Yesterday was our Housewarming Party (no gifts please edition, because we never finished all the wine from the housewarming for our condo). The day was perfect. The afternoon rain showers failed to materialize, and we were mostly able to enjoy our back yard after the obligatory tours of the house.
I had the Summer Entertaining issue of Cook's Illustrated (or Entertaining magazine), and I put together the stuffed burgers which I made slider sized. I should have made more of them, because people seemed to really enjoy them. I scrubbed down the grill and made grilled corn. We ordered jumbo pizza from Spukies (28" round pizza, which is huge!), and generally had fun during the day light hours.
Eventually we all moved inside to eat the little ice cream pies (s'mores) and try our hand at the Gelatinis. They weren't as strong as they were supposed to be, because we didn't have enough gelato for the 8 or so people still around at that point. I will have to try again with a double batch of gelato (or fewer people, though it was fun to hang out with everybody).
We really did mean no gifts, so when my friends brought a huge polka dotted box with a bow out I studiously ignored it. I'm pretty good at that. When they asked what they should do with it, I said put it back in the car. Eventually they had the Blackbird egg me on to actually open it, and my friends got together and bought me a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. My eyes are still huge! It was one of the things I never put on my wedding registry, because I was uncomfortable putting anything that expensive on there. I hated the feeling that someone might feel obliged to buy something really expensive even if it would be something that I would use constantly. Thank you guys! It's just in time for me to try my hand at making little individual cakes all prettily plated like you would see at Tartelette or Cannelle et Vanille. As soon as I finish all of the dishes and rearrange the kitchen counter to give the stand a permanent home!