Tuesday, September 23, 2014

How to Prepare for a Major Holiday

These three days before Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish new year) could be the template for my approach for the 3 days before any big holiday or event.

Day 1: The Messy Stuff

This day I bake, bake, and bake more. Challah braiding, cookies, cakes, anything that will cover my kitchen with flour and sugar and make it a total mess. This week I made 9 challahs, and 2 desserts, plus a really complicated dinner that I wanted to try out. My strategy is that if there are any disasters, I have plenty of time to fix the problem. I also do my grocery shopping today.

Day 2: Me Time

Today is Day 2 (yay)! So I exercised really hard, took a leisurely shower, shaved my legs, went out to get my nails done... Plus I am currently watching Caillou with my 2 year old, will nurse the baby a ton, feed the kids an easy dinner (pizza maybe?), and try to sneak in a few magazines. Ideally, I would also use today to get spiritually ready, but a few minutes to decompress is enough for me this year.

Day 3: Get $hit Done

The "day of" is when it all comes together. I set the table (if we didn't eat breakfast and dinner in the dining room I might have done this on Day 2), do the cooking (briskets, veggies, sides, soup, etc), run  and unload at least 2 dishwasher loads, wipe off counters, and get the house in order.

Of course there is still parenting to do, so day 3 this year also includes a speech assessment for the 5 year old, music class with the 5 month old, and hopefully seeing my stepmom as she drops off kids from school.

After the Event:

We clean up as much as possible that night, then unload dishwashers and reload the next morning.

Just for fun, here is my menu this year:

Whole wheat raisin challah
Cinnamon and cranberry challah
Apples and Honey
Miso-Ginger Soup with Fresh Corn Ravioli
Brisket with Pomegranate Relish
Multi-Colored Carrots and Potatoes
"French Fry" Green Beans (just thin, crispy and with salt)
Coconut Macaroons with Lemon Curd
Fresh Berries

Wine, lots of wine.

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