Sunday, November 29, 2009

That [Manic] Time of Year...

(imagine what I'd do to a dog...)

This time of year is insane for me. Of course the holidays are crazy for every mom, but wedge in 2 birthdays and a huge church party and you too may find yourself mentally rocking in a corner in the fetal position.

Yet hosting 20 people for Thanksgiving turned out to be the eye of the storm. The fact that I had time to make festive gerbil headgear on Thursday morning speaks volumes. The key is inviting the right people. And making your friend Lindy set and decorate your tables. We had 3 turkeys (smoked, deep fried, and brined), mounds of sides, piles of rolls, and enough pies to induce diabetes in an elephant. We played games, read gossipy magazines, slept, laughed--in short, it turned out to be an amazing day. And Anne did all the dishes (she insisted, seriously she did).

On Friday my real work began for our church's annual wreathmaking party, which Dave calls Belmont Ward Prom (see my last year's post). I am in charge of food (pause for laughter). I think they called me because they are (once again) trying to scale things back and figured that putting a Hobo in charge of refreshments is one way to keep things from being too high-falutin. I really had to resist the urge to use a recipe that involved Velveta and Dave wanted me to serve squirrel. I don't speak Foodie, but I am well versed in Comfort Food so I planned on meatballs and bacon laden mini quiche and 450 mini cupcakes and every bar you can imagine (blondies, brownies, gingerbread, oatmeal bars, apricot bars, lemon bars, peppermint chocolate bars, coconut bars, caramel bars...). Tons of people helped so it was doable. But very exhausting.

I conned Dave into making the little cupcake trees for me and tossed the whole decorate the table stuff to Lisa and Christine who know how to work a pomegranate. So although we started out swearing we'd simplify things, it was just as fancy and over the top as it should be. But in my defense, I did do away with all utensils. No forks or spoons needed. Just toothpicks which again, are kinda Hobo.

Seriously there is a whole other post in my head about the "Anti-Wreathites" (tm Becca) who hate this annual party and almost succeeded in derailing it this year. And as my hand was cramping while decorating mini cupcake #411, I started to go to the dark side myself and had very Grinchy thoughts but I drowned them with a Big Gulp of Diet Coke. And then when the second giant batch of marshmallow whip cream frosting wouldn't set up and we added 2lbs of powdered sugar to stiffen it and it still fell and now tasted like a sugar cube dipped in Fluff, I was very discouraged and cursed my Boston Foremothers for instituting such a time consuming tradition. But then Brittany drizzled chocolate on the top and lo and behold, a Wreathmaking Miracle occurred. They were not only passable but by far the favorite cupcake. "How did you make this frosting?" "These white ones are delicious--I can't get enough!" Oh the bad frosting that was turned into manna. I can't believe I ever doubted.

Now that the huge Mormon Ladies Winter Extravaganza is over, I should be turning my attention to that little holiday coming up, what's it called? Oh yeah, CHRISTMAS. This weekend we got a tree and decked the halls watched Miracle on 34th Street, Mr. Kruger's Christmas, Frosty, and The Grinch (cartoon, not Jim Carey).

But before I can really wrap my head around Santa, our Millie has a huge milestone. On Friday she turns 8. For us that means she is old enough to be baptized an official member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. My mom is already here and Grandma Dava and Grandpa Russ arrive this weekend along with Steph et al from Jersey and Lee et al from Albany to participate. Mills is really excited and so are we. If you're in the Belmont area on the 12th, show up at the chapel for a nice little programs and some yummy treats after. Probably some bars. Nothing too fancy, I promise.


ellen said...

We can't let "them" kill wreath making!

SLP said...

This year I paid my $ at the door, ate my share of food and left the empty wire frame at the door as I went home exhausted and all I did was show up - HOW SAD IS THAT?

Anne said...

You are the diva queen of wreathmaking. It was a blast hanging out in the kitchen.

And Thanksgiving was super wonderful. xoxo