Thanksgiving in the new kitchen...
We had my side of the family over for Thanksgiving dinner last night, and it was a big test because, you see, although we have already used the oven once, it was for a sticky rib dish, a very quick and easy recipe. Not a honkin' 9 pound rib roast. So our gas range was still a roast-virgin.
We thought we would do a very straightforward meal - roast beef, roast fall vegetables, starting with a simple Caesar salad. My sister was bringing ice wine from her very recent trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake; my brother was bringing dessert (he and his wife are great at making dessert). We were all set.
The perfect kitchen utensil? A temperature probe; a PROGRAMMABLE temperature probe. I poked it into the roast, popped it in the oven, attached the probe to the receptacle, and with the push of a few buttons, presto - convection roast on auto-pilot. The oven would cook the roast until the perfect doneness, and then shut off on its own. My kind of cooking!
The perfect kitchen TOOL? Yours truly. My parboiled potatoes and yams quickly became mush as I overboiled them. Either I was lulled by the comfort of knowing the oven would take care of the cornerstone of the meal, or my brain was just comfortably numb. I'm still getting to know the power of the gas elements. Let's just say we're not exactly comfortable with each other yet. . So while at the top of the pot the potatoes were perfectly firm and ready for roasting, the bottom half were past the point of no return. I thought I might salvage the yams by tossing them around the roast with some carrots. But alas, I put the carrots in too early and they were frick-a-zeed by the time the roast was done.
Mashed potatoes and stir-fried broccoli with asparagus and mushrooms became our last-minute substitutions. At least I had a plan B.
It was so nice to have a house with kids and babies in it again. My nieces are the most adorable little girls. They are smiling and responsive now - it's just amazing to see the little changes in them in such a short time!
Courtesy of my relatives' well wishes and gifts this weekend, was the inescapable fact that I have another birthday coming up very quickly. When I was in my 20's it was great cause for celebration because as far as I was concerned, any time there was an opportunity for a party, I was your party girl. My 30's, they were pretty good too, although a bit tougher in the later years as I approached the big 4-0. Now that I'm in my 30-tens, it's actually getting rather painful.
I suppose I'm not doing too badly. When my teenage niece comments on my jeans, that's gotta be a good thing, no? Thanks Holly - I love you extra for that!
In any case, to ease my pain, this drizzly morning I went to Bobos Spa & Nails salon for their Tuesday Special - Manicure and Pedicure for the price of a Pedicure alone. I've been searching high and low for the latest O.P.I. shade called "My Private Jet", a sparkly gray hue for fall, and lucky me, they had it at the salon! And I also splurged when she asked whether I wanted the Dead Sea SaltScrub for my aching legs and feet. What a lovely experience - pleasant ladies who were professional and friendly, sitting in a lovely massage chair... then getting caught up on the latest gossip via People and In Style magazines, sipping green tea while I waited for my digits and toes to dry. If I didn't have to pick up little Diva by 11:30 AM sharp, I could have gladly stayed there another couple of hours!
When my hands were done, my first impression was I wasn't too sure about the colour. To be honest, it almost looked TAUPE! That's a nice colour on Asian skin, now, isn't it? But once I got outside, my fingers took on a life of their own, all sparkly, not in a drug store pinky-gum shade, but quite elegant on my shorter nails. When I got home, I promptly went on eBay to take advantage of our above par dollar and presto (yes, I'm liking that word lately - my weird personal ode to mindfreak) - I should have that bottle of polish here in a matter of days.
My toesies were diggin' the "Lincoln Park at Midnight" deep purple.
I think you've got an idea of where you can find me on the odd Tuesday morning from now on...