Festival of...beer and midriffs

You know it's a crazy, mixed-up world when I am given the corporate credit card and the responsibility of planning the company Christmas party.

Some supervisors might take the $40/person budget and go to a nice restaurant for an hour or two. This particular party planner decided to have a bonfire, get a bushel of raw oysters (?), and spend the rest on alcohol. Oh, plus one Olive Garden gift certificate for the winner of the poker tournament. Who knew my co-workers and their dates could be so much fun?*

*I'm having second thoughts regarding the installation of a stripper pole in my living room, though. Hopefully, that was just holiday beer banter.

We took one group photo at the beginning of the evening, which was smart, because the rest of the shots look something like this:

I certainly hope there's something in the corporate budget for President's Day...


Colonel Mustard in the Kitchen

Every year, my mother, eternal optimist extraordinaire, buys me kitchen-related gifts, which I love because it's like she's keeping that glimmer of hope alive that someday I might become a great chef...er, not burn down the kitchen. (Nope, that was not a run-on sentence).

Observation of the day: why do spice racks come with unalphabetized bottles of spices? Who can cook under such chaotic conditions?

Post-baking-script: every try making "pecan ball" cookies while getting sloshed on white wine and listening to Clancy Brothers? No? Let me save you the trouble, 'cause you'll just wind up with chunky pecan oblong-ish shapes with wayyyyy too much sugar.