I've been a very busy girl these past few weeks, which is why I've not been posting as often. So far, in the last two days I've turned 24lbs of apples into three types of applesauce, made a small batch of pumpkin pie spiced apple butter, as well as roasted corn and poblano quesadilla filling, refrigerator oatmeal, and breakfast sandwiches. Pretty soon I'm moving on to brownies, banana bread, and hummus. And we can't forget the home made pizza I made for movie night. That probably sounds like enough food to feed an army, and it is, but what I'm really doing is procrastinating. I know that may be hard to believe after reading the list of everything I have accomplished, but in reality I'm putting off cleaning the house. If I'm honest, on the best of days I'm a terrible housekeeper and on the worst days you'll wonder if I ever clean at all. The truth is, I'd rather be playing with my son than cleaning, so more often than not we make messes rather than clean them up.
Isn't life with a toddler grand?
Despite my self-admitted poor housekeeping skills I do attempt a mini-spring cleaning the week of my son's birthday. The key word there is attempt, right now I'm attempting not to think about it, hence all the extra time I've spend in the kitchen. I'm sure each and every one of my guests know I'm a complete and utter slob, but for this one day a year I like to have the house somewhat in order before the party sends it back into chaos. We have exactly seven days to go until my friends and family make the trip to help celebrate my son's third birthday and I haven't cleaned a single thing. In fact, I've made such a huge mess of the kitchen and dining room that I'll have to clean before I can continue cooking. Perhaps there was a method to my madness after all, now I'll have to get a bit of cleaning done so I can make the birthday cake!
Every year I start my planning by picking a theme for my son's party. The theme for his 2nd birthday, as you can see from the photo above, was dinosaurs. I made a pretty kick ass Paleontology Cake, but so far this year I'm at a bit of a loss. How in the world do you top a cake as cool as that? I've got a few ideas and hopefully I'll be able to tweak things this week. In the mean time I've come up with our menu for the weekend. The last two years we've done a chili buffet, but I'm ready for a change. We'll have a hoard of hungry toddlers running around and I can't think of anything they would enjoy more than a pasta buffet. I've never met a kid who didn't love pasta, have you?
So without further ado, here is this year's party menu. I'll be updating it over the next week or two with links to the various recipes as I have time to photograph and post them.
✔ Party Theme
Antipasto w/ Olives from Mezzetta
Roasted Red Pepper Hummus w/ Red Peppers from Mezzetta
✔ Main Course - Pasta Buffet
Originally we had planned on three types of pasta and an assortment of toppings and sauces, but a number of our guests weren't able to come for the party. Instead we had Fettuccini Alfredo topped with imitation crab meat, chopped broccoli, and parmesan cheese. I look forward to trying out the pasta buffet on a larger scale next year when we have more guests. Even on a small scale it was a hit with everyone, especially the kids, and only required a minimal amount of work.
I have a Crock-Pot Triple Dipper we used for keeping the toppings warm and everyone was able to customize their Fettuccini.
✔ Side Dishes
Mixed Green Salad with Homemade Buttermilk Ranch
Cheesy Garlic Bread
Local Craft Beer
✔ The Cake
In an effort to be open with my readers I want to let you know that House Party and Mezzetta have provided me with free or discounted products that I've used to create some of the recipes in this menu. As always, all opinions are my own.