Friday, December 07, 2012

7 QT: A Very English Holiday

1. This year we're staying in the UK for Christmas. It was a tough decision for all, and by all I of course mean only me because I'm kind of a selfish brat and viewed it as an affront to justice that I wouldn't get to see my family over the holidays. Even though we spent Christmas with my family for the past two years. See? Major Bratitude.  However, I was an emotional terrorist played major hardball and bargained that I would stay and mostly not pout about it if I could go home at Thanksgiving. For a whole month.

2. I do have to say that I'm actually kinda looking forward to having a big family Christmas here where no one is trying to kill each other. You see, my husband's family are basically kindly Hobbits from the Shire with not a single contentious bone in their bodies, whereas my extended family are the Hatfields and McCoys. Ah finally, Christmas without a flak jacket…

3. There is one thing standing in our way though….SPACE. Since this is Europe, we basically all live in dollhouses so nobody has room to host a Christmas dinner for 20+ people. Or even 10 people. Except for the priest in the family, who lives in a giant Victorian mansion-presbytery from the days when priests got to live in mansions with 10 bedrooms and 4 floors and servants quarters and a special room for a pool table. It's funny because I'm not even kidding. But he's not playing ball, so we're kind of in a jam. So if you could, please pray that Fr. In-Law changes his mind, otherwise my Christmas will look like this:

Drunk, alone, in PJs all day, watching infomercials with a tissue paper cracker crown on on my head a la Bridget Jones. Can we please avoid this? Kthanks!

4. That aside, I'm having wild fantasies about what I can cook for our potential-big-family-Christmas dinner, constantly mulling over what fantastic American culinary specialities I can force them all to try. Because sweet baby Jesus knows that I am not going to eat bread sauce (blech) and mushy boiled brussel sprouts (double blech). What's your favorite thing to cook for Christmas? Do I feel a link-up coming on….??? I hear they're all the rage these days.

5. Can we just talk about how cold it is y'all? I'm dying here. Until this afternoon I hadn't actually left the house all week. Too cold. And dark. Like the sun sets at 2pm dark. I was wondering why I was starting to feel cranky, sad, and short fused. Luckily my sweet husband sensed the impending stir-crazy meltdown and took me out for coffee and scones at our favorite fancy country hotel. Yum. 
6. Speaking of the cold, my skin never does very well in winter. Does yours? If so, don't tell me because I'll be terribly jealous of your freak-of-nature-super-model-good-skin fortune. If not, let me let you in on a little secret! Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream. Don't be afraid because it's called "Cream". It's   light and lovely and silky and super hydrating. I'm talking make your face feel dewy and perfect kind of hydrating. So hydrating that the Agent touched my cheek and said "Your face feels kind of like our baby's butt…. I mean that as a compliment".  And (almost) best of all, you only need a tiny bit of it for your whole face- the small jar does me just fine through all the cold months, which are many since I live about 15 miles south of the Arctic Circle.  It might be my favorite skin product ever, which is saying something since I've tried approximately all of them (except for the reeeeaaaallly expensive bee venom and other crazy ingredient ones). So ask for some for Christmas. Or just buy it yourself. Whatever. You won't be sad.

7. I was feeling extra bold today so I decided to try on my two biggest pairs of pre-baby pants. And guess what? THEY ACTUALLY ZIPPED UP.  I'm not saying they looked good (they didn't), but they went on and zipped up and I didn't have to lay down on the bed and inhale or do the pants-dance to get them on. Which then inspired me to try on my real wedding ring, which I haven't worn in many many moons. And you know what? IT FIT TOO! I had been wearing some rings which were an anniversary gift (originally sized to fit my right hand…) as a wedding ring, but now I can wear the real deal. I am so happy. Looks like my mediocre attempts at weight loss have been a semi-success. Only 23 enormous pounds to go. Wish me luck.

Bored yet? If not, go see the Quick Take Queen for more.


  1. Yayyy about the wedding ring and pre-baby pants!

    Aw man, to me Christmas in England sounds magical ... I'm probably being overly sentimental but I immediately pictured scenes straight out of "A Christmas Carol" and "A Little Princess." This is what reading too much British children's literature does to you! Good luck finding enough space for everyone - hopefully Fr. In-law agrees to host.

    As for something to serve at Christmas, this definitely isn't traditional, but what about a Mexican dish? I noticed when I was in England that it's hard to find good Mexican food there (I only saw one Mexican restaurant in the 6 months I was there), and being from Texas you're probably pretty familiar with a few south-of-the-border dishes. :) It would be a novelty, and I bet everyone would love it!

    1. I think Mexican is a great idea! I was actually thinking of doing a Tex-Mex dinner Christmas Eve. You're right it's totally hard or rather impossible to find good Mexican food- or any Mexican food at all here (ok that's a lie, there are a few in London and around but they are not excellent). It's even kind of hard to find ingredients. I keep wanting to kill people who post recipes with green chiles on Pinterest....

    2. A burrito cart recently opened up in our town, and I thought that was just the most exciting thing ever! The owners are real Mexicans and everything. I thought it was very delicious, although it could be that anything even approximating Mexican food is a winner in my book, after some of the plonk I have eaten since being here. Also, my veg-box farm sold tomatillos this year, and it was like a little bit of heaven. :)

      The dark is driving me crazy. Gus wakes up from his nap, and it is already dark for the day. I just keep telling myself, at least I don't live in Aberdeen anymore!

  2. This is my most favorite post in the history of quick takes. For real
    Also, I'm jealous of English Christmas crackers and the resulting tissue paper crowns. It's very Harry Potter to me.

    As for my American-style menu idea, just serve Ranch dressing. The English empire failed because it didn't invent Ranch dressing.