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Christmas Festivities

This year we didn't have to travel far for Christmas - we had it at the house and made everyone come to us! I wasn't on the computer at all yesterday, but I did think to snap a few photos throughout the day.
Here's a little Christmas recap:

It snowed on Christmas Eve! The snow didn't stick around for long but it was so nice to watch it fall; it certainly put us in a jolly mood. I also couldn't help but shoot a few photos of my new dress courtesy of my grandmother. I thought this photo showed off some our Christmas decorations and all the gifts piled under the tree splendidly. There's also a cat hiding in the corner there.

Shawn's mom brought over a pretty bouquet for the table. I love that there's a pinecone and twigs in there! And those messy looking cookies are my first attempt at rugelach. I used the recipe for chocolate raspberry rugelach in my new Smitten Kitchen cookbook. Shawn was ecstatic - he loves rugelach!

This year, we hosted Christmas dinner! Actually, in our case it was Christmas lunch. Shawn's mother, brother & fiance came over and everyone made a little something for nommin' and then we all exchanged gifts. This was the first year I didn't get to see my family for Christmas! :( My sister and her boyfriend came over later in the day to exchange gifts, but it's just not the same. We still had a great meal though, and it was the first time we felt as though we made Christmas 'our own'. Here's to the start of our own traditions and celebrations!

Speaking of traditions, it's not Christmas without a buche de noel and some champagne.
Shawn felt the need to photo-bomb all the pictures I tried to take of the buche. This year I wasn't ambitious enough to make it myself, so I got a small one from work. It's chocolate cake, filled with chocolate mousse, and topped with chocolate ganache and various sugar decorations. I think it looked so pretty!

This is the only picture I took of my gifts; these are all from Shawn. It really helps to make a wish list because you end up getting lots of things that you want! ;) My brother also got me the adorable succulent tea lights from my list, and my sister got me an awesome wooden-looking owl candle and a cookie cookbook. Shawn's mom got me a really pretty sweater and his brother got us some sweet popcorn snacks and a cactus. Actually, we got a lot of snacks from friends this year... I wonder what that says about us. We got so many thoughtful amazing gifts this year, I am so grateful! And I'm even happier about the fact that everyone else enjoyed the gifts that were given to them - I think I may like giving gifts even better than receiving them :)

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate - I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!