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Thread: Dashing December Savings (frugal chatter 2014)

  1. #571
    Cat Trainer (Trainee??) Andit's Avatar
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    J&C, only you can know what is best for your family. If it were me, I would let them come. It could be used as a lesson to your boys that sometimes, no matter how difficult, you have to put up with trying situations and here is how to deal with them.

    My Godparents had 2 daughters, neither son-in-law was crazy about them (one was more nasty than the other). The nicer SIL, always came to Xmas dinner with the younger daughter & their kids. The not-so-nice one rarely ever came, and insisted that his wife (the older daughter) and their kids have their own Xmas. Growing up, I was at their house more than those grandkids (my folks & I went to visit them - an hour's drive away - at least once a month) & I think I met those grandkids maybe twice in my life. In the end, the nasty SIL ended up alone - his wife died, his kids & grandkids were too busy to spend time with him - I'm convinced the lesson they learned was that if something is unpleasant or inconvenient, you can opt out & take the easy road. Not saying your situation is anything like my family's, but I can't help but wonder if those kids would have turned out differently had someone swallowed a bit of pride and put up with some degree of unpleasantness.

    We have a friend of the family who is all alone now, not someone I would choose to spend time with, but I've more or less inherited her (my parents sort of inherited her from other friends of theirs who are now living in another province). She doesn't have any family left and few friends, so she was always welcomed (still is) at our family gatherings. She is not a bad person, but can be a bit of a trying personality, kwim. We always did our own Xmas celebration just for us (my parents & me) & any guests came on another day.

    Sorry, I'm rambling. That's what happens when instead of coffee I opt for the almond croissant in a morning outing.

    Good luck with everything.

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  2. #572
    Cat Trainer (Trainee??) Andit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ciel View Post
    Spotted a video about Christmas in Berlin-KaDeWe's roast goose meal with red cabbage (topped with fig quarter section), kale, a boiled potato and baked apple (topped with baked phyllo? star) looks yummy. Another segment had a vegan Xmas meal dish-red cabbage was also the menu with nut loaf, potato & squash dumplings, and sauce.

    Andit-chestnut puree is something I will have to buy or to find out how to make. Mont Blanc dessert and Nesselrode pudding would be two recipes in need of puree! The pudding recipe was mentioned in a book about the colour purple (dye).
    Red cabbage is a staple in eastern European households, especially when served with roast pork. Yummy.

    As for the chestnut puree, check any European deli, they should carry it. I know Loblaws had it at one point, but I haven't bought it in years, so not sure (last time I had it, my folks brought home a can from Hungary in their checked luggage). Take the contents of the can, put it through a ricer onto a large dinner plate & cover with whipped cream (for best results you want a very high chestnut to whipped cream ratio ).

    Never heard of this brand, as I said we usually got our tins from the deli, but apparently Amazon is going into the gourmet food business (yikes on the price!):
    http://www.amazon.ca/Merchant-Gourme...chestnut+puree

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    -went to walmart this morning , lcbo saved 4.00 on 2 bottles of wine -gotta have on hand if we are going to 2 open houses
    -then fortinos
    -visited my hubbys niece and her family
    -came home and bbq hamburgers -yummmm
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  4. #574
    Canadian Guru jasperandchar's Avatar
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    I appreciate everyones comments AND suggestions about Christmas and my parents, I still have not heard from them so who knows....but I am sure as Christmas creeps closer the phone will ring.

    DH, Jaden and bil are gone to see The Hobbit, dh is using scene points...yippee.

    Trying to finalize my Christmas supper menu as I am tire of the same old boring foods , you know mashed potatoes, carrots, etc.
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    2019 is the year that we continue to save before we buy!!!

  5. #575
    Canadian Guru jasperandchar's Avatar
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    Inquiring Minds Want to Know!!!!

    IF you are hosting Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner or a holiday do you tell people what you are serving?

    Is your menu predictable, do you make the same things every year or do you change it up?

