Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Day and Random Stuff

New Year's Day Sky with Dancing Clouds

New Year's Day dawned cold, wet and altogether dreary. Bummer!  However, by noon, although it was still chilly, with a brisk wind blowing, the sun was shining.

My son-in-law (Gardening Daughter's husband), called me about 10:30 to invite me to a New Year's Day lunch, which was to feature Black-Eyed Peas and a lot of tasty leftovers from their New Year's Eve get-together with friends from his work place.  I gladly accepted.  One of my resolutions for this new year is to spend more time with my children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren (I currently have three blood-greats and one love-great.)

 I had my fill of chips, yummy Spinach Dip, guacamole, pickled okra, olives and other (need I say high-calorie) foods before settling down to a bowl of rice and Black-Eyed Peas, cornbread, and sides of steamed cabbage and other dishes we Arkies enjoy.  Also present at lunch were Elder Daughter (ED) and her mother-in-law (ED's husband stayed home to watch football), and my son and his wife.

I had been moved by the invitation to lunch to get into my own kitchen and make something to take for dessert.  I make a mean bread pudding, if I do say so myself.  So I made a big one (four eggs, a scant cup of sugar, 30 oz. of milk, generous dashes of Saigon cinnamon and vanilla, about 3/4 cup of golden raisins, a couple tablespoons of melted butter and almost a whole large loaf of several-days-old-white bread.)  While it was baking in a well-buttered dish, I prepared a hard sauce of butter, powdered sugar, dark rum (usually kept only for medicinal purposes and flavoring for my annual mince pie), and a wee bit of vanilla.   Still-warm bread pudding with a teaspoon of rum sauce drizzled on top is pretty tasty.  Turns out, it was a big hit with my son's wife, so I sent her home with a 16-oz. container full of pudding with a generous dollop of rum sauce on top.  She was a happy camper.  My son-in-law hinted around about the remaining pudding, so I left that for him, and will pick up my dish later. Funny thing is, I didn't know either of them were so fond of bread pudding, since I don't think I have ever made one to take to a family dinner.  One never knows how the most humble things can be appreciated.  Or -- maybe it was the rum sauce!

My late afternoon was spent at my church.  I have Altar duty this week, always a labor of love.  Setting up everything for tomorrow's services took about forty-five minutes, then I worked in the office for a couple of hours preparing the service schedules for the remainder of January, and writing checks for the "first of the month" bills.  As treasurer, I am not allowed to sign checks, just to prepare them for the signatures of others.  The authorized signers should be at one of the services tomorrow and the checks are ready for them. I'm glad to have that little chore out of the way.  I usually work in the church office on Monday mornings, but I may give myself a holiday.

All in all, not bad for the first day of the new year.   I was well fed, blessed by the company of my family, and pleased with what I accomplished at work.

I hope your day was as enjoyable.


Snap said...

Sounds like a wonderful day with family. Don't remind me about checks ... I have to work on the check book.. ack!!!

Happy New Year!

Arkansas Patti said...

What a lovely day and to think part of it was from resolutions made.
Did you remember to put 2011 on the checks? That drives me nuts for a few weeks.
Keep enjoying.

Moannie said...

Ummmn! Bread pudding? Not the soggy type: bread and butter? But the dark rich pud thick with currents and mixed fruit, nutmeg and cinnamon and mace...baked in the oven so that whole house is redolent of Christmas? Is that the Pud. you mean?

I used to make it often, but we never seem to have stale bread any more,what little there is goes to the birds.
But oh! I can smell it now.

Happy New Year. Off to steal some stale bread.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Pat, I've caught up on your blogs this morning... Sounds like you had a fabulous holiday season this year. Your New Year's meal sounded like mine although mine was a one-dish concoction.. I made Hoppin' John (which combined black-eyed peas, rice, bacon, onions, ham and kielbasa all in the same dish)... It was wonderful and I hope it brings us good luck all through 2011.

Hope you have a wonderful week --now that we are already into a brand new year.

Jinksy said...

You bread pudding sounds like a variation on what I call 'bread and butter pudding'... My bread pudding, is something else - would you like to swap recipes? LOL :)

rhymeswithplague said...

You sound like a happy camper and a busy camper rolled into one!

I ate blackeyed peas, collard greens, cabbage, and pork roast on New Year's Day for the first time in my life (even though I have lived in the south since I was 6). It was scrumptious, especially when my daughter-in-law cooked the collard greens with the leftovers of a maple-glazed spiral ham!

Marvin said...

I love bread pudding and yours sounds delicious. Too bad you couldn't upload a generous portion so all of us could download a sample. :-)