Thursday, December 31, 2009

to hell in a handbasket

Crackle, crackle...

Like most people, P and I have been stuffed silly and giving our livers a major workout for the past month or so. We have the best intentions for a healthy beginning to the New Year, but have decided that if you're already headed to hell, might as well finish with a bang. Right?

Last year we braved a literal blizzard to attend a NYE party. While fun, we decided to stay in this year and model our celebration after NYE 2007/2008. I am hereby publicly committing to the following menu of sin to finish out 2009 in the throes of pure gluttony...

L&P's Decadence for a New Decade Menu

Elderflower cocktails or spritzer
Elderflower soda + vodka = Yay, vodka!
Jan 1: Wine plus seltzer ane elderflower soda proved to be much lighter.

For nibbling…
Jan 1: Just could not fathom adding more fat when the time came, so we opted for olives and cheese instead.

Baked Artichokes with Crab and Sourdough Stuffing

Crab cakes stuffed into a vegetable. Woo hoo surf and turf!

Jan 1: We made these and they were delish. We also made impromptu crab cakes witht the extra stuffing.

Mushroom ravioli in sage and brown butter
Yay, prepared food! MMmm, butter.

Jan 1: Soooo, forgot to buy the sage. Raviolis resided in plain brown butter with a little thyme.

Warm Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad
Salad is healthy. Good.
Veuve Cliquot
'Nuff said.

Chocolate Soufflés with raspberries
I salut you, Trader Joe, and your delicious frozen desserts.


Digestif Calvados served by the light of an ambient fire YouTube video… Jan 1: Not even close.

Can we eat it? Will we survive? Will we ourselves be certifiable foie gras in the end? Does PETA hate us? What are you doing to kick 2009 in the rear?


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

better than a pile of puppies

Sometimes, when I am in a foul mood, I wish I had a pile of puppies to snuggle. My two nieces are a way better solution. Not to compare them to puppies, but it's true.


scenes from a NoCo holiday


Friday, December 25, 2009

peace & joy

Happy holidays and all the best for the New Year!


Saturday, December 19, 2009

welcome to the 21st century

RIP, TV: 1997-2009

When I was 18 years old and preparing to head off to college, I went shopping with my mom to buy a TV for my dorm room. Woo! I was looking at little 16" sets, but my mother wisely said to me: "You should get a bigger TV. Someday you will have an apartment and you will want to have a bigger TV."

So true, so true. I bought a giant 21".

12 1/2 years later, my TV has lived with me in many apartments, with many roommates, we got married and belonged to Pete, too.

Over the past few months, I noticed that TV was getting some gray hairs. Strange bands of white in the top left corner of the screen, a purple glow in the bottom right corner. I feared TV was not long for this world....

On Friday, December 18, 2009, Pete said to me: "Does the color look kind of weird, or is it just me...?" I was in denial (we were watching a sort of sci-fi thing, so maybe everyone was supposed to look purple/green). Alas, he was right. Things did look kind of weird. In fact, they looked really weird. RIP, TV....

We now have a Christmas SALE 32" flat screen. I can see people's pores. Everything is so crisp and clear I feel like I'm wearing amber vision shades. I feel like a fool for defending my 12 1/2 yr old TV against the HD for so long. And yet...

I miss you, TV. You will always live on in my memory (and in my office until we learn how to recycle you...).


Sunday, December 13, 2009

cassoulet forever

Yes, it really was that good.

It's a bit disorienting to be cooking up a huge hunk of pork shoulder, a bunch of chorizo, and half a bottle of wine at 9am, but hey, that's what you've got to do to make a really kick a$* cassoulet.

Who is this "cassoulet" you speak of?

Eliz came over to help us celebrate the noble pig in all it's deliciousness. The dish contains pork in no less than 3 forms, so you know it's got to be good. And... it was. Hopefully, it will continue to be as delicious for a long time, since there are still 3 lbs remaining.

Vive le cassoulet!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

let there be light

This little light of mine...

Right now, the wind is howling outside my window. Quite frankly, it's pretty craptastic weather we're having. Oh, how I love the winter. Was reaching a new level of cranky when I suddenly remembered this shot from our post-Thanksgiving insta-transformation to Christmas. Heeeee.... That's better.

Looking forward to flannel PJs and Harry Potter tonight. To all my friends in the Northeast: it has begun -- let's have drinks.


Sunday, December 6, 2009

a great accomplishment

Contrary to popular belief....

Contrary to popular belief, this photo above is not London Bridge, but Tower Bridge. Oh yes, you know what this means... After 3 years of attemts to visit I finally got my Tower of London trip. I even passed up the Fortnum & Mason hamper display for this, so those of you who know my hamper love will understand the gravity of this visit.

It's good to be a raven if you live here.

After a Yeoman's wander with a beefeater, JW and I checked out the crown jewels including the first and second largest diamonds in the world, Anne Bolyn's resting place, the bloody tower, Traitors Gate, 3 of the 7 spoiled ravens on the premise, and 2 gift shops.

[Note: It could have been a "tour with a Yeoman Warder," instead of the tour being a "Yeoman's Wander," but I am not good with accents as many of you know...]

Yes, I am quite pleased with myself.

Back home safe and sound. Jet lag has woken me up early for a productive morning of Christmas prep and some bloggy catch-up. Missed you.