In December 1992, following the death of my Grandma Cudney, we gathered for our first post-Evie Christmas Eve at my Uncle Chuck’s and Aunt Carolyn’s house in Chippewa Fall’s, Wisconsin. In attendance that evening were, Me, Micki, Ellen, Mary, Gene, Carolyn, Chuck, Brian and Scott. We ate grilled prime rib, king crab, jumbo shrimp cocktail, twice baked potatoes, drank wine and old fashioneds, at cookies and other deserts.
Prior to 1992, Christmas Eve was already my favorite holiday of the year. It was the time we all gathered at Grandma Evie’s house and shared the wonder of being a family. After 1992, when the two sister’s, Carolyn and Mary, committed to keeping as much of the tradition of their childhood Christmas Eve’s as possible in the wake of their mother’s passing, and to allowing others of us to add to the fun without changing the root of it, Christmas Eve built to an event unparalleled in the rest of the calendar. Really, all the other 354 days of the year are either recovery or anticipation for 12/24.
Over the years, some of the original cast members have been unable to attend and new family members have been added. The location has changed, but the menu has remained shockingly constant. This Monday, for the 21st consecutive year, I celebrated Christmas Eve in the only way I will ever care to do so, with my wife Michelle, my parents Mary and Gene, my grandmother Dorothy, my aunt Diane, my aunt Carolyn and uncle Chuck, my sister Micki, my sister Ellen and brother-in-law Ron, my nephews Ethan, Emerson, and Jonah, my nieces Raiah and Anna, my cousin Scott and his wife Amanda, and their children Evan and Nora. And before the clock struck mid-night, Micki’s boyfriend Dave joined the fun.
I had promised myself that I would have an unregulated night for Christmas Eve. I didn’t want to be that buzz kill at the party constantly checking for calorie totals while people where handing out plates of goodies. And because, it is my favorite night of the year; I wasn’t going to ruin it for myself either. However, for the purposes of this blog, I did write everything I put into my mouth down on paper, and added it into myfitnesspal the next day.
That doesn’t show the whole meal, as it didn’t fit onto one screen of my phone. Also, as you can tell, I started to get a bit tipsy be the end of the night, and it is pretty likely that I actually ate and drank more than the 4,907 calories it shows here. You can also see there that I dropped 2200 calories of exercise on Monday in preparation for the evening: Snowshoeing and wood splitting. Alas, it was insufficient.
Lastly, my weekend started with a wedding in Madison on Friday and also had Christmas day meals and drinks as well. So my calorie tracking over the weekend has been a bit off.
In any case, I stepped on the scale this morning at 338.8# a gain of 6.6 pounds. And guess what? I am not a bit concerned about that. 21 years of Christmas Eve is a tradition that needs to be maintained, even by skinny Chad. As my Uncle Chuck would say, “If I can’t put loads of butter on my sirloin steak, I might as well be dead.” (He never actually said that, but given the opportunity, I think we can all agree, he definitely would.)
Back on the horse the weekend. (Heading to the gym as soon as I am done writing this.) Look for another drop this weeks, and if things go as planned, and end to this yo-yo-ing.
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!!!