I'm going to be honest here. I'm a little bit nervous about spending Christmas with Nate's family. We got everyone gifts, and they're perfectly respectable. Nate and I will probably get more stuff for each other than we did for anyone else, which I feel vaguely guilty about. I mean, it's probably normal and natural for a married couple to get more stuff for each other than for their siblings, but I have an overdeveloped sense of shame. I don't know who I have to credit for that, but there you go.
Part of it is probably that I haven't spend a ton of time with any of the family-in-law. And it's somewhat unlikely that we will ever get the chance to spend any kind of extended period of time together. I mean, it'll probably be a week or two a year for the rest of our lives. Which is fine, I guess. I mean, it's not something I have any strong feelings about either way. I mean, I don't really know most of his family all that well. Plus, I don't have terrifically strong feelings about spending tons of time with my own personal family that I spent eighteen years living with. So, there's that.
I like Christmas, and this won't be the first one that I've spent away from my immediate family. I don't think I was nervous about spending Christmas in Italy. It was probably at least partly because I had already been in Italy for three months and knew each other and knew for a fact that there was going to some extremely delicious several-course lunch with the entire extended family on both sides, all of whom I knew well (with the possible exception of Mario, Andrea's dad, who I believe has Alzheimer's).
I need to remember to find a recipe for the green sauce that was supposed to be eaten with boiled meats. I ate it with bread, and it was awesome. As I recall, the entire meal was somewhere within the four to five courses range. Soup, pasta, a first meat course, a second meat course, various breads through the duration of the meal, and something like five desserts.
I'm pretty sure it was the largest meal of my life to this point, and definitely one of the best ones. Fantastic. Nella, Serena's mom, is supposed to be like a restaraunt-grade chef. We went to her house for Sunday lunch at least twice a month while I was in Italy, and I have to say, she did not disappoint.
Also, Italy was where I learned the value of having a breadmaker. Nate and I got a breadmaker for a wedding gift, and we use it all the time. We haven't bought a loaf of sandwich bread since our honeymoon.
I guess what I'm really trying to say is that I'm nervous about Christmas, and it's a new feeling for me. I'm sure it'll be fine and enjoyable (although we do apparently have to take a family photo, and I tend to have very negative feelings about family photos in general. Oh, and take some kind of a hike). But mostly enjoyable.