I’m “working” at home on a Monday – I’m going to call it a sick day, laptop in bed with me grading – also sleeping. I woke up with a ridiculously sore throat at 12:42 last night, choked down three tylenol, debated whether I had to go get cultured for strep, and then emailed everyone at a little before 7:00 to say I was working at home.
The party was Saturday, and although I felt really well-organized and the neighbors even came over to help move furniture and vacuum, the first few hours were pretty hectic. There were a bunch of kids, rearranging the coats by playing on top of them, getting themselves locked in the bathroom, and one little girl in a glitter dress shedding glitter absolutely everywhere.
I didn’t photograph any cookie platters – but I set up a “pack your own” cookie operation in the back bedroom – put out all the buckets of cookies and containers and ziploc bags and suggested donation amounts by size of container. I think people really liked it.
My personal theme for this year’s party was do less, don’t hurt yourself, and I think I for the most part succeeded, except there have been some scheduling unfortunate juxtapositions, like the above cold, and more that I will get to in just a minute.
- King Arthur marshmallow fudge (I think the only thing I overbought on this year was chocolate chips – well, and plastic bags, but those keep – and this fudge used up a bunch of those)
- pepperoni roll, with (homemade) pizza sauce – that I forgot to put out, but we can eat it on Christmas Eve, as part of our stupid-holiday-movie and homemade-pizza traditional celebration
- Deviled eggs – these were especially good this year, a little sweet (honey), a little curry, a little lemon juice. Piped instead of scooped. I boiled 3 dozen eggs, in two smaller pots instead of trying to do 4 dozen in one large pot. While I was cooking the eggs on Friday night, the black cat seemed to have some kind of seizure – I thought she was dying – she let out some really piteous mews, and spasmed, and poop was coming out of her butt. We wrapped her in a towel, and she calmed down and I went back to the eggs. The first time I checked on her, she had moved herself to the other side of the towel and by the second time I checked, she had left the towel, and gone to her regular sleeping spot on the futon in my bedroom curled up with her sister. Although I felt like a bad mama for not paying more attention to the cat, the next day I thought some of the eggs might’ve been slightly over-boiled, but the overall tone was yellow not green.
Squash tartjust decided NOT, so I still have one large squash from my last CSA box to use in something
- kale-a-kopita – I used one bucket of the chopped kale that I had frozen from Tipi’s sale, and a whole pack of fresh dill I bought at the big Whole Foods by Mark’s Chicago apartment for Cookie Party South and didn’t use, and lots of Costco feta. One and about a half boxes of filo for around 45 little triangles, and I ate the last one Sunday night for a snack.
- Wienies and kosher dogs in yeasted dough, almost 60 kosher dog hunks – I wrapped each big link in dough then cut it in quarters – and about 80 little weinies. All the kosher dogs got eaten and almost all the weinies except about a dozen in a bag that the kids ate on Sunday while watching the Packers
- Two kinds of meatballs, cocktail with chili sauce and jam, and Swedish – all cocktail eaten, some Swedish leftover, enough for a casserole with noodles
- Hummus and muhamarra and pita – just enough left for us to eat for lunches
- Hot salt and pepper shrimp, 4 pounds and all eaten except for about 10 shrimps
- Layered pesto and sun-dried tomato and cream cheese, that I made as a log instead of a round, and put out half at a time – with peppadews, and olives, and marinated mushrooms, and artichoke hearts. There’s a chunk of it left but again, not more than I think we can eat for snacks. Oh, and some hunks of Reggiano Parmesan, a $16 impulse buy at Whole Foods where they had the hunks of Parm at the checkout counter.
- A few cheeses and crackers, bought the cheese at Fromagination with a gift certificate I got for my birthday last summer: Carr Valley Mobay, Roelli Red Rock, which is a cheddar with a little blue vein (although I think I still like Huntsman more), Roelli Dunbarton Blue, and Roth Van Gogh, which is an aged Gouda, Oude Gouda, “owde howda” in Nederlandse
- Caramelized onion dip – that also had goat cheese and caramelized leeks (leek confit that got too dark) in it – served with potato chips. I ate the last of it with pretzel sticks on Sunday night.
- Buffalo chicken dip – just a single batch this year, and made with Cholula sauce and Ceasar dressing, because that’s what was open, although I found the bottle of Franks at the back of the pantry after the party
- Spicy peanut dip and vegetables – could’ve had more carrots
- Salami and cheese cubes on sticks – a few of these left, but I think we can have scrambled eggs with salami and cheese for Christmas breakfast
I was up until about 1:30 cleaning up after the party. I cut my finger on a wine glass, and then John cut his worse. Which all would’ve been OK, except we had to get up and drive to Milwaukee on Sunday morning to see our first foster kid, Kaylah, graduate from UWM. A great thing, just unfortunate timing. Cruel.
When I got back I was so tired I just lay on the couch for a hour with cats, while the kids watched the Packers. Then I got up and finished washing platters and putting furniture back, and was just in time to watch the Sunday night cable show season finales in real time, starting at 8:00 instead of 10:00 PM, Homeland and The Affair, with a little plate of cookies.