Mar
14
2012

  Lunch Went Fine

Lunch went fine today, although I was reminded why I generally don't bother entertaining people without children anymore. I mean people without toddlers, since technically I did have guests and their child over for lunch today. It's just that their child is in her 30s.

I stuck to my planned menu with one omission-- I never got around to baking thin and crispy oatmeal cookies. I baked a pecan creme pie yesterday morning mostly just to put the extra pie crust in the fridge to good use before it dried out. I hadn't planned on serving it as the dessert today, and W and I ate some yesterday. It was a new recipe, which is why I didn't count on it. But there was plenty left over, and it was tasty, so I kept it under cover and served it already plated, so no one was the wiser that I wasn't serving the first slices today. . .

The chicken pot pie turned out well. I had made a note in my cookbook last time I made this recipe, that I should try the sauce with white wine added. Today I made a slight change from the recipe, and deglazed the pan with wine. That was enough to add just a little something to the flavor, without actually adding alcohol (since it mostly boils off while deglazing).

Both W and M were very well-behaved during the meal. Although W ran off after only eating a few bites, it was better than if he would have stayed and tried to monopolize the conversation, considering it's sometimes hard to understand what he's talking about. Before dessert I had to excuse myself and put M upstairs for his nap. Fortunately, T had been unable to get him to take a morning nap, so he fell asleep very quickly.

It was such a lovely day, we moved out to the back porch for coffee and dessert. But I didn't get to relax for long, since I had barely finished my last bite of pie when T declared that W was getting too fussy and rambunctious to stay in the room with us anymore. I'm around him all day, so I didn't really notice, so I'm glad he spoke up. I DID notice that once I took the boys outside to play, they did settle down a bit.

Fortunately, T was able to take over host duty from that point. I basically just went back to my normal routine, which is hanging out with my kids in the afternoon. This is why I don't bother inviting people without toddlers over-- the pace of socialization is so different. I remember I used to be somewhat annoyed at the amount of time parents had to spend tending their children when I would go visit people who had kids long before I ever did. So rather than be annoyed, I learned to just attend the baby shower and bring lots of gifts, and then write off ever seeing that couple again.

But when adults with toddlers come over, at least we're all pretty much on the same page, expectation-wise. Come over, let the kids play. Preferably something that involves running around outside to tire them out. Then everyone sits down to eat. When there are more kids, I put them at their own table, and that works out. Maybe a little bit more playtime after lunch, but not much, since it's naptime. Gotta be home by naptime, or at least have the kids strapped into their carseats to sleep on the way home.

It was very nice when I visited N & T in NYC, since they have so many kids. N and I both had to take naps with our babies at some point during the day. Sometimes one of us would nap in the morning, the other in the afternoon, sometimes it would work out we'd be asleep at the same time, whatever. When everyone is used to adjusting their schedules and activity level around the fickle moods of young children, there's no stress.

Now, there was no stress today, since I knew these people were parents so they'd understand. Granted, they did exclaim that it's been so long since they had a little one in the house that they'd forgotten what it was like, but I'm sure they remember how it is somewhere in their subconscious. Plus, it was really a social call about T, not me. He's the one producing their daughter's album, not me. I felt very satisfied just getting the house in order and hosting lunch. I really didn't feel bad about escaping to take care of the kids. Although I would have if it were MY friends who came to visit. But then, my friends are not in their late 60s and so wouldn't mind coming out to play with the kids when it was time to get the kids out of the house.