I managed to stay up until midnight and watch the fireworks over the city, which went on for quite awhile...Arrow did not like the fireworks one bit...but then, she didn't care for her Christmas outfit either.
Santa Paws napping
She got dressed up for the annual sweet 'n knit, which brought many friends, kiddos, and delectable sweets to share...even some knitting! I made peppermint bark, which is an annual tradition, and peppermint patties for the first time. (I then proceeded to make peppermint patties three more times during the month of December.)
I also made a giant cheese ball shaped like a pumpkin, which I had been obsessed with since fall...not sure why. But I finally got to make it!
This year's party favors were tins of the best chai tea mix, which has candied ginger and smells divine...The Kitchn has provided all sorts of inspiration!
Basket o' chai
I also made gingerbread and mulled apple cider, my favorite smells of the holiday season, plus the tree, of course! Other holiday fun included brunch with the Chous and Los, checking out the wares at Renegade, a delightful holiday luncheon at a coworker's house, the end-of-year pub quiz at Edinburgh Castle...seeing friends, making treats, and just relaxing. I made another batch of peppermint bark and honey lacquered almonds with rosemary and black pepper to give as holiday treats for Dan's coworkers.
Sweet 'n savory
I also made a gingerbread shack this year, using a kit from Trader Joe's. (I added a bunch of candy to it.) The lesson I learned: gingerbread houses are so much harder to decorate than it would seem.Lil' piggy in the doorway
After Christmas, we drove down to LA to visit my brother, picking my mother up along the way. I had not been down south in many years, and the drive took much longer than I remembered. We ate waaaay too much, visited Universal Studios, hiked a trail in Griffith Park, and I finally tried Pinkberry!
La la land
And now it's 2011, wow!