Sunday, September 17, 2006

it's gettin' to be about that time...

The time to start figuring out what I'm going to make for my annual "Family Christmas Eve Dinner".

It started in '99 when I was just trying to help my mom and grandma out by doing whatever I could and my mom said "why don't you make something for dinner the night before Christmas?"...and so it began.

Every year since then I've tried to top myself, which, let's face it, wasn't all that hard after the first dinner. I think instead of trying to top myself, I've been trying to make up for that first dinner. I thought it was fine...and so did CG. I made a stir fry of sorts that I kind of made up. Anyway. I made mashed potatoes to go along with it. Let me back track a second and say that I was 18 at the time. So...well....yeah....I made my Betty Crocker mashed potatoes in the box.

*pause for gasps*

What?! They're good!


I didn't think anything of it at the time. I was actually quite proud of myself for whipping up dinner for 8 and not burning anything or undercooking anything, etc. I think back....all I can think of is the look my grandmother (the absolute BEST cook EVER) tried to hold back when she saw my box of mashed potatoes.

So, yeah, I'm trying to make up for the powdered mashed potatoes that I can't believe I feed to my gourmet chef Granny! (and she ATE them! Oh what grandparents do for their grandchildren....I think it helped that I'm the only granddaughter....hehe).

Let's see if I can remember back....*thinking* can't remember what I've made all 5 years after that, but I can remember the last few. Here's what I've made:

herb crusted steak with smokey balsamic onions
chicken parmesan
cheesey crock pot chicken (you wouldn't believe how good this is)
chicken kiev (another really yummy one)

That's all I can remember. This year I'm thinking of going with this new meatloaf recipe I've found. I've had a hankerin' for meatloaf for the past few years....but not just any meatloaf. My MOM'S meatloaf! I tried several different recipes (and, I'm ashamed to say, I tried some frozen ones too...Yick!) and none of them were good. Then I was watching the food network and saw this recipe for meatloaf and said to myself "okay...I'm trying this last one. If it doesn't turn out right....THAT'S IT for meatloaf for me!"....and wouldn't you was the best!!!

I'm thinking of making the meatloaf, which is surprisingly simple to make. I'm also considering (if I make the meatloaf) to make this yummy mashed potatoes (Yes, with actual potatoes this time!) that has parmesan and mozzarella cheese and some other stuff and then.....oh crust it with parmesan breadcrumbs. It. Is. So. Yummy.

I don't know what else would go with that. What do y'all think? About everything. I don't know. I've got to decide soon so I can make whatever a few times without CG and me getting so sick of it we don't want it when I make it for everyone.

Enough whining from me.

I'll leave you with this....

It's a freakin' Praying Mantis! He (or she...I think it was a "he" though...he looked like a "Louie")....or "Louie" decided that they wanted to hang out on our lawn mower cover. I thought he was cool. There was a little caterpiller chilling on there with him too (I'm not sure if he's in the picture....I named him "Stan").

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