Oh, shi-ooooooooooot.  I woke up to discover I’d left my internet tethering on overnight.  I wasn’t actually surfing for those eight hours.  Hope that makes a difference.

First, for those of you who asked about sis’s dogs…

Aspen lounges in his Elvis outfit.
A curious Roxy.

Well, last night was Christmas Eve and, as has been custom, my sister, Andria, hosted dinner…

My sister’s mood = uh…overly festive.

Sis is babysitting Molly for the holidays.  Too many dogs in the house?  I’m the last guy to criticize.

Moving on to dinner…

Christmas tradition #1: the prawn

Christmas tradition #2: scampi

Mom’s homemade super-garlicky eggplant.

Mom’s apple cake.

Boy, this takes me back to my Japan trip. A Mont Blanc.

Let the gift-giving begin…

Clearly someone’s idea of a joke.

Foie gras ice cream. Surprisingly unsuccessful.

Foie gras creme brulee. Haven’t tried it yet but I’m sure it’ll be great.  Or, if not great, then certainly better than the ice cream.

Various pates and terrines.

Assorted savories.

Various peppers ranging from very hot to insanely so.

More macarons.
Keep 'em coming...

Notice how all of my gifts are food-related?  Oh, you did notice.  I fear that it’ll take me all of a week to gain back those three pounds I lost while in Tokyo.

Well, making the rounds today in what feels less a Christmas celebration as it does a farewell tour.  Then, early next week, I’ll be getting together with some old friends: Lori (high school friend), Lawrence (long-time buddy in from London), Cynthia (former co-worker and friend, also in from London), John (high-school friend and perennial party boy/troublemaker), Nigel (aka Supa, former host of our weekly Hong Kong Movie Nite), Bruce (aka Sushi Man, once ate 50 pieces of sushi in one seating).  Should be just like old times.  Except for the part where I have to catch the last late-night bus home from downtown, stagger home, and crawl into bed as the sun is coming up.  Ah, fond memories.

53 thoughts on “December 25, 2009: Merry Christmas!

  1. Merry Christmas to you and yours!! Ah, the foodie, in all his glory, enjoy Joe!! We are back from our cruise, ate,ate,drank,drank,and then ate more and drank more. A wonderful cruise to say the least! All 10 of us had a ball!! And I was able to LEGALLY drink with the kids! Stay safe, Sheryl.

  2. Instead of eating 50 pieces, how about he just order a proper meal? 😉


    I think you should lose those booties, but that cape really works for you! 🙂

  3. The dinner looks great, and so do the food gifts (except for the Pot of Gold chocolates, of course).

    Hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas!

  4. Merry Christmas!

    Yummy presents. Num num num.

    I’m lolling in bed with the hubby, drinking coffee, munching donuts and watching trash TV. Nothing says Christmas like lazin’ and lovin’.

  5. Me revoila =)!!

    JOYEUX NOËL !!!!

    Je vois que votre dînner de Noël c’est très bien passé!! Et bien moi auss 🙂

    Hummm mais que de bonnes choses…avec beaucoup de spécialités française…mais quand donc venez vous nous rendre visite ? (bon, j’aurai essayer 😉

    Ici depuis le 24 au soir c’est huîtres, foie gras et bûches de Noël à chaque repas et ça jusqu’au 1 Décembre outchh…comment garder la ligne après ça? lol

    Bonne après midi!

    Ps: Hier soir j’ai essayé pour le première fois les huîtres chaudes au champagne….c’est assez spéciale^^

  6. Merry Christmas Joe and to your families in
    Montreal and Vancouver!!!
    Mele Kalikimaka

    Happy Holidays to all!!

  7. Hey J!! Happy/Merry Whatever Holiday you want to use as a reason to “party”!! And a “hi” to the family too!

    Sorry I’ve been away for a spell… you know, kinda got stuck behind the scenes of my own not-ready-for-TV-reality-show! Good to see you got back from Japan under the weight limit.

    Anyway, I’ve missed a few “meetings” here… gonna have to find time to catch up… How’s Fondy? And, Ashleigh…?

    Well, my laundry is finished – must attend to it!

    Have a good visit and, go safely!


