Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were chillier than normal for Phoenix. The rain and 55 degree temperatures kept us out of the pool and inside. Our family is attempting to make some new Christmas traditions since we are no longer all based in Iowa. We are still trying out some ideas and discovered a few keepers (like Christmas Eve bowling!). Here are my 8 things from Christmas 2016.
1) Make pumpkin bread
My nephew got this recipe from his teacher and wanted to make it. My sister usually makes zucchini bread so this was an easy switch. Add some cute little helpers (who sometimes were not all that helpful) and a delicious Christmas Eve treat was ready.
2) Drink Gluhwein
Gluhwein is a German warm mulled-wine that is super-tasty. Add a little bit of amaretto into it and you have a drink to make you warm. The family drank this during the Christmas where we visited all the Christmas Markets in Germany.
3) Go Bowling!
I love bowling so we decided to hit up Dave and Buster’s for some Christmas Eve bowling. I got second place our first game and second to last the second game. I need some practice!
4) Christmas Eve brunch
Christmas Eve Brunch was a fantastic idea. It was still raining so we all set out for breakfast at First Watch. This smoked salmon eggs benedict with greens was the only healthy-ish thing I ate all day!
One of my nieces got a giant chocolate chip pancake with bacon. I think she won the ordering contest.
5) The Cheese Plate of Christmas Eve
Instead of doing a full meal we did snacks, cookies, pumpkin bread, and a giant cheese plate for Christmas Eve. All day we munched on goodies so a cheese plate was really all that was needed.
6) Christmas Day wrapping paper mayhem
With 3 kids and 7 adults, opening presents is fun! I opened up a Gryffindor t-shirt, earrings, LuLaRoe leggings, and boatloads of gift cards (everything had to fit into my carry-on suitcase!). The kids made out like bandits. Cassie was more into the bows than the actual gifts- oh well.
7) The Christmas Day feast (and pie)
The Christmas Day Feast was a really delicious one. We had turkey, beef tenderloin, stuffing, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, squash, and most importantly- pies!
Josh’s mom made a triple berry pie that was to die for. Seriously- she should go into the pie selling business.
8) The Christmas Day nap
My thought of an epic Christmas Day nap was interrupted by my nieces stealing my phone to watch Rainbow Brite on Youtube while the youngest stole my purse and jumped on the air-mattress. I tried.
9) Boxing Day hike
After all the indulging my brother and I snuck away to hike around the Apache Wash Trails. We took Sidewinder to Ridgeway and got a much-needed workout. It is so much more enjoyable to hike here when it isn’t blazing hot!
Reader Question: What does you and your family do on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day? My family needs some ideas!