"new" CDs

...from Half Price Books in St. Paul...

Johnny Cash Collection, Vol. 3 - Johnny Cash (Sun recordings)
At The Organ - The Minus 5
The Best Of - Ben E. King & The Drifters
Tyrannosaurus Hives - The Hives
Remix Album:Happy End Of You - Pizzicato 5
Terroir Blues - Jay Farrar

"At The Organ" is on the Yep Roc label, located in NC. Artists on the 10 year old label include:

Big Sandy & His Flyrite Boys
Billy Bragg
Chatham County Line
The Comas
The Go-Betweens
Kristin Hersh
Robyn Hitchcock
Laika & The Cosmonauts
Legendary Shack*Shakers
Los Straitjackets
Nick Lowe
The Minus 5
Bob Mould
The Reverend Horton Heat
Southern Culture On The Skids
Two Dollar Pistols

They have good company in the Chapel Hill music scene, and along with good ol' Merge Records and other indy outfits in that area are recording and releasing really great stuff.

We had a pile o' holiday cards awaiting us upon our return to CT, and we have a few more things to mail out if you never got one of our cards. Sit tight!

Tonight we have a small NYE gathering to attend. The "theme" is food fit for a King and/or Queen. Mrs. Cupcakes has prepared a "King Arthur Flour Chocolate Indulgence Cake". I have secured a small quantity of red and black caviar, smoked oysters, and as a royal joke, a few tins of "King Oscar" sardines. I wanted to go get a bag of Whoppers™ from Burger King, and some of those paper crowns they give to kids, but the timing wasn't right.

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Double espresso

Originally uploaded by doctorhectic.
Christmas morning espresso.

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Swedish sausage making

Nigh ev'ry year, 'round 'bout the season, my parents hold a Swedish sausage making party. There is lots of food and drink, and the main attraction is the sausage making in the kitchen, which was happening in that kitchen 20, 40, 60+ years ago. Maybe not ev'ry year, but since my grandparents got together back in '39, using the same recipe handed down from my great-grandmother to my grandfather to my mother.

And it goes a little something like this...

Combine in a pan 3 lbs ground pork, 3 lbs ground beef, 3 lbs potatoes.

Swedish sausage making

...rinse and prepare the sausage casings (they're pig intestines, soaked in brine), and load one on the plunger. Scoop mixture into the plunger, plunge out some sausage...

Swedish sausage making

...and sausage 'til there ain't nothing left.

Swedish sausage making

There is a yellowed, laminated newspaper clipping from December of '61 that has photos of my grandparents and my mother making Swedish sausage, up on the refrigerator every year. I usually miss the party each year, but this year it was held later than usual, so I was in town for it. TRADITION!

As I was driving around reviewing the sights of my youth, I happened upon the demolition of the old Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, which is attached to the new/old Walker Art Museum.

Guthrie Theater

They have ripped off the glass wall that was the outside of the building, and you can see the "lobby" that surrounds the theater space itself, with the double doors that lead into the space.

Guthrie Theater

I only went there for a few performances, some theatrical, some music performances, but it was extra creepy seeing it perfectly still in this half-eaten state.

Guthrie Theater

Speakin' of eatin', Xmas marks the spot! There was some food, I must admit, but I really just wanted to show you this...

Tree on Bag

My dad came home with a bag of groceries, and said there were kids decorating the bags at the store. Nice tree.

Also this...

The Cranky Spreader

A kitchen tool that I got for my mother that consists of a square piece of PVC and a cap with a crank, allowing you to load it with butter, cheese, or in this case, cream cheese, and crank out these thin ribbons of said ingredient. There are also fittings for "Star", "Strings", and "Zig-Zag", but we haven't tried those yet.

And last but not least, also this...

Black Olive Bunny and Owl

My mom learned how to turn an olive into a bunny, so I tried to turn an olive into an owl. With creepy pimento eyes. OLIVE IT! Get it? I made it out of an olive and OLIVE how it turned out.

Happy Xmas!


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