Wednesday, December 28, 2011

a very merry ugandan christmas

christmas was lovely. low-key. laid back. i loved it all.
i did remark to curtis at one point that it felt like we were just pretending it was christmas. he agreed. but i think we all still enjoyed ourselves.
i woke up thinking of all the things i needed to still do so i quietly slipped out and started prepping some breakfast stuff. curtis was already awake {still recovering from jetlag}. the boys and jamie came out shortly after.
we turned on skype and chatted with my sister and brother-in-law {their late christmas eve} and the boys opened their presents from them while on skype.
then it was time for stockings!

i love stockings. growing up my dad would usually do stockings for us and individually wrap each item in our stocking. my sister and i would close our eyes, reach inside and pull something out. then we'd quickly unwrap it, open our eyes and shout for joy at some random item we'd just received. our stockings often held practical things like socks and underwear and then as i got older sometimes i'd have note paper or kitchen items. then there'd be some gold-chocolate coins and a clementine in the toe of the stocking. and some of my favourite things would be the random doo-dads my dad would find at Lee Valley or the dollar store or these days it seems Pier 1 is the choice store for random {but usually handy} little things. 

i had saved up these little battery-powered fan-thingies the boys got from jamie's mom and i put them in the top of their stockings. well, the boys were completely enamored with them and played with them for a good 15-20 minutes when we convinced them to open up some of the other things inside their stockings.

then we read the last of our advent ornament stories {from this book} which told the story of the manger and Jesus' birth.
then we opened presents and our living room soon filled with wrapping paper and toy pieces. and lots of car noises.

we ate our breakfast and the guys {nick & trevor} went to church. i had to get the turkey ready as i really had no idea what i was doing. i recruited curtis to help me cut off the turkey neck {thank you, curt!} and then we stuffed the turkey and put 'er in the oven. and hoped for the best.
the afternoon was chill, playing with toys and games {and snacks} and relaxing in front of the tv.

i remember christmas day as a kid. checking out what everyone else got, trying out new games, toys or sitting around the table munching on leftover brunch foods. or eating my clementine from my stocking. and babybel cheese! i missed that this year. i remember one christmas one of my brothers got some sort of star wars computer game and all of us huddled around the computer, howling with laughter at some sort of storm trooper video. 
sometimes we'd walk down the street to the ice rink and hop the fence if it wasn't open to go skating for a bit while we waited for dinner to be ready.

we spoke with jamie's family at around 5pm in between me chopping up potatoes and checking on the turkey.
then our friends james and ronald came by in their finest clothes {james wore a really cool traditional ugandan dress/suit thing and ronald was looking very "smart" in a sweater vest} and the turkey was finally ready.
i was terrified it was either going to be underdone and we'd all end up with samonella poisoning or overdone a la National Lampoon's Christmas vacation.

while the skin was a bit crispy, the turkey meat was tender and delicious. i was so proud of myself. my very first turkey - and then jamie carved it for his very first time too! i think we are officially parents.

i didn't take any pictures during the meal or after as i was so exhausted i could bring myself to sit at the table and soak in the good and funny conversation, but i do remember sitting there, smiling. quite pleased with the day and how it had all turned out.
while we have missed our families and some of the more "wintery" things about christmas time in canada {not that it was really wintery in toronto this year...} i've thoroughly enjoyed spending christmas with just my husband and kids {and brother and nick and trevor...but you know what i mean.} it's been so good to just be us. to not have to rush around and do this, go there, get that, and be rushing, rushing, rushing. it's been chill and it's given us a chance to figure out how we as a family are going to celebrate christmas and to solidify those traditions as uniquely ours. 
i know that these traditions won't always be able to be kept and especially as my kids get older and one day will form their own family units, i'll be given another opportunity to start new traditions that fit with my stage in life. but for now? i'm loving where we're at.

hope you had a wonderful christmas, no matter who you were with or where you spent it.


  1. So glad you guys had a wonderful Christmas :)It snowed last night, everything is white now! Oh and on Boxing day we did scoot down to the ice rink but only Sam put on his skates for a bit ;)

  2. Good job on the turkey!

    Glad you had a nice Christmas where you are... Merry (belated) Christmas to you all!!

  3. Nice turkey...good shot! Did Curtis use his new knife to cut the neck?? Jamie might have to ask for an electric knife next yr!(side note: while it's Dad's tradition to do stockings, I've always purchased and wrapped a ton of the stuff in them too :) Loved skyping with you too...ours felt abit off without you all! xoxo


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