Christmas morning no one in the family woke up until 7:30. Whew. But then Jet got his teeth brushed, put on his clothing, and then wandered down to see what had changed in the library. He came into our room to wake us up, only then, and told us that Santa had been there and was so efficient that he'd put Jet's gift *in* his stocking. He was pretty blase about the soy milk being drunk, the cookies being eaten and the carrots all chewed down to the stubs.
Soy milk. Yeah. Jet decided that since Santa is so fat, he really needed something healthier to drink along with the cookies, so we bought a quart of soy milk at the store earlier in the day when we were getting all the groceries for Christmas dinner.
The morning was quiet and easy. Jet decided that egg nog French toast sounded good, so I didn't go to the trouble of making the usual pecan sticky rolls for breakfast. The diary delivery service delivered Christmas morning, poor guys, but we had fresh egg nog for our breakfast, and I mixed it with the eggs, a bit of cinnamon, and it turned out very nicely. The sugar in the nog really made the toast brown well. We really enjoyed it a lot and since our tradition is that we do the stockings before breakfast, and then do all the presents after breakfast, Jet was pretty incentivized to get through breakfast quickly.
He then had like twenty presents to John's and mine four or so, and nearly all our presents were from Kathy. Thanks, Kathy. :-) Jet got a load of loot. He even got to the point where he was like, "I have too many presents."
But he liked them all, and he was very, very happy with Crash of the Titans, which Santa got him. I don't think Jet noticed that Santa reuses, as it was a used copy, but I was pretty impressed with the old elf. He's keeping up with the times. It's as cool to have a green Santa as a red one. *laughter*
I called my parents, and then Kathy called us and it was good to catch up for a while. Then we got into gear. The house was already clean from the last few days of us working on it, and so we could just concentrate on the food and stuff.
We'd invited a total of 20 other people to come and share Christmas dinner with us, so 23 in all. I made five pounds of sweet potato casserole, and then made a vegan version of the classic green bean casserole as we had a vegan coming to visit. She said she'd be fine with anything that's just vegetarian, but I figured I'd do what I could. The ham, though, was... well... ham... :-) Big meat on a bone and it went into the oven fairly early to get it heated through. Then I added a mustard and brown sugar crust on the outside and let it glaze itself. It worked out quite nicely.
Bonnie brought a tofu loaf with mushroom gravy as well as a really nice cabbage salad. Tonya and family brought lots of rolls and bread. Dean brought the drinks. The Bob brought desserts, and Chewie brought the appetizers. So we had a lot of great food from a lot of different sources and it made the whole thing very straightforward, so far as the food. Still I scrambled to get all the hot things together at once, and we all started eating at about 4:20, when everything was hot enough.
All the adults and teenagers fit at the adult table. The kids had a great time at the kids' table, and eventually went to the basement where they played with the games table and each other. They're old enough, now, to be pretty much self-policing, and we only have to go down when we heard a certain caliber of noise. *laughter*
So we all had a great dinner together, and talked and talked about all kinds of things. It was fun to just have conversation for the moment. Plus, with all the different personalities in the room, there was a lot to talk about and all kinds of associations made from all across the table. I really liked that. I made a ton of coffee, decaf, regular, and even espresso shots for those that wanted them. *laughter* I guess I'm pretty set with that kind of stuff. Even had sugar cubes for those that wanted them.
It went well. I think everyone had fun, and got to meet someone they hadn't known before. The kids had a great time playing together, though, afterward, Jet was so tired, he wasn't as sure about it being as fun with everyone else about. I could understand why he'd feel that way. He really wanted to play with all this new things.
The food turned out well, too, as nearly everything was eaten down to the last little bits, so not a whole lot of leftovers of anything but the ham, and I wanted ham leftovers for ourselves. I just didn't want the whole things. I think it was Mark Twain who wrote, "Eternity is two people and a ham." He wasn't far from wrong.
But we had a good time of it today, and Jet and I mostly stayed home and he played with all his new things. We did a lot of his Crash of the Titans, and he got to play with his laptop, though he doesn't really like doing it when people are watching him. He did demonstrate his computer to the other kids, down in the basement, and he's really enjoying exploring it on his own. I think that he likes doing that without us, better, as he doesn't have the same expectations we do, so for him it's just doing stuff with it and when we get frustrated with it, a little, he takes it kind of personally. So I've tried to not look over his shoulder, though I've peered, occasionally at his journal just to see what he's been doing with the tools he has. He's been trying all kinds of things on it, on his own, and the OS has been robust enough to just let him play.
That's been very good.
We got a few things at the grocery store today while John got a hair cut, and I bought some split peas in order to take advantage of the huge mass of leftover rolls and the bone from the ham. I browned onions and garlic and then sauteed carrots and potatoes for a while, and then added the sorted and washed split peas with the ham bone and lots and lots of water. I skimmed the mass for a bit, and then let it simmer while Jet and I played video games together.
At dinner time, I took out the bone, pulled all the meat off it and then shredded it. Then I used a stick blender on everything in the pot until it was pretty smooth and then added the meat back in. The bone is now going to the dog next door, but I had to use it for soup, first. *laughter*
It was great with garlic toasted rolls, and Jet had spaghetti with browned butter and parm with the rolls. He ate quite a few of them.
The soup turned out wonderful. It was creamy and sweet and had just enough of the smoky ham flavor to make it just right. I can't drink commercial split pea any more, as it is almost always too salty for me. I like mine. *laughter* I never dreamed I'd say that even twenty years ago... but I really do like my split pea soup, now.
So we had a very quiet Boxing Day. Just Jet and his presents and some good play time at home, with just us.
Plus, I got to watch episodes 13-15 of Bleach. I'm enjoying the Quincy a lot. *grin*
It's a good prelude to the coming weekend, as things are going to be a bit nuts for a few days. John's got a ton of meetings for the search committee and it's going to be a bit crazy. Jet and I will figure out how to fend for ourselves for a good long time.