One of the best things about summer is having friends over and enjoying a meal over the the barbie. Yesterday, we had 2 couples who were foodies like us over for dinner. And here’s what we had:
For starter, Gillian/Ciaran made an Asian-style salad which was all crunchiness and refreshing to taste. And look at the colours!
As for us, we bought some gourmet sausages (think spinach-ricotta-chicken, hot-and-spicy, Moroccan lamb) from the butcher and also experimented with new recipes. The prawns were marinated with olive oil, lemon grass, garlic, chilli, salt and pepper.
Then our piece-de-resistance – field mushrooms with mascarpone and crumbled blue cheese topped with basil. It’s nothing to look at honestly but it was everyone’s favourite!
For dessert, Nico/Zoe brought a summer fruit salad served with raspberry coulis which was the perfect dessert given the heavy meal we had.
After that, it was some mucking around with the kids. Or rather, Kezia playing with CS. Right from the start since we knew Kezia, this little guy has always had a soft spot with CS and would often initiate play with him. There is something magical about CS I must say, ‘cos I ended up marrying him!
And then the kids couldn’t wait to find their presents underneath the tree…and of course, they got what they wanted!
What wasn’t captured in the pictures was the after-dinner part. Gillian and Ciaran stayed on to play mahjong with us – something we had been doing with them. Last night, however, we learnt a new style of mahjong which was pretty competitive because of the scoring system! And I won 6 out of all 6 rounds! Now if only real money was at stake….
P/s: I still haven’t been able to capture a nice picture of our Christmas tree for this year. Am going to keep trying till I snapped a favourite so stay tuned…
when someone else is doing the cooking for you…(Lovely neighbour Travis was the appointed bbq chef for the party so that the birthday boy can enjoy himself.)
when the place is decked out in party mood…(A constant refrain from CS: keep it low-key please…and remember I’m not turning 16! Thus, the under-stated party decoration…if I had my way, the whole place would be filled with balloons!)
when you get to share it with loved ones…(One thing we were glad to see: people we invited interacting freely with each other even though they were from different groups: family, church, neighbours, couple-friends. In fact, some came up to us separately and remarked: you got nice friends. It’s great when your friends can get along.)
when there are presents involved…(Although CS won’t admit it cos he’s too nice a guy, I knew this was his favourite present – a car care kit from Travis!)
when there are tangible reminders of the good times you’ve had…(nothing beats a handwritten card, anytime!)
And so the 40th birthday party was a great success. I read this quote somewhere and felt it really gives a good perspective about birthdays when one’s older:
“Do not regret growing older.
It is a privilege denied to many.”
Last Saturday, on the pretext of a housewarming get-together, I threw my boss Dave and his wife who are expecting their first baby a surprise baby shower. It also worked out well that they were going to be the last guests to arrive because he had to attend their godson’s first hockey match…
And then the unsuspecting couple arrives; I loved the look on Fliss when she first walked in; too bad the shot was blurry!
And then there was the food that everyone brought:
Then it was time to ‘shower’ the couple with gifts:
The gift that says it all, from yours truly!
And then everyone had a go at guessing ‘how big she really is’:
The next game was for the ‘parents-to-be’ only- identifying ingredients in bottles of baby food:
This is my latest buy – a vintage typewriter. What I really like about it is the bright orange colour which gives it a retro feel. I also like the tag on it that reads “Traveller de Luxe”. It brings me back to bygone days where people would lug this little machine in their travel ‘cos it was one common mode of communication. The typewriter is made in the former Soviet state of Yugoslavia, so I also like the fact that it is a reflection of a past geo-political entity. Most of all, I like the sound of each key clicking away as I type on each letter and see how each letter slowly forms a word, and from each word forms a sentence…
I am thinking of typing my next letter using this typewriter so it’s definitely going to be fun! And the other thing I’d like to do is to use it at a party where friends could type their own place card or name tags when they arrive. So you see, this little thing may be a tad pricey but hey, how often do you come across something functional yet whimsical at the same time?! Smiles…