Friday, October 31, 2008
Where did this year go? What amazes me the most is that in less than 3 weeks, I will celebrate yet another birthday. I don’t really mind getting older, with each year something new happens and I enjoy finding out what exacting is coming next.
Since January I’ve seen some pretty major life-changing events happen. A second grandchild arrived, my son-in-law became a juvenile corrections officer, grandson #1 not only started walking, but talking-in full sentences, my husband got a promotion, so did my son, our son became engaged, I started working as a paid freelance writer, I became a moderator for a magazine, lost my day job and began a very cheerleader type campaign to work full time as a writer.
So now the holidays are coming up. Right after I turn 51, Thanksgiving will be upon us.
Since we now have even more in-laws, our annual Thanksgiving dinner will be somewhere between 25-35 people.
That’s a whole lot of mashed potatoes I’ll be making this year. If only I had known that my recipe would become such an integral part of all family celebrations-I probably would have thought twice about how badly my kids needed to eat more than potatoes as a vegetable and created a much less labor intensive dish.
Anyone who’d like to serve this dish, which has been in even Family Circle magazine, the OC Register, on Woman’s Day website and is a favorite on BetterRecipes.com, I will put the recipe into a column before the big day. It really isn’t that hard or time consuming, but when you have to triple and quadruple the amounts-well, that is an awful lot of spuds to peel and mash!
Speaking of food-a cyber friend and I were talking about the upcoming potluck season and she had mentioned she was trying to find something to put a dish into that wouldn’t be missed if forgotten at the hostess’ home.
I told her about how I’ve remedied this sticky situation and we both agreed this might be a great tip to talk about here.
In our family, we do a lot of potluck events. Group birthday parties for the deluge in April and May, July 4th , Thanksgiving, Hanukah and sometimes Christmas and Passover (my husband and I try to get away during those two times, so while the party goes on, we aren’t part of the festivities), plus little get-togethers at other times.
These little handy tips come to mind. One I particularly love is but I can’t take credit for came from one of the guys I used to work!
First mine-I hit the dollar stores or BigLots and buy disposable foil and plastic containers. I even hunt the clearance aisles at TJMaxx or the markets for all different sizes and shapes and oven capabilities. Depending on the food, I just use these and leave them at host family’s home. Same with serving pieces-sometimes the dollar stores will have nice big serving spoons and forks. I don’t have to make that trip back to wherever we were to pick up something I’m going to be needing.
My former co-worker does something even better-he goes to thrift stores and buys up nice looking platters, cake covers, single dinner size china plates and leaves them with the host as a gift. He has said the only caveat is that you need to really be vigilant about checking out all the used pieces first. The best part, the proceeds go to a worthwhile charity-so by buying them and giving a nice gift, you are also doing something nice for someone who could really use a little kindness.
And since the holidays are coming up-what more could we all ask for given what has been happening across the country?
One Christmas a friend gave everyone of her guests a chip/dip container...the plastic ones with a lid. It is large and has deep wells. If you wanted to take any food home you had to bring it and if you forgot...oh well.
Needless to say, I never forgot my "take home container" ☺
I wind up using those ziploc containers or bags when sending home goodies for guests.
Fifty one, eh. That was about five years ago for me. I can't even remember back that far. Hopefully you do like I do, send out holiday family newsletters detailing all the happenings, then keeping a copy for yourself so you can refer to it five years later. Or six or seven . . .
But I have found that if I write the year end letter and mail it-I don't have to send cards, which I really am so not into.
Potluck dinners are so much fun !
I hope to get to taste your potatoes one day :)
They're actually really easy, very delicious and quite figure friendly! Plus, kids and adults love them.
Happy Halloween to you as well.
no kiddies at my door yet. ;-(