Began the last day of 2013 with two quick cartoons as I prepared for a relatively early work day. In Kung Fu Panda Holiday, Po has been given the honor of hosting the big Winter Feast at the Dragon Palace. However, to do so, he'll have to miss his father's family get-together at his restaurant. Po knows nothing about fancy dinners and is run ragged trying to get everything together and fend off a bunny chef who thinks he has to defend his honor...until he remembers the meaning of teamwork and being with the ones you love.
Ruby is also having party problems in "Ruby's Surprise Party." She wants to hold a big surprise bash for her best friend Louise, but Max keeps making her jump out of her hiding spot too early. All he wants is that chocolate-raspberry cake Grandma baked!
Work was a mess all day long. First of all, I took out a full trash yesterday...and found it on the ground this morning. The feral cats must have gotten into it. I had to pick that up and was almost late. Second, it's the beginning of the month. Third, people were preparing for New Year's parties and large dinners. Fourth, all the news stations are blaring snow reports, even though we're supposed to get less than an inch, and the real problem will be literally freezing temperatures. I spent most of the afternoon stressed and frustrated. I was glad to grab cheese on a good sale, along with aluminum foil and sparkling apple-cranberry cider and heavy whipped cream for tonight, and hurry home.
When I got in, I changed into regular clothes, then made my own New Year's Eve dinner. Sliced sweet potatoes and put them in with the ham, along with the leftover sliced apples from Rose's party last week. Defrosted green beans and almonds and made "French Salad" (lettuce with home-made dressing). It came out delicious, perfect and moist and just sweet enough.
Ran cartoons all evening as I baked and cooked. Everyone's favorite red-nosed reindeer finds himself chasing the unhappy baby New Year who has fled because of his big ears in the odd Rankin-Bass tale Rudolph's Shiny New Year. Chuck's not happy with how he has to spend his New Year either in Happy New Year, Charlie Brown. He has to write a book report on War and Peace, even as Peppermint Patty begs him to take her to her big New Year's Eve shindig.
Moved to shorts as I did the dishes. It takes a little spinach to give Olive's grandma enough vitality to join Popeye in a New Year's Eve dance contest in "Let's Celebrake." Popeye and Olive try to get Bluto to stop sabotaging their nightclub routine in "Morning, Noon, and Nightclub." Jerry is a "Mouse In Manhattan" when he flees the country and Tom for the bright lights of New York City. Mickey Mouse proves to be one heck of a party animal when his wild get-together even gets the furniture dancing in "The Whoopee Party."
Did two Good Eats episodes on snack food as I used Alton Brown's method for popping popcorn - a simple metal mixing bowl with oil on the bottom and foil on the top. I ran "Pop Art" and "Pretzel Logic" as I made my New Year's snack. Though I did burn the bottom of the bowl a little (as I feared), the popcorn came out surprisingly edible.
I also got the first items of my Amazon.com orders today. I really needed a new cordless phone. My old Panasonic is from when I first moved in. It was a bit clunky, and the screen had died. (The reviews on Amazon mentioned that's a problem with this particular model after six years or so. I've had it for seven.) I have another Panasonic, this one more streamlined, with larger buttons and a light-up face. I also got the most adorable WebKinz Lil' Kinz Lamb - I named her Sharri, after puppeteer Sharri Lewis, whose most famous creation was Lambchop.
I'm off to make whipped syllabub and wait for the cacophony that is the fireworks over the river. I hope all of my regular readers have a wonderful New Year's and a safe and happy 2014!