Tyler and I haven't been to the farm for Christmas Eve for probably at least 10 years. He still talks about it, especially the Christmas Eve Church service with candlelit Silent Night. This year we decided to go, now that our Christmas Eves are free, and his parents have been so excited, they couldn't stop talking about it! This is what memories are made of. :)
Aside from some snow early Christmas Eve (which simply dusted everything in the most beautiful coating of frosty white snow), the weather for holiday driving this year was absolutely perfect. As the sun was going down in the late afternoon, it was so gorgeous, I just had to get some pictures.This is literally in their backyard. Isn't it glorious?
This year, I have been taking a lot more pictures. In part, thanks to my (new-to-me) iPhone 5S, which was a hand-me-down from Tyler. It's much faster than my old iPhone 4, and the camera is stunning. Case in point...
We enjoyed a very lovely evening with the folks. Supper was their traditional Norweigan/Danish fare that included Lutefisk, Lefse, and Flatbread. Lefse is very yummy. It is is a traditional soft Norwegian flatbread. It is made with leftover potatoes, flour, butter, and milk
I may have tasted Lutefisk once before on that long-ago Christmas Eve, but I don't remember if I like it. I'm pretty brave when it comes to food, and I'll try anything once.
For those of you who may not know what Lutefisk is, here is the definition from Wikipedia: Lutefisk is dried whitefish (normally cod, but ling and burbot is also used) treated with lye. The first step is soaking the stockfish in cold water for five to six days (with the water changed daily). The saturated stockfish is then soaked in an unchanged solution of cold water and lye for an additional two days. The fish swells during this soaking, and its protein content decreases by more than 50 percent, producing a jelly-like consistency.
When this treatment is finished, the fish (saturated with lye) is caustic, with a pH of 11–12. To make the fish edible, a final treatment of yet another four to six days of soaking in cold water (also changed daily) is needed. Eventually, the lutefisk is ready to be cooked.
Gross, right? Yeah, kinda. Arnie loves it, and has been eating it every year of his 80-year life. Susan tolerates it. Tyler tried some, but didn't really like it. I had two pieces. It doesn't really taste like anything, but the texture is very slimy and gelly. You smother it in salt and melted butter, so it's not so bad. I didn't mind it, but I don't think it liked me back, because it ran right through me. Ah, cultural traditions, how exciting you are!At 8:30, we went to church for the Christmas Eve service. I love this church. It is so cute!
The music was provided by a brother and sister. The violin played the melody, and the piano played the harmony. They were lovely.
Since spending the last 6 years at my Lutheran church (I grew up in a non-denominational home church), I have been getting more and more interested in the church calendar. Advent is really very cool. It builds up the anticipation of Christmas over the previous 4 weeks. I was so excited that the 5th candle was finally lit!
And, as we all anticipated, we got to sing Silent Night by candlelight. And singing all the other carols was an absolute joy.
We spent the rest of the night watching Mr. Bean's Christmas Special and Home Alone. What a special night. I can't wait to do it again, hopefully year after year! Love you, Mom and Dad!