Every other Christmas was spent in Massachusetts with my mom's parents. At Babcie's — grandmother in Polish — we celebrated the holiday much the way it is celebrated in Poland, the country my ancestors are from. Christmas Eve was a day of fasting until dinnertime. No meat was served during the meal, which consisted of 12 dishes that some believe are representative of the 12 disciples of Jesus. Beet soup was sort of a mandatory dish, typically served with small mushroom-stuffed dumplings, which I still don't like. Babcie would bake a fish with this wonderful lemon butter sauce. There would also be some kind of pasta dish and, of course, my favorite: Sugared blueberry pierogies. She normally made about eight dozen of them with homemade dough and blueberries she had sorted through for days to get the right ones. Once the pierogies were made, she'd boil a big pot of water, drop them in and let them cook for about 3 minutes, then drain them, put butter and salt on them and serve. Christmas Eve dinner at Babcie's house could easily feed 50 to 60 people.