Thursday, November 10, 2011

November birthdays

The beginning of November is always busy because of the birthdays.  No sooner is Halloween over and we're into deep fall and bday season.  (People must be busy in February. Just sayin.)  Something I didn't mention in my Halloween post is the dinner we had with our friends Mark and Dina the night before Halloween. For three years now, we've had dinner together on Mischief Night.  So much has changed in those three years. During the first dinner, I had only written 1/3 of my dissertation and Mark and Dina hadn't celebrated their first wedding anniversary yet.  During the second dinner, I was officially done with the diss and Dina was days away from realizing she was pregnant with her first baby. And now at this third dinner, the baby joined us for his first Mischief Night dinner.

Dinner was on a Sunday night and I needed to start thinking about what we were doing for my mom's birthday at the end of the week.  Although my mom elected to have dinner at a restaurant, I was still in charge of providing a dessert.

Here's the thing: my mom doesn't really like dessert per se.  What she likes is fruit dressed up as dessert.  This is a complex matter that I still can't understand.  I like fruit. I eat fruit. Fruit is not a dessert. There: I said it. (I can feel Erin clicking on the "Comments" as I type this.)  No birthday cake for this momma.  She couldn't pick between Lidia's baked pears or "Vice President George Bush's Apple Crisp" (a recipe she pulled from a magazine in the late-80s), so I made both.

A word to the wise: you can buy mini bottles of moscato at the liquor store.  Of course, you can always buy a large bottle of moscato, but that stuff will sit around awhile because how much boozed-up white grape juice can a person drink?  Also, I had to substitute seedless raspberry jam for the apricot because I opened up my apricot jam ... and discovered a sizeable mold colony in the jar.  Oops. No time to go buy more, so raspberry had to do the trick.  I don't think it changed the flavor that much.  btw, you need vanilla ice cream for this--so much better with the ice cream.  (My mom would disagree.)

I have to admit that I do love this apple crisp. Because it has so much butter and sugar topping,  I guess I can technically count this as A Real Dessert.

I wish I taken a pre-oven picture of this.  The apples are piled so high that they stand at least 8 or 9 inches tall in the pie dish.  As they bake, they slowly sink down.  (Also, make sure you put the pie plate on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Otherwise, everything will goo all over your oven.) You can see that a chunk of the topping slid off in the back while baking. It became glued to my oven rack and I had to pick it out with tongs. Oh well.

The fluff collar is outta control.
People who know me also know that I have no qualms in regards to eating dessert for breakfast. (That being said, I hated eating breakfast for dinner when I was kid. Even French toast, which is basically dessert for dinner.  What a weird kid.)  Since I've been really, really, REALLY little, all I want when I wake up in the morning is something sweet.  But all things sweet were forbidden for breakfast in my mom's house when I was little.  (You can imagine how rebellious I felt eating chocolate croissants every morning when Ron and I went to Italy in college. In Europe, it's NORMAL to eat dessert for breakfast.)

You can also imagine my surprise when my mom texted me the following morning and said, "I'm eating apple crisp for breakfast."  To which I replied, "DESSERT FOR BREAKFAST??? HYPOCRITE!  I'm eating a Reese's peanut butter cup right now."  To which my mom replied, "Ugh. Apples are better."

This will remain a fundamental disagreement in our household until the end of time.

Ron's birthday was earlier this week. The poor guy not only did not take the day off (it was gorgeously sunny and 70 degrees!) but he's also on call this week and LITERALLY walks around with the freakin phone glued to his head.  (I just found out an hour ago that he was up most of the night on the phone in the kitchen.  I had no idea.) We had dinner at his parents' house on Tuesday, and I'm still trying to recover from my mashed-potatoes-and-gorgeous-green-beans-with-mushrooms-and-walnuts coma.

Who's blowing out the candles? The Bumble or Ron?
A word about the T-shirt: The Bumble is Ron's favorite character from Rudolph.  When I was a little kid, I terrified of this creature. I would hide behind the couch (not joking) when he would appear on the screen.  When I saw the Bumble T-shirt at Target last year, I FREAKED out and immediately bought one for his birthday.  He wears this shirt almost every day.  I didn't actually think he would like it, let alone wear it. It was $8, so I didn't really care.  But it's his favorite T-shirt.  Crack me up.

*sigh* I still have so much grading to do.  The only thing that is motivating me to get crackin on that is: If can just grade 26 more exams today, then I WON'T HAVE ANY HOMEWORK THIS WEEKEND.

Actually, crap. I take that back. I (me) have a paper due on November 15th.  CRAP.  Yes, I do have homework this weekend. I could cry just thinking about this realization.

Well, if I learned nothing else this summer: "I'll just think about that tomorrow."

(Ok, can I just tell you that it's taken me TWO HOURS to get this freakin post POSTED because Blogger IS THE WORST and Firefox is FIRST RUNNER UP FOR THE WORST???  TWO HOURS OF MY LIFE THAT I WILL NEVER GET BACK!  Why is posting on Blogger SUCH A  PAIN IN THE ASS?? WHYYYY???)

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