HAPPY BOXING DAY TO ALL !!
I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday season thus far. Whatever occasion you celebrate, in what fashion and with whom, I hope your blessings were multiple and you were gifted with a few ‘stolen’ moments to reflect upon what this time of year truly means to you.
With the relentless barrage of ‘Cyber Mondays’, ‘Black Fridays’ , ‘Blue Tuesdays’ etc., it’s nigh impossible to escape feeling a little worn down by all the retail pressure, hype and stress attendant to the last 2 1/2 months of the calendar year.
A Bergdorf window inspired by Literature.
Come every Autumn, somber faced, buckle shoed pilgrims of Thanksgiving Past spar in vain with the mighty ghouls & goblins of Halloween Present, the high hatted elder’s gourds no match for the glo-stick laser swords of today’s trick or treaters.
It seems just a scant two seconds later, the omnipotent present day commercialisation of Christmas is flinging all the other holidays aside like The Hulk stomping his way through a pop-up perfume kiosk. Where did the baby Jesus go? Does anyone remember swaddling or Frankincense??
By December 26th we’re left laying dazed and confused in a crushed pile of mylar wrapping paper, bandaged fingers throbbing from doing battle with unwieldy packaging.
But I won’t go on about this. I’m no stranger to shopping and certainly not one to throw stones at glass houses (or shop windows) I delight in retail sport as much as anyone who appreciates beautiful things. I love fashion, furnishings, items for the home…books, kitchen and tech-y gadgets. Don’t even get me started on shoes & bags (hello, I have a pulse) But I guess the confluence of shifting priorities, our boys being adults now and the preposterous rise of retail bombardment has left me increasingly spent (no pun intended) as the years go by.
A tasteful (of course) window at Bergdorf Goodman in NYC this Christmas.
I actually did have every intention of posting one or two Holiday Shopping Guides this month, but there was such an incredible plethora in the blogosphere already that I didn’t feel I had anything of great merit to add.
I might have proposed just a few books I didn’t see mentioned, or perhaps the electric foot warmer my husband bought me earlier this year… it stays between the mattress and fitted sheet and is just about the best freaking gift ever for popsicle toed people like me, but where’s the rule saying I can’t dole these suggestions out over the new year?!
Anyway, the month shot by in the blink of an eye. In part because we took a quick trip to NYC to see our older son. This year is the first we weren’t able to spend Christmas together. I sulked for about 2 seconds, until I thought of all the thousands of families with loved ones away from home because they’re serving to keep us and our country safe and that shut me up pretty quickly. Insert red cheeked emoji here. Once again, if you are one of those families, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU.
On the way back from NY, we made a very brief stop in New Orleans. Just enough time to drive around the Garden District for a few hours and snap some pics of the holiday decorations there. Oh…those houses… sigh.
Apologies to those who have already seen a few of these photos on my Instagram feed (which FYI, I am definitely cheating on my blog with-it had to happen sooner or later 🙁 It’s just too easy and so tempting ! )
Back on the Santa Barbara home front, having both my siblings from Canada able to join us this year made our parents very happy. And even if the hearing is no longer so great ;
“Joe Cocker died, Dad”
“JIM COKER?? NEVER HEARD OF HIM”
“No, dad, JOE COCKER. So sad. He died of lung cancer”
“HE WAS BORN IN MANCHESTER??? STILL NEVER HEARD OF HIM”
It’s a blessing to be 84 and still enjoy playing chess with your son while your daughters prattle away about skin care regimens and old love affairs in the background.
I forgot about the ‘Less is More’ edict I so cavalierly promised to adhere to for my next holiday table and mixed the black lacquer I bought in Burma earlier this year with my vintage cranberry glass and, well, things sort of escalated from there.
I will embrace the spartan table setting one of these days. But, probably never at Christmas.
Meanwhile, back in the kitchen, The Incident of The Goose in the Night was well under way.
Why a goose, instead of a turkey, or prime rib, or even a simple but succulent ham??
Indeed, she says, casting longing glances at the Hamness Perfection of her Thanksgiving ham (don’t look at my dirty roasting pan)
Well. Seriously, who knew, first of all, that goose is a red meat?? As Thanksgiving so eloquently put it moments ago, WTF??! Isn’t goose poultry? And when I say ‘red meat’ I don’t mean like a duck. Not brown. RED. With a lot of red blood. And apparently slow cooking is the most important aspect of cooking goose in order for it to lose most of the fat but retain the moisture. And parts need to be removed before other parts and, and, and. All the men were getting cranky. Yet another chess game ensued, a bottle of wine was opened and the new thermometer would not budge off celsius. Apparently thought it was a Canadian goose.
How many sisters, thermometers, iPhone farenheit conversion apps and bottles of wine does it take to cook a goose?
Finally, my goose was cooked.
It looks pretty good, right?
But looks, as we all know, can be deceiving. It was TERRIBLE. Only my sister and I ate any at all. (Thank you wine 😉 )
Thank goodness we had great side dishes and leftovers from the night before. Live and learn. Duck, duck, no goose.
Still and all, it was fun and we will no doubt find it even funnier next year, God willing, when we are sitting in front of a nice, big brown turkey!
How was your Christmas?! I’ve missed you all!!