Welcome to the most fattening time of the year

birthdayOur Thanksgiving turkey wasn’t even finished cooking yet and The Hubs and I were discussing what we wanted to have to eat on Christmas.  Ham?  Meatloaf?  Halushki?

Happy belated Thanksgiving!  I’ve been cooking nonstop for a week.  Literally, an entire week of slaving over the stove.  The Toddler turned three last week.  Three.  How in the world is my baby three?  How is the Preschooler four?  How am I old enough to have a three-year-old and a four (almost five)-year-old?  Wasn’t it just 1997?  I mean, really, if you catch me on an off day, I’d probably say, “No, it was 1997 like, five years ago.”

No, 1997 was seventeen years ago.  Which means, this coming year on my birthday, I’ll be turning……


So, my child turned three this year.  He’s sassy.  Right now he’s sitting to my left, wearing mustache pajamas and eating lollipops.  On Thanksgiving, he opened the front door when my mother got here and, literally, bowed, “Hello.  Welcome to our home.”  I also caught him peeping at me (note the binoculars) when I was trying to write.  Anyhow, I let him pick him pick out the clothes he wanted to wear to his birthday party since, you know, three is  pretty big deal.  He selected a little plaid shirt, which was fine, but when I was putting it on him, I noticed the sleeves seemed a little short.  I said, “buddy, this looks a little small.  It might not fit.”  He said, “Yes it will.”  And it did, albeit with shortish sleeves.  I thought to myself, “Hmm, must be an 18 month shirt that got shoved in the back of the drawer.”

No, it was a 6-12 month shirt.  My three year old wore a 6-12 month shirt to his 3rd birthday party.  A shirt which, interestingly enough, The Preschooler wore in his 9 month pictures.

He’s a little guy.  But he makes up for it being a ball of nonstop energy that climbs up the sides of the washer, jumps off couches, and eats three lollipops at a time.  Knowing this, I’m not a bit surprised I was only in labor with him for four hours.

So that was fun.  I made a tie dye birthday cake, which was not only fun but delicious.  And then I attempted to make pumpkin pie.

I can make a turkey.  I can make bread from scratch.  I can make cakes and cupcakes, and casseroles and brownies and fudge and all kinds of delicious crap.  What I can’t make, is a pie crust.

For whatever reason, this year I decided it’d be fun to make a pumpkin pie.  My mother is typically in charge of making pies because the fact that I work a 40 hour work week gets in the way of me being a stay at home mom and having time to make pies.  This has been detrimental to my crust making abilities.  Martha Stewart’s recipe assured me–assured me–it was easy to make a pie crust.  It’s just fats and flour!  You can do it!

I think things started to go wrong when I realized I didn’t have a pastry cutter in my drawer of kitchen gadgets.  So, yeah, that’s approximately step two, right after “add flour.”  No matter, I’ll use forks.  That’ll work.

No, actually it didn’t.

In an act of desperation, I tried to use a potato masher.  This also didn’t work.

At this point, I was getting mad at myself for two reasons: 1) not being able to mix a pie crust with a fork and 2) forgetting to buy a premade pie crust at the grocery store.  But, whatever, I mixed it with my hands until it looked dough like and then texted a picture of it to my mother.  “Will this still work with little nuggets of butter in it?”

After a long silence, she texted back, “Maybe.”


Well, the pie itself cooked for what, an hour or something.  Then it cooled for three hours.  And it looked like a legitimate pie.

Think with me for a moment, if you will, of the American Civil War, and the nutritionally devoid creation called hardtack.  Hardpie tack is basically just flour and water cooked into little squares of rock solid biscuit.  They last forever.  They are gross.  You probably would enjoy building a fortification made of hardtack more than you would enjoy eating hardtack.  Pack some for your zombie apocalypse bunker.  If you can’t eat them, maybe you can reinforce the walls with them.

Anyway, the pie filling was delicious.  The crust was like hardtack.  Buttery, molar busting hardtack.

The Hubs, bless his soul, ate several slices of pumpkin pie.  I ate my mother’s pecan pie and said, “I’ll use your recipe next year.”

“We use Crisco and milk.  Not butter and water.”  she reported.

Well.  I’m sure I can’t do any worse than I did with the brick like substance I baked.  Nothing says Happy Holidays quite like a lost filling (okay, I’m exaggerating.  No one actually chipped a tooth on the pie crust, but I’m eating it like pudding from now on….you know, just in case).

And now for Christmas.  This will be the first year we’ve had a legit sized Christmas tree.  Up until now, because the boys have been so little, we’ve had a little tiny three foot tree on top of a table to keep it safe from…you know, our children.  This year we bought a brand new 6.5 foot tree and are going to attempt to set it up tonight.  I imagine my next blog post will be stories of the three-year-old scaling the tree and running around the house with the star on his head.  We’re nothing but festive here at my house.



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