Madison and Nicolas hosted all of us for a traditional Danish Christmas in their beautifully decorated home on Christmas Eve. Christmas is celebrated on Christmas Eve in Denmark, and Nicolas and Madison shared those lovely, festive traditions with us. The meal was delicious! We enjoyed several traditional Danish dishes with a few of our regular favorites as well. Nicolas and Madison served roast duck with gravy, red cabbage, Frikadeller, or Danish meatballs, ham, broccoli casserole, green bean casserole, and potatoes. For dessert, we enjoyed Peyton's cookies and a special Danish dessert called Risalamande, a delicious rice pudding topped with cherry sauce and one almond hidden somewhere inside. Whoever finds the almond wins the almond prize! Madison and Nicolas did a fantastic job of preparing a delicious meal.
In between dinner and dessert, we exchanged our Secret Santa gifts. We chose names way back in November and kept the secret until Christmas Eve. I am always amazed at how thoughtful each person is choosing a gift for their person. Nicolas had me this year, and I could not be more thankful for his gift. He put it all in a burlap Santa sack tied with jingle bells! Inside was a beautiful ceramic evergreen tree I can keep out all winter and a white gnome, or nisse as they are known in Denmark. He also included vintage Christmas albums and a festive pillow for my couch.
We also joined hands and took turns choosing a Christmas song to sing as we danced around the Christmas tree. I love seeing the joy in the faces of my family as we share Nicolas' traditions. We also played a Danish exchange game called Pakkeleg. It was so fun!!!! We finished the evening with the reading of 'Twas The Night Before Christmas, a tradition we have had forever. I offered for Nicolas to read it as we were celebrating in his home, but I was overruled, and tradition won out. And I was happy to oblige. After a lovely, festive evening, we headed home to set out our stockings, cookies for Santa and head to bed.
Christmas Day was just as lovely. Steve and I awoke to the sound of...silence. Once upon a time, we had four little ones clambering for us to get up and go see if Santa came. We have two remaining, and they are older and like to sleep longer. Steve and I enjoyed a quiet morning, turning on the tree lights and Christmas music. Soon the kids were awake, and Madison and Nicolas arrived for brunch. Per tradition, we open stockings, enjoy brunch, and then check under the tree for presents.
It was a cozy, relaxing morning as we enjoyed kringle, coffee cake, muffins, fruit, and tea, coffee, and juice. We took our time opening gifts, and before we knew it, Peyton and Chris arrived to start opening their presents. We had a pleasant visit with them while Rhett and Kyrstin headed to her house for Christmas dinner. Peyton and Chris also had dinner with his family after leaving our house, so the rest of us enjoyed leftovers from the night before and some fun new games to end the night. We called my mom, who was happy and content, and suddenly, as quickly as it came, Christmas Day was over, and new memories were stored in our hearts.
My friends, I hope you had a happy, healthy, cozy Christmas.
Thank you for visiting!