Thursday, December 29, 2011

Hullo Again

Oy. It has been a busy few weeks. You can tell by all the time I've taken off from the blog lately. I spent Christmas Eve day wrapping presents until it was time to go to my cousin's house. My parents, her parents, and all the usual Sunday dinner goers were there. We had lobster stew* with pork and beans because my BIL is a diva and doesn't eat anything we traditionally have. (His mother brought them.) It was a wonderful frenzy of present opening and eating. I got my Patriot's boots! (I also got a Clarisonic which has already made a difference to my skin; I'm not kidding.) And my niece made me an ornament. My cousin told me that it was very important to her to make something for me. Apparently she is learning something from all those craft days we have! So sweet.

On Christmas Day the dude, Stella, and I drove out to Lawrenceville (NJ) to have Christmas with my parents at my sister's house. We got lots of lovely things. I'm pleased to say one of them was twelve hours of organizing with a professional organizer! Yay! (I'm posting before pictures tomorrow, for Donna.) We ate Chinese food and then played our new games. Just when I told you that everyone gets a game, my mother decided it was too difficult to buy and keep track of four new games, so each couple got one. My sister and BIL got "What's Yours Like?" and the dude and I got "Over Under." They were both fun and easy to learn, but What's Yours Like made us laugh more. (Nothing quite like the year we got Balderdash and played with my {drunk} uncle**. You can still make the dude laugh by saying "combo plate." But I digress...) Stella did well with her cousins; though she did stake out territory under the table and defend her turf.

On Boxing Day, the dude and I madly cleaned, baked, and cooked for all the relatives. We had twelve over in our little place (which is currently dominated by a Balsam fir tree). We had kielbasa with cvikla and the most awesome salami fans--stuffed with fig jam and goat cheese--to start. Of course no one came empty handed so we ended up with a cheese platter supplemented with my aunt's famous cheese ball. We followed with bigos, a cucumber salad, and three kinds of pierogis (sweet cheese, potato and cheese, and mushroom). (All except my BIL and niece who had hamburgers. Sillies.) For dessert it was rum cake (and my was it rummy!) and blueberry pierogis. Stella did pretty well considering there were so many large men in her house.

December 27th was my sainted aunt's birthday, and I spent the day madly stitching a "Fresh Mesh" by SamSarah Designs. I did the spring hearts on a black mesh bag. It was going pretty quickly, but I took a half an hour to look at information about Carolina barbecue. (The dude and I are planning a trip.) I regret that because I was half an hour shy of finishing! We had a fabulous dinner at Teikoku, our favorite birthday party restaurant where I finished stitching in the restaurant's dim light before it was time to go. Everyone loved the bag; unfortunately, no photo.

Yesterday the dude and I vegged out until it was time to meet my parents and sister in Atlantic City. My dad enjoys roulette and since he has limited mobility, it's one of those things he can do. It's only an hour and a half drive. We ate at Carmine's, a NYC institution that serves fabulous family-style dinner. We're taking the leftovers back to New Jersey tonight.

I hope I get to sleep some in the new year!

*Starters: cheese ball, spanakopita, liverwurst ball, teriyaki chicken wings, a chorizo pie. Potato babka. Dessert: two kinds of turtle cookies, coconut crunchies, cheesecake with raspberry sauce.
**Once nicknamed Druncle Dick by the dude's friends. It stuck. 


C in DC said...

What a darling ornament made by your niece.

Jennifer said...

Sounds wonderful! And your niece made a lovely ornament.

Where are you thinking for BBQ? Jeff and I talk about doing a BBQ tour of the south, and Carolina BBQ, which is vinegar based, is his favorite. I'm a Texas beef brisket girl myself.

Chris said...

Sounds like you guys had a great holiday!

jhm said...

Where did you find blueberry pierogis??? Are they available in the Philly area?

My DH LOVES pierogies - of any kind! even the ones with saukraut (sp?).


Donna said...

Sounds like tremendous fun that you have been having.

At our house we have a phrase, too,that induces gales of laughter.

It originated with a game of Apples to Apples and the phrase is Mystical Penguins.

Go figure.

Deborah said...

Sounds like all had a great holiday. Love the ornaments and those boots are pretty awesome. I am a Pat's fan, of course! Have a great New Year.