Early start to get the bird stuffed and in the oven by 9:30 a.m. I thought I had loads of time but before I knew it, the folks were at the door and the excitement was palpable! I had just got the potatoes started when it was time to open the gifts. Usually this is quite an orderly procedure - youngest to oldest and one at a time - but James was so excited that he could barely wait for his turn. However, everyone was very happy with their gifts and Ariel helped with the cleanup of wrapping paper and ribbons and bows.
Lunch started on time - shrimp, smoked salmon and smoked mackerel for the first course, capon, stuffing and vegetables to follow with cranberry sauce and gravy, and finally, the climax, flambeeing the plum pudding! I have to say it was spectacular. Elliot declared it the best ever. This was accompanied by custard, cream, strawberries and mince pies. So everyone had something to their taste. Coffee followed for the adults while the kids were excused to enjoy some of their new toys.
Later, everyone retired to the kitchen to clean up or the family room for more games and toys. I was quite happy to stay in the kitchen as the kids by now were getting hyper from all the excitement. Once the dishwasher was loaded (thanks Dave) it was time to relax. Soon things were being packed up and the respective families were ready to head home. Another load in the dishwasher and I was ready to retire - still no TV - it had been a long day.
It had snowed most of Christmas Day which, although beautiful, meant more shovelling and scraping. I managed to get most of the ice off my driveway but didn't tackle much else other than a few clean up tasks. The house is almost back to normal and I will start putting away the Christmas decorations on the weekend.
I was expecting a new stove and range hood to be installed and was delighted to find I was finally hooked back up to the phone, TV and internet. The delivery arrived just after noon but the guys didn't come to install the hood until 7:30 p.m., just as I was settling down to a movie on TV. Rather inconsiderate of them! However, at least it is done and I didn't have to spend another day waiting for them to arrive.