Monday, January 26, 2015


We’ve been celebrating Chris’ birthday for several days now, and had a little family gathering for Brunch yesterday.   Caro did all the food, including the cake.

Sweetpea set the table, choosing an assortment of paper and plastic from our stash, including glasses left from her FROZEN party last Summer.  (Funny, they must be the jinx, for THOSE pictures were kinda fuzzy as well).

There were Bacon-Wrapped Dates and at left is a little dish of Salmon/Cream Cheese Spread, with a garnish of Red Onion and Capers.

We had a lovely bowl of Shrimp in a Beer/Garlic/Minced Onion/Butter Sauce, to go over Grits.   Can you SEE all that tiny onion and garlic and Cajun seasonings?

I DID manage to make the Grits, with about half a stick of butter poked down into the middle to melt.  Grits is a Southern version of a creamy, white Polenta, and some of us prefer ours with just a little sprink a sugar. 

There was Sausage Strata, bubbly and golden.   It's an eggy bread pudding, with lots of little pork sausage crumbles.

 Sublime Wok-Scrambled Eggs.

Hash-Browns with caramelized onions and peppers and white Cheddar.

Kielbasa in a honey-mustard sauce, in a little doll-sized crock-pot.

Some St. Angel, a creamy roulade resembling Ricotta, some dried cranberries, and little Seckel pears.

Toasted Pecans.

What happens to a birthday cake when everybody chooses a different color of balloon.

We had quite a day, beginning with Ganner's hiding inside the big Water Heater carton, on which he'd written all sorts of BEWARE!!    and  DANGER!!!   And CAUTION!  IT BITES!!! topped by quite a faithful copy of a portrait of him painted by Sweetpea when she was in pre-school.   As afraid as I was, more for HIM than HER in this charade, since he twice practiced his grand entrance, bursting out the door and almost collapsing himself, box and all, onto the floor, but also making sure she did not take fright either, I gave her a whispered word during our hello hug, and armed her with one of the big flexible foam tubes which came as cushioning in the heater-box. 

One jump from the box, a smart set of painless whacks with her sword, a small set-to as he armed himself with another, and much merriment and hugs all round and lauding of the heroes.

After Brunch, four of the things made their way upstairs, where we tried our hands at balancing them on our palms, balancing things on THEM, doing that spin-the-plates thing with Chinet and frisbees, and lots of surprise jousts throughout the afternoon.

I swear, That Child was the oldest person in the house.

Moire non, 


Cheryl said...

Yummy....all of this wonderful looking food has made me hungry!! It sounds like you all had a perfectly delightful day! God is so good! :) Thanks for sharing.

Miss Merry said...

What a fun time! And your food looks scrumptious. I kept scanning up and down, matching recipe names with dishes, going back to identify ingredients - you sure know how to throw a Birthday Breakfast party! Delicious!!!

Sylvia said...

Yum, I love Shrimp! Looks like a fun birthday party.

GSL said...

As mouth-watering as those brunch dishes look and I was only recently introduced to a delish shrimp and grits appetizer in Charleston...all those lip licking images can't compare with your delightful commentary of whispered hugs and the like. That Lawn Tea hardbound edition will hopefully in the future only be known as Book 1 and I'll be clearing shelf space for the entire collection!

Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

Darling Rachel,
Oh, this is the kind of birthday party that we always wanted as children but, for whatever reason, never really had. Now we have the idea that we can arrange one now that Chris has shown us all the way.

However, producing the vast array of delicious Southern food might be more of a challenge we shall just have to hire you and Caro for the event!

Well, as they always say, it is rarely the contents of the cardboard box that children or animals like is the box itself! Happy Birthday to Chris and many, many happy returns !

Jeanne said...

Oh my word Rachel, this party and the FOOD is 'awesome.' Happy Happy birthday to Chris/Ganner. I am pretty sure this birthday was an Olympic celebration of a birthday. Everyone deserves a gold medal. I honestly can't stop laughing thinking about Chris in a huge box. I adore the way your family makes every day events an adventure. You are all so special and I love you to pieces.

Thank you so much for your wonderful comments. I am sorry it has taken me so long to visit. This is the time of year that I am doing my garden club yearbook and it is a huge job. So terribly time consuming. I have posted about it in the past so you probably remember me doing it before. I like doing it but this year I have to make 65 yearbooks at 20 pages each. I do all my own printing and collating. Our garden club has 56 members and then I make extras for new members as they join. A labor of love. They all have to be ready by Feb.2nd. Yikes.

Have a lovely week and stay warm. We are cold here.
Love, Jeanne

Kim S. said...

Happy Birthday to our dear, dear Chris!!! You folks give the BEST parties! Every single thing had me drooling. Could you ask Caro to please send me the sausage strata recipe when she has a minute? Brunch is my favorite meal. Next favorite is breakfast for dinner.

I loved Chris’ surprise for Sweet Pea and bless you for arming our girl!

A Super Dilettante said...

Dear Rachel,

Hello. My belated happy birthday wishes to Chris. Caro's food looks utterly delicious and an eggy bread pudding is one of my all time favourites. Oh my dear, you do know how to give a party - the food, the cake and the company. I am taking a few tips for my dinner party next time. What a charming idea to organise a surprise party. Hope you are having a wonderful weekend.

Best wishes, ASD