We had a good Christmas together. Christmas eve the Haas side (Mom’s side) of the family (my Dad’s family are almost all in Virginia) get together for dinner and gift exchange. We have done this for as long as I can remember. We had a great time seeing all the aunts, uncles and cousins (there are about 50 of us if you were to sit down and count us all). Both Santa and the Belschnickel come to hand out our gifts. We always pull names at Thanksgiving, but this year I was a little sneaky. I saw my cousins family wasn’t putting their names in the hat so I swapped names with her little boy (God knows I have more than enough boy toys in this house to supply him with presents for the next few years then I can move on to his younger second cousin. (Sorry girls.)
I gave out my homemade snowmen (I should have made more everyone loved them). They also enjoyed my tres leches cake (but what self respecting PA Dutch Haas doesn’t enjoy cake covered in milk?)
After the whole family gathering we always head back to my parent’s house for our immediate family to exchange gifts. I think this little tradition started sometime after my sister and I grew up, maybe after she had kids and moved back to PA. But we started it so we could enjoy Christmas day as a family and not be thinking of gifts etc instead of the real meaning of the holiday. (We never attended church services unless Christmas landed on a Sunday. For us the holiday meant family time.)
Mom seemed upbeat enjoying what she got as much as what she gave. We all hugged and said goodnight, as we’d see each other for lunch.