Due to our renovating, we had a very low key Christmas this year. There was no tree, no decorating, no Christmas music in our home, we just didn't have the room for decorating or merryment. We did however, do our very best to make this Christmas special in it's own way.
It didn't really start to feel like Christmas for me until Christmas Eve. Even though it was a very very HOT day (and we have had our air conditioner disconnected due to the renovating), I got busy making lots of our favourite dishes to share on Christmas day. Here's a glimpse into our Christmas Eve.
First up was a scrummy vegetarian lasagne - this one with is a realy hit with the kids and made the house smell delicious.
Next up was another vegetarian lasagne - this one dairy free for my Aunty and me as we are both lactose intolerant. I just substituted the milk for soy and left out the choose - easy and still delicious. You can find the recipe HERE.
Next up I made some super easy peasy coconut balls - recipe by Mel Goodsell that I had saved from a few years ago. With just a few ingredients, this was super easy to make and yummy too.
I then took a little break from baking and while the kids were next door with their friends, I quickly wrapped their Christmas Eve gifts. One of our traditions on Christmas Eve is to give the kids one present each. Even though they know what it will be, they still very much look forward to these gifts. After wrapping, I popped them aside to give the kids later that evening.
Hubbies favourite came next - Cottage cheese and rice patties. These are again vegetarian and totally delicious. I forgot to take a photo once they were friend, but here they are ready to pop into the frying pan. I plan on taking some step by step photos and blogging this recipe soon. They are delicious with a salad or veges. They didn't last long on Christmas day either.
I took another break from baking to share a quick dinner with my family and give the kids their Christmas Eve presents. You can see from their faces how excited they were.
Inside their presents were a new pair of pyjamas each. Our lovely neighbours helped by finding Emily's pyjamas. They are perfect for her and both kids loved their new comfy pyjamas.
After dinner, we continued our traditions by watching Carols by Candlelight on TV together, and I continued my baking.
One of my most favourite things to make for Christmas is Gingerbread Cookies. I make them every year and follow the recipe given to me by a dear friend Helen Karanfilovski. Sadly I have lost contact with Helen and would dearly love to wish her a Happy Christmas, but sadly I no longer know how to contact her. So the next best thing is making her cookies and sending her good wishes as I think of her and her gorgeous family while following the steps of her recipe. These are really delicious cookies too.
Our lovely neighbours shared our tradition of new jammies on Christmas Eve too, so I happily took a photo of them both with our kiddies, all looking super duper excited for Christmas Day to arrive too.
After baking the Gingerbread cookies, it was time to hang up my apron so to speak. I was all baked out and still had quite a few hours of work ahead of me. Next up Jasper wrote his letter to Santa and got his snacks all ready. The kids also placed their Santa sacks near the fire (as they don't have bedroom doors anymore so had nowhere else to hang their Santa Sacks).
After the family were all tucked up in bed, it was time for me to wrap everyone's presents. We had a more low key Christmas this year, with one main present for each child and then some smaller ones, just things they needed. With everything wrapped and piled together on our couch, it still looked like a lot. After a few hours of wrapping, I was happy to stand back and have one last look at our presents (and tiny tree, can you spot it). I headed to bed about 1:30am, super excited for Christmas morning to arrive.
Tell me, do you have any Christmas Eve traditions or something you bake that makes it feel like Christmas? I'd love to hear all about it. x