I’m re-posting this. Originally posted over on the other Jen’s blog.

As I mentioned in the previous post, we hosted our first ever Christmas Eve! We spent most of Christmas Eve day corralling children so that one or the other of us could either cook (FatJ) or clean (me.) I borrowed a tablecloth from Jen, set the table with my Grandma’s china, got a centerpiece from Spruce, and had place cards made by the resident three year old. We had a total of four guests. I didn’t have to do ANY of the cooking for the meal itself (I did, however, provide us with a plethora of cookies for dessert), which was simply wonderful. FaJt planned and cooked the entire meal. He went with a standing rib roast, mashed potatoes, a green bean/red pepper dish, and popovers. It was all very delish.


On to gifts… we received a number of kitchen/cooking related gifts this year (much to our surprise and pleasure!) FatJ’s parents gave us this (!): Le Creuset oval french oven (I think. Not sure on specs exactly.) Did you know you can find deals on these things at Marshalls?
We also got this: Oxo SoftWorks carving and cutting board. This is going to come in handy when we need a flat, smooth surface for rolling out pie crust or cookies or a pizza crust. We have tiled countertops which I HATE because junk gets in the cracks and it’s just so yucky.

FatJ’s stocking stuffer from me Santa was this: Waring Pro immersion blender. We’ve had one too many times lately where we’ve taken a boiling hot soup off the stovetop and carefully dumped it into the food processor for pureeing. Not exactly the safest.

And in my stocking I found this: J.A. Henckels boning knife. A boning knife appearing in my stocking?? It was just for show for the kids. FatJ failed to get me any stocking stuffers, and thought Ryan would find it odd if Mommy didn’t get anything from Santa in her stocking, so FatJ took this boning knife that he had purchased FOR HIMSELF when he was buying a knife gift for his uncle, and put it in my stocking.

Something I desperately, desperately needed were new cookie sheets. Jen had sent me this article, FatJ read it, and immediately went out shopping. Did you know Nordic Ware is made here in the Twin Cities? Did you know they have a factory store in St. Louis Park? These cookie sheets are nice. Too bad I’m tired of making cookies or I’d try them out.

Last but not least, our toaster saga. The toaster I bought to replace our 10 year old one was a piece of junk. The inner mechanism was bent, so one piece of toast would only go halfway down, thus ending up being only half toasted. I returned it the other day, and today FatJ went out (to Macy’s! to buy a toaster!) and spent what I consider to be w-a-y too much money for a toaster. This thing better make good toast.

Some other fun morsels of goodness included chocolate bars infused with interesting flavors like lime and chipotle; tea; and meat rubs. Oh, and holiday M&M’s. We mustn’t forget the M&Ms.