Category Archives: 12 Dates of Christmas

12 Dates of Christmas / Holidays

The 12 Dates of Christmas

December 15, 2015

IMG_6547We polished off a couple more dates this weekend (’tis the season!) And though our dates are a little less exciting than previous years, it’s really nice to carve out a little bit of quality time just for KC and me.

Our sweet peanut had a mild cold this weekend (’tis the season for that too, unfortunately), so she napped a bit more than usual. We took advantage of our time alone together and tackled the huge pile of Christmas gifts that were waiting to be wrapped. We turned on Christmas music and wrapped gifts for awhile, taking breaks to drink homemade mochas and catch up on our overflowing DVR. It might sound boring, but it was so fun to hang out with just the two of us, chatting and joking while wrapping Christmas gifts.

On Saturday night we lit the fireplace, turned on the Christmas lights, and watched Elf together. It was just like old times, when we had so much TIME to just lay around and watch movies. So magical. And really, Elf just never gets old. I love it.

On Sunday we lounged around in the morning, listening to podcasts and drinking coffee while P napped. After she woke up we headed downtown together to finish up shopping for a few more gifts and to buy some more gift wrap. P ended up falling asleep in the stroller, so we grabbed a quick bite to eat at a local restaurant. The food was mediocre and the service was sort of terrible, but there’s really nothing like being able to snag a quiet moment together these days. The holidays are full of so many obligations and activities, it’s really easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of it all and have it just whoosh by without hardly taking a moment to enjoy it. Our little dates are such a nice reminder to stop and take a breath every now and then and just soak up all the joy of the holiday season together.

Five dates to go! I hope that your holidays have been very merry, and that you’ve been able to sneak a few moments just for you.

12 Dates of Christmas / Holidays


December 1, 2015

The very best month of the year is finally here, so you know what that means — nonstop holiday cheer for the next 31 days! Christmas tree^^We don’t have our tree just yet, so that’s a picture of last year’s tree.^^

We spent this past weekend Christmas shopping, and even managed to brave the crowds (for a very short period) on Black Friday. Granted, we went out in the early afternoon — not at 4am, or whatever ridiculous hour the sales start at. (Even though I’m up at that time most nights… But really, I wouldn’t choose to be up at that hour. Y’know, if I had a choice.)

Anyway, we actually got a good chunk of our shopping done, which is pretty exciting. Now I have this massive pile of gifts in the bedroom that are just staring at me like, “Wrap me.” And, ugh, as much as I love a nicely wrapped gift, I can’t say that I really enjoy wrapping presents.

Xmas gifts

Aaaand since Thanksgiving is over, the 12 Dates of Christmas have officially started! Since we’ve got Prim in the mix now, I think I’m going to be taking a pretty loose view of what constitutes a date. Even living with the in-laws, it can still be tough for KC and I to sneak out to have time with just the two of us, so some of our “dates” will definitely be including our little Sweet P.

We got off to a great start this weekend, tackling four (4!) dates.

For our first date, we went Christmas shopping on Black Friday. This included an adorable trip to BabyGap, where I was like, “We have to get gifts for other peoples’ kids, but wouldn’t this look so cute on P?!” And KC basically just rolled his eyes at me and said, “Do what you want,” because that’s totally how our marriage works and one of the million reasons I love him.

Our second date we were able to sneak out and go to dinner on Friday night while KC’s mom stayed home to keep an eye on Prim who was already in bed. We went to a Greek restaurant, which was decent, but kind of loud. But it was so nice to just have some time for the two of us. We talked about all the big changes that are on the horizon for 2016, and discussed plans for our upcoming anniversary. We also discussed a budget for Christmas gifts for each other, but somehow managed to avoid deciding on an actual figure, so… I guess it’s gonna be a free-for-all this year!

Our third date was on Saturday night, when we rented Trainwreck on demand and vegged out on the couch. The movie was so funny (I was laughing out loud basically the whole time), and it was so nice to relax together on the couch, just like the pre-baby days.

Our fourth date was turning on holiday music, simmering a spicy scent on the stove, and decorating the house together on Sunday. We didn’t finish decorating, (um, decorating a house is a little different than decorating a one bedroom apartment!) but we made some good headway, so things are at least looking a little festive over here.

Eight more dates to go! I can’t wait.

12 Dates of Christmas / Holidays / Relationships

The 12 Dates of Christmas (six through eight)

December 16, 2014

waiting for santaWe polished off a few more dates over last week and last weekend.  We completed date 6 by heading to The Star for dinner on Wednesday night.  It was the eve of the giant storm, so we sat by the window in the restaurant and waited for mother nature to unleash her fury while dining on meatballs, salad, and pesto chicken pizza.  I’m beginning to feel the little twinge of “missing out” on the adult beverages of the season (I have taken to smelling anything KC drinks these days), but the housemade lemonade at The Star almost made me forget about the fact that I can’t imbibe like everyone else this season.

Date 7 was, I have to say, pretty special.  On Saturday night we went out for a fancy meal at Michel Bistro with KC’s siblings and their significant others (we opted to all go out to dinner together in lieu of getting each other gifts this year).  That wasn’t really part of the date though — that came after dinner, when rather than driving straight home, KC drove me through Piedmont (where the rich people live) so we could see all the Christmas lights.  There were some pretty awesome displays, but there were also a lot of houses lacking in Christmas cheer.  (Um, what’s the point in having a bunch of money if you’re not going to spend it on amazing Christmas lights?  Clearly we have different values.)  The best display by far was this giant house that had a glassed-in sunroom visible from the street.  They had strung lights down the beams between the glass panels and had a giant Christmas tree right in the middle — so festive!  And of course, I love that KC knows me well enough to know that I’ll get kid-on-Christmas excited over just driving around and looking and lights.  (I love him.  Just wait for the mushy post coming up next week on our 10 year anniversary!)