  8. @ Ganymede

    Only a little one? *grins* What better way to make yourself feel alive than a hot Toddy? Besides, she has Steve to revive her with some s&p!

  9. Merry Christmas, Joe! Send greetings also to Mom and Sis, and the fur tribe.

    Thanks for the dog pictures yesterday and today (including Baby, the honorary dog). You’re getting really good at them. Cool backlit photo of Roxy in the snow! And loving Northern breeds the way I do, especially liked the pic of Aspen, Sis’ Siberian. Were the macarons good? You did get yummy presents.

    Enjoy partying with dear old friends. They’re the greatest. Your blog friends are here while you go through this unsettled time. Though you haven’t been able to say so far, we’ve “heard” you all the same, ever since last year. Tell us when you can. We’ll be around.

    Now, what did you and Sis get Mom for Christmas this year? Did she like it? Any famous Mama quotes? My Mom always says something funny, unintentionally. We celebrate and open gifts on Christmas Eve, after services. Dad got Mom a big hummer of a CrockPot, the original manufacturer. Poor Mom, she was so tired by late last night, she said, “Oh, boy! The original hot tub!” We roared with laughter. Well, she’s right. It would be a hot tub for whatever’s being slow-cooked. 😀

    My best present this year hasn’t come yet. My aunt is sending me my great-grandmother’s hand-pieced quilt.</strong? It's done in a 1930s "grandmother's flower garden" pattern. Though we never met (she died a few months before I was born), what makes it special is who my great-gran was. She lived a hard life in tough circumstances, no electricity, hard work, and took care of husband, home, and sick relatives with never a complaint. Others say she had plenty of provocation, but she never had a bad word to say about anyone. That I'll have a visual connection to her, and the dear hands that made it, moved me to tears. Seeing it will remind me of her kindness, gentleness, and strength when I'm prone to yield to my "fast lip." I am so humbled to have this part of her come live with me. What a gift.

    Merry Christmas to the blog family! And all of your extended family, two-legged, four-legged, furry, scaly, or feathered.


    ~for the love of Beckett

  10. 0_0 ps! Left the faucet running on my html tags again. ‘Solly.

    Some Merry Christmas fun….

    An interactive Christmas card.


    And for even more fun (it really is), type Christmas carols/bells using your computer keyboard.

    1. The flash player takes you to a mantelpiece with snow globes on it.

    2. Click the globe 2nd from the right. It’s addictive, for this big kid. 😀


  11. @ MightyStarGazer – 😯







    uh…anybody have a cold bucket of water?


    VERY cold water??




    (PS: I SWEAR, I only love Todd for his mind! AND his nippleless chest! 😀 )

  12. Christmas Eve blues have given way to Christmas Day sunshine, literally.

    Slept in this AM. Walked a few dogs at the shelter in early afternoon. Sunlight, no breeze, and layered clothes kept me comfortable.

    My sis is making lasagna, Husband and I will join her for supper.

    Happy continuing holidays to all!

  13. Nothing says “Christmas” more than a decorated begonia …

    Merry Christmas Joe, and season’s greetings to all the “blog buddies” around the world.

  14. Watching “The Time Machine” 2002 version.. the creatures look almost exactly like the Wraiths. And they feed on humans.

  15. Hi Joe, why a “farewell tour”? Did I miss something? You going somewhere? The dogs/cat are all gorgeous 🙂

  16. Very nice Christmas traditions. We went with 1 1/2 inch steaks with baked potatoes here at the station. Got the meals out to the E.R.s with no problem. And if you ever go into survivalist mode, I’ll trade you some weapons for the cool food supplies you will have laid away. Hmm. there’s a money making scheme for you. High end survivalist food packages. Certainly the calorie count on a lot of those items would make them ideal for the purpose.
    You sure you only lost three pounds? I know you have a naturally svelte build which you work to keep, but the picture of you looks to be just on this side of emanciated. So hurry up and dig in to the good stuff.
    Thanks for the glimpse into your Christmas, and hope you have a blast for the rest of the trip.

  17. Merry Christmas to one and all!

    I’m returned home from my family visit’in and cozy with my kids, Basil and Scooter cat.

