I think most people who’ve hosted a large gathering will agree that not having to cook on Christmas is a gift in itself. Being able to celebrate with your family, minus the grocery shopping, prep work and dishes leaves you a lot more time for holiday cheer.

One thing was also particularly evident this Christmas day at the Pfister – the hospitality industry never sleeps. Staff was bustling around through the crowd to accommodate each and every guest –  over 500 for Christmas brunch in the ballroom alone. The lobby and the cafe were also busting at the seams with guests.

The Tamscin family spread out one of the plush velvet couches in the lobby, digesting after brunch. They looked right out of a J Crew catalogue – gorgeous, blonde, neatly groomed and amiable. Mr. and Mrs. Tamscin grew up in Wisconsin, but have been living in Arizona for the past decade or so. They  came back to see their parents and agreed that a Wisconsin Christmas feels much more normal than Christmas in the dessert.

“What was the most delectable thing you ate?” I inquired. In case you missed it, I went on about the brunch menu here. “Pork roast, leg of lamb and gluten-free desserts” they chimed back in unison.

I snapped a few family photos in front of the Christmas tree for them and talked journalism with their daughter, a college student, before they were on their way.

No matter how you celebrated your holiday season, I hope it was merry and bright. And may 2013 bring you and your family much health and prosperity!

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