Years ago, in the midst of chemo induced fatigue, I turned to my husband and wished him a “Joyous Gretchmoose.”  This instantly became a Christmas tradition in the Gallagher household.  Different from Seinfeld’s “Festivus,” celebrating this does not mean that you cannot celebrate Christmas – they are not mutually exclusive.  Each year it means something slightly different to me, but really it represents the spirit of Christmas.  I can’t pinpoint the words to describe this better than that.  It’s just the warm fuzzy feelings mixed in with the excitement of kids opening gifts and the exceptional kindness that is brought out in people during this holiday season.

Yesterday my family woke up to wishing each other a Joyous Gretchmoose.  As always, we put much thought and consideration into the gifts that we give each other.  It may be a small trinket or it may be a lavish surprise, but it is NEVER without love.  Amongst the gifts this year was a remote control helicopter for my husband to help him escape the endless hours of work that make up his week, 1D paraphernalia for our daughter given her obsession with the ever popular boy-band, and a soft scarf for yours truly because I am always cold and in search of warm cozy things.

Aside from the care put into our gifts, we enjoy spending the day cooking a special meal.  The downtime between preps and actual cooking time are filled with movies, video games, and general silliness.  Lots and lots of silliness.  Most recently it’s been a wrestling match where you yell “too tired to fight” at the person who was silly enough to sit or lay down on either the bed or couch and tackle them, pinning them down and forcing them to wrestle their way out of it.  More often than not, this happens to be my husband which makes it a great match against his girls.  The greatest part of this is that he has the added challenge of having to wrestle his way out without hurting either of us.

This year, we got turkeyed out at Thanksgiving so we decided to do an aged standing rib roast with sage au jus.  Alton Brown is a cooking genius.  Through his recipe we turned a tera cotta planter into a clay dutch oven and made one of the best standing rib roasts cooked to a perfect medium rare.  The food experiment of the evening was Paula Deen’s Apple Pie with a crunch topping.  I’m drooling as I type this and am now cutting this short so that I can revisit this feast vis-à-vis leftovers.  I wish you had smell-o-vision so that you could be a part of this as well.  Since technology hasn’t hit that point yet, you’ll just have to eat with your eyes.  From my family to yours, we wish you a Joyous Gretchmoose.

Aged Rib Roast Apple Pie