    We’re all watching and listening to a wonderful holiday special on TV by an excellent Irish musical group named “Anuna”.

    I have their albums and thoroughly enjoy listening to them.So much so that last year I braved the streets of New Brunswick, NJ to see them perform in person at the State Theatre. A truly magical experience, believe me.


    Again, to Joe and all my fellow Stargate fans and blog denizons, and all you talented makers of Stargate… I bid you a wonderful Christmas time followed by a spectacular and blessed New Year – 2010 — Wow!

    …by the Jersey Shore…
    a-snugg’lin with my kitties

  18. Woooo!! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to Joe and all the blog commenters!! Hope you all have a safe and wonderful day celebrating! 😀

    @ Deni, Tammy: Thank you for the birthday wishes!! And yes, Tammy, that rule is nonsense. Everyone knows that intelligence trickles down among the babies each year: those born later are smarter. Oh yes, this is totally true. 😉

  19. Merry Christmas night to all. Hope everyone was safe, warm and enjoyed the day.

    I don’t understand foie gras in anything sweet….but then I’ve never had it soooooo?? Still sounds nasty though O_o

  20. PG15: Too funny! Who comes up with all of those crazy studies anyway?

    for the love of Beckett: Are you going to display the quilt?

    Mr. M, thanks so much for the dog/cat pictures! They are all so cute. It’s good to see pets so loved!!!!
    The food presents show how much your family loves you. Don’t worry about the weight. You can work it off at the gym next week.

    I escaped from my mom’s house early. My new niece is out of the hospital (since yesterday), so my mom didn’t even complain as I packed up! Maybe, my brother could bring my niece over next time I visit?
    It will be so good to have a morning at my house!

    I hope everyone has a great evening!

  21. @ Deni – I totally missed the “farewell tour”. Geez…this, along with the ‘bad news’… 🙁

    Maybe Joey visited friends and family he may never see again. Or, maybe…wait…oh noes…maybe he’s moving to…TOKYO! I knew it, Joe! You quit Stargate, just so you can move to Tokyo and write Assault Girls flicks!

    As long as you’re not sick, Joe, we don’t care. We just don’t want you to go dropping dead on us, or anything…at least, not until that Atlantis movie comes out. 😉

    @ 2cats – That’s some beautiful music right there. Thanks for sharing! 🙂


  22. What a great haul of food for Christmas presents.

    I had prime rib for dinner. I love that your family’s food choices are totally different. Growing up it was always turkey for us.

  23. @MightyStarGazer: Oh that’s just so…so…wrong. I think I need to bleach my eyes now. Um, nice job on the artwork, though. It wouldn’t be nearly as disturbing if it were badly done, you know?

  24. Tammy Dixon ~~ Hey, Tammy. Will definitely display great-grandma’s quilt. There’s something about it that makes me feel really close to her. It’s like her life story is written in the colors, pattern, and stitches. It looks similar to this:


    Hugs to everyone who’s dealing with empty places in their lives this holiday season. There are losses of all kinds.

  25. @MightyStarGazer: Wow. A little frightening, like a Wraith/Grinch/Ken doll hybrid!! Great artwork, wish I could draw…

    Joe, thanks for posting the Aspen as Elvis picture. The husky rescue I volunteer with will LOVE to see it. Tell Sis if she and Mom want candy too, just let me know by email and get me a shipping address!!

    Merry Christmas, everybody!!


  26. Hey, Joe! what great christmas gifts! Every bite will bring some great things to you. I learned the convenience of online shopping. No crowds, no standing in line. just looking on the computer, typing in the credit card and off it goes directly to the recipient. WOw, way cool.

  27. @ Deni & Das

    I’m guessing Joe was visiting the various older folks in his Montreal circle.

  28. Happy Boxing Day! Joe, you might want to check out this morning’s Gazette. There is a list of some critics choices for the best restaurants of 2009. Au Pied de Cochon is one of them. I was thinking that perhaps you might want to check one of them out before heading back to Vancouver.

