Sunday, January 17, 2010

Dining In

Back in the olden days (last month) we used to eat out a couple of times, every single weekend. It was kind of just a given. At the risk of repeating myself (ha), we have willed ourselves to trim the ol' food budget. And that means not eating out as much. It pains me a little.

We all know that lady who spouts off about how she would much rather cook a healthy, delicious meal at home than eat out. Well, I ain't her. Every now and then, I want someone to cook for me. Preferably, someone named Carlos or Gabriel.

In the absence of Hacienda or El Camino or Mazatlan or La Fiesta, I can hold my own. I do love cooking, thank my lucky stars. It's my outlet. One of my favorite ways to love my people is to cook for them.

So, last night, in an effort to both escape another meal of left-overs and see a couple of girls who I desperately needed to spend time with, I kicked my family right out the door and cooked for the ladies.

I flung out the tablecloth, along with my Anthro napkins, wrapped up in mini cookie cutters.

Dress code: Sweats.

I made one of my favorite salads, with oranges, beets and goat cheese. The girls decided that beets taste like dirt, which poses a bit of a problem, since I recently declared that I do not trust anyone who dislikes beets.

One of the ladies also refused the goat cheese.

I'm in the process of reevaluating that friendship.

I found a spectacular recipe for creamy white chicken chili (I soaked my own beans for the first time!) But it's not photogenic, so I didn't take its picture.

I did, however, photograph the oranges. That's worth something -- right?

After dinner, we watched The Waitress. Seriously, ya'lls, watch the blasted movie. It's one of my alltime faves. Fresh, fun dialogue, fantastic cast, endearing story. Pie. And Keri Russel has had my heart ever since she wrestled through the whole Noel/Ben dilemma.

As for today, it was back to reality.

Back to the meal that just won't quit.

Back to church and naps and sweet cheeks and unruly hair and the occasional time-out (but who's counting?)

I loved my 10 mph weekend. I'm thankful for these blustery Winter months that cause me to hunker down and putter.