Julie came over! YAY! All the way from Bakersfield and we played a rousing game of Pictionary.
Since then I’ve had houseguests that have stayed for a week and a half. They were over for dinner every night!
I’ve had a Cinco De Mayo party. I’ve had my sister over. I’ve done a seafood pasta dinner.
As I’ve said…Done done and DONE!
I was surprised to find out on Christmas day that I had one more celebration. I was surprised again to find out last week that I was hosting. I still think this counts as having people over for dinner.
I woke up EARLY on Saturday and started cooking. I gave away tea breads for Christmas as one of the homemade gifts we gave. I was happy with the gingerbread and the chocolate chai cake wasn’t bad. I’m not sure how the strawberry bread was and I know the Earl Grey tea cake sucked. It’s a good thing that bread didn’t get handed out widely. As soon as I tasted it I pulled it from distribution. However I think, if I had to do it all over again, that I’d make the bread I made for Dee and Steve. It was a blueberry ginger muffin. Mmmm.
I continued to cook making two lasagnas, prepping the salad and garlic bread and baking two tarts for dessert. And we cleaned, wrapped gifts, set the table and were finished by the time they were supposed to get there. So I fell asleep on the couch for a bit waiting for them to arrive.
There are more pics here
Saturday, December 23rd we had a holiday open house. Here are pictures of friends, food and family . I especially love the pics of Morgan, my littlest niece. That blue gum was later found all over her face and no one knew what it was. If I had the pictures I do now it would have been quite clear.
I will not be inviting Sherry, Willy or Heather. In fact I did try to invite Heather but she cancelled. The other two … well it was more out of a sense of obligation than anything else and really…life is too short.
I think I will just put an invitation out a week in advance for what I plan to cook and see which friends bite.
I will also still have Julie over.
And then I will mark this complete.
Well, of course it’ll never be all the way done because I like having people over. It is becoming a habit! But when do I mark it complete?
I want to invite:
When those four more dinners have happened I think I’ll mark this as “done”.
When my friend and coworker Francie got back from her Italy trip she brought me a bottle of limoncello and a promise that she had bought balsamic vinegar and planned to cook with it at my house. Francie cracks me up. Left up to me, I’d still be hiding in my cube minding my own business but Francie is very hard to say “no” to. So I’ve stopped trying and instead really enjoy her friendship. She had no qualms at all about telling me to pick a night that her and her son could come over and cook with me.
She didn’t want to cook and experiment for just her and her son. She wanted an audience and since she’d met Michele and Charles before and liked them she told me to invite them as well.
Another reason she had this balsamic vinegar experiment at my house was so I could hold her hand. She’s a wonderful cook. I think she prefers not to be alone though. Me? I can cook all day by myself but I don’t think Francie would find that enjoyable.
And in fact I found cooking with Francie to be a lot more fun than cooking by myself. Aside from her girly, high maintenance demeanor, Francie and I are a lot alike. The other day she asked me about something that she had thought out so thoroughly that I was impressed. She had out-thought and out-planned me. A woman after my own heart. She showed up on time with all the stuff she said she’d bring and we got to it.
- Italian Bread Dipping Sauce
- Caprese Salad
- Low Fat Oven Baked Greek Tilapia drizzled with balsamic vinegar
- Rosemary Chicken Breasts
- Grilled Balsamic marinated London Broil
- Port Balsamic Sauce
- Some marinated cucumber salad that turned out over salted.
And my favorite part…
- Balsamic-Caramel Sauce over Vanilla Ice Cream that we served with strawberries. I highly recommend this one. And the tilapia. But I’m partial.
When the dinner was over, we all played a long but fun game of pictionary. I’d never played with Francie and her son before and was glad to see they weren’t intimidated by beach house gaming proclivity.
Last night I threw my sister and her husband a going away party. I served homemade lasagne, penne and vegetarian lasagne spirals with a ceasar salad and homemade garlic bread. I made a cheese spread and crostini as an appetizer and put out homemade cookies and cupcakes. For dessert I served an apple tart and a chocolate ricotta refrigerator cake.
I love to cook. I love to try new recipes. This weekend alone I think I tried seven. Some were good and some were just ‘ok’.
This goal would be a lot easier if I completed the goal of keeping my house in a continuously good state.
There are a couple more intimate dinners I’d like to host before marking this complete. Francie brought back a collection of balsamic vinegars from Italy and she wants to come over and make a bunch of food with them. Plus there are other people that I’d like to invite over to enjoy dinner with.