Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Traditions ~ Nana's Christmas Eve Gathering

I've shared that twelve years ago my beloved sister Barbara was suddenly taken from us by a fatal heart attack. I don't know if it was Nana's infinite wisdom or God's amazing grace, but that year my then 84 year old grandmother, began hosting an extended family Christmas Eve party. She's done it every year since.

Nana and Mom (2008)
Her tiny house fills up with family members who see each other only on this night. Aromas of traditional Mexican dishes permeate the house. We fill our plates with her famous red chili enchiladas, beans, posole, and mom's savory tamales. Nana is 96 this year and I've mentioned in earlier posts, she's had some health challenges this year. She's cute though, feeling better, and looking forward, as always to having her family all together for this one evening.

That first Christmas after Barb's death, loomed over me like a dark cloud. I love Christmas, but I had lost my sister, had gone through a really challenging divorce and this was the first time my only daughter would be away from me for the holiday. Nana's party was one of many blessings God graced me with that Christmas and I am so grateful for the rich memories.

So, we are in the last bits of planning for the evening. Who brings what? Tables, Heaters, Plates & Cups, etc. I am, of course, planning on a plethora of traditional Mexican desserts, made mini. I recently learned that assiete à desserts means Plate of Desserts in French. It would be platos de dolces in Spanish I guess :-). Correct me if I'm wrong...I'm only half Mexican LOL.

Tres Leches Cakes

Rice Pudding
Mexican Wedding Cookies
I'll probably add my Green Wreath Corn Flake Cookies for a pop of color and the kids love them and I won't leave out the favorite Chocolate Mousse either. Otherwise...pretty white...delicious, but lacking in color. :-) I love this part too!

What kinds of traditions do you look forward to every year? Have a wonderful weekend. ~ Blessings, Janet


  1. So sorry about your sis... It sounds like Nana is a true gem! This is the first year we're breading from the ham tradition... One of our adult daughters wanted to make her enchiladas and no one objected. We're doing a Mexican pot luck! Sounds so FUN!!! These dishes look YUMMY!! I think we need RECIPES!!!

    Thanks for coming by my blog ;D
    I'm a new follower. (((HUGS)))

  2. Sorry about the loss of your sister. It's something we never forget.
    Mexican Christmas with great Mexican dishes..Yumm Yumm. Your Nana looks terrific and so do you, I might add.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog... I'm your new follower.
    Blessings on your family for the Holidays
    Wanna buy a duck

  3. P.S..... I meant your Mom also looks good .... so I bet you do too.

  4. So glad you shared this... what a wonderful tradition.... Did you make ALL those little desserts??? They are beautiful

  5. You are killing me, the food looks delicious! I am so hungry and so want some. Thanks for stopping by, hope you have a wonderful holiday!

  6. I want to leave a thoughtful comment, but honestly, I am slightly distracted by all those photos of sugary goodness. I want that flan. Immediately!

    On a serious note, I am sorry about the loss of your sister...I know how difficult it is, during the first year and all the 'anniversaries'. I love that your Nana started a new tradition. It is so important to be surrounded by family and friends, especially during the holidays, because the holidays just aren't the same without family present. Everything about the gathering of loved ones, the sights, the sounds, the scents, is such a blessing.

    Since my husband and I moved to Maui, we haven't been able to spend every Christmas with our families, and I do miss the traditions, but we have also learned to start our own little traditions - just the two of us - that remind us of the true meaning of the season, our love for life and one another. And it's all good. :)

    I'm really glad to have "met" you through our blogs. You are a beautiful person with such a kind and encouraging spirit. I love that in a friend.


  7. Hello! Thank you so much for visiting my little blog, and Thank you so much for the sweet, sweet comment!! I really do always try to look on the bright side, It sounds as if you do as well!! Your mom and nana are beautiful women! I think I need to try one of each of those deserts! Im so excited to be following you!!!!

  8. YAY!!!!! I'm your 100th follower!!!!!