When I was a kid, I not only found it fascinating that Santa had a flying sleigh, but also that he could apparently slide down chimneys. This bit was probably the most difficult to understand and believe, but that’s exactly what made me want to believe it in the first place. It far for fun to believe in things that seem a bit impossible. To go down the chimney seemed easy enough, but I always wondered how he managed to climb back out. I imagined all sorts of possibilities including that his boots had jet pack thrusters on them so he could just zoom up and back onto his sleigh. Our house only has a gas firebox and no proper chimney, so Santa will have to use other means to fill our stockings on Christmas. Philippe announced to me today that we can wrap and put presents under the tree tomorrow, one day earlier than usual, so that was exciting. Then he quickly changed his mind and said, “well not all of them, but some of them.” Either way, it will be nice to finally have the visual of presents under the tree and the thrill of wondering just what might be inside those wrapped boxes!
As I type this, Philippe is burying the salmon we purchased. Not in the yard, of course, but in a mixture of dill, sugar, and salt for our annual gravlax. This, after preparing his foie gras, which will be the second appetizer on the menu come Christmas Eve. These two returning food stars often steal the show, but then it’s time for the guinea fowl and vegetables. Last on the menu will be my favorite bit of all in the form of Christmas Cake. This will shaped into a yule log or Bûche de Noël, and complete the annual event. It’s quite a production for just two people, but that’s the fun of the holidays. They are always full of fun surprises and things that you don’t really need, but simply want. This year, my list had almost nothing on it, so nearly everything is going to be a surprise. I can’t wait! And yet, I’m fine with having the hours pass a bit slower and savoring each and every little moment. Our house currently smells delicious, but it will be another 48 hours before I can sample any of the dishes that are creating those scents.
As the tree sparkles with lights and the candles flicker on the bookshelf, I’m content just enjoying the moment. Philippe and I are going to start a puzzle this evening as well. It’s an illustrated holiday street in Paris and looks like it will be fun and not as maniacally difficult as the one at my mother’s house a couple of weeks ago. Phineas won’t be joining us due his lack of thumbs and will be instead curled up on his new Christmas blanket that we purchased for him this year. We like to pretend he appreciates fashion and will be telling all of his little squirrel friends that its by Ralph Lauren. He also has a Calvin Klein blanket and we just don’t have the heart to tell him that these are actually now discount designers whose fashion appears mostly at HomeGoods and Marshall’s these days. And though there’s no snow falling, the scene is set for a perfectly beautiful and magical holiday. Somewhere, far away, elves are putting the last minute touches on gifts for kids around the world. And Santa is preparing for that most impossible journey, one chimney at a time, landing a little sleigh and a team of reindeer up on a rooftop.
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Da Vinci Paint Co.: Quinacridone Red, Nickel Azo Yellow, Leaf Green, Cobalt Turquoise, Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
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