Our 8th date happened on Sunday night.  We had spent the day at a family Christmas party, and I was pretty tired by the time we got home (and had zero interest in cooking dinner).  We decided to head out to Boot and Shoe Service for dinner, which was delicious (as usual).  We shared ricotta and toast, a salad of arugula, frisee, almonds and feta, the classic margherita pizza (my go-to) and a linzertorte for dessert.  They had some delicious-looking cocktails on the menu, which I was a little bummed I couldn’t partake in, but the housemade ginger-mint soda was a nice second place.

It’s crazy that Christmas is next week already (I guess I should probably get my shopping done…)  Good thing we’ve only got 4 dates to go!

12 Dates of Christmas / Favorite Things / Holidays / Relationships

12 Dates of Christmas (two through five)

December 8, 2014

fancy bump

We’re on a roll with the 12 dates of Christmas over here — I dare say we might even exceed 12 this year!  (And good thing too, as I suspect our date nights are going to be a little fewer and farther between once the bambino arrives next year.)

We started off strong by hitting up Camino on Friday night for dinner.  Camino is one of my favorite restaurants, and it happens to be just blocks away from our place, which is a nice bonus.  I had been bugging KC to go to Camino for awhile, since it’s now crab season.  Camino always does crab in the fireplace during this time of year and it’s sooo delicious.  KC and I went to Camino for the first time for our 6 year anniversary (almost 4 years ago now!) and I had the crab — I’ve been hooked ever since.  Their cocktails are amazing too, but sadly I wasn’t able to partake this time around. 😉

We had a nice long meal — sharing some cheese and bread, a salad of bitter lettuce, puntarelle, and lentils, I had the crab with farro, KC got quail, and we shared persimmon pudding and some almond/chocolate cookies for dessert.  It was perfect.

We talked about the baby (how it’s weird to be pregnant — in a good way), plans for the future, our upcoming anniversary, and all other sorts of things.  It was so nice to get away and connect, and it really reminded me that we will definitely need to make an effort to find time for just the two of us once the baby comes.

Our second date was on Saturday night, which was KC’s office’s annual holiday party.  It’s a huge event — everyone gets dressed up and the company goes all out, with multiple open bars and food stations.  Luckily, an H&M dress I’ve had for a couple years still zips over my bump, so I was able to get all dolled up for the evening (maternity tights and all).  The party was fun — a bit of a whirlwind.  And dang my legs were tired by the end — pregnancy + heels is not a joke.

Our third date was going out for brunch on Sunday morning.  After teaching Saturday morning and then attending two (!) holiday parties that same day, I was pretty tired for most of Sunday.  KC and I slept in and then rolled out of bed and made our way back to Camino for brunch.  I could barely function, being so tired from the day before, but it was a nice way to spend the morning nonetheless.

Christmas candyWe capped off Sunday night by having dinner at home and watching The Family Stone together.  I made a big pot of soup and whipped up some Christmas candy for a work event.  Honestly, there’s not much else I enjoy more than just hanging out at home with KC, especially during the holidays.  It feels so nice to just slooow down a little and take some time together.

I hope you all are enjoying the holiday season.  Only 7 dates left!  Merry merry.

12 Dates of Christmas / Holidays / Relationships

It's December!

December 1, 2014

My favorite month is finally here, and there’s so much to look forward to!  This month we’ve got the usual smorgasboard of holiday gatherings and parties, but more importantly — KC and I are celebrating 10 years (!) together this month.  Yes, 10 years ago on December 22, 2004, KC and I went on our very first date.  It was terribly romantic — I was 20, he was 21, I wore a hooded UCLA sweatshirt (purchased in the kids section), we went to lunch at Chili’s…  This is the stuff of legends.

But let’s rewind for a second, shall we?  How was your Thanksgiving?  I hope it was full of carbs, pie, and more carbs.  (Oh, what?  Pie is a carb?)  Ours went quite swimmingly this year.  After hosting last year, I think I may have actually (mostly) figured out what I’m doing, and everything went off without a hitch.  (The turkey was even done at a perfectly respectable time this year!  A miracle.)

ThanksgivingI only snapped one picture on the day-of, because I was kind of busy hosting and enjoying the day (funny how the camera never comes out when that happens).  But I really should have taken a shot of my 19lb turkey, because that thing was a beauty.

And while I slept in the next morning, KC got up early and put up Christmas lights on our house.  (Hello, reasons like this are why I’m having his baby.)  I decorated the inside of the house, and badgered KC until he finally agreed to go get a Christmas tree with me yesterday.  And a tree we did get:

Christmas treeThat’s 7-8 feet of pure Christmas splendor right there.

And since it’s now the Christmas season, the 12 dates of Christmas has officially started!  Our first date was yesterday — we went out to brunch at Chop Bar and then picked up our Christmas tree.  Chop Bar was delicious, and the hot chocolate I ordered was maybe the best hot chocolate I’ve ever had.  And really, any place that serves Acme bread with the meal is pretty much golden in my book.

Last night I whipped up a gigantic batch of Winter Minestrone (uh, yeah, we’re definitely going to be eating that for lunch and dinner for like the next week) and got to work wrapping presents while we watched Elf.  I got a bunch done, but there’s still more wrapping left.

Xmas giftsAh, Christmas… I’m so glad you’re finally here.