This Christmas my husband and I headed to my brother and sis-in-law’s home where they hosted about 25 of us. My entire family and a few of my cousins showed up… it was fun.
We started off with awesome appetizers… my favorites were the Guacamole and Spinach Cheese Fondue – YUM! My brother made both appetizers… he’s an awesome cook, but don’t tell him I said that… shhhhh!
And then we opened PRESENTS! Although my husband and I both agreed that we wouldn't exchange gifts this year because 2012 was a very rough year for my family, he still bought me a couple thoughtful presents. Unfortunately, I got him nothing, but it's a good thing his birthday is next week, hence I will make up for it. Thanks VS!
My family seems to think I’m a lush since I received 3 bottles of alcohol as gifts… assuming my husband is really happy about that. Whiskey? That's a first... I wonder if I can cook with it? Suggestions welcome.
My cousins Ajay and Nan bought me Parisian chocolates from La Maison du Chocolat as a “congratulations” on a blog milestone that I will be sharing with you in the coming weeks. A very sweet gift, such a pretty box, and the Rochers were really yummy. Thanks A & N!
Even though I don't partake in the tradition of giving funny gifts, my family is notorious for their silly little gifts from Trader Joe's. This year I got TJ's Shortbread Cookies and Gyoza Dipping Sauce. These gifts are just silly, cute, and comical more than anything else.
In addition to the gifts I gave all my nieces and little nephew, I decided to give away my “fake” handbags to my teenage nieces, you know, since I don't carry fakes anymore.
goodbye... fake Miu Miu, fake Chloe, fake Tory, fake Fendi, fake Marc, fake ChanelThey were ecstatic to say the least, not to mention I have a little extra closet space. Don't they all look like DIVAS?
my teenage nieces
And then we proceeded to have dinner… I know, I took the pictures a bit late, blame the wine. In any case, my sister, D, made amazing Baked Eggplant Parmesan, and my cousin, Nan, made kickass Baked Spinach Ricotta Lasagna.
My 14 year old niece, Rhea, made Sun-Dried Pesto Pasta… so good, watch out Food Network, she’s a chef in making.
And of course, no party is complete without dessert made by yours truly. A Cranberry Orange Cake (coming soon) I especially made for my mom since she’s not a fan of frostings and all.
And since my family are a bunch of “chocolate” lovers, I made this very moist Chocolate Sour Cream Cake with Buttercream Coconut Frosting. I seriously suck at decorating… my cake fell apart so I hope you believe me when I tell you this cake was really moist, and quite delicious too!
A special thanks to my brother and sis-in-law for opening up their home to a crazy and loud bunch of us.
And last but certainly not least, we missed my late brother-in-law, A, who was mentioned through out the night, and who I’m sure was drinking with us in spirit. This was one of our very few Christmas’ where he wasn't physically with us, and now that is an unfortunate reality of our lifetime. I missed having tea & dessert with him this Christmas, he would have totally digged into the desserts. We miss you A, and we all love you so much!!! You will always be with us in spirit and in our hearts, forever!
neices & my little nephew