Our first morning in Durango we awoke to snow. It was truly the perfect Christmas Eve... it felt like Christmas, it smelled like Christmas, it looked like Christmas. We had a fire going in the fireplace, hot coffee, great company.
Mostly we sat and just watched the fire going and snow falling. The kids were all playing and exploring. They went out and sledded (Joe had never been) and had snowball fights and knocked icicles off the roof.
We had planned to cut down a Christmas Tree but there was already one at the house so we didn't need to.
Vicki spent most of the day cooking and preparing our "Feast of Seven Fishes" an old Italian tradition.
The Feast of the Seven Fishes is an Italian Christmas celebration.
Today, it is a feast that typically consists of seven different seafood dishes. However, some Italian-American
families have been known to celebrate with nine, eleven or thirteen
different seafood dishes. This celebration commemorates the wait, the Vigilia di Natale, for the midnight birth of the baby Jesus
We had shrimp cocktail, king crab legs, spaghetti with red tuna sauce and a breaded flounder with a salad. We didn't do all seven fishes but it was the theory. :) We didn't eat until after the Polar Express though.
We left for the Polar Express about 5:30. When we arrived there, all dressed in our matching pajama's.... it was still snowing and you could hear the train. The people were bustling and the anticipation of Santa was in the air. We had a little time to kill so we walked out and saw the train as the other riders got off. Joe was so excited.
Then we went in for the "presentation of the Polar Express" and lined up as the train rolled in blowing it's horn. The coal car smoking and the engine puffing. To say it was magical is really an understatement. And Conner (the 15 year old) tried to pretend that he wasn't caught up in the moment... but the twinkle in his eye gave it away.
We had paid for upgraded parlor car and it was so worth it. It wasn't all that much more money... but you got a lot for the money. We each had a table and got Santa hats and got to keep our hot chocolate mugs. Our chefs "peppermint and gingerbread" were fantastic! They sang and involved all of kids even the big ones. We rode to the North Pole and Santa boarded the train. We sang Christmas Carols and we ate cookies. It was Christmas Eve in Colorado and it was magical.
We all left the train and went through the museum and headed on home in the snow. We got home and had dinner and put the kids to bed to get ready for Santa.