God Help Us All
My son, Ian, was baptized three weeks ago. We invited a few friends and some family to share this special day with us and planned to have a cookout after the festivities. My sister, Kathy, flew in to perform her duties as Godmother and she also was a big help getting ready for the par-tay.
Now I am famous for overdoing things, particularly food – namely homemade food – at parties. This time, I decided, things would be different. I thought I was doing good. We were expecting about 28 total (including us) and we were just going to have hamburgers (bought pre-pattied), hot dogs, baked beans, veggie tray, Asian salad, chips and a cake. Really, the only things I had to make were the salad and the cake.
Well, when I was trying to find ideas for my cake on webshots.com, I noticed one ambitious baker made some cross cookies. I decided I wanted to make some cross cookies. I mean, how hard could it be? You buy some sugar cookie rolls and a cookie cutter and ta-da – cross cookies.
While I was shopping at Cincinnati Cake and Candy Supply, I happened to notice they had cross molds. Hmmmm. A little chocolate is always nice at a party. And how hard can they be? You buy the mold, you buy the chocolate, you melt the chocolate, you put it in the mold, you let it cool and ta da – cross shaped chocolates. So I picked up the mold, white chocolate mint and milk chocolate pieces.
Kathy suggested we also have a buffalo chicken dip and a pasta salad, both of which she offered to make. Just to prove I'm not the only one complicating things, Kathy wanted us to get rotisserie chickens instead of canned chicken because our oldest sister, Sharon, said that's what she does to make it 'fresher.' (Personally, I didn't notice a difference.)
While at Costco, I saw watermelons for $3.99 and decided that's always good at a party, especially one on Labor Day weekend, and all you have to do with one is cut it up. So I picked one up. (Thanks to the friendly couple who pointed out my first choice was moldy on the bottom.) They didn't have pre-made burgers in any size mere mortals could actually eat, so we had to just buy ground beef and patty them ourselves.
To back track, I had ordered a baptismal outfit off ebay over a week before the baptism. I didn't get it 'til Saturday and it had milk stains all over it. Gross. And it was dry clean only, so my bargain just turned into a liability. Kathy found a store called Fancy Kids in Reading (the bridal capital of the world) and we found a cute, reasonably priced outfit there, but it still was a stop (and research) we didn't plan to make.
In spite of it, I thought we were in good shape to get the house picked up and all the food made in time for us to leave for the church at 2:30 on Sunday.
I was up til past midnight making the cake and I was questioning my cake decorating abilities, as I always do. The thought even crossed my mind that I might have to actually buy one from Kroger or something. That and the fact that I trashed the kitchen.
The next day, I went to make the cookies and the first batch turned into blobs. Really, none of the batches came out with sharp-edged crosses. But I guess decorating helped give the illusion that they looked nice. Had to completely give up on the chocolate crosses. *sigh*
I barely had time to take a shower and, up until that point, wasn't even sure the one dress I thought I could fit into post-pregnancy, with new giant boobs, was going to work. Thank God it did. Kathy and I were scrambling to pick up the kitchen and get things set up since our guests were getting back to our place the same time as us. By the time we got to the church, all of our family and friends were already there. Somewhat embarrassing, but thankfully, the priest got the party started about 15 minutes late.
Everything turned out fine, though, in the end. Ian got all Catholicized and everyone seemed to have a good time. The only sad part is more than one person who knew how crazed I'd been said, 'Well, live and learn.' The sad part is, I never do. We'll be doing it all over again for our annual Ornament Exchange Party this December and I'm sure for many other gatherings in between. Can I get an Amen?