This would be our first Christmas with just the two of us together at home ever in the 10 year history of us. When I was growing up the youngest of seven kids, Christmastime was, of course, huge. It wasn't all about lots of presents, although we had our fair share, it was about family time together eating, playing games, playing cards, going to church. Drew's family, although smaller, also put an emphasis on family time.
Drew is an airline pilot. He flies a lot. He likes to chose when he flies for pleasure. He tries to chose the easiest and cheapest time for us to fly to see family. That time is not Christmas! This year, although he had a few days off around Christmas, we chose to focus on our immediate local family - that is, us, the cats, and the bikes.
Christmas PrepBecause we were going to be home, we decorated the house in a big way for the first time in 8 years.
Our tree wasn't tall enough to use Drew's full height advantage for the #1 task.
All done. I love our little tree!
Looks pretty at night too.
So the house was decorated, but there were the usual holiday hassles,
The post office was a zoo!
And holiday baking
All to get ready to have a quiet Christmas at home.
Christmas EveWe rode our mountain bikes on Thanksgiving, so why not on Christmas Eve! Utah had not seen appreciable snow since November so we bundled up and rode from our house on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. We were not the only friends out there.
Ran into Sally and Karl doing the same thing.
As you can see in the previous photo, the weather had been moderately warm for Dec 24, but not sunny. All that cloud cover paid off when the sun sunk to the horizon. We were treated with the most amazing sunset imaginable.
Note the Christmas lights on the house in the center of the photo. So special.
The short days of winter drove us home to a very quiet dinner. I think we may have had some sort of veggie patties again, which might be becoming a tradition.
White Christmas DayThose clouds from Christmas Eve held snow. Lots of snow. After a cozy Christmas morning opening gifts from family and friends far and wide while sipping espressos by the fire,
we ventured out into a couple of feet of NEW FRESH POWDER! During our first couple of years together, before home additions and winter bike races starting hogging our time, we snowshoe'd a lot. With the beautiful fresh new snow, we decided to relive those early days and headed up the mountain to Lamb's Canyon.
At the lower end of the trail, someone had broken trail in the fresh powder. About a mile in, we ran into that solo man with no snow shoes. Crazy! After that, Drew had his work cut out for him breaking trail in ever deeper snow.
12"-18" of deep powder- that's hard work!
It was a true winter wonderland.
And not flat.
Breaking trail is slow going. We tried to make it to the ridge line between Lambs and Millcreek Canyons, but we were running out of daylight, and gas, so we turned around about a half mile from the ridge. It got pretty dark on us, but we were prepared.
We ended the evening with a some sort of tasty vegetarian crock pot concoction.
Post ChristmasDrew had a few more days off after the 25th so we continued with the quiet home evenings/outdoor theme. We enjoyed a hike on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, where three days earlier we had been riding.
Mid-hike phone calls give Lucy a chance to take goofy pictures.
There were movies in the newly completed basement media room with the family,
and tormenting the family with Drew's Christmas present to himself.
Fresh air, cozy times, and entertaining cats together with Drew are three reasons this was the best Christmas I can remember!!