Monday, January 9, 2012

christmas actually

We didn't go back to the Midwest for Christmas this year; we had done enough traveling between the Michigan/Illinois trip in May and the big Spain/Italy trip in the fall. So like last year, we spent the holidays at home in San Francisco with Dan and Carmen.

For Christmas Eve, we decided to be very San Franciscan and have local dungeness crab for dinner. Steve made the carrot soup with crab, as well as the crab cakes again, and we all ate quietly while Elsa slept. For the picture of the day, I just shot the Christmas tree, since it now had presents underneath.

358/365 christmas eve

The bonus of staying home was that we didn't miss Elsa's first Christmas. (It was also her first half birthday.) We got up early to maximize Elsa's awake time and got her presents opened before her first nap. The downside: it wasn't particularly bright in Dan and Carmen's living room at 7am, so the pictures were more challenging than they would have been otherwise.

After presents, we had a while to hang out. Carmen and I took Elsa and got some coffee, Dan made himself some breakfast, and Steve worked on our Christmas dinner. Before long, it was time to Skype with the in-laws, with dinner following around 3pm. Steve made the usual prime rib, which was especially good this time. To go with it we had mashed potatoes, macaroni gratin, roasted vegetables, horseradish creme fraiche, and a beet salad that Dan made. For dessert, Carmen and I had made individual cups of tiramisu the day before. Stockings followed, and we finished the evening by watching Midnight in Paris and warming up some leftovers for supper.

359/365 elsa's first christmas

I didn't take as many pictures of the whole present opening process on Christmas morning as I have in the past, but we all got some good stuff. I received pretty much everything on my wishlist, plus some. Steve gave me the tabletop light unit that I had wanted for photos, and he got extra points for getting me a Heath vase. I hadn't put one on my wishlist, but I had been lusting over them for quite a while.

The day after Christmas was "play with your new toys" day. Steve spent some time hooking up the Blu-ray player that Dan and Carmen had given us. Meanwhile, I put together my new light and tested it out with my new Heath vase and the last surviving ranunculus flower.

360/365 christmas presents

Carmen and I went out for a girls night on Tuesday, after the boys had gotten home to stay with Elsa. We went to Zero Zero, where we got tasty drinks, pasta, and pizza. Of course, Carmen was probably most excited about the panna cotta for dessert. (See below.) We had planned to go see the muppet movie after dinner, but we were too busy enjoying our food and ran out of time.

361/365 girls night

Wednesday was relatively boring compared to the previous few days. I made room for our newly acquired cookbooks on the cookbook shelf, looked through the Miette book, and decided to take a picture of the cookbooks with the little Deglingos pig that I had put in Steve's stocking.

362/365 the cookbook pig

I played with the tabletop light some more on Thursday, figuring I'd try it out that night after having Steve make me some hot chocolate. Of course, actually waiting until dark to take my pictures made me nervous, so I set up a test shot with the chocolate bar and the toppings. But then we went for burgers at SouthEnd for dinner, and I wasn't hungry enough for my hot chocolate later. Oh well.

363/365 all i need now is the "hot"

Friday, New Year's Eve Eve was quite nice weather-wise, prompting me to take a walk through the park to look for pictures. Remembering the picture of the fall-ish pumpkins that I took last January, I picked this shot of some spring-y clover as my picture of the day. San Francisco is good at being seasonally ambiguous.

364/365 lucky new year

And that is where I end this post. (Cliffhanger!) Next time: day 365 and a look back on 2011.

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