Friday, July 04, 2008

Recovering after the 4th.

As I write, I'm sprawled out on the floor, with my head in the beanbag because the couch wasn't big enough for my laptop and stomach. I am so full. I am so disgustingly full, I almost look forward to the week of self-imposed starvation ahead to compensate for the gluttony that went down today. All in the name of celebrating the birth of our nation.

First up - here's the finished product from last night's post (see below) - the strawberry cake in all its glory. Because I just have to push it, I added blueberries.

Helene got a better pic with her camera. It was a hit, but as predicted, Mina ignored the cake and whipped cream and just ate the strawberries. Before we all go crazy applauding her healthy eating, let me point out that she also managed to consume four whole chocolate chip cookies all by herself.

Oh Mom, puh-leese. You'd do the same thing if you could get away with it.

The rest of us were just as bad. Jeff tackles a burger to end all burgers. I prepped these last night too. They came out really good - definitely not a lady-like, dainty burger. But, I think I've satisfied my craving for red meat for at least 3 months or so. Which is probably how long it will take me to fully digest this thing. The recipe was my own mish-mash of ideas culled from various sources - Ancho chile powder, red onion, cumin, salt and pepper in the meat... via Cooking Light magazine. And to offset any "Light" connotations, I inserted a fat wedge of Vermont cheddar cheese into the center of each patty, courtesy of Martha's EveryDay Food. As the burger cooks, the cheese melts from the inside. There's nothing everyday about this burger.

Personally, my favorite item on the menu was the salad. Don't snort. Really. It was a light, refreshing foil to carnage around me. Watermelon, arugula, walnuts, feta, rasberry and lime vinagrette. Sounds odd, but very tasty. The original recipe is here. I modified it with feta.

Thankfully, we had partners in crime to share in the calories:

We also celebrated with Kristen, Brandon, Grace, Helene and Michael. Thank God. I didn't feel so bad surrounded by good eaters. My own kids weren't so interested in the kid sized versions we put in front of them.

It was a good day.

I only wish I could have incorporated some exercise into the equation. The kids had me beat there. They benefited from having a bounce house on-site to work off each calorie consumed. But first, the warnings:

Then, the set up.

Let the bouncing begin:

As much fun as we had, as the afternoon wound down, it got kind of sad. It was time to say goodbye to the Perkins - who head back to FL.

Our time together was brief, but it was a wonderful prelude to the upcoming beach vacation in September. Not too long now! I hope there will be enough time in the next few weeks for me to work off the calories I consumed today, before setting foot on any beach in a bathing suit.

Miss Mina's look of reproach says it all.
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