December 25, 2009


Here in the Dana Treat household, we have big celebrations on both Christmas Eve and Christmas.  I am Jewish, so that may seem strange.  But friends of my parents starting including us in their Christmas dinner when I was just three years old and, aside from a few years when I was out of town, I have gone to their house ever since.  There are many traditions that I look forward to – champagne cocktails, Marilyn’s cheeseball, and a wonderful dinner that is essentially the same as our Thanskgiving feast.  I always sit next to Tom, Marilyn’s husband, because when I was a little girl, I thought he was the greatest (he is pretty great).  After the dinner is over, Marilyn opens up the windows and the guys smoke cigars while the women try to escape the stench.

Over the years, we have started our own Christmas Eve tradition.  It is my parents’ anniversary (42 years!) and I always cook a big meal for them since they have never really been able to go out to celebrate.  Yes, hotel restaurants are usually open but they long ago decided they would rather eat a meal that I have cooked.  Because that night is one of the only times we can all seem to get together in the month of December, that is when we open our presents for each other – regardless of when Hanukkah falls.  We have taken to calling it Hanumass.

Our dinner was good – I made it a point to use some of the bounty from our CSA so we had dishes featuring beets, parsnips, and brussels sprouts.  I made two desserts and ice cream because I am crazy that way.  We ended up only eating one of the desserts (a Pecan Gingerbread tart that I thought wasn’t much good) and my mom took the Eggnog Poundcake for us to share tonight.  I do all the cooking in our house but I have to say, Randy sets a mean table.  IMG_4218


One of the things that Randy brings from his family tradition (in addition to requesting sauerkraut at both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner), is the spirit of hospitality.  And for parties at our house, that means a well-stocked bar.


Most of our friends are beer and wine drinkers, but Randy always sets it up anyway.  I tease him about it but the truth is, it makes me happy.  We both love to entertain and nothing says party like a bar.

I hope you and your family are celebrating with one another and enjoying the season.


  1. […] 2009 December 25 by apostrophesuz I love reading about other bloggers’ holiday traditions.  My kids keep me honest, […]

    Pingback by christmas traditions « foodie suz — December 25, 2009 @ 11:17 pm

  2. We celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah, and it’s so nice to be able to share in all holidays!
    Love the table setting and the nutcracker boy.
    Happy Merry!
    you look pretty, as always!

    Comment by stacey snacks — December 26, 2009 @ 2:51 am

  3. I loved reading about your family traditions. Happy Hanumass, Dana and family!

    ps I really like your dining room chairs.

    Comment by Hilary — December 26, 2009 @ 12:46 pm

  4. Beautiful post. These are few words, but they say it all. Merry Hanumass to you all!

    Comment by Vivian — December 26, 2009 @ 3:38 pm

  5. You are so beautiful, Dana! I love this little glimpse into your house and your traditions. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

    Comment by kickpleat — December 26, 2009 @ 5:02 pm

  6. Dear Dana: I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas, I celebrated yesterday with my family and some jewish friends. I like you settings. Time also to wish you a Happy New Year 2010″!!!!

    Comment by Ana — December 26, 2009 @ 10:23 pm

  7. Beautiful! Happy holidays to you and your family! Our Christmas dinner ended up having fruitcake (we also hit that Christmas eve, but a fruitcake lasts a LONG time), a Buche de Noel, steamed pudding AND cheesecake because we are also insane. And there were leftover mince pies from Christmas eve.

    Comment by Kate @ savour fare — December 26, 2009 @ 11:49 pm

  8. Thank you for such a delightful glimpse into your home and your holiday, Dana.

    I was raised Greek Orthodox, my husband Catholic, we both evolved evangelically over the years, have an ordained daughter and a niece with a Jewish family, to illustrate our truly American family. I love the blending of traditions and the richness it brings to life, especially in this season, and commend you for your thoughtful, and tasty, approach to it all.

    The eggnog poundcake in your next blog looks like it may have to find a way to our celebrations, but, first the spinach and tortellini appetizers is scheduled to make an appearance at a baby shower in a few weeks.

    Comment by Penny — December 28, 2009 @ 2:13 pm

  9. oops! I meant basil, though spinach might work as well.

    I also meant to comment on the wonderful table decorations – I think I may have to “borrow” the idea of using nutcrackers next year. I’m always looking for new places to have them stand guard and the table is a natural.

    Comment by Penny — December 28, 2009 @ 2:20 pm

  10. You are adorable:) I always enjoy your posts and recipes!! Happy New Year to you and yours!!!

    Comment by Nancy — December 30, 2009 @ 2:45 am

  11. I love this post. =) Thanks for letting us see into your world! I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday.

    Comment by Ashley — January 4, 2010 @ 2:16 am

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