Christmas day was definitely different this year compared to last year. Last year we were on our road trip up north and stopped in Philly for a few days of relaxation and some city exploring too. This year, we went to my moms house like we used to but it was still different.
My brother brought his new cat to visit, along with my cousin bringing his dog in addition to the other two dogs that were already at my moms house. It was packed to say the least. The dogs played with each other, and barked, and wrestled. The kitten found a quiet and cozy spot near the Christmas tree and kept to herself.
My mom made challah french toast for Christmas morning, like always. In the beaten eggs, she always adds some cinnamon and a drop of vanilla extract. Plus, with fluffy, eggy bread like challah, it's always delicious!
Although we all started our day with coffee and french toast, once it was time for gifts we really toasted, with mimosas.
We all opened gifts, hugging and thanking each other. In between gifts and snacking on cheese, we Skyped with some of my cousins and my aunt up north. It was nice to see a little bit of each other - although of course it isn't the same.
For dinner my mom made all of our favorites including baked mac and cheese that I helped her with, spooned corn bread, spinach and rice torte, sweet potatoes, turkey, and even ham. It was a delicious feast and I was happy to take leftovers home to each it all over again.
This past weekend was a nice weekend of relaxing at home, catching up on cleaning and grocery shopping and cooking. We have so many great ingredients in our home right now, including produce to juice, home made focaccia bread (which I have photos to share), leftover turkey and chicken for paninis, and sprouts which are super healthy and I've been putting them in our salads. Other than that - S introduced me to a new comic book, Fables, which I've started reading along with some F Scott Fitzgerald short stories. Over all, it's been nice to be back home.
Some of you may have seen my small victory on Instagram - we finally submitted our Visa applications to the Brazilian consulate! It was hours of tedious paperwork, getting it together, making sure everything was signed to perfection - the consulate will deny and prolong the process for any little reason. Saturday morning, we waited in line at the post office and were lucky enough to be helped by a woman from the Bronx who used to work in Passports in Manhattan. Walking away from the post office with only my copies and without my Passport felt relieving, yet scary at the same time. Now begins the fun part where I can research old train stations, little towns around Buenos Aires for day trips, and art markets and restaurants galore!