From the time I was a small child to well into my twenties, I was a Christmas junkie. I loved the holiday season — the Christmas carols, the elaborately decorated shops, the abundance of good food (primarily the kind loaded with sugar and fat), shopping for family and friends, the proverbial “good cheer,” even the crowded malls. I couldn’t get enough of it.
Greeks eat vasilopita on New Year’s Day for good luck. Photo (and cake by): Georgette Gilmore
Baristanet wishes you and yours a happy, healthy, peaceful and prosperous New Year. Did you make (or break) a resolution yet? Will it be a lucky 13?
Today, New Year’s Day, Greeks eat vasilopita — a cake with a foil wrapped coin inside. The person who gets the piece with the coin will have good luck all year long. If you want to whip up your own, here’s a vasilopita recipe (my kids will be hoping to score the coin at Grandma’s house today).
Happy 2013! How did you ring in the New Year? What traditions do you have (and did anyone else bang pots when they were kids to make noise…?)
Milk Money: Happy New Year! 20% OFF all clothes and shoes!
Hip Chic: Half off sale. Boots as low as $25 and some tees $10.
One Savvy Design: 30% off Coats, Sweaters, Dress Pants, Skirts, 20% off Boots, 20% off Handbags (blue dots on tags are excluded)
My Blue Suede Shoes: New Year’s 1-2-3 Sale works like this — today — and for the next two weeks (expect when closed on New Years Day), buy any one item (shoes or otherwise) and save 10% on your purchase total. Buy any 2 items, and save 20% on your purchase total. Buy three or more items and save 30% on your all your purchases! The store is making room for inventory of beautiful Spring footwear.
There’s another snow storm coming (wispy snow already falling) but there’s still time to catch a movie. Here’s the schedule for Montclair area. How many of the new holiday 2012 movies have you seen? Give us your reviews.
My mom was born and raised in Mississippi. If there is one thing a Southerner can do well is cook and eat. I love my mom’s southern dishes and one of my favorites is her Hoppin’ John dish for the New Year.
In the South, eating Hoppin’ John on New Year’s Day is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck. This dish is made with black-eyed peas, which are symbolic of pennies or coins, and can be served with Collard greens (more symbolic wealth since they are green, the color of money) and/or cornbread, which represents the color of gold—even more wealth.
Hoppin’ John is one of those classic Southern dishes that can be made in many different ways. At its core, however, Hoppin’ John is just rice, black-eyed peas, some kind of smoked pork, and onions. Simple and delicious. My mom’s recipe is just that. A simple recipe, allowing the black-eyed peas to shine. Served with a straight from the oven piece of cornbread, it’s so good.
This year, my mom is visiting for the holidays and I’ve convinced her to share her recipe for Hoppin’ John. It wasn’t easy, as it’s all in her head with no measurements or directions written down. I followed her every step and was able to put a recipe together to share. Make it and enjoy it on New Year’s Day!
“Are we having a tree UN-decorating party?” asked my daughter this morning. The annual family Christmas tree trimming party, complete with eggnog and homemade gingerbread, is one of the highlights of the season at our home. “Hmmm, do you think that would be fun?” I asked. “Not really,” she sighed.
Not at all, I think to myself. De-decking the halls and house is not something I enjoy. My family loves the holiday season so very much. It’s a bit of a downer to remove all the decorations and store them away in cold plastic crates in the basement, where they hibernate for eleven months of each year.
And so we postpone the sad chore. Usually until the first weekend after New Year’s Day. I know some folks who wait even longer. When do you take down the tree and remove other festive decor?
What are you doing New Year’s Eve? Going to Times Square? Having a party at home? Dining out? Going to a big soirée? Or maybe you’ll be enjoying time at home and asleep before the ball drops. If you need some ideas, here are some local restaurants having special menus and some other “alternative” ways to spend the last day of 2012:
Bare bones is a good description of the Aldi. It follows a Costco model of not usually carrying competing brands, so there's usually just one choice for any product type.
But it does have good prices, and it accepts WIC transactions.