Sunday, December 28, 2008

Duct-taping Christmas Eve dinner

These pictures are not in order because I don't want to spend the time to put them in order.
Here's a picture of one of the many spills that occurred while trying to make dinner.  And here's some left over sticky stuff on my crockpot courtesy of John trying to duct tape the lid closed.  

The paint spill happened right after the flour spill.

Who needs utensils when you've got fingers?

Those are Roman's fingers in the pink mashed potatoes, not mine.
Here, let me do it.  (Um, no.)
My solution.  (Worked).
John's solution.  (Didn't work).

Much like Thanksgiving dinner, we sat down with Bella and talked about what we were going to have for dinner to make sure we were all happy with the menu.  No sense in making dinner if nobody eats it right? She suggested having the potatoes she likes this time.  Easy enough.  We agreed to roast, mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls, red jello, orange jello salad, and corn.  Totally doable.  My FIL gave us a roast the day before.  I didn't even have to go shopping as we had everything we need for this dinner.  At least, I hope we do.  I don't care enough to check.  It's snowing and I'm staying indoors.

Wednesday morning John calls from work and asks me if I started the roast yet.  Um,  I just got out of bed and you expect me to be thinking about a roast?  So around 10:30 I put the roast in the crock pot and start worrying that it's not going to be ready by 6:00.  So I worry and worry and worry about it.  Then I start worrying that it might not taste good.  John's the one who always makes the roast whenever we have one.  I don't know what spices he uses.  Then I remember someone telling me they put in a package of dry onion soup mix when they make a roast.  Someone gave us a box the other day so I know I have that.  I mix two packages with a cup of water as suggested on the box.  I pour it over the roast.  

That's when the trouble begins.  Because I added the cup of water, now the crock pot lid won't stay down all the way.  The roast is so freakin huge that it's lifting up the lid.  My worries that the roast won't be ready just skyrocketed.  I push and push and push on the lid but it won't stay down.  Great.  What are my options?  I could somehow pour the water out but that's going to be really messy.  I could try and scoop out some of the water.  "Honey," I call, (he's home from work now), "the roast is too big and I can't get the lid to stay down."  He comes over and inspects.  "Should I just pour out the water?" I ask.  
"We need something to hold it down."  He starts looking for something.  "Do we have any tape?"
"I don't think the tape will stay,"  I say.  "What should we do? Should I just pour the water out?"
"Where's the tape?"  he says again and looks around the kitchen.
"Honey, you just fix it okay."  My stress levels becomes uncomfortable.  "I'm putting you in charge."  I hate decisions and trying to solve problems.  Like I really hate decisions/stress/dinner crisises. 

Then he has it in his hands.  I'm completely surprised.  I think it's the first time he's found something without me either telling him where it is or me getting it for him.  He starts duck taping the crock pot lid.  I almost laugh out loud but cover my mouth as I realize a blog post coming on.  I reach for my camera and start snapping pictures.  I manage to get one picture before he realizes what I'm doing.  He goes for the camera and we start dodging each other as he protests and I insist.  We are both laughing hysterically.  "This is going to be so funny on the blog" I say as I'm taking pictures of him trying to get the camera away from me.  Unfortunately, the camera is too slow to get the picture of him flipping me off.  

He gives up and goes back to ripping off pieces of duct tape with his teeth and putting them on the lid of the crock pot.  It doesn't work of course.  

I find something that does.  It's a $30 platter I bought from Target a couple of years ago.  We've never used it.  I bought it as an accessory when I was staging our spec house.  I tried to sell it at our moving sale but nobody bought it.  It also didn't sell at our garage sale this summer.  But now it has a purpose.  The very heavy platter is going to sit on the crock pot lid and keep it closed.    

