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April 18, 2005

Because Weekends Were Made For Fun

Ikea had a big tax-free shopping event over the weekend, so you know where I was bright and early Saturday morning:

weekend-ikea.jpg
Hello, crowds!

Ikea Burbank was PACKED. You'd have thought they were giving crack away with the Billy bookcases, and although every cash register was open, the lines were still 15 people deep. There was also a lot of sneezing. (Have you noticed the amount of sneezing in public these days? Shameful. Germs! Germs!) but I persevered, all for my TAX FREE Ikea stuff that I spent the rest of the weekend putting together. ("Jennifer, does this sexless little Swedish drawing of a person look like he/she is putting the rolly thingies on the front or the back?") ("I am so confused. Can't someone just bring me a drink? This instruction manual will make a good coaster.") ("Ya'll, I'm tired. Ikea just wore me out.")

Here is Bob, being fabulous and furry all over the new Ikea chair which I plan to use as an office chair, not as a catbed:

weekend-bob-chair-yarn.jpg


Notice he is accompanied by four balls of Crystal Palace "Iceland" wool yarn in hot pink and orange that I got at Unwind. I plan to make a cable scarf out of the hot pink using Annie Modesitt's "Breakin' The Rules!" method of cabling without a cable needle. The orange is for Shannon's hat. One day Shannon will have an orange hand-knitted fabulous wool hat, and though she will likely see it created every step of the way here, she will act excited and surprised and oh my! Is that a hat? For meeee? Won't you, Shan?

One more Bob/Chair/Yarn pic:

weekend-bob-chair-yarn2.jpg
(Is there anything better than a still life
with cute cat, new Ikea chair and YARN?)

On Saturday evening, after spending a long day working my ass off ... oh, I mean shopping at Ikea and deciphering Swedish instruction manuals ... I decided it was time to move into the kitchen for phase two of Saturday: Evening Dinner Party. Unfortunately, by this time it was already 4 p.m. and the brisket I had planned to slow cook was still sitting in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic. Not a good start. It was too late to run out to the store for a substitute main dish, as I had already started cocktail hour (it's 5 o'clock somewhere, geez) and so it was into the freezer and pantry we go for the adventure I like to call "Diving For Dinner!"

You know, I need to interject at this point that when I was living with my husband, I cooked dinner every night and did the dishes and, OK, yes... granted, Mr. X. only ate three things (ravioli, pizza, hamburgers) but still. I worked within my boundaries. Every night! After he left, I tried to find at least one good thing about being single, and I decided it was the freedom to cook anything I wanted. Anything! I! Wanted! So, then ... what did I want? After much thinking and a glass or two of wine, I decided I wanted to cook something Mr. X really hated. Like scallions. He hated scallions. So, for two months, I put scallions in every single dish (not as easy as one might think.)

I was convinced that being single meant the liberation of my true inner chef, the one who had been struggling to break free of ravioli from a can. Well, we're still waiting for liberation. Inner chef, WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU?

Cooking seems like such a great diva thing to do ("Come on over! We'll whip up some Chicken Marsala and crème brulee!") but in reality cooking is hard. Oh for you, maybe not. But for me, who is suffering from a serious bout of CRS (Can't Remember Shit), cooking is a challenge. Which is why, once again on a Saturday evening I find myself serving guests a meal of trailer park proportions.

Green bean casserole and tater tots.

For dinner.

weekend-food.jpg


Jennifer is a good sport. She claims to love tater tots! Loves my green bean casserole! But really. I'm such an amazing hostess. Notice the paper plates I make my guests use at my house:

jen-enjoys-tatertots.jpg


Actually, this is all strategy, you see. I am setting their expectations low, so that when Inner Chef magically appears (ANY MOMENT NOW) my friends will be completely floored by the amazing meal I just whip up effortlessly (notice how obsessed I am with whipping things up. I yearn to be a whipper-upper!) One evening, my friends will arrive expecting the usual assortment of completely mismatched, overcooked dinner food I always serve and the will bow down to me in astonishment as I parade in front of them... something. Oh God, I'm so hopeless I cannot even think of a fantastic meal idea for Inner Chef to make. But anyway, something really fancy. Something that does not contain Lipton's Onion Soup mix, Ketchup or French's fried onions. That's right, folks. Not even a potato bud! I will make a meal out of real spices and hydrated ingredients.

And when that day comes, you will be the first to know.

Posted by laurie at April 18, 2005 10:17 AM