Merry Christmas!!!

Best wishes to everyone celebrating Christmas. According to the Library of Congress, this is the first known commercial Christmas card. It was the work of Henry Cole, a British civil servant, in 1843. That was same year that Charles Dickens published “A Christmas Carol.”  We are celebrating this year at our house in Virginia with our four children and, of course, Luna.

Last night, I made our traditional Cioppino soup — a tradition started by my late father, Jack Turley. It is a spicy mix of mussels, shrimp, sea bass, clams, crab meat, and other ingredients. I have previously written how I grew up hating the soup but the tradition fell to me when my father became ill. I am now as addicted to the soup as my father was. We gave a toast to my dad (who was also my best friend) as we enjoyed his favorite soup with warm bread. Leslie then made my favorite Old Fashion cocktail (with extra cherries!) and we watched a couple of old black-and-white Christmas movies with the kids. It was a great night.

Luna was the first up this morning and got excited when she spotted her Snoopy sock on the ottoman with the other packed Christmas stockings. She then stood guard awaiting the “all clear” to have at it.

It took some doing this year, but we finally found a great tree. Two of the boys decided that they wanted to put a paper Charlie Brownesque star on top of the tree rather than our usual star. While I was convinced that the entire tree was going to collapse as they stood on the couch, they finally succeeded in adding their curious addition in what goes done as a bona fide miracle of Christmas.

Tonight, my job is the the beef, gravy, Yorkshire pudding, and fresh grounded horseradish sauce while Leslie makes an assortment of our favorite side dishes for the dinner.  We also have a great Bûche de Noël (or yule log cake) for dessert.

The Turley family wishes everyone a happy and safe holiday. I will be toasting our blog family tonight and giving thanks for the wonderful community we have created at this site.

Best wishes,

Jonathan Turley

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