Random Thoughts in No Particular Order
The last couple weeks have been a bit crazy, and this weekend is going to be more scheduled than I'd like. All good things, but lots of places to be at specific times.
But a couple catch-up items:
Fair-Trade Chocolate: My Halloween chocolate came in, and I have two observations. First, being an American used to supersizing and all-you-can-eat buffets, I was surprised at the size of the mini chocolates. They're smaller than the Hershey's miniatures that I was assuming they would resemble. I think each kid needs a few of these. And when the two bags I ordered got here, M talked me into letting him try *just one* piece. And I tried just one piece. Which has turned into sneaking pieces when he's out of the room because I swear this is the best chocolate I've had: rich and full without being either wimpy like your drugstore milk chocolates or bitter and harsh like your gourmet variety. M wants to take some to his pre-school Halloween party. So all things considered, I just ordered four more bags, which brings our Halloween candy expenditure to somewhere around the cost of the complete Bobby Darin CD set I've been coveting but too cheap to buy.
Lemon-Basil Martinis: The limoncello is finished, and brother, it smells great. I haven't had a chance to pick up the Miller's gin or fresh basil, but I have a feeling my virgin batch of lemony basily goodness is going to be whipped up this weekend.
Lamb: My half a lamb will be ready for me to pick up this weekend, and I'm so excited. I've been trying to clear out our packed freezer over the last two weeks so we'd have room for half a lamb. I got special lamb seasoning last weekend. We are gonna eat well. The experience reminds me of the farmer's market in Brooklyn I frequented every week. Morehouse Farm, producers of the best merino wool available, were there every week, and I think I knit through their entire stock. They weren't a sentimental bunch, as they also sold lamb meat. I always felt a tad guilty around Easter: "Yeah, I'd like this Contessa Shawl lace kit and a leg of lamb."
Knitting: Speaking of which, I finished up some work knitting and started a new hat for T, which I can't wait to finish. Phil thinks it's akin to wearing holiday applique sweatshirts, but I disagree. What do you think: saucy or silly? Check out the hat here.
Tallies: In November, I'm going to start tallying up how many nights I make our family dinner at home, how many nights we go to non-chain restaurants, how many we go to chain restaurants, and how many we slap something together like the always popular weiners-in-Spaghetti-o's.
I realized that I didn't write enough about New York and Dan and Amy's. It's late, so it'll have to wait again. But one little gem: They live in an amazing circa 1920s house on Staten Island. They've done a ton of work, and the place is cozy and inviting. The big feature, though, is a bar, and I mean a real bar, down in the basement. That's where the photos on this entry were taken. The bar room has a sliding door that can close it off from the rest of the basement. Very mysterious. But perhaps not. The house was built during Prohibition by a political fundraiser who potentially liquored up and then shook down potential contributors in his secret speakeasy.
So if you're sitting in a basement filled with toys, dirty laundry, and a dusty computer airmoire, as I am right now, I leave you one last jealousy-inducing note: