Christmas Break 2020

Hi friends, welcome back! I’ve taken down my Christmas decorations and am slowly getting back into the swing of things. Before the blog gets back to reality, I wanted to share all about our three-week Christmas break. Jon and I saw our families for the first time in almost a year and it was just what we needed! It was so nice to relax and spend quality time with our families. I didn’t take as many pictures as usual (I didn’t even get a Christmas selfie with Jon!), but I have quite a few to share with you all 🙂

Jon and I planned to spend a week in Michigan before Christmas, and then head south to spend a week in Georgia with his family, but we ended up having a last-minute change of plans. The rental car company didn’t have any available cars the weekend before Christmas, so Jon and I picked up a car December 12th and drove about nine hours to Michigan.  This ended up being a blessing in disguise because we made it out before NYC got pummeled with snow!

We stayed at a hotel for a night near my parents as a safety precaution, and our first stop after checking in was picking up pizza from Buddy’s! This is our favorite pizza place in Michigan and they have the Detroit Style Pizza. I always get an antipasto salad too, they have the best vinaigrette!

Jon and I were able to stay with Jon’s Situ (meaning grandma in Lebanese) for a week while we worked remotely. We are so lucky to have been able to spend this extra time with her, especially with all that is going on! Each night she cooked us an amazing meal and we all had dinner together, it was so special! Jon and I usually eat the same thing for dinner every night of the week, so it was a treat to have something different every night 🙂

How beautiful is this dining table and Christmas tree! It was the perfect spot to eat dinner, normally Jon and I eat on the couch. Situ made us delicious burgers, salmon, and chicken and I wish I had taken more pictures! Thanks for having us Situ!!

After spending a week with Situ, Jon and I headed back to my parent’s house to stay until Christmas. We played a lot of sequence, watched Wheel of Fortune, and ate my favorite take out – Szechuan – and Jet’s Pizza. Even though we didn’t have plans, the time seemed to fly by!

Here are some family pictures we took in the Victorian Village in my hometown.

On Christmas Eve my Aunt Ann stopped over to deliver her famous Christmas cookies, equally delicious as they are pretty!

I made an impressive ginger bread house if I do say so myself! Usually I don’t have the patience to make one, but I was quite proud of how it turned out. I am quite certain my family ate it the day I left – I saw them eying it 😉

Our Christmas Eve dinner consisted of beef tenderloin, Brussel sprouts, green bean casserole, a salad, ciabatta rolls, and mashed potatoes! We also had cookies and ice cream pie for dessert!

My grandma got her own table this year! We were all happy to be able to have her for Christmas. The last time I saw my grandma was at my first dress fitting at the end of February, pretty crazy how much has changed since then!

On Christmas morning we woke up to a fresh snowfall – I got my white Christmas!

On Christmas morning we sat in the family room opening presents and enjoying each other’s company.

One of the most unique and thoughtful gifts was from Jon’s cousin Logan. He had me for the cousin Secret Santa and he knew I love to travel and cook/eat, so he created five at home date nights from around the world for us! Each date had a card with instructions of what to make, along with an ingredient such as mini margaritas for Mexico, and a Pandora station to listen to along with it. I was so impressed – thanks Logan!!!

As tradition, we had cinnamon rolls, eggs, and fruit for breakfast prepared by chef dad.

The ladies on Christmas 🙂

Usually on Christmas we see my Aunt Linda, but this year we had to move the festivities virtual. She set up an online White Elephant, and everyone picked a link to a gift online, “virtually wrapped it” and then when it was your turn, you could unwrap a gift or steal an opened one. We all joined zoom to play and got to see each other from a distance. It was fun to do something special together and make the most out of Christmas 2020. Thanks Aunt Linda!

The day after Christmas, Jon and I loaded up our car and drove down to see Jon’s family in Georgia. We had a gourmet ham dinner when we arrived and opened more presents from Santa! You know you’re getting older when you’re excited to get things for the kitchen!

The following day we went to pick out our wedding bands with Jon’s parents at the same jeweler my engagement ring was from. I was so blinded and overwhelmed by all the sparkle, so it was nice to have their guidance. We actually found it harder to pick out Jon’s bands than mine.

We visited Avalon afterwards, my favorite outdoor mall area, to make some exchanges and do a little shopping. We took a break for some indulgent hot chocolate indulgence and it was so heavenly!

On New Year’s Eve I had a girls lunch with Jon’s mom and sisters and I got a chicken gyro pita that was yummy. In case you didn’t know, one of Jon’s sisters is my age and has been my best friend since 7th grade so it’s always great being able to see her! It also made the meet the family part of dating basically non-existent ha! Here is all of us from last Christmas.

We spent NYE with Jon’s parents and ordered pizza from Bobby G’s for dinner and watched The Founder – the movie about McDonalds and I’d highly recommend! It was funny seeing Ron Swanson from Parks and Rec in a different role.

The older I get, the harder it is to stay up until midnight! Jon and I at least got a selfie here and watched to clock strike midnight. It’s finally our wedding year again!

New Year’s Day was spent as it should be – watching football all day with some delicious appetizers with a side of wine 🙂

For dinner Jon’s mom made a delicious lasagna, a perfect end to our Christmas Break!

Jon and I drove back from Atlanta to NYC last Saturday and had a pretty uneventful drive. Jon’s mom packed a great lunch for us so we wouldn’t get hangry.

I’m so happy we were able to see both of our families for an extended time, we really missed them! Jon and I unpacked the car and crashed hard once we got back! Now it’s back to reality and back to work! Hope you all enjoyed reading and had a wonderful holiday!

11 thoughts on “Christmas Break 2020

  1. Sounds like you had the perfect Christmas seeing family again after a year. You had a trip plus all that delicious food. The gingerbread house looks amazing, you are right to be proud of it!

  2. I never knew beef tenderloin was a Christmas dinner tradition until I met my wife. My family always had crown roast of lamb. Also, gotta ask, what makes “Detroit-style” pizza unique?

    1. We’ve also had crab legs most years, that is a good Christmas dinner! “Detroit-style” pizza is a deep dish square pizza – also the toppings are on the bottom, then cheese, then sauce so the bread absorbs all the delicious grease 🙂

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