We are less than a week until Christmas and this year it will be a quiet one for me and handsome Jack.  I have to work on the 26th so it made no sense to travel anywhere.  Plus we figured this will be our last quiet Christmas before we go from becoming a little family of two (me + Jack) to becoming a family of six in the summer.  :-) 
This year I wanted to take some cute pics of Jack by the Christmas tree.  The only problem?  He is afraid of the tree.  He will not go close to it at all, which in a way is a good thing since he will not mess with it or the ornaments.  How much does he dislikes the tree?  He looks super serious in the photos.

 In the end I went with this one.  Love this card!

Poor dog.  Right after he jumped from the bench I had him and went straight to his bed giving me the evil eye.  So, I tried.  We have also enjoyed having our first snow yesterday.  Jack was not sure at first but later in the day he loved it and was a snow dog maniac.

Now that the pics are done, I have to finish wrapping gifts-- including Jack's, because yes, he does get gifts.  I am THAT dog mom.  
And speaking of gifts, I hope you all have done your shopping and are way ahead of the ball game but if you are still looking for some great gifts ideas, check out some of the gifts ideas I posted last week!

Aren't they fabulously awesome?  You will surely have tails wagging with these gifts. 
Have you finished your Christmas shopping?
Do you shop for your dog?
Did you take Christmas photos of your dogs?


** This is a repost from a recipe I posted last year on a previous blog.  But it is quintessential Christmas and it deserves to be reposted. **
One of my fondest childhood memories involves preparing Christmas food or comida de Navidad, with my grandma Ina. Her boisterous personality, love for salsa music and contagious zest for life and the holidays made the celebration preparations so very special. She is a wonderful cook but for some reason baking is not a forte of the Moret women, my maternal side of the family.   They realize that this is a shortcoming so over many generations they have mastered a number of Christmas desserts that do not involve baking. And among the Christmas desserts none reigns more supreme than the arroz con dulce, a coconut based rice pudding that is served cold or at room temperature. If there is anything that embodies the flavors of a Caribbean Christmas, it is this dessert. 

As I continue to research and learn more about Scandinavian, especially Norwegian, cooking I am surprised at how many elements of Norwegian cuisine are similar to the Puerto Rican foods I grew up with. So imagine my surprise when I found out that during Christmas, the Norwegian eat also a rice pudding dessert called riskrem, which is more like rice cream served cold topped with hot cherries. And me likey. There are many variations but the formula is basically the same:

cold rice porridge (risengrynsgr√łt) + whipped cream + a sweet element = this tasty dish.

{And do not tell me this does not look festive}



My thoughts on this dish? I really liked it but I can see why this is something eaten during Christmas. Not only is it loaded with heavy cream (hello, waistline!), but it is very rich which makes it perfect for the cold weather. The flavor is yummy with a little tang that contrasts with the sweetness of the hot cherries. The recipe for the hot cherries seemed a bit blah to me but I added some bourbon to the syrup and it really took the fruit to a new level.   More mature.

And here is a fun fact about this dish when served on Christmas Eve.  There is a lovely game that goes with this dish.  On Christmas eve a whole almond is hidden in the bowl of rice before serving individually. As guests eat the dessert everyone wonders who has the almond in their dish, and whoever does, gets a prize! How charming it that?

Oh I can see myself curling up with a bowl of this dessert on Christmas even while I wait for the Jolly Old fellow to make his act of appearance. I wonder what it will be... Hmmm, suddenly the lyrics of the song "Santa Baby" are in my head ;-)