I make the orange jello salad and remember to put the mandarin oranges in it this time.   With only four ingredients you wouldn't think that I wouldn't forget the main one, but I did last time I made it.  No wonders it tasted different.  I ask John to go out in the garage and find the potatoes someone  gave us.  He brings them inside and peels them and I chop them up.  They are red.  I've seen potatoes that are red on the outside but these ones are red on the inside.  I start worrying that they aren't going to taste good.  Oh well.  I chop em up and cook em and mash em.  They are pretty lumpy so I grab the whipping cream that's in the fridge and pour some in.  Whoops.  That was too much.  Uh oh.  Now they're too runny.  I can't really peel, chop, and cook more potatoes.  Well, I guess I could but that would really suck.  So I get this really good idea and I make instant potatoes and put some aside for Bella since she wanted them anyway, and then I add the rest to the real potatoes.  Runny potato problem solved.  I smile at myself.  What's next?  The rolls.  Easy enough.  I grab the bag from the freezer and put them on the cookie sheet.  Then I open a can of corn.  It's kind of shameless how easy this Christmas Eve dinner is to make.  Oh wait.  I haven't made the gravy yet.  I don't know how to make gravy but I'm not in the mood to call my sister, so I try this one on my own.  I get out this new utensil I bought at the store that sucks stuff up, I have no idea what it's called, and I start sucking up the juice from the roast and dropping it into a pan on the stove.  As I do this I make a huge mess as I have no problem sucking up the juice but a huge problem transporting that juice to the pan. With the roast juice in the pan on the stove, I try and think of what I should do next.  Flour?  I think people put flour in.  So I say to John, "Do you think I should put flour in the gravy?"  
"Here, I'll do it," he says.

He starts to put some flour in the gravy, loses patience and ends up dumping tons of flour into the gravy,  spilling it on the stove and the floor.  Thanks.  I'll take over from here.  So I take some of that crap out and add more roast-juice spilling even more juice onto the counter. We are both idiots in the kitchen if you haven't noticed by now.  (The gravy doesn't end up turning out that good even though I fix the flour consistency problem.  It tastes too much like dry onion soup mix.)

This is when we find that Roman has gotten into the paint that Gregg and Allen gave Bella earlier in the day when they came over to exchange presents.  I pick up the bottles of paint, wash Roman's hands, snap a picture, and walk away from the paint in the carpet.  Yes, I just walk away.

I dig out the Christmas dishes that I have somewhere.  Oh yeah.  Top shelf of the pantry.  Glad I didn't forget to use them as that would kind of defeat the point of having special Christmas dishes.  I also get out the special red goblets that Bella loves.

We set the table and then sit down to eat.  Roman eats the red jello.  He spits out everything else.  Bella eats a roll, red jello, orange jello salad, corn, and some of her instant potatoes. She's mad the gravy tastes gross.  John eats the roast.  I eat a roll.  Capri eats it all.  We have leftovers out the ying yang.  


Mama Yo said...

Ha Ha! Good for you! Hey, at least you made the effort! Thanks for the chuckle. Oh, and I bet your husband stole the camera.

Emi said...

what I would give to have been a fly on the wall for that one....
(and I noticed you guys like jello, wtf?)

Amanda said...

The love for Jello is a Mormon thing. You wouldn't understand.

Emi said...

that gravy looks.
spackling paste?

Camille said...

Oh my gosh Amanda. I love it. this was so funny. BTW, I totally wanna come over and see your house... the little sneak peaks of your decorating style looks amazing!

Oh and my DH served his mission in UT. He's had Jello with green pepper and onion in it..

Amanda said...

Cam, I would love to have you over. The house is clean one day a month between the hours of 2-5 pm so just make sure you call ahead and make an appointment.

Emi said...

I'm loving the diet coke by the crock pot btw... I'd be needing to crack open a cold one after that too.

Heather Carringer Lemon said...

Ok so you are hilarious! I can't believe I haven't read this blog of yours before now. I have the solution to your spices problem. Next time you go to the store get a few different kinds of the Mrs. Dash shakers in the spices section. They are perfect for anything. No extra salt in them which is perfect. And to make it even easier on you on the back right above the ingredients it tells you what type of meats the recomend for that spice mixture. I don't even bother with individual spices anymore.

Gina said...

This blog is hilarious! That gravy looked delicious. haha NOT

Kat said...

So since we r new Facebook friends I was curious and started reading ur blogs...I was laughing so hard while reading this one I started crying. Great effort and if I may offer a great roast tip I use Lawry's marinades (specifically Lemon Herb) in my roast. I usually put it on in the morning before I leave for work and pour a bottle and 1/2 it turns out so moist and family luvs it...