Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Weekend Recap

As I finally catch up on all of my favorite blogs, which I've been neglecting the past few days, I thought I'd join in the merriment and tell you about my long, very red and green, weekend.

 It started with a Friday afternoon hike on the Billy Goat Trail with my Inna. That's right, she's mine. We got our feet a little muddy, we climbed on rocks, and we ate fruit and granola.

That night, we ventured to U Street with Josh for our first speakeasy experience at The Gibson. I'm not one for liquor, especially when it tastes like licorice, so I can't honestly say that my drink with absinthe in it tasted good. But it was still a fun time with great conversation about the world. After finishing our expensive drinks, Inna and I sent Josh home and went on a romantic little date at Bistro La Bonne. It was very french, very tasty, very reasonably priced and I would definitely return but my heart will still always be with Bistro Du Coin.

I don't have photographic evidence but I wore green pants and a red scarf out on Friday. 

Having had only the one cocktail and a glass of rose with dinner, I woke up with a mild hangover on Saturday morning. If you've ever read my first ever blog post, you may remember my belief in windy bike rides as the #1 way to cure a hangover. Luckily, I had a long-standing date with my dad to meet at 9:30 am on the Georgetown waterfront and set out for a Christmas Eve bike ride. We rode south to Alexandria, across my favorite bridge to the National Harbor, and then back to Old Town for hot soup and tea/beer by a fire at our favorite Irish bar. We rode to the new MLK memorial, which I hadn't seen yet, and then back to my parents' house. It had been a long time since I'd biked up the Capital Crescent Trail and it was nice. The whole day was very cold and windy but the sun was out so we survived. 

My ride ended up being 36 miles and my dad's 42 because he had a much longer ride to our Georgetown meet-up. I couldn't even remember the last time I rode my bike over 30 miles and that is sad. We are excited to plan many more father-daughter bike rides this winter to rack up the miles in preparation for our epic journey in Summer 2012.

Within ten minutes of our return home, Josh arrived with a car full of presents and overnight clothes. He and I headed to a bar in Bethesda to watch a disappointing Broncos game. Afterward, we showered and got dolled up for the traditional Shaw Family Christmas Eve feast. Can you guess who insisted we set up the tripod for a lovely photo? It was me.

We talked about many things and then we played our made-up telephone/memory/pictionary Christmas game from last year. And, thanks to the game, we laughed a lot.

We also all wore red or green or, in most cases, both. We are very festive.

 The grown-ups went to church and, because we stayed home to watch Friends Christmas episodes, I guess that makes Josh, Nathan, and I the kids. I fell asleep on the couch and then woke up at 8am the next morning to run my Virtual 5k.

Running, sweating, blah blah blah. Then we gathered around the tree and opened presents. Nathan and I always sit on the floor while the grown-ups sit in real chairs. I guess overnight, Josh entered the world of grown-up and earned a seat on the couch. It is fun to get presents, but I am finding more and more that I have five times as much fun giving them. Christmas is so much nicer now that we're all adults and we take a long time to sit around the tree enjoying each others company instead of ripping paper wildly.

Then we ate our traditional brunch,

read books, greeted an afternoon visitor,

played a chess tournament (resulst: 1st place- Dad, 2nd place- Joshua, 3rd place- yours truly),


ate leftovers around the dining room table, drank a 1985 bottle of Bordeaux, had a lesson in wines of the world,


and watched Water for Elephants. Christmas was a day full of coziness and that is exactly how I like it. I really didn't want it to end.

To wrap up the weekend, Josh and I returned home and I ran the Home for the Holidays 10k yesterday afternoon. Then I went to Inna's for one final night of best friendness, and to catch up with her parents and eat her mom's kickass cooking, before she flies to Kuwait and Italy to ring in the New Year.

Sometimes I am cynical about Christmas because of the disgustingness of Black Friday and the 500 e-mails I get a day in December trying to sell me things, but it really is the best time of the year. If every weekend could be four days long and full of love, family, food, wine, and sweating, I think life would be just about perfect. Cheesefest over.

I want to know! How was your Christmas/ Hannukuh/ Holiday Celebration?? Did you go anywhere exotic or stay home? Did you sweat a lot? Did you loose a chess tournament? I hope it was merry and bright!


  1. Your Christmas sounds absolutely lovely! :) Ours was quiet and simple and I agree--giving presents is the best! Great job with the ride and virtual races! And hubs and I were just talking about how annoying all the "sale" emails have been and we even started unsubscribing from some retailers!!

  2. amidst the extra 50% off at anthropologie and the seedy drunken men who preach christmas from bartops, we have found joy and love and happiness and delicious food! high five friend... and miss you already!