Ian and I invited our friends Marcia and Dan to join us for a sumptuous lunch on Christmas Day. Marcia drove from home in Hopkins and swung through Grandy to pick up Dan. They arrived an hour before we expected them, but being good family friends they tiptoed over the still wet kitchen floor and kept talking as I did the last bits of dusting.
Marcia, who graduated last weekend with her master's in Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, is already an accomplished massage therapist, fab cook and master cookie/candy maker. She brought us an oval-shaped plate of sweet assortments. I look forward to eating the toffee every Christmas. This year she added 2 new recipes; Oreo truffles and an almond bark type of white chocolate delight that I passed on to her from a Facebook group I belong to:
Melt a package of white chocolate chips in the microwave or in a double boiler. Stir in about a cup of dried cranberries and about a cup of shelled pistachios. Spread on wax paper and chill. When hard break up into bite sized pieces and enjoy.
Both were delish!
Dan is a self-taught master gardener, who works his butt off in our many gardens during the warm weather. We spent some time thumbing through hobby farm and garden magazines talking about the raised beds, split cedar fencing and the many varieties of sunflowers we’ll work on in the spring.
Son Richard and I both worked nights; him 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the local casino, me 11 p.m. to 9 a.m. Christmas morning. Since I did not get home 'til 9:30 and Richard was fast asleep, Ian had the lunch menu planned and ready to go; smoked ham, a whole roasted chicken, cheesy mashed potatoes, gravy, fresh green beans in portabella mushroom cream sauce and a bagged green salad that I adore from Costco. Truth be told, while I do have the odd Martha Stewart inspired moments, Ian is the better cook. I had contemplated making a pumpkin pie, but there was no space to enjoy it, so it was voted down. That fact alone should attest to how full we were.
We talked, laughed, ate, drank, then cleared dishes and started the dishwasher's first load. Our dogs got to lick clean pots and pans. I had set aside leftovers for Dan that were clearly too near the floor and our 15-year-old poodle, Tucker, decided he'd help himself to a bit of Christmas cheer until he was busted. Thankfully, we salvaged both the leftovers, which were rewrapped, and Tucker's age-sensitive stomach.
It was just shy of 3 p.m. when the 'must sleep' wave washed over me and we said our good-byes. It was a nice day, well spent. Merry Christmas and God bless.
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