    Are you guests asked to contribute something to the meal OR if they ask do you accept them bringing something to contribute?

    Do you cook some of your meal ahead of time or perhaps do your prepping ahead of time?

    Is your meal fancy or simple/relaxed.....

    include whatever you are comfortable sharing
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    2019 is the year that we continue to save before we buy!!!

  6. #576
    Canadian Guru jasperandchar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasperandchar View Post
    Inquiring Minds Want to Know!!!!

    IF you are hosting Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner or a holiday do you tell people what you are serving?

    If they ask I will say but I don't specifically tell my inlaws what I am serving

    Is your menu predictable, do you make the same things every year or do you change it up?

    I'm not a turkey fan but because I am the odd man out I do make a turkey, shhhh I love ham . I normally do mashed potatoes, carrots, gravy, turkey, condiments, bread.....BUT this year I am making a few changes, I love brussel sprouts so I am serving brussel sprouts, thinking of doing a different type of potato dish but will get dh's opinion, I also was thinking of serving an appetizer as we normally just dive into the turkey, etc and we're all done and stuffed in 15 minutes .

    Are you guests asked to contribute something to the meal OR if they ask do you accept them bringing something to contribute?

    My mil has offered to make the stuffing (dressing) which is awesome because it's dh's grandma's recipe and it's so yummy...drool....

    Do you cook some of your meal ahead of time or perhaps do your prepping ahead of time?

    I will be cooking somethings the day before because I cannot handle stress anymore and need a huge timeframe so I can get things done in my own time and stress free.

    Is your meal fancy or simple/relaxed.....

    we use paper plates so I would say relaxed....


    include whatever you are comfortable sharing
    we have an alcoholic punch that everyone is welcome to enjoy,

    my inlaws normally arrive 1 hour or so before dinner (they live right next door) and they leave about 1.5 hour after dinner
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    2019 is the year that we continue to save before we buy!!!

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    okay here goes
    I am cooking turkey dinner on boxing day -only day can get my 2 kids and their spouses together ith ashlyn" too
    my meal is predictable -now I havent cooked in 1 years a xmas meal -since my mom died -my daughter had prime rib last year
    -we have turkey ,turnip stuffing,mashed potatoes the usual and we dont tire of it -my son-in-law is Italian so he lves turkey they dont have it at xmas-nop i don't ask them to bring anything cause the are my kids-but this year I dont need to make pies or buy them as son-in-law will buy canollis
    -no I don't cook ahead either
    -it is relaxed not real fancy -even thou its at the diningroom table


    -I cant wait this year to do It
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  8. #578
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    Inquiring Minds Want to Know!!!!

    IF you are hosting Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner or a holiday do you tell people what you are serving?
    If they ask but I usually make a variety of things due to dislikes and allergies and a daughter with an eating dissorder, it gets very complicated.
    Is your menu predictable, do you make the same things every year or do you change it up?
    Normally yes but this year I am totally switching it up, with being sick our whole Christmas is off kilter so I thought it was a good time to break tradition and do Prime Rib this year

    Are you guests asked to contribute something to the meal OR if they ask do you accept them bringing something to contribute?
    It depends on how many I'm hosting, some years it has been 25 plus so yes. This year everyone is helping in the kitchen prep and clean up for both Christmas eve and Christmas day, my girls will be home with their significant others so we will have 13 people and four dogs for two days so it is a lot of work!!
    Do you cook some of your meal ahead of time or perhaps do your prepping ahead of time?
    I always cook as much as I can prior, my turnips are mashed and in the freezer, home made buns in hte freezer and all veggies will be preppped except potatoes
    Is your meal fancy or simple/relaxed.....
    With just 13 of us it will be formal, we dress for dinner and the table is set to perfection one of my favorite parts..still stressing a bout using paper napkins!!!)I always thought it was important for my kids to know how to properly set a table as well as how to dine formally so we do it for the major holidays.
    If I have a crowd (over 16) it will be buffet and casual, not much you can do with limited space.

    include whatever you are comfortable sharing





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  9. #579
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    I am going to answer this twice, since I do celebrate 2 Christmas every year, Dad's family is German so they celebrate Christmas Eve and Mom's family is English and celebrate Christmas day which has completely worked for us as there has never been a fight over Christmas, which is amazing for someone who grew up with parents who divorced when she was 3.

