We had a great New Year's Eve with friends. All the kids came up from the basement where they had been playing Wii (loudly) all night long in order to do the midnight countdown, and shortly thereafter Kyle totally lost it. This boy loves his sleep, and even asked "How come we have to stay up early?" (he gets confused about the whole staying up/getting up early versus late issue). I asked if he was ready for bed, and he said yes, so I put him to bed at 12:15. I understand his need for sleep, but what kid asks to go to bed when there are eight other kids, including his best buddy William indulging in mayhem in your house?
In addition to eating lots of food contributed by all (recipes below), we played the game Identity Crisis which I reviewed (before playing it) on 5 Minutes for Mom. It was a LOT of fun. We played three on three and laughed a lot. There are lots of pop culture references, but many old standards, including classic actors and cartoon characters -- but the way the game is played, even if you don't know the people and don't do well in round one, you can still clean up in round two. I'd definitely play this one again. It's a mix of Taboo, Password, and Outburst.
Terry and I have had a bit of a West Wing a-thon, and finished up Season 1 last night. Fortunately, I received both season 2 and season 3 for Christmas, so Season 2 will begin tonight.
It's been like falling in love all over again. By the time it ended a couple of years ago, it was one of our few "can't miss" shows. But going back to the first season has been such a treat. We've fallen in love with these characters all over again. I didn't realize I had missed out, because I had caught an episode here and there on Bravo over the years, but it's just not the same. I know that some were bothered by the liberal politics of it, but honestly much of the political plotlines go right over my head. I enjoy the snappy dialogue and characters, and who can complain about Rob Lowe? Incidentally, I've decided that the fact that Rob Lowe was cast as basically a geek -- and that he pulls it off -- is one of the underestimated brilliant moves in the show.
Now I'm debating whether to go ahead and buy Season 4 or not. I think that I will, because the price is still right around $20, with a list price of $60. I don't think I'll ever have to pay full price, but I think that the chances are good that it will go up to $30 or $40. I'm sure we won't polish off Season 2 in less than a month as we did with Season 1, due to our indulgent holiday schedule, but even if it takes 6 weeks, we could be cruising right through them.
I told Terry that when (if?) thirtysomething comes out, he'll have to watch it with me, but he said I was on my own. Seeing Timothy Busfield has made me wish for it even more. Speaking of Timothy Busfield, I always pictured him as a shorter person, but seeing him stand up beside Allison Janney (CJ) who is over 6 feet tall made me realize that he's not, and this has sort of rocked my world.
I could go on and on, because we've really (really) been enjoying this, but since this isn't called "The West Wing blog" I guess I'll stop right now, although any of you can feel free to gush along with me in the comments. And if you disagree, feel free to float that comment as well. But I did just find out (from my amazon browsing) that series creator Aaron Sorkin also wrote The American President, and basically built on that to create this show, which makes a lot of sense. So, I may convince some of you West Wing naysayers who love The American President (who doesn't love that movie) that the series is worth a try.
We ate some of our New Year's Eve leftovers for lunch while we were watching, and I thought I'd bring the post back around to the "loaf" theme by sharing my recipe for my hot sandwich roll:
Hot Sandwich Roll (I don't know what the real name is or was -- no doubt it's more appealing than the one I gave it), and I don't use a recipe so hear ya go:
1 refrigerated pizza crust (found by the biscuits and stuff in a tube)
sliced provolone cheese
shredded mozzarella and/or parmesan cheese
sliced green onions
Spread out the pizza crust into a rectangle. Cover with a layer of ham, a layer of salami, and a layer of provolone, then sprinkle mozzarella and/or parmesan cheese and green onions. Roll it up (from the long side across), and then tuck the ends under. Slash the bread across, and bake for at least 20 minutes at 375 (the tube instructions called for 400 or 420 for about 14, but the dough was not cooked inside, so I would lower the temp to below 400 and cook it longer.
Cut into slices and serve. It's so good.
My friend Nicole brought a hot dip that I really pigged out on as well.
Hot Mexican dip (again I am making up my own name and estimating the recipe) -- Edited later because Nicole emailed the real recipe to me, but she liked my name so I'm keeping it:
Spread 2 pkg light cream cheese on the bottom of a 9 x 9 oven proof pan.
Cover with a can of Hormel Hot Chili.
Cover with shredded cheese -- (1 block of each of sharp cheddar and she mixed cheddar and monterey jack or pepper jack)
Optional -- put diced green chilis or sliced jalapenos on top
Cover and bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until bubbly.
Serve with tortilla chips or fritos.