This was the weekend of Christmas Parties. Both involved lots of laughs, good food and wine, and great time with friends.
On Friday we went to our Community Group Christmas Party. This always involves way too much (delicious) food and a great game of White Elephant. Our rules for gift giving are that you can’t buy a gift, but instead have to bring something from your house that you either: a) want to get rid of, b) think someone else should enjoy it as much as you do, or c) have been doing some winter cleaning and ran across this random object that deserves group appreciation!
Well, my gift fell into category C. I was cleaning out my book shelve and ran across a copy of ‘Cat Hymns’. Yes, you read that correctly, ‘Cat Hymns’. And the best part was that there was an accompanying CD! This book featured a wonderful collection of hymns that have had the lyrics changed to cat themed numbers. Just a few of these include: I Will Sing of My Purina (to the tune of I Will Sing the Wondrous Story), Tussle and Play (to the tune of Trust and Obey) and What a Friend I have in Catnip (to the tune to What a Friend we have in Jesus). And the part that made me really laugh was the music that the lyrics were played with – bluegrass, gospel, country, and even cats singing with a French accent. Wow! Needless to say, the gift received quite a few laughs.
Aside from the game of White Elephant (which did include some great gifts, such as a Spiderman volleyball, a shock pen, a Hooters mini-basketball, and it was the year of the DVD – Boy in the Striped Pajama’s, Cast Away, and Dodgeball), we watched a few clips from the first version of Tron and were all in awe of the phenomenal graphics! And then, you can’t forget the very random and funny quotes of the night –
In response to the tenderloin that Sarah made – “Yeah, the tenderloin from an angel”
When someone was surveying all the gifts to see if he wanted to steel one currently open – “Do you want some Merry?” (Referring to the Boy in the Striped Pajamas DVD)
And you can’t forget the reflex game that was brought out. Apparently, the last person to click their button after the middle light turns from red to green gets a shock. I guess I have cat-like reflexes, because I never did get to experience that shock. Too bad.
Then on Sunday it was time for the 6th Annual Bailey Cookie Exchange. I’ve been hosting a cookie swap for quite a few years now, and I think this year’s exchange was the best yet. I’m not sure if it was the caliber of cookie, or if the group of ladies that came were just a good mix, but it was very enjoyable! A lot of new faces joined the mix this year and I’m pretty sure I laughed off all the cookies I ate (at least that is what I’m going to tell myself…)!
I made a delicious Spicy Ginger Cookie (http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Ginger-Spice-Cookies-103156) and ate way too much dough and quite a few afterward…you know, in order to ‘test’ and make sure they taste okay for everyone else. They were. I also made one of the best black bean dips I’ve ever done, so I’m going share that recipe with you today:
Sweet and Spicy Black Bean Dip
1 can (or 1 1/2 cups) of Black Beans, rinsed
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 small Red Onion, chopped
a few dashes of Hot Sauce
2 tbsp Vegan Worcestershire Sauce
1 tbsp sugar
Mix all ingredients together in a food processor and process until smooth. Serve chilled with cut veggies. Yum!