Our Cheesy New Year's Eve

Did you do anything fun for New Year's Eve?  I remember going to the occasional party, wearing cute dresses and drinking, but I can't even remember the last year this happened.  Kids came along, and who is going to watch them that late on a holiday?  At least, that is the boat we are in.  Throw in the fact that Mr. B works odd hours, and more often than not, it is just the girls and me.

Several years ago, my mother and company were up visiting over New Year's Eve, and they inadvertently started a tradition in our house.  The big grocery store has a huge fancy cheese department, and they sprung for some Brie and Maytag Blue, among a couple other varieties.  It turned out that both daughters of mine are total cheese nuts.  Not normal cheeses like cheddar, but strong cheeses.  Expensive cheeses.  Stuff I probably wouldn't buy on a regular basis.  A tradition, however, was born.  Every New Year's Eve, we pick out some fine cheeses.  Usually, we just have them as a little snack or dessert, but last night, I decided that we needed a party spread!  I used my big wooden pizza peel as a cheese board, baked some spinach-artichoke dip, roasted some garlic, sauteed some grapes, and laid out a fine snacky party table for three. This was pretty much our dinner, but why not?  It was New Year's Eve!

It was also a time to hit the olive bar at the store.  I also introduced the girls to kumquats!  Big Sis liked them.  Little Sis?  Nope.

My cheese board plan:  one cheddar, one flavored, one goat, one blue, and one soft and creamy cheese.  The cheese lady at the store had samples of an amazingly creamy smoked cheddar, so we jumped on that one.  We also followed her recommendation for a blue, a delicious Spanish blue.  It was mild, but flavorful.  Joan of Arc brie and goat cheese won based on price, and for our flavored cheese, we hunted down our favorite:  rosemary-olive oil asiago.

We also had a small tomato caprese salad (more cheese!), red pepper hummus, lots of raw veggies, apple slices, cold grapes, and warm slices of baguette.  If you're wondering about the sauteed grapes, here is the deal.  One of my favorite treats ever served at a party involved sauteed grapes (olive oil and sea salt), goat cheese, and toasted baguette.  It is an amazing combination of flavors!  

We continued the "cheese" theme by watching Dick Clark's New Years Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest, beginning with the whole "30 Greatest Women" countdown thing that started at 7 Central.  Okay, we also played games and did other things, because it wasn't the most exciting entertainment, but when I was a kid, I always watched the Dick Clark show, especially after the 1987 NYE, when The Bangles performed.  I was a member of the Bangles 'N Mash International Fan Club, what can I say?

Fergie was the west coast host this year.  Not really a fan, but back in the '80s, she was on Kids' Incorporated, which I loved to watch on Saturday mornings as a kid, before it moved to the Disney Channel.  (We didn't have cable at that point.)  Here is your cheesy video for the day.  If you're afraid of clowns, I'm sorry (not really).

Mr. B made it home by 11:30, so I got to ring in the new year with him.  There was still plenty of yumminess on the table, and he came home with chocolate wine.  Ever had chocolate wine?  Oooooo...

Today, there are roofers hammering over our heads.  We will have black-eyed peas for lunch.  It was a yogurt parfait kind of morning.  Tired of my dorky food pictures yet?

I would be lying if I said I never make resolutions, but as always, I will not share them.  They are mine.  I wish each and every one of you a magical 2014.  May all your dreams and plans come true, or at least, let nothing fall apart.  Love, light, peace, and hope.

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  1. LOVE THIS SO MUCH!!!! fancy cheese! looks so fabulous and NO I never tire of food pix ever! Sounds utterly delightful. We went to a kid friendly gathering at a friend's house, Julia had a wonderful time and they played the 'What Does the Fox Say' song which made my New Years right there. Long ago, we stopped going out, Andrew and I would watch Twilight Zone marathon and we (me actually) would make some kind of exotic from another country dish. It's funny that we're going out more on New Years now that we have a kid! But we're back by 9:30. I never make resolutions, b/c I can't even follow through with a plan for even half a day! I would seriously like to get our garage cleaned out and organized this year. Most of my resolutions, halfway as they are, form around the them of cleaning......i am a weirdo. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    1. If we had cable, I would so have the TV on for the Twilight Zone marathon! The whole series is on Amazon, and my oldest loves it, but it's more fun waiting and seeing which episode pops up on TV next.

      So Christmas Day, we introduced my sister and 2-year-old niece to "What Does the Fox Say." Then two days later, we babysat Little Sis's best friend and her brother, and the three of them played it OVER AND OVER AND OVER, much to poor Big Sis's chagrin. She hates it. I almost bought her the book for Christmas, just to tease her. (Plus, the illustrations are awesome!) There was one copy left at my favorite book store. Alas, I had already spent enough on my kids, so I put it back. Another woman saw me put it down and grabbed it! Now I know that Little Sis or my niece would actually appreciate it.

      I need to clean and purge tons of stuff in my house, but I suck and need help. I also need to work on healthy stuff, and aside from Christmas Day and last night, the food part really has improved. Happy New Year!!!

    2. we don't have cable anymore, so we're watching on Hulu i think! so much better, you get to choose which eps you haven't seen!

      JUST SAW the Fox book in the grocery store today! It's awesome! Great art!!

      in other news, I have a cold. just had a hot toddy. now off to my bed with clean sheets for the new year! (we have clean sheets at other times too :)

    3. Oh, blah. Get better soon! My grandmother thinks she has the flu, and I'm hearing about sickness all over FB. Perhaps the best part of not going anywhere during this strangely long break is not catching anything.

      We watched a few episodes on Amazon. I introduced Big Sis to "To Serve Man," "The Hitchhiker," "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet," and "To Sing the Body Electric." Both girls watched "The Dummy." Little Sis wants a ventriloquist dummy now, "just like that one!" Creepy.

  2. I wish you a fantastic New Year as well Danzel! Have a wonderful 2014 :D

  3. Replies
    1. It was very good. I love cheese. I've been a vegetarian for 18 years (this month!), but cheese is the main reason why I just can't go vegan...

  4. I love it. What fun. We watched the DCRE too. I loved that countdown. My husband and I both agreed that the performers on the show use to be way cooler than they are now.

    And side note, what was up with Fergie's pose? Did you notice she only stood in one position almost the whole night?

    1. Oh, I know the pose! It had lots of attitude. Hahah! She made certain faces a lot, too. And Jenny McCarthy acts like she's still on Singled Out. Jenny, that was such a long time ago...

      I think that show had the best lineup of the bunch, but even that wasn't saying too much. Maybe I'm getting old. But no, I just have different tastes...

  5. I loved reading about your Christmas and New Year, and all your great Christmas books -we have one in common :) - and all the yummy festive food, and I loved seeing the beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing :)
    I wish you from my heart a happy, beautiful and magical New Year! All the very best to you and your family xoxoxo

    1. Oh, I loved your Christmasy book countdown! I hope your Christmas was wonderful, and I wish you and your family the very best 2014 imaginable! xxxxooo


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