Finally! We got the family to come to Tifton.
After some intensive negotiation, we found a weekend that everybody could come down here. We had hoped to feed them lunch on Saturday, but some of them ran into an awful hold-up on I-85 because of a wreck. They were in that traffic jam for an hour and a half. So everybody got here mid-afternoon.
My niece (the one who gave us Bagheera) arrived wanting to see her former kitty, and shortly after she got in the house, she yelled, "BAGHEERA! HERE, KITTY!KITTY!KITTY!!" Well, she startled Richard and me and I'm pretty sure she scared the hell out of all three cats. Bagheera has adapted to our quiet ways and has become shy of strangers like Lila and Dashiell. Katie caught one very brief glimpse of Bagheera and that was it. Nobody ever did see Dashiell, but after a few hours Lila came out of hiding and let people pet her. After everybody left on Sunday, it was about two hours before Bagheera emerged from her hiding place. We have no idea where that place was; it's like she just dematerialized.
I was going to take pictures of all the food, but I got so caught up in cooking it and getting it on the table that I just forgot. But here's what we had: Richard grilled steaks because everybody likes cow. Beverly volunteered to help, so I asked her to make our green salad. Richard also made a fruit salad (with no dressing because good fruit doesn't need dressing). I cooked green beans in chicken stock with a little bacon fat thrown in for good measure. We also had some sauteed asparagus (cut it in two-inch pieces, put a little olive oil in the pan, sprinkle on some salt and pepper and a few red pepper flakes, and cook quickly