Merr’ Chrimmus, indeed.

I wrapped most of my Christmas gifts this morning around 03:00 before I went to bed, and set those for the immediate family outside my door so they wouldn’t have to wait for me to wake up to open them. There was no way in hell I was getting up before 09:00.

I got my mother Isabel Allende’s The House of the Spirits, Michael Crichton’s Prey, and The Very Best of Sting & the Police (of which I am mos def going to have to make a copy; I love me some Sting).

My father is as difficult to shop for as Dr. 7, but I got him a gift certificate to iTunes that should keep him satiated for quite some time.

And I ain’t shoveling that damn driveway anymore until I need to go somewhere—like back to Rose. Which may be happening entirely too early (like Wednesday) on account of the weather.

My mother is currently pissed because her Amazon shipment for me hasn’t come in yet; to top it off, it looks like it won’t be coming until around January 3—long after I’ll be settled in at Rose again.

She did, however, get me some clothing: two knitted turtleneck ponchos (one tan, one black; can’t find a picture of the brand she got) with accompanying appropriate shirts. Interesting; I hope I can pull the style off.

Now I just need to be able to leave the house (without chipping at the ice in the driveway) so I can have an excuse to wear them…

Oh! And I got the awesomest book from Dulin: Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life. When he asked me what I wanted for Chrimmus, my response was:

Hmm… Find me a fascinating biography or autobiography—no shadow-written political books, although political figures are fine (particularly those in Latin American countries or Soviet bloc[-esque] countries).

😀 Have fun…

I’d say he did wonderfully…

My auntie Peaches didn’t make it over for dinner (we are getting damned frustrated dealing with this woman…), but we made good food anyway. I whipped up homemade garlic mashed potatoes and made auntie Peaches’ cornbread stuffing (recipe below, in the extension of the entry). Mother-dear made auntie Lisa’s sweet potato casserole (recipe also below), broccoli, and macaroni and cheese from scratch. The Old Man was typically annoying by eating all the yummy topping off the sweet potato casserole and leaving just the potatoes, the dirty bum.

Because my family is one of television-watchers, dinner was accompanied with the mandatory viewing of—of all movies—Kingdom Come. For all of the childhood jokes my friends made about my mother reminding them of Whoopi Goldberg (?!?), that movie is the one where the similarities in personality are apparent even to me. Weird.

Ah, well. Christmas is good. Particularly after a call from Mae, a chat yesterday with Dr. 7 (in which he pointed out a game that would be perfect for the likes of me), e-mails abound from friends, and my first-ever comment from Dr. 7. Now, whether this occurred because Luke isn’t around to pass along his commentary or because of some change in opinion about my blog, I don’t know.

To make the sweet potato casserole (diabetics beware) you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup white sugar (please don’t ask why it gotta be white…)
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 stick of butter/margerine
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cans (16 ounces each) of sweet potatoes

Preparation:

  1. Drain sweet potatoes.
  2. Put in a large bowl and mash with a fork (heh!) or potato masher (that’s more like it).
  3. Add eggs, sugar, spices, and vanilla.
  4. Stir with spoon until it’s all mixed together.

Now, that sits while the topping is being made. (Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, while you’re at it.) Ingredients for that:

  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter/margerine
  • 3 tablespoons of flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (crushed, preferably)

Preparation (for just the topping!):

  1. Mix everything together except flour.
  2. After mixing, put flour in mixture.
  3. If the mixture is still very wet, add more flour. You want the topping to be dry and thick.

Combining and cooking:

  1. Lightly grease a 13-inch by 9-inch pan. (This probably isn’t necessary if you use a good non-stick pan.)
  2. Place (like concrete?) the sweet potato mixture in the pan.
  3. Evenly distribute the topping on top of the mixture.
  4. Bake in oven for 45 minutes.

The cornbread stuffing is just as simple. Ingredients:

  • Two boxes Stove Top Chicken Stuffing
  • One box of Glory cornbread
  • Two cans (16 ounces each) of chicken broth
  • One can of Cream of Mushroom soup.

Preheat yo’ oven to about 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Preparation:

  1. Cook the cornbread using the directions on the box.
  2. In a large rectangular piece of ovenable cookware (like a 13-inch by 9-inch pan), crumble it up.
  3. Cook the Stove Top stuffing according to the directions on that box.
  4. Add that to the crumbled cornbread.
  5. Add about a can and a half (or two cans, if you want it a little wetter) of the chicken broth.
  6. Add the cream of mushroom soup (plus slightly less than the recommended amount of water, if it’s condensed).
  7. Mix well.
  8. Bake until it’s sufficiently warm and to top is slightly browned.

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