The traditional Brown Christmas Eve was held at Cheri & Dan's house. So nice to only travel a couple blocks. We had over half the Brown siblings in attendance: Debby, Cheri & Pat. Randy came after his own festivities ended. Cousin Bob and Debbie came and lots of the next generation: Debby's girls, Kristen & Kerri with hubbies Mike & John; and Kerri's boys: Christopher & Jacob. Jill & Joel, Natalie, Kathryn & Kacey were there too. As well as the matriarchs: Lois and Gloria
The gift exchange is always a hit, unfortunately some 'exchangers' weren't able to make it, but their gifts arrived anyway. Quite a variety of items, very well thought out. I think everyone was happy with their gifts. As for our family's gifts: Pat - winter golf gloves, LeAnne - cute Dooney & Bourke coin purse, Jill - purse, earrings & Starbucks card, Joel - Amazon gift certificate. Other great gifts were the items knitted by Kristen, Debby's Pilzner glasses and a variety of video games & movies among too many things to mention.
Of course, dinner was way too good: Roast Beef, scalloped potatoes, several salads and the famous 'Caramel Dumplings' for dessert. The Caramel Dumpling recipe is a Brown family legend. Pat & I have been married 25 years and this is the first time it's been served, even though I've been hearing about it all this time. It'll definitely be on the menu for years to come. Basically, it's a caramel sauce topped by sweet dumplings baked in an iron skillet in the oven and served warm with whipped cream. I think vanilla ice cream would also be a great topping.