I hope you all had a Christmas as fantastic as mine. The food we ate was delicious, the jazzy Christmas tunes we listened to (quite a bit of Frank Sinatra and Micheal Bublé) were totally groovy, and there was a mountain of presents under the tree- even my dad (probably the hardest person on earth to shop for) had a ton of presents!
My dad's cousin Nico, who lives in Germany (yet he is Argentinian- another example of how my family is spread out across the globe), is visiting us over the holidays, which means an extra person to open presents with!
On the days leading up to Christmas we watched a bunch of Christmas movies we ordered from amazon. Of the seven we purchased, my favorites were Elf (of course), Christmas With the Kranks, Love Actually (I think this is everybody's favorite) and The Santa Clause.
On Monday my mom invited some new friends over for an afternoon of Christmas baking:
On Christmas eve, we all helped to prepare empanadas, traditional Argentinian turnovers which you fill with cow meat or a veggie mixture which most commonly would be corn, mushroom, black beans and olives.
As you probably guessed, mine were veggie.
Here is my mom holding our beautiful plate of piled empanadas, and my dad next to her holding our beautiful new umbrella over their heads:
Our tradition is to open all our presents on Christmas eve, over the course of several hours while we eat dinner.
My presents were super awesome: I got an apron with The Veggie Polyglotographer written on it, a bunch more baking stuff, books, clothes, bath products... I even got an electric hand warmer! It stays at 43 degrees for 3 hours!
I believe that the most successful present of all is the massage chair we gave Nico. Everybody's been taking turns on it since Christmas eve. It's amazing. I want one for myself.
On Christmas day, we basically just sat around and relaxed until the late afternoon when we took a long walk to the movie theater to see A Long Walk To Freedom.
That movie is INCREDIBLE. Go see it. Now.
I learned so much I did not know about Mandela. His story really inspires me; it's proof that if you want something badly enough, if you work and work at it, without giving up a single time, you can get what you want. This movie really got me thinking.
And Idris Elba is a terrific actor. When we got home, I watched a video of him on Jimmy Kimmel, and was surprised to learn that he is actually nothing like Nelson Mandela. He managed to completely transform himself for the movie. I find that amazing.
The conclusion is, I absolutely adore being on vacation. Why can't we stop working and just be on holiday forever?