and following a melancholy morning of missing Dad, she had spent a nice afternoon with my sister and family friends and was in pretty good spirits. We shared a laugh and a couple of tears over the phone.....I realized she was holding up just fine.

Christmas dinner carried the twist as we decided we would forego the traditional choices and have some sensational seafood this year. Keith made up a traditional Caesar salad with fresh lemon, anchovy paste and homemade garlic croutons. Kim made a homemade version of Red Lobster's cheese biscuits...they were lighter, fluffier and better than the Real McCoy, as far as I was concerned. We munched on Shrimp Cocktail and bacon-wrapped scallops while Dave prepared the fantastic main dish: Ginormous Alaskan King Crab Legs. These bad boys were filled with delectable crab meat. It was a wonderful meal that flew(or swam) in the face of our traditional Christmas dinner. Fully sated, everyone moved to the living room for some post-meal relaxation. For those keeping score, I outdid myself carrying on Dad's tradition of wearing my food.....I managed to spill soda on my scallops and red wine on my sweater. In fact, the entire dining room probably required being hosed down after my grappling with the crab legs. If someone were looking closely at my sweater post-meal; they could quite possibly identify every course. Those interested in holiday gift ideas for me in 2011 should think about a holiday Haz-Mat suit to accompany the designer drool bucket.

After lunch, I went upstairs to call my sister. She was finally beginning to regroup and was happy to tell me about how her own relationship with Mom has healed over the past few months. When I returned, I expected the usual bout of Wii games, toy construction and lively conversation. I was struck by the silence as I entered the upstairs hallway. I looked down to an astoundingly wordless scene.....the kids played quietly and the adults, all of them, were asleep. It was a blessedly peaceful portrait of the family.....the family that naps together stays together, right? After the drama of the rest of this year, this was a much-appreciated scenario. After photographing them in repose, the kids smiled at me but stayed quiet. I walked down to the kitchen table and sat with Sierra as she silently demonstrated her sewing skills for me. I savored the moment.....quiet and reflective. I looked around the room and thought about how grateful I was for this family and for the peace my own family has found. I thought about Dad and all of the Christmas memories he worked so hard to create and I prayed that he found his own peace.

We would rally for the annual Winge Christmas Party that night. We were all still sated from the seafood, so we ate lightly. We brought a S'Mores dessert with Scooby Snacks and Kim and Dave brought deer sausage and cheddar cheese. I sampled the beef and noodle dish. It's a loud and boisterous scene, once again set in the taxi garage where the vintage Corvette the guys had been working on was in full display. Kids were running about playing basketball. Our branch of the family seemed a bit dazed amongst it all. This raucous scenario was quite the opposite of our serene scene earlier.

The kids went home with their grandparents and we retired back to Kim and Dave's. Recovering the chill feel of the day, we got comfy, popped in a DVD and Dave prepared the dessert we were too full to enjoy after dinner: Irish Cream Creme Brulee. After watching Dave torch the topping, K and I shared this silky goodness while settling in for a quiet and cozy evening.

I hope everyone's Christmas was happy and peaceful. Thanks for reading and Happy Holidays!


David Lee said...

Whew, I'm glad you had more to say than "We ate at Dave's."

Confounded Cook said...

LOL, Dave....

Kristy said...

Wow!! What a meal! Sounds and looks fantastic! To all your readers..I've got the drool bucket covered and I've already bedazzled it so if the rest of you want to chip in on the Holiday HazMat suit that would be great.

Confounded Cook said...

I had hoped you would take on the bling for the drool bucket, lovey. Thank you!

Willie said...

I'm still stuck on the French Toast Bake! Sounds like a dish made in Heaven!!! Glad you and Keith had a great Christmas Greg!!!

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