Sunday, November 12, 2006

A very happy birthday party

Well, the party was a smashing success, if I may say so - as the not even british hostess!
All you who raved about the food? May we all please take a quiet moment to praise costco? Seriously. I do not think I have ever, EVER done such an easy meal that then turned out incredibly, edibly good. And I do mean those two things connected. I have had easier meals, and I have had more delicious meals, but this one was embarrassingly simple for the payoff. How simple?
Well, perhaps if I had not underestimated the amount of frosting and time needed to engineer the horizontal separation and then the frosting and 'decorating' of a vanilla bean cake baked in a giant roasting pan - with a baby on my hip - and then become immensely behind in the rest of the kitchen duties, it may have been a bit more simple. Oy.
But really, previously I have had very lucky potlucks, or very labor intensive food prep on my part. But I sold out completely this time to more pre-made meal assistance than ever in my party history (except for the cake. never the cake.) and had some exquisite additions from friends, and we had a great meal. In my 'how much work did I do and how much fun can I have' hostess kind of review of 'a great meal', of course.
Costco, thank you for the blue cheese pecan dip, which appears to be made primarily out of 4 deliciously high fat ingredients (mayo, sour cream, blue cheese, really had to wonder?). Next time I may cave to your processing fees and buy your vegetable tray as well, but TJ's has all the same veggies, but organic. But I forgive you because your pre-marinated turkey breast was perfect with TJ's box-o-stuffing and pretty damn easy to cook, too. Which matters when the cook also wants to make and drink lemon drops. Oh wow. mmmm. I will share my recipe for lemon drops later. And I do have a secret! When I am running out of posting ideas, grudges and love later in November.
Did you know that costco sells gravy?
I had such a great time because the food part was so easy! Thanks to the friends who brought mashed potatoes, bean salad, shrimp platter, cheese and bread, made the menu that much more varied.
The weather never cleared up enough to dry things out and hang out outside with a fire, and I was terrified of the impact the kids would have on the supergirl's teenytiny bedroom adjacent to our bedroom/family room/full of more toys room (house is small.) - but they were amazingly subdued for hours with a game of stuffed-animal-chucking (and I thought those things were useless), and just when things started to reach critical mass (there were about 12 of them), my dear sainted friend, blessed Juju showed up with her face paints and balloons and took the banshee right out of them!
Bubbles' current favorite foods are the ones I made everyone eat for dinner. His favorite things to do are go to music class with me when I teach, or to rock out on the vast array of instruments we have for him here at home. For the ceremonial singing of the birthday song, I passed out maraca eggs for everyone to sing a 'cha-cha-cha' version. The effect was quite festive.
Bubbles again loved his yummy vanilla cake and was feeling generous enough to share.

After the cake, we had a jam session with kids and adults, which was a dream
come true for our little guy.
He stayed up way past his bedtime.. rockin' out and drumming with the gang, then climbing quietly into his uncle's lap and contentedly watching the rest of us play and dance around him as his eyelids grew heavier and I eventually carried him off to bed. I love that kid.

So, it was a smashing success, as you can see.
My favorite moments?
#2 When at one point I realized that the two parties going on between our house and dh's cabin/office were primarily this: dh's crowing about his great find and his captive audience surrounding his new/old stereo, AND a group of primarily women guests gathered around 'my' computer screen (on the kitchen table) reading the birthday story. ha. kinda funny if you appreciate irony.

#1 My baby feeding me cake.


Green Kitchen said...

Looks and sounds of a happy day. :)

mamadaisy said...

Happy Birthday Bubbles! (and mama, too!) the party looks and sounds like it was wonderful. I am a big fan of balancing the joy-to-work ratio for all my gatherings. good for you!

nakedjen said...

it was a veryveryvery fun party. i had an awesome time and i'm so glad that i came. thank you for having me!

i had no idea that dip was from costco...until now. and well, i will be following your lead and serving it myself in the future. because it tasted that good.

and your efforts for the cake? 110% totally worth it. it was so yummy!

Elizabeth said...

Right, so Kaitlyn's birthday is Saturday, and I have PLANNED NOTHING. We don't have Costco or Trader Joe's, but we have Sam's Club and Gordon Food Service. I'm thinking I need to pay them a visit!

The baby is, as always, ADORABLE. Congratulations on a successful party!

bobbymacbean said...

Hi - Hopefully you'll be notified of this post. I got a Blue Cheese Pecan Dip from Costco around the holidays in 2009. It was very good but I didn't keep track of the maker and they didn't have it the next year and haven't seen it so far this year. I was wondering if you have that info written down somewhere and wouldn't mind sharing if you do ? - Thanks and Happy Holidays - Brian - bobbymacbean ya hoo