We held Christmas for my side of the family on Saturday. It started as a busy day, with an early appointment at the blood bank for three of the locally based family members as we attempt to stand up a new Christmas tradition. Then my brother helped me pick up a bunch of good second-hand baby furniture that I scored for $140. It will need a clean-up and a new lick of paint, but it will save us hundreds.
By late morning the interstate travellers had arrived. It’s always great when we all get together – we enjoyed a lunch of Australian tiger prawns, a roast lamb with veggies including the first harvest of potatoes from the garden, and creme caramels for dessert. After lunch we sat around and chatted, played board games for hours and enjoyed each others company.
Of course, being Christmas there were presents too, but we keep it manageable by operating a “secret santa” exchange with a $50 limit. It really allows you to focus on only one person, which ensures the gifts are meaningful and will be cherished. I received a pasta drying rack and the board game – Articulate – and my wife received a new personalise-able wall calendar, plus some books including one on making your own baby food. I couldn’t have thought of more perfect gifts for each of us.
On Sunday we set about the task of braiding the garlic which had been drying in the garage for the past few weeks. I set up our portable camping table and a few chairs under the large protective canopy of the rowan tree in the backyard. My sister accepted the task of braiding the stalks while the rest of us prepared them by trimming the roots and brushing off any remaining dirt with an old toothbrush – it felt very “tomato day”. Merry Christmas.