    We will start with Dad's for Christmas Eve.

    Quote Originally Posted by jasperandchar View Post
    Inquiring Minds Want to Know!!!!

    IF you are hosting Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner or a holiday do you tell people what you are serving?
    There is a standard dinner that is made every year which is a mix of traditions and dietary needs. The dinner is left up to my Step Mom (as Oma can no longer cook, they used to split the food) and I do dessert.

    Is your menu predictable, do you make the same things every year or do you change it up?
    Our menu is pretty standard, just saying a riot may break out if there no Sour Brotten (sp?) or Potato dumplings which is our traditional German portion of the meal. So here is what is standard:
    Sour Brotten (sp?)
    Boiled Potatoes
    Potato Dumplings
    Red Cabbage
    Carrots
    Peas (Carrots and peas have been separate as I do not eat peas, but would pick around them but bro doesn't eat carrots and if they touch the peas they are been contaminated)
    Quinoa Salad
    Above the Standard must haves but sometimes depending on what my Step Mom find she will add in new dishes plus sometimes there is a vegetarian dish for Opa if not from everything else he is good.

    Dessert every year does vary but I am not allowed entry to the house unless I hold at least one dessert containing peanut butter and chocolate as per my Half Bro.


    Are you guests asked to contribute something to the meal OR if they ask do you accept them bringing something to contribute?
    For the most part my Step Mom cooks everything this is her thing, but I do bring the dessert as my Step Mom does not really bake. As well my cousins wife also usually brings a pie since her and her sisters get together and make about 10 of them for each of them to take to various events/functions over the season.

    Do you cook some of your meal ahead of time or perhaps do your prepping ahead of time?
    The only thing really made ahead of time is sour brotten as it has to soak/marinate for 3 to 7 days so that is started ahead of time.

    As well all desserts are done ahead, I have everything baked and usually packaged so I just have to take with me and than set up on my Step Mom's serving platters


    Is your meal fancy or simple/relaxed.....
    It is pretty fancy to some extent although rules have been relaxed, we no longer have to dress up, we used to all have to get Christmas outfits and be dressed up and now it come be comfy. But dinner is on the food china in the dinning room.

    include whatever you are comfortable sharing
    Just saying is there is no fight over the dumpling or sour brotten it is a good night, I have literally seen one family member lick a potato dumpling and another one say whatever and still eat it, I have also seen people stabbed by a fork when reaching for the last one. All I have to say is yippee and yeah to the fact I do not like dumplings.
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  10. #580
    Must Coupon, Must Save :) SassyAshley's Avatar
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    Round 2 Mom's House

    Quote Originally Posted by jasperandchar View Post
    Inquiring Minds Want to Know!!!!

    IF you are hosting Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner or a holiday do you tell people what you are serving?
    It is never really asked, me and Mom always know what we are having and bro doesn't care so it is what it is.

    Is your menu predictable, do you make the same things every year or do you change it up?
    I am so not a turkey fan and have been known to talk Mom into Christmas Lasagna, or Chicken Wings. But we have now come to an agreement, Christmas will be turkey since it is a given we are not eating turkey at Dad's and all other holidays can be whatever.
    So dinner will be the traditional:
    Turkey with Potato Stuffing (Only stuffing I eat)
    Butter Roasted Potatoes
    Candied Squash
    Candied Baby Carrots


    Are you guests asked to contribute something to the meal OR if they ask do you accept them bringing something to contribute?
    It is just me, mom and bro and bro isn't bringing anything but that is okay as we really do keep it simple.

    Do you cook some of your meal ahead of time or perhaps do your prepping ahead of time?
    The stuffing is done ahead, the potatoes are boiled ahead of time so they just need to be put on a cooking sheet with the butter and roasted once the turkey comes out.

