Family Holiday Fun

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Of course, it starts by packing two families into a rented minivan and battling our way through Bay Area traffic. This, after hours of planes, trains and automobiles (and ferry boats, in our case) by me and the kids, and my brother’s family, who came all the way from New York. And somewhat amazingly, it was a ton of fun.

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We spent a few days with our dad and his wife, Jane, in Sonoma, swimming, playing ping pong, shooting pool and generally messing around, highlighted by a magnificent prime rib dinner cooked by Dad and Jane. Then we piled back into the minivan to join our mom and her husband, Carey, in Berkeley–arriving there just in time to help put the finishing touches on the days of prep work and cooking they’d already put in for the Japanese New Year Celebration. That’s the Dungeness crab I stir fried with black bean sauce, ginger, garlic and green onions–a Chinese dish, I know, but it seemed to fit the festive menu.

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Then friends and family dropped by, all bringing more dishes to the feast. We had sushi, breaded flank steak, teriyaki chicken, more sushi, traditional mochi soup, more sushi, sweet beans, sunomono cucumber salad with octopus, all kinds of sweets, and yes, the traditional multi-layered jello you can see in the back. And that was just the beginning. Skyla and Weston had as much fun cooking as they did eating, and we all enjoyed the family time and good food. Now I really have to resolve to run more often, if just to burn off the calories consumed in a few short days. Here’s to a fantastic 2017 for all!

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