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australia, ocean

Detours off Britta Blvd


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Mardi Gras progress...
Busy busy week! Except for the holiday Monday when I quickly got all the transplants I acquired from my parents' house in the ground in my own yard (including defeating the nasty huge palm thingy!), my non-work hours have been crammed full of Mardi Gras party prep, so no computer leisure time, and work has been busy enough I haven't been able to post either!

So, onto Mardi Gras progress...

2 weeks before (see last entry):
  • living room mostly decorated
  • double-batch crab puffs in freezer

    1 week before:
  • 12 dozen spinach balls in freezer
  • pirate hat mostly sewn, just hand-stitching of crown lining to brim left, plus tacking brim into shape to crown
  • webcam broadcast & upload tested - on wifi via AirPort Express - woohoo! Final placement still TBD, since I only have one cam at the moment, but I know people will be hanging out at the food table more than the living room, and I can't find a spot that can show both on the same cam…we'll see…
  • recipes transferred to an ancient iMac DV also now on wifi & in the kitchen corner as my new recipe computer! :D
  • ready-made cheese fondue purchased (yummy stuff I've had before so I'm not worried about any testing for the fountain)
  • (no chicken skewers or tricolor scrolls this year, since I think I have enough food with the fondue fountain being new)
  • various cracker assortments purchased
  • sliced cheese assortment purchased (in case some people don't like the fondue flavor)
  • tier trays decorated with new ribbon (vs. wire twisty stuff from previous years)
  • (cookies did NOT get done before the weekend away, but the spinach balls did…best laid plans & all…)

    Week of party - down to the wire!
  • prizes organized by winner and arranged prettily on top of TV
  • 7 dozen mask cookies, iced, decorated & painted with gold
  • 5 dozen fleur-de-lis cookies, iced, decorated & painted with gold
  • shrimp mold setting in fridge
  • purchased Party Swirls thawing in fridge
  • fruit & veggies purchased
  • brie & pastry purchased
  • my costume finally completed (pirate tri-corner hat just finished last night, coat pressed, no buttons, sword scabbard & hilt aged to look infinitely better than the $1.99 play sword it really is!...except that now it looks so much better that I really want to complete it by painting the blade silver…I did buy silver spray paint today, so we'll see if that gets done!)

    Still to do tonight!
  • make King Cake (trying a bread machine this year for the initial mixing & kneading steps)
  • cut veggies & refrigerate
  • cut sliced cheese into cracker-size slices & refrigerate
  • cut oranges, lemons, limes & kiwi & refrigerate (cut peaches & pears immediately before party time)
  • cut some orange slices for garnish for hurricanes
  • arrange marachino cherries for garnish for hurricanes
  • make up brie in puff pastry
  • ice King Cake
  • if fridge space, set out Party Swirls on leaf lettuce garnish & refrigerate
  • print & cut more ballots

    Day of party!
  • vacuum!
  • get makeup on (glitter!)
  • clean both bathrooms
  • switch webcam index page to live broadcast
  • ~2pm buy ice
  • arrange party swirls on green leaf lettuce garnish
  • arrange cookies
  • get out celery last - arrange veggie tray
  • cut fruit (kiwi, green pears, bosc pears, peaches)
  • arrange fruit tray
  • arrange cheese & crackers
  • arrange buffet/decorate
  • clean up kitchen
  • 2:45 bake brie in pastry 15 minutes @ 425F
  • 3:30 put on costume (wear apron!)
  • cook spinach balls 20-25 minutes @ 325
  • cook 1 set crab puffs 5-10 minutes under broil
  • heat up cheese fondue in microwave, thin if necessary
  • start fondue fountain
  • set out lemonade in spigot jar
  • mix up punch in punch bowl with ice ring
  • set out shrimp mold with crackers

    ...then have fun! :)

    Unfortunately my place is still a disaster of disorganization, since I got both cars into the garage the weekend before I went to visit my parents, but the last several boxes hadn't found a real home yet, so the patios are unusable as I type. Instead of actual final unpacking & organization as I'd like to have done by now, those boxes will be stashed back into the garage, moving a car back into the driveway if necessary, then the patios arranged for party use. This is the largest project for tonight, and might be the reason I have to not sleep at all, especially since on the way home from work today is both a goodbye pint at a pub for a longtime co-worker, then onto a radio station Mardi Gras party in SF for a few hours...I'm a glutton for punishment, I know, but I'm willing to sacrifice sleep for the sake of just about any party...just look at what I do for my own parties! ;)