24 November 2007

Perfect Results

Since it's still Thanksgiving weekend and I just finished entering the two dressing recipes I cooked this year into MacGourmet, I've decided to post them. This is the first year that I was pleased with the results -- both of the dressings turned out perfectly.

Oyster Dressing
from the kitchen of dminmem

- 1 package Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup celery, thinly sliced
- 1 cup onion, finely diced
- 2 cans chicken broth
- 2 1/2 pints oysters, strained, cleaned, sorted

Preheat oven at 350° F. Strain oysters over a bowl. Reserve liquor. Rinse and inspect each oyster for shells. Pour stuffing into large bowl. Pour in chicken broth and oyster liquor. Add celery and onion. Pour egg over ingredients. Pour in melted butter. Add oysters. Fold all ingredients together until well combined. Spray 8 x 11 x 2 casserole with non-stick spray. Pour mixture into casserole and gently pat until slightly packed and even. Cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes.

Cornbread Dressing
from the kitchen of dminmem

- 1 package Pepperidge Farm Cornbread Stuffing
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup celery, thinly sliced
- 1 cup onion, finely diced
- 2 cans chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon rubbed sage

Preheat oven at 350° F. Combine all ingredients in large bowl. Gently fold together until evenly moist. Spray 8 x 11 x 2 casserole with non-stick spray. Pour mixture into casserole and gently pat until slightly packed and even. Cover with foil. Bake for 30 minutes.

If you try these, I feel sure you'll like them.


...all my troubles seemed so far away...

Just kidding. I didn't do too much around here yesterday. With Cameron leaving the house at 7:30 for a 4-day trip, I was feeling a little blue. We ordinarily buy our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving, but I won't buy it without him. So, early in the morning I finished cleaning the kitchen and sorted through some e-mail. I ended up doing some work at home rather than going into the office. I ate a piece of mincemeat pie for breakfast while watching CNN.

Later, a small bowl of oyster dressing for lunch was good while watching 1994's "It Runs in the Family" (also known as "My Summer Story"), the second movie based upon Jean Shepards's semi-autobiographical stories of growing up in Hammond, Indiana. To me, this movie wasn't as good as the 1983 release of his first one, "A Christmas Story," based upon a story that first appeared in the December 1965 issue of Playboy, "Red Ryder Nails the Hammond Kid", .

Next, I watched "Hustle and Flow." Because I previously had the attitude that I didn't want to see "gansta" life on the big screen I avoided seeing it when it was released. The fact that I actually liked the movie surprised me. There were aspects of it that I found very disturbing, while at other times I felt empathy for the characters in the story. Plus, I saw bits and pieces of Memphis in the film that were familiar to me which is always fun.

Next was "One Last Thing" with Cynthia Nixon and Gina Gershon. This was the second time I've watched the movie in the last couple of weeks. It's a great movie about a teen's final wish after he learns he's been diagnosed with terminal cancer and what he does to make that wish come true. Grab the Kleenex, especially for the end where he's reunited with his father.

Since it was around 4 P.M., I got up and fed the dogs, made a small plate of turkey, asparagus, mashed potatoes and gravy and oyster dressing for myself and watched the local news, which was riddled with "breaking news," including the third, fourth or fifth story of robberies, domestic violence and shootings I'd seen in the three days I've been home. Very uplifting.

Knowing that the Christmas season is officially upon us, I pulled the remaining Franciscan Desert Rose from the china cabinet and stacked it with the pieces we used for Thanksgiving which were already on the dining room table, making ready for the Lenox Holiday china that Cameron bought me for Christmas 5 years ago. I'll go into the attic today and pull down the large "dishes" box we bought at U-Haul a few years ago and put our Pier 1 red, green and blue striped champagne flutes, martini and wine stems in the cabinet as well, allowing me to store our usual cabinet inhabitants and get the dining room table cleared off. Then, I'll take out the leaves and remove the pads and Thanksgiving will be officially done.

Maybe then I'll listen to some Christmas music. I'm sure, by then, I'll be more in the spirit of the season.

Around 9 P.M., I was channel surfing and ended up watching "Indie Sex: Extremes" on IFC (the Independent Film Channel). It's a four-part series -- this was part four." I haven't seen the other three.

It was a documentary featuring Dita Von Teese that looked at sex in film throughout history with commentary from writers, actors, producers, directors and film critics about whether it's art or porn, whether they're pushing the envelope for the sake of pushing the envelope, depicting life as it actually is, whether specific examples of sex added to the story or were simply gratuitous, and whether simulated sex can tell the story as well as something more explicit. Specific examples were mentioned, including "Caligula," "Shortbus," "Myra Breckinridge," "Lolita," and "9 Songs." It was interesting to listen to each of the viewpoints.

After the credits for Indie Sex there was a spot for the IFC Friday series "Grind House" and "The Henry Rollins Show." I like Henry Rollins, so I decided to hang out and watch his show.

He opened with this episode's "Teeing Off," a commentary on musicians and bands "selling out" and being able to distinguish between bands getting paid twenty years after they recorded the music they wanted to record and bands who actually do "sell out," recording what they're told to record. His celebrity guest was Gene Simmons of KISS fame and his musical guests were Queens of the Stone Age. I enjoyed the interview with Simmons as well as the music of the guest band.

The animated series "Samurai 7" followed Rollins' show. Me: completely disinterested. Because I wanted to watch tonight's Grind House feature, "Bully", I kept an eye on the clock while I surfed for a half-hour between Logo, Showtime, Flix, and the XM lineup for the holidays.

