On Saturday the 3rd, we went to my dad’s house in Chesapeake Beach for a second Thanksgiving (since he wasn’t around for the first). He made us a nice feast with some roasted duck.

Dad and Nina

After lunch, we walked over to North Beach where their Christmas parade was going on, and Nina got to see her first Santa.


On the way back home, we stopped at Bojangles for takeout, then had it when we got home. A coworker swore it was the best biscuits and mashed potatoes fast food has to offer, and I have to agree. The next day we picked up our Christmas tree from a lot on Centreville Road (at West Ox) where Gerald Jones and his family grows trees from pinecones, it was an easy experience (even with Nina).

Monday the 5th it was our first big night out. My mom came over to babysit Nina, and we were off to DC, first we had dinner at Taberna del Alabardero (many wonderful Spanish dishes), then Tori Amos with the Appollon Musagete Quartet (the string quartet made it one of my favorite shows by her.

Saturday the 10th we held our annual holiday party. We started at a much more kid friendly time of 4PM and had one of our biggest crowds. Attendance ebbed and flowed, and much beer was consumed (nobody at all wanted wine that night).


The Wednesday the 14th I managed to get Nina successfully to sleep on my own while Jill whooped it up with the knitters in Reston Town Center (usually she would feed her to sleep). As a reward, the next night I had a night all to myself as Jill and Nina are away visiting friends Kelly and Chris and their new little one. But what did I do? Work until 8:30 (little short on hours this pay period), go shopping for a potluck lunch, make said dish, then make dinner, and then start relaxing at 12:30, and then it was time to go to bed.


Thursday the 22nd we went to see Todd Wright mc-ing his annual Claus-ter-f&#%. That was the plan, but Mom called before they played their first note as Nina was crying hysterically, and we headed home to find a perfectly calm baby. After Jill put her to bed, she bailed on returning and I went solo – glad as they played some of my favorite Christmas tunes (including this one).


Christmas morning we slept in, then I made a baked French Toast with strawberry sauce before we opened presents after noon. Probably never going to be able to sleep that late again. Christmas evening was fun at Mom’s with Dad and Sharon, but ended way too late with a super fussy and tired Nina, but happily she got back to sleep ok after we got home.


Thursday the 29th Jill’s mom arrived for her two month stay with us. The next day I took a long lunch at Dogfish Head (with a Palo Santo Marron) and worked late, but it was worth it. On New Year’s Eve, we had dinner at Harth (in the Tysons Hilton) with a lovely meal of small plates, then on to Native Run‘s NYE blowout at Jammin’ Java (which included a Brindley Brothers reunion, very happy to see that) before retiring for the evening to the Comfort Inn in Fairfax, which I chose solely because it was the closest place with a jacuzzi tub (we were super classy and rang in the new year from there).

Nina NYE