No, really. I love having people over. I just don't care for the cooking part. That stresses me out. First of all, I don't have much experience with cooking, and secondly, I don't enjoy it. I wish I did, but nope, sorry - my family is lucky we actually eat. I get by, mind you, but it's nothing fancy. The only time the word Gourmet is used in this house is if we're talking about how Al Gore-may be nuts. (Okay - that was a very corny joke. Sorry.)
The first panic came with trying to figure out what in the world I would make, what do these people like and dislike, do I need to be concerned with making it healthy (cause most of the stuff I make is not a low-fat version), etc. The questions came pouring out. Hubby wasn't the best of help, but we finally decided that it would be salmon.
I have a really tasty teriyaki glazed salmon recipe which is very quick and easy to make in a skillet. (Funny side note: I had no clue how to spell teriyaki and when spell check gave me what it thought I was trying to spell it came up with the word bacteria and hysterical. Yikes! That would be hysterical if I served bacteria salmon. Not.) Back to the story: A side salad, some fancy rice and a side of bread and it looks like a nice, simple, and healthy dinner. I even had time to make a quick dessert - Grands Little Pies.
With dinner plans made and ingredients purchased, I went to the task of cleaning the house. Deep cleaning the house. When you have first time guests you not only want to make a good first impression, but they're most likely going to want a tour of your house. So that means every single room had to be in order, dusted, vacuumed, smudges wiped off, etc. I even made it a point to wash the floors.
The main preparations were done, table set, house was tidy and next thing you know the guests arrive. Right on time. Which was fine because for once I was ready on time - that doesn't usually happen.
Things were going smooth. I poured myself a glass of wine. While Jason was finishing up the tour I went to the kitchen to finish the glaze for the salmon. As I was taking the salmon out of the oven where it was keeping warm, the S.O.B. dish came sliding out of my oven-mitt and flipped over landing up side down on my kitchen floor.
I stood there - frozen for a moment - not really believing this just happened to me. What the heck was I going to do. I thought to myself I could easily pick it up before anyone saw what had happened and try to play it off, but nope - here comes Mrs. Guest. "Uh-oh, what was that?" I hear her say as she comes up the stairs from the basement. Crap - I just got caught - plan B - I ask her, "So, what's your favorite restaurant, looks like we're going out to eat tonight."
Mrs. Guest goes on to say it's not a big deal, just throw it on the grill and it will be just fine.
Seriously, you want me to serve you (people that I just met) food off my kitchen floor and be okay with that? Really? That thought just wasn't sitting well with me. Even if I did clean my floors that day (with chemicals). I was so mad at myself and I can only imagine how dense my husband and his co-worker thought I was.
But would you believe it - they INSISTED on eating my floor glazed salmon. Even though it was broken in pieces. I rinsed it off a bit and we put it on the grill, still mortified.
We sit down to eat with the adults in the dining room and the boys at the kitchen table. The salmon gets passed around and I take my share of flakes while shaking my head in shame. But they really ate it and they really liked it - or at least that's what they made it seem like - for all I know they could be really good fakers.
In the middle of dinner Luke walks in wearing a shirt and underwear and cheerfully announces that he just pooped his pants.
COME ON! Can't a poor Mom get a break from this humiliation?
I drag him upstairs to rinse him off and come back down to attempt to finish my now cold salmon crumbles - good thing I only took a little - everyone else was already finished.
To boost my spirits I pour myself a 3rd glass of wine (I think, but whose counting anyway?) We are sitting around the table enjoying each others company, as far as I can tell. The topic shifted to the geographic sides of Cleveland and which side was the best to live on. They continue to say the east side is the best - it is the "right" side. Me, trying to be the
Three strikes - I'm out. I don't believe we'll be having this couple over for dinner again. They must wonder what my husband saw in me. Cooking abilities? Nope. We saw the gracefulness of that. Ability to train the kids to have good manners? Half naked kid smelling up the dining room during dinner? Nope. Witty? Nope - more like ditsy.
Ugh! I tried, but I surrender. White flag is up and waving.