Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas | Brunch Menu + Table

Merry Christmas!  I'm enjoying a little peace and quiet in front of the fire now that all the excitement of the day has passed.  The boys were up at 7:15 (really just Charlie, but he was offering wake up service for the rest of us). Over the next hour all the stockings and gifts were opened and then while the boys got busy enjoying their new things, I finished up our brunch prep.  My parents came over to spend the morning and afternoon with us.  It was a relaxing and good Christmas.  Andrew made a little film for us to watch and Charlie showed off some new basketball tricks and moves.  I thought I would share my brunch menu and links to the recipes.  There were a couple new items that I really enjoyed.  This would be a wonderful New Year's Day or special occasion brunch too.  It is easy to assemble with a couple day in advance items which is the best part about hosting brunch!

^^ Paperwhites were in full bloom.  The above was taken on a brighter day earlier in the week.^^

^^ I packed up some peppermint bark for my parents to take home.  Details and recipe to follow in next blog post. ^^

Menu || Recipe Links
Ham and Cheese Stuffed French Toast (made day before)
Herb Scrambled Eggs (see below)
Bacon (not pictured, I took picture after we ate and it was all gone.)
Whipped Yogurt with Fruit
Sour Cream Coffee Cake (I make this in a bundt pan instead and place all streusel topping in the middle.  I also made this the day before and covered with plastic wrap)

(The yogurt was so delish.  I served with it fresh pineapple, toasted coconut, dried bananas and papaya.)

To make the scrambled eggs - In a large bowl, whisk 8 eggs, add 2 TBS heavy cream, salt + pepper, 4 ounces cream cheese and a handful of diced basil, parsley and green onions.  Warm a couple TBS of butter in a large skillet and cook eggs slowly over low heat until just set.  (Stir frequently while cooking)

Monday, December 14, 2015

Our Home at Christmas, part one

As usual, my blogging is lagging far behind and there is always so much I want to capture this time of year both in writing and photos.  So, even though I didn't intend to do multiple Christmas decorating posts, that's the way it's going to be.  I managed to snap a few pics last week, and will hopefully get the rest this week.  I have some cute packaging ideas for treats (at my rate, you'll likely be able to use them for next year...) but nonetheless, I promise to share!

December, while flying by, has been filled with some of my favorite things already.  I tagged along with Jimmy on a business trip to Boston a couple weeks ago.  I spent my days strolling through the city and Beacon Hill (picture perfect in December) and we spent our evenings dining at cozy, romantic little restaurants followed by long walks through our favorite city all lit up with twinkling lights.  Our first evening we walked arm in arm for several miles back to the hotel, down foggy cobblestone streets, past old cemeteries and quaint storefronts, while church bells chimed the time and it was all really quite magical.  I kept saying, how pretty is this?  Our new favorite spot for dinner was Aquitaine in the south end (still mourning the closing of Hamersley's).  When we came home it was luminaria (see here and here for old recaps of our village tradition the first Saturday of every December).  Then, last week we got to enjoy both Charlie's Christmas performance and Andrew's band concert at school - they were such wonderful nights!  Our tree is up!  Our home is decorated!  And even amidst all this Christmasy goodness, it doesn't quite feel like Christmas yet.  It could be the odd, warmer days we've been having (ahem, 62 degrees this past weekend!)  or maybe that my children are getting older and this time of year just feels different.  It's lower key, less fuss, maybe a little less anticipation too, even though Charlie still very much believes in Santa!  I can't quite put my finger on it, it's still my favorite time of year just a little more relaxed than it used to be.

  ^^ Just inside the front door, I hung two little preserved boxwood wreaths over our old English hunting prints.  I picked up 4 wreaths while in Boston and added gold satin ribbon. 
Ribbon tying tutorial in the works - you all asked, I listened. :) ^^

^^Outside everything is fresh (or at least was - warmer weather is making it a lot less likely that I'll leave the greenery up till the end of January like I usually do) ^^

^^ the temple bells ended up on the banister this year ^^

^^ a trio of small bells hang on the wreath over the mirror.  faux garland embellished with pinecones we've collected on walks^^


^^ fresh greens have been put in water inside little pewter pitchers ^^

^^ a small grocery store table top tree placed in my big blue and white bowl (from Wisteria) and decorated with gold pinecone ornaments I also picked up while in Boston.  A nice little keepsake to remember my Christmas visit there.  We did remove the nail connecting this tree to the plastic stand because it was not drinking water.  We made a fresh cut and then placed it back into the stand (anchored in oasis). ^^

^^ my mantle somewhat looks the same every year. ha. This year I kept all the greenery faux though making me much more likely to light the fire.  I'm so much happier without having to fish out and replace the dried out greenery. ^^

^^ I still love the basket, but it's been leaking this year.  I placed plastic under the little rug that it sits on so our floor will be protected.  I have plastic bags lining the inside of the basket too, so I'm not sure what is going on, it's not a perfect system.  

That's all for now..  Going off to run errands because our pantry is empty and hello... Christmas is in 11 days!!!!