Today is a special day because it is my first day off after the Winter Solstice, and before Christmas, so we have a special tradition that we try to differentiate from Christmas a little by calling it Yule. On this day, I go around and deliver homemade treats to my friends. These things are not Paleo, so I will not include the recipes. Over the past years, I've indulged in them as well, which is probably why I have felt so bad come Christmas morning. I'm not saying that I'm giving people stuff I know will make them feel bad (if I didn't give these out, some of my friends might come after me because these are very popular); I'm saying that these treats contain peanuts and peanut butter, and up until last year, I didn't know I was allergic to peanuts. I don't know if I've said this before, but I was a peanut butter addict. I thought I couldn't live without it. Then last year, I got a hold of The Plan by Lyn-Genet Recitas, and it changed my life and started me on my path to Paleo.
This is also the day that we have a special family dinner and give each other family presents. If you continue reading this blog, you'll probably notice that we have a special family dinner about once a month or more, but this is a special dinner with gifts. Ray and I give each other and the kids a gift on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day, but most of Christmas Day gifts are from Santa.
You might be asking why we celebrate this way, and I'll tell you. It's because I'm a big kid at heart. There's even an old New Kids on the Block Christmas song that sums up my sentiments exactly:
"I still believe in Santa Clause/Maybe that's just because/I'm still a child at heart."I can't wait to open presents and celebrate. I want to have dinner by the light of the Christmas tree. I want my kids to open gifts from me that aren't overshadowed by what Santa brings. I want to drink hot apple cider spiced with cinnamon. And I want to eat something a little bit more special than the every day, but maybe not as special as Christmas dinner.
In the past, we have had Cornish game hens, roasted chicken, cranberry sauce, that sort of thing, but this year, we're going to switch things up and have Paleo Pizza Pasta and Stuffed Mushrooms with Cinnamon Rolls and Spiced Apple Cider.
We're also having Vegetable Soup made with nourishing Bone Broth for lunch because I have a cold. But as far as colds go, I don't really feel bad, which is a dramatic shift from the past where every cold was a miserable experience that I knew would turn into bronchitis. This time, other that a productive cough and runny nose with occasional sneezing, I feel pretty good. I drank some bone broth before bed, and that made me feel better. That stuff is magical, and is so rich in umami flavor that even though it was made with chicken bones, it tasted like drinking a delicious perfectly-seasoned, grilled steak. I also slathered myself is some Chest Rub that I made myself. This stuff is fantastic, and doesn't contain anything that you don't include yourself.
UPDATE: Today was a wash. After writing this, we went grocery shopping. Lydia, who had felt better after a bad stomach virus started feeling really bad again. And after getting out in the terrible weather, I started feeling worse, too, but I got most of my presents delivered.
I did manage to take a nap, and we opened Yule gifts and ate the pizza pasta, but I couldn't tell you if it was any good because I can't taste anything, so I didn't take pictures or post the recipe. Ray didn't make it the way we usually do, so we'll have to do it again on a better day. We have also decided to wait until tomorrow to do the cinnamon rolls because Lydia didn't feel like eating much today, and I can't enjoy them. I'm having the cider right now, and it is so soothing to my throat. I hate being sick this time of year. At least the kids enjoyed their gifts.