Welcome to Blogmas day 21 and happy Solstice! Today is officially the first day of winter, the shortest day and the longest night of the year. My family isn’t particularly religious, but as we often end up traveling on Christmas day, we’ve adopted the Solstice to be the day for our big meal, special gifts, and family time.
We have developed a lot of traditions over the years to make this our special celebration. We always cut some fresh pine boughs to make the house smell amazing and cut out paper stars to lay around the table. Each of us gets two stars and before we eat the meal we write down two wishes we have for the coming new year and hang them on the branches. It may sound a little cheesy, but as our Christmas is often spent away from home and we never do much for New Years, then this is our time to come together as a family and reflect on the year.
Each person also gets one gift on the Solstice that is their special gift of the year. We only do one gift to save the fun for Christmas day, but having the most sentimental present on this night makes is really amazing.
This year we went all out- huge meal, fancy table setting, and I gave my parents their gifts. Since my mom and I are vegetarian, we went for a vegetarian roast, with cider glazed carrots, green bean casserole, stuffing with fresh cranberries, mashed potatoes, homemade gravy, crescent rolls, and an onion dish my parents love. It was such an amazing meal and we finished it off with homemade ice cream and a salted chocolate torte that I made. The recipe is from Tanya Bakes and I’ll try to do a post on that because it’s pretty great.
I was really excited to give my parents their gifts this year. I spent a lot of time finding the perfect thing, and I definitely nailed it. I gave my mom the HP Sprocket mobile printer which she was thrilled with and we spent the evening getting it to work. If you haven’t checked it out, I would highly recommend doing so. It’s a great gift for someone, and something they wouldn’t necessarily buy for themselves. I got my dad a custom made beer tap handle as the one that he had broke and he hasn’t replaced yet. The guy who made it I found on Etsy and he did such an incredible job. You can check out his shop here. I would really recommend this guy, he was absolutely amazing with designing the tap, and his work is fantastic. If you’re trying to buy for someone who is really hard to shop for, a really nice, custom gift is the perfect way to go. You can find pretty much anything on Etsy, but this tap handle was perfect for my dad and he loved it.
I always love our little family traditions like this, it makes the whole festive season something to look forward to. I’ll be back tomorrow with another day of Blogmas, but until then, happy Solstice!