"Bully" is a good, but distrubing, movie based on actual events that happened in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1993, among a group of high school friends and acquaintances ending up in the murder of Bobby Kent, the "bully." He had emotionally, physically and sexually abused his best friend Marty all of thier lives. He raped a friend of Marty's girlfriend, Lisa. The parents were oblivious to what was happening with their children everyday, let alone what was brewing among them to retaliate against Bobby.

My heart hurt for the abused. It's a story where you wish the teens had been mature enough to deal with the tormentor in a different way. But, they didn't deal with any of their lives in a mature way. Unprotected sex resulted in Marty's unintended girlfriend becoming pregnant, they smoked pot, dropped acid. Where's the guidance? Where's the parental involvement?

At the end of the movie, each of the seven were shown along with their sentences. Most involved got 10 or more years in prison. Lisa, the mastermind, got 40 years. According to this site, she's already been released, as have two others. One remains on probation. Two others were sentenced to life. Marty, according to the movie, was sentenced to death by electric chair.

It's a sad, sad story. But, I think it's definitely worth watching.

22 November 2007

Three Loads Down, One to Go

Well, once again we've given the KitchenAid a workout for Thanksgiving. The third load of dishes is now washed and waiting to be put away. Another load in the morning should take care of the dishes used for Thanksgiving 2007.

Cameron has an early departure and is in bed. I want to keep the noise down, so I decided to post more photos from today's preparations.

The curried, deviled eggs.

Real banana pudding made with homemade vanilla pudding from scratch. (Boxed banana pudding tastes like a Laffy Taffy and just will not do).

Cameron's Caviar Pie

Clockwise from lower left: Mashed Potatoes, Giblet Gravy, Yeast Rolls, Cornbread Dressing, Steamed Lemon Asparagus, Caviar Pie, Cranberry Sauce (yes, from a can -- forgot fresh cranberries* for the chutney I usually make), John's ham, Turkey, Oyster Dressing and Deviled Eggs. Not pictured, Mincemeat Pie, Pumpkin Pie and Banana Pudding.

Although I did eat a bit too much, I didn't overeat like I have in the past. Before he went to bed, I asked Cameron, "do you have indigestion?" He said he did, but declined a Gaviscon. His sleeping pill should put him out of that misery in due time. I think I may have one myself.

I am thankful to have spent another Thanksgiving with people I love. I wish I could spend the holiday with all my loved ones, and I pray that they had as nice a holiday as I have. May we all be blessed with the realization of how blessed we are, and may we be grateful for this everyday.

And again, Happy Thanksgiving!

*Mentioning that I forgot cranberries reminds me of one of my favorite Christmas songs, "Christmas Wrapping" by the Waitresses. I guess, the holiday season is officially here. And in case you didn't know it, just watch the myriad commercials for the retailers who are torturing their employees with 4, 5 and 6 A.M. openings tomorrow. And, God Bless the poor folks who worked for K-mart and any other retailer who felt it necessary to be open today.

The Heat is On

It's 10:17 A.M., Thanksgiving morning. Here are a few shots starting from around 8:30:


You ready, old gal?

Thank Goodness!


Let's get it started....

I'm ready to be oiled and spiced.

So far, I've talked to Cleo and Danna. I have more calls to make. But, right now, it's time to cook. Happy Thanksgiving! And as my friend Ken used to say, "more later."

Let the Festivities Begin

It's Wednesday night, well, actually it's Thanksgiving morning. My man and I are home together after a very hectic week.

In the past I've started cooking on Tuesday, but not this year. I got home from work too late to start anything then. So, tonight we're baking pies and doing prep work, like chopping onions and celery, for tomorrow.

Here are some snaps of works in progress:

My favorite mixer with pumpkin pie filling in the bowl.

Ready for the oven.

And now, we wait.

Future deviled eggs.

There will be more work in progress posted as we go. The camera's battery has died and I'm waiting for mincemeat pie filling to cool. Yippie! It's Thanksgiving.

12 November 2007

Not so awful to me

I was looking for the new Taco Bell commercials because one of the actors we recently viewed while casting for some spots we're working on is in them. While poking around I found Along the right side of the site are myriad links to spots. I clicked Taco Bell and didn't find what I was looking for. Then, I spotted Cadillac.

It may be true, in some opinions, that the song here was ruined by being commercialized. But, I still love the spot. Must be because I love old Cadillacs.

Regardless, check out

09 November 2007

Guess it wasn't meant to be...

...or, perhaps, we dodged that bullet. The house we had a contract on in Hernando is no longer available to us. The builder has a contract on it, and we have 48 hours to take our contingency off of our contract.

If we don't remove the contingency he'll accept the other contract.

We won't delete it because we haven't sold our house. And, until we know what's going on with the rumored Delta and Northwest merger, which is thought will be announced in January, we need to stay put.

So, there you have it. Our house is still listed but with the slow market we're really not expecting to sell, although an agent just left with a client only minutes ago.

08 November 2007

Thursday 8 November

Gosh, can't believe it's November. HATE IT. Except I do love Thanksgiving and all the preparations for it.

Not much to report. The house showed yesterday. Got a fantastic survey response from the agent, who is bringing a client by tomorrow. Mixed emotions about that. Too much to tell so I'm putting that off.

So, here is an erratic Luncheonette post for today.

While I was toiling away on a project that's about 89% finished and due today, John David stuck his head in my office and offered to pick something up for me at Arbys. So, I said "yes."

Two regular roast beef, a regular order of curly fries and a large glass of ice water. We watched SpongeBob Squarepants in the diner.

03 November 2007

Love Martha

Sean Jean, PDiddy, Puff Daddy, whatever, not so much. And, Jessica Simpson? No, not really.