  29. thanks for the pictures Joe and Sis, gorgeous pooches absolutely beautiful just like yours Joe:)

    Merry Christmas Joe and Family, lovely to see y’all:)

    I’m hoping to escape for a couple of hours shortly to visit an old friend whoI haven’t seen since the day before yesterday, gotta bug the crap outta him on boxing day cuz its traditional.

  30. for the love of Beckett: I remember talking to my Aunt who made quilts. She could tell you where every scrap of cloth she used came from. “This one came from a dress I made for ___, this one came from the old curtains we had, and etc..” Quilts tell a history.

  31. Enjoyed supper with Sis (see previous post).

    After the meal, one of her cats claimed my lap and actually snuggled up to me! Won my heart, but allergies kept me awake…all…night…

    Does NOT help that it’s “mountain cedar” /juniper season in S Texas. Most humans seem to be allergic to that tree.

    Need to make a shelter run today so I can post a photo here. There’s an adorable pug mix that has FUR! One of those spiky “Benji” coats. No photo on shelter website yet.

  32. @ Gilder – Pretty nice of Joe to point out that they are gonna die soon, eh? 😉

    (I really shouldn’t joke about this – we’re waiting for ‘the call’ about hubby’s great aunt as I type this – they’ve only given her until the end of the weekend. She’s nearly 90 and in poor health, so it’s not unexpected, but sad nonetheless.)

    @ Joey – I’ve been thinking about what you said – you know, about such-n-such being one of my more endearing qualities. It’s been bugging me…something just wasn’t right about it. At first I was flattered, then I got to thinking, ‘Hey! Waitastinkin’minute! Is he insinuating I have LESS endearing qualities??!” 😡

    Yeah… I’m keepin’ a sharp eye on you, bub. 😉


  33. @Das: I just got a vision of Joe going to the old people giving them his leftover crap chocolate 🙂 Some farewell tour.

  34. @MightyStarGazer

    ‘cor blimey mate – wait ’till das gets a look at those!

    Joe – what cool pressies – macarons and foie gras! Hope you have fun catching up with all your old mates, sounds like you’ll have a blast!

    Love all the pics, Roxy is goregous! and Christmas dinner yum loving the seafood – very Antipodean at Christmas!

    Happy Boxing Day everyone, right, who’s hitting the sales?

  35. No Jolokia pepper’s or Red Savina peppers ? Now those are hot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  36. @MightyStarGazer: Does anybody know if Das is okay? She coulda had herself a case of the vapors by now…:)

  37. @ MightyStarGazer & kiwiclare – Oh. My. 😯

    But see, here’s the thing. I can’t imagine Wraith and humans mating, since I think of Wraith as bugs, and in my mind that means they are animals, not humans. In my world humans and animals just do not do such things (though I am aware that these things do happen in remote parts of rural Appalachia, and Scotland… ). Now I certainly think Wraith are sexy beasts, much like I think horses are sexy beasts, too, but that doesn’t mean I’m gonna go all Catherine the Great on one. 😉

    @ Deni – How much you wanna bet Joey’s pawning off all the mint-filled chocolates on his poor, unsuspecting relatives. 😉


  38. Merry Christmas, Joe!

    had a great one here. Proposed to my girl on Christmas Eve and she said yes!

    She’s never watched any Stargate, but does watch SGU with me and enjoys it…plus, one of the things she got me for Christmas is a red “You Are Here” shirt just like Eli’s. How cool is that?

    Have a great holiday, thanks for all the hours on enjoyment with Stargate (and a damn entertaining blog!)

  39. You know Mr. M, I kept reading about those Macarons you keep getting as gifts.
    I thought they were “Macaroons” and wondered why the ones you were showing were so pretty. I’ve never seen such smooth textured Macaroons. I finally Binged it.

    The definition I found for them are: Macarons are sandwich-like pastries made with two thin cookies and a cream or ganache between the cookies.
    Do they come in chocolate? The color assortments are beautiful (from the pictures). How would you describe the taste? Which ones are your favorites?

    Gilder: Wishing you an allergy free night!


  40. @ MightyStarGazer – Ha! I totally missed your comment about Steve, and the ol’ S&P. Boy, you have my number! Give me a good ol’ S&P over rumpy pumpies, anyday! 😆


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