Our Christmas party was wonderful last night. My brother, Dennis, his two sons, Cody and Barry and Barry's wife, Miho joined us to celebrate the happy occasion. Mom especially loves having Miho here because Miho is Japanese and can speak with mom in their native language. Our only unhappiness was that my sister-in-law, Nancy had to work. I should boycott Walmart for doing this to us.
We had traditional ham for the first time because it happened to be extremely reasonable (cheap) at Foodland. WHAT a deal! I think it was 97 cents a pound for the shank and $1.17 a pound for the butt. We picked up the shank but a shopper stopped us and insisted we should get the butt because we'd get a lot more meat without contending with the bone. After that long conversation, we decided to go with the butt and put our shank back. Just then, the store staffer watching us said, "Did you know that the butt is better? ....." OK, OK!!! We bought the smallest butt which was still a huge 11.6 pounds. We looked on line for a pineapple glaze recipe. Then Art hacked that humongous hunk of butt in half to make cooking it faster, and stuck it covered in the turkey roaster. We added the glaze a half hour before it was done.
And you know.... it was great! Everybody loved it. Mom made kinpira gobo (teriyaki burdock) and macaroni salad. I added a somen noodle green salad. Dennis brought a green bean casserole. Everybody took home a TON of left overs. We had some tonight and it was just as yummy!
Miho and Barry brought two adorable and utterly delicious Christmas cakes.
Barry, Cody and their brother, Shawn who is performing in Waikiki and could not be with us are all very close. It does my heart good to see the three handsome brothers, so very different but so devoted to each other. Whenever they're together, they act like it could be their last time in each other's company. It's beautiful. My children, Tif and Jon have a very close relationship, too. Siblings are such a wonderful, glorious thing.
My dear friends, Dave and Diane brought over a fruit tart pie that was out of this world.
Dennis did the honors. Are you wondering why I'm only posting photos of the desserts? I don't know. That's when I remembered to take a photo, I guess. I totally forgot to take a photo of the butt of ham.
This morning something occurred to me. I asked mom if she always made us put away the tree each year right after Christmas. In Illinois, I always insisted the tree be taken down right after the holiday. I don't know why. There was just this compelling force that made me insist on it. The kids wanted to keep it up longer but I felt it had to be put away.
"Of course," she said. "It's important to put things away and clean up everything before the New Year. You don't want to take old debts, celebration things, grudges, (dirt?) into the New Year. You must go into the New Year clean."
Now that I'm living with my mom, I'm finding an explanation for a lot of the things I do. All those quirks I have... it's Mom's fault.
So there you have it, we took down the tree and put it away in the closet. It was amazingly quick.
Everything was put away so we went to the After Christmas sales today and got some fabulous deals! I bought a NEW $79.99 12-quart stock pot at Macy's for $34.99. Woo hoo! I also bought a NEW $16.00 calendar at Borders for $7.00 and NEW holiday wrapping tissue for the NEW coming year.
OK... that's that.
Sigh... now comes the old cleaning.