    Is your meal fancy or simple/relaxed.....
    So relaxed, paper plates, usually eat at the coffee table (still have not found the dinning table) and come as you are, PJs, Sweats we do not care be comfy.

    include whatever you are comfortable sharing
    Bro will be hung over from the night before I will get the lecture from Mom even though I do not drink and my bro is incapable of doing anything for himself well I never seem to sit down. Good times.
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  11. #581
    Must Coupon, Must Save :) SassyAshley's Avatar
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    Good Evening Everyone,
    Okay day here is today, did not get as much done as I would have liked but I got two weeks no need to panic yet. In regards to your question Nancy I am hoping we can work together as a large portion of what is left to be done is all Mom's and she needs to decide stay, sell or toss. The only issue will be her work schedule. Kind of funny I get two weeks off during her busiest time of the year, but since she is working Boxing day she got an extra day off this week so hopefully we can get a lot done. As of right now Christmas is not happening as no where for bro to sit but Mom keeps telling me not to worry it will be done.

    I think I have picked the menu for Dessert at Dad's, I go completely overboard but it is because I feel I have something to prove (but that is a story for another time). Right now it looks like I am making the following:
    Chocolate Cheesecake Souffle
    Peanut Butter Cheesecake
    Lemon Meringue Cheesecake Shots
    Candied Cranberries
    Peppermint Patties
    Peanut Butter Melt Aways

    Plus I will take half of whatever Mom makes for our house, I am hoping for cookies as I am lacking those on the menu so far. Not my best year that was 15 cookies, bars, candied and chocolates and 4 plated desserts but in all honesty I know I will not get time for all that this year so cutting back a little.

    Tomorrow Mom is off so the cleaning and baking will start, I wanted to do some baking today but did not get to it. But there is always tomorrow so no worries (yet).

    Off to get some more work done, I have only been on Shut Down for 2 days and already feel like it is flying by, hope everyone has a great night.
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  12. #582
    One Awesome Domestic Diva MrsSunshine's Avatar
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    well just finished turkey dinner here. did everything myself, complete from scratch. it was well enjoyed.
    another dinner christmas day dinner at my brothers. everyone contributes.

    anyway, off to enjoy some relax time with family.
    enjoy your evening all.
    Be Strong
    Be True
    Be You.
    Simple as that!

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    I will be cooking dinner at our house for about 16. I usually make the same menu each year with help from DD and DH-usually my SIL and I alternate cooking Xmas dinner each year so the menu varies a bit.

    Ham dip and bread as appetizer
    Turkey, dressing, gravy and cranberrry sauce-usually only 1 or 2 eat this
    Mashed potatoes
    Brussel sprouts
    carrots
    home made buns

    Dessert is usually English trifle made by my Mum but since she is away this year haven't decided the dessert. I usually don't ask people to bring anything except perhaps a bottle of wine if they wish.

    Very informal-we line up and serve ourselves at the stove and sit anywhere in the living, dining room or counter stools area. Once we set up an extra table but we usually don't bother. The emphasis is really on the family time and visiting. Oh yes I did just invite one friend tonight to join us for Xmas and she said she will bring some cabbage rolls so that will be a new item for Xmas dinner.
    Last edited by lizzie bargain; Sat, Dec 20th, 2014 at 10:26 PM.

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    This afternoon I attended a funeral as part of the Catholic Women's League honour guard. When I returned home my husband had sad news. His cousin Julie had died today at the young age of 27. She had a 5yr old son that we had met as a baby. I knew her, but we had not seen since before our wedding because they live in Medicine Hat, AB. I keep breaking down in tears for the loss of her young life. She is the oldest of 3 children. She was a bright young woman and had lost a set of twins last year. My husband handles things differently than me...I haven't seen him cry today. I'd appreciate prayers for our family at this time.
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    (((hugs))) Angela, Thoughts & Prayers for your family during this time.
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