For the first time ever, we are in Vail, Colorado through the Christmas holiday. We've come to Vail in December before, but have always been home on Christmas. This year, the stars aligned and we were all able to make it for the week of Christmas, so we decided to do a rare thing and stay in Colorado the whole time. Since we just lost my father-in-law last month, and since he has always been such a huge part of our Christmas celebration, we thought this year was as good a time as any to change things up.
Yesterday, Ladd and the kids skied while I stayed back in the village finished up a little gift wrapping, then we all met up and went to the 3:00 Christmas Eve service at Vail Interfaith Chapel, one of my favorite places in the world.
The chapel is home to several different denominations and congregations, and we decided to go the Lutheran route for Christmas Eve! I've been going to this little chapel ever since we've been coming to Vail, and I've attended Episcopal, Presbyterian, and Lutheran services through the years. I love it there! It makes me happy.
After church, we had a dinner reservation we'd been looking forward to! Miller and Luxe is a new restaurant in Vail, created by (Food Network brother) Tyler Florence. We were so excited and by 5:15 (we like eating early!), our tummies were growling.
Tyler wasn't in town (he has another location in San Francisco), but he was very kind to send some champagne to our table. 😭 It was so delightful, and it also gave me some serious clout with my kids that Tyler Florence sent us complimentary champagne. Haha!
Then the food started showing up, and let me tell you one piece of news: Without question, this was a top ten meal for me. Absolutely incredible! We started with some canapes that I won't even be able to describe here. This little cylinder was the most delectable salmon mouse wrapped in the lightest, crispiest puff pastry...and I ate five, I'm just being honest. I just kept wanting to go back for more. And I guess I did keep going back for more.
And then there was a platter of truffled deviled eggs. Imagine the most perfect, classic deviled eggs you've ever had at a party or family event. Then imagine the goodness of those deviled eggs amplified by a factor of ten. That doesn't even come close to how good these were. And look at the presentation!
The picture below doesn't do it justice, but I ordered Dover Sole, which is prepared tableside. Basically, the chef took the sole out of the pan then made the most beautiful pan sauce to go over the top. Bernaise was also on the side, and I'm still dreaming about the whole affair.
I made the mistake of taking mostly videos and not enough photos, but my family enjoyed a mix of mushroom ravioli and various cuts of beef, and every bite was otherworldly. And then we had dessert!So as you can imagine, we were beyond full when we went back to our room, but we had business to attend to: Christmas PJ's! It's a tradition, and I wasn't about to take the year off just because we weren't at home.
Long story short, these were the PJ's this year.
And another long story short, we all traipsed down to the lobby and convinced a kind person behind the desk to snap our family Christmas PJ pic.
On our way back to our room, just after the above photo was taken, I dared Ladd to skip happily down the main corridor (past the lobby bar) in his elf outfit. And to my shock and awe, he did it! And so did the rest of us, and I don't know if it was a combination of Tyler Florence's complimentary champagne and the amazing food and the sugar in the desserts or what, but I haven't laughed that hard in months. Maybe years. I was incapacitated with laughter.
We all started to get tired and the craziness started to die down. Then we turned in one by one until visions of sugarplums danced in our heads!
This is our little vacation Christmas tree setup. 😂 I ordered the four-foot tree online and Paige added her cowgirl hat as a topper. And the presents may look like a bunch, but I guess that's what happens when the five kids all grow up and buy one another presents! It grows exponentially. We might need to start drawing names next year! But it was nice to have this little traditional Christmas element since we're nine hours away from the ranch.
We miss being home and will be excited to head back next week, but being together was the most important thing.
Merry Christmas, friends!
I’m a desperate housewife, I live in the country, and I’m obsessed with butter, Basset Hounds, and Ethel Merman. Welcome to my frontier!