Posts Tagged ‘Holiday’

Thanksgiving was amazing.  I had so much fun cooking and playing hostess.

The table linens looked fantastic.  It’s the first time I’ve served dinner with cloth napkins and I think they’re such a nice touch.  I look forward to using them again and again.

I started my day in the kitchen at 8 AM.  I baked Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins and delivered them to my favorite neighbor (who I knew was cooking and would be as busy in the kitchen as me).  I may have dumped half the pan of mini-muffins on the bottom of the oven and the oven door.  I cursed.  I took a deep breath and said, at least it wasn’t the turkey or the pie.  (The dropped muffins weren’t the only mistake I made though.  I also forgot to put the blade in the bread machine so the bread didn’t mix and flopped.  Oops.  We never missed it though.)  I moved on to start baking the pie and setting up the house. 

We stated the day with munchies.  Everyone came around 12 or 12:30.  We all skipped lunch and just grazed and socialized.  The starters included:
–  mixed nuts, m&m’s, and chocolate covered almonds
–  chex mix
–  nuts in the shell for cracking, and salt & pepper pistachios
–  fresh veggies and ranch
–  coconut shrimp with dipping sauce (thanks Jill and Paul!)
–  artichoke crab dip  (thanks again Jill and Paul!)

Meanwhile I was cooking in the kitchen with a lot of help

Jill was the most amazing kitchen assistant on Thursday!  Near the end, I was roasting more than the turkey and my amazing cousin-in-law was so kind to put a cold cloth with ice on my neck.  She also read my mind and helped with everything from mixing mashed potatoes to swapping casseroles in and out of the oven to warm them at the end.  I couldn’t have done it without her!

Alex filled many roles from bartender to turkey carver.

The food hit the table about 3:02 (my cooking schedule worked out just right for our 3 o’clock dinner).  The final menu included:
–  turkey
–  mashed potatoes
–  gravy
–  stuffing
–  green bean casserole
–  green salad with oranges and beets (thanks Lynda!)
–  butternut squash stuffing casserole (thanks Donna!)
–  mom’s brussels sprouts
–  sweet potato casserole
–  cranberry sauce

After we all stuffed ourselves to the brim, we watched one of our family holiday favorites, Christmas Vacation.

Following the movie, it was pie time.  This year we had two:
–  Pumpkin Pecan Pie
–  Apple Pie (thanks Jill and Paul!)
Both were made with the famous family pie crust.  The Pumpkin Pecan Pie is a recipe my mother-in-law passed down to me last Christmas.  And, the Apple Pie was made with heirloom apples from Oregon.

Everyone had a great time.  I was surprised how different it was to be the one in the kitchen instead of sitting on the couch.  But it was so much fun!  All the housework, cleaning, cooking and dishes were all worth it.  I would do it again in a heartbeat.

PS. The family room remodel was completed in time for Thanksgiving.  Official before and after pictures coming soon. 🙂


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Dare to… Entertain!

Nevermind the fact that our remodel isn’t quite done, the house is still a mess, the laundry needs to be folded, and I still need some groceries.  Nevermind that I’m not going to do any of this today.  Because, instead, I spent the morning out shopping with the girls, and I plan to spend the evening will the in-laws because my husband’s cousin flew in today for the week. 🙂

We did a decent amount of yard work yesterday (blew and picked up lots of leaves as well as pulled weeds).  We also have trim painted and ready to install, and most importantly, The Turkey was evicted from the freezer this afternoon and has taken up residence in the fridge for the next 3 days and 18 hours (I rounded up and am giving it a full 4 days to defrost). 

I won’t have a full Thanksgiving table set until Thursday (you should see the to do list of all the things I’d like to accomplish before then, I’m sure it’s totally unrealistic).  But, I did finish sewing my Fall linens this weekend and set a quick fall table to participate in part 2 of Kim’s 6 week holiday Dare to DIY Blog Party.  Don’t forget to click over to Kim‘s and see all the other amazing tablescapes her creative blogging friends have shared.

T-Minus 4 days, and counting until Gobble Gobble Time.

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Happy Mother’s Day

The post is a day late, but we celebrated the holiday on time.  Saturday we took lilacs to Alex’s mom and to his step-sister to wish them both a Happy Mother’s Day.  Sunday, Alex had to work, but I had my mom, brother, and sister-in-law over for dinner.  We had kabobs, a green salad (and can I say, I forgot how much I love feta and mandarin oranges on a salad!), fruit salad, and Robyn made a very yummy potato salad.  For dessert we enjoyed homemade strawberry shortcakes.  Two vases of fresh lilac blooms cut from our garden decorated the table and smelled decadent!

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This year Alex and I hosted our first Easter Dinner.  The highlight of Easter weekend was dying Easter eggs.  I had been blowing out egg shells for a week or two and had collected a few, and my mom donated a dozen or more to the cause.  They’re a little harder to dye because they don’t sink, but with a little patience, they look just as great as whole eggs.  Then, on Saturday, I spent about an hour stringing thread through the eggs and hung them from our dining room chandelier.  They created an awesome centerpiece to our Easter table.

There was food galore!  Alex and I cooked our first ham.  We also made scalloped potatoes, green bean casserole, fruit salad, and deviled eggs.  My dad and step-mom made a yummy green salad.  Alex’s mom brought a delicious smoked salmon dip and crackers for an appetizer.  My coworker (he was family-less for the holiday, so we invited him to join us) contributed homemade rolls (some had garlic and were amazing!).  And my stepbrother and his entourage made dessert (which had a name like Sex in a Pan, totally inappropriate).

It was a beautiful dinner and lots of fun.

Table arrangement and Centerpiece

Table arrangement and CenterpieceYum Yum!

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