Christmas brekky is of course cinnamon rolls.
Then, this being Japan and all, the girls went off to school and K went off to work. It was a bit of a frightful morning actually as Friday I asked Meg to tell the other third of their walking group that as it was Christmas Tuesday we would be driving them and would she like a lift as well or would she walk down and join a different group? Little H jumped at the chance to get a lift and that was that.
Until this morning when at 7:00 the doorbell rang.
Fearing a funeral announcement K went down to answer the door while the girls and I continued to eat cinnamon rolls and exclaim over the contents of their stockings.
K came racing back down the corridor and threw open the kitchen door- "It's H-chan!! She's been waiting outside!"
Poor H. She had forgotten her conversation with Meg on Friday and I hadn't followed up with a mail to her mum as recently everytime I do the reply is 'yes, I heard from H.'
Of all the mornings too- it was minus 8 and really really windy. The kind of bitingly horrible weather you don't want to even step out in let alone stand around on the roadside for 20 minutes waiting in.
H is incredibly shy and didn't want to come in and wait 30 minutes till the girls would be ready to go, so K quickly threw some clothes on and said he'd drive her down till they met the next walking group (who would be well on their way by now.)
Only, when they reached the next group they were three girls from Meg's (and H-chan's) year level and as K pulled up to let H-chan out they ran over to the car and started entreating 'Give us a lift too! Please! Thank you!!' and K being K and not me, rather than saying 'Nice try! Go on, off you go.' He said OK and gave four girls a lift to school before coming home again. Weirdly, none of the hitch-hiking three expressed any wonder at the absence of Meg or Amy in the car...
During the day it was Christmas dinner prep with the extra challenge of having a one tray oven that is also my microwave so using the oven means no microwaving will be going on. Oh and only two burners on the stove, to boot.
I relish the challenge.
And I start at 1pm for a 7pm dinner which significantly lessens the challenge.
I realised that the free softserve coupons we were given for suggesting a name for the local milk factory's cows (Amy suggested K's name for the mother cow....) had to be used by today so, despite the weather and the fact that there was a simply ridiculous quantity of food waiting for us at home we went off and had a rich chocolate soft-serve appetiser:
Meg wanted to eat outside with the cow statues but Amy and I escaped to the (relative) warmth of the car.
After K got home and Meg went to piano practice (just another Tuesday here after all..) we finally had Christmas dinner. It's really weird for me to have Christmas dinner at teatime but hey, you do what you gotta do, right?
fabulous picture that includes the light string and some laundry for atmosphere...
We had cranberry and bacon stuffing, roast chicken, gravy, roast vegetables, salad and cranberry sauce. All washed down with this fizzy sweet abomination called Chan Merry. There was actually white wine for K and I but it was the classy stuff that requires a corkscrew and wouldn't you know it we couldn't find ours. Oh well, the girls shared their Chan Merry for a token toast. That's certainly all I wanted of it!
Amy saw those fancy paper cuffs on the chicken legs somewhere and was desperate to make her own. I'm not sure any chef has ever made them out of yellow construction paper but Amy was thrilled and that's the main thing, hey?
A little Christmas silliness.
Then it was time for some presents. Meg wanted to play Santa first and gave out hugs with her presents. This was the first year she chose all the presents she gave all by herself. She had a secret shopping list and was a woman on a mission at the shopping centre.
I loved seeing how excited Meg was to see everyone open their presents.
Even stepping in and helping out a bit:
A little more excited than Amy who wasn't sure what she was looking at:
But she was quite thrilled when she worked it out:
It's a light up pom pom set that converts to a light up be-pompomed baton. Amy loves to make up dances and is always making batons out of advertising fliers so Meg was right on the money with this present!
Then it was my turn (love the light string and towels in this picture... sigh...)
Then Amy's turn to play Santa:
She chose a notepad and shitajiki (a piece of plastic you put under your work so the writing doesn't indent the page below. I think it might be unique to Japan...) in a character that is quite popular so Meg was chuffed.
And finally presents for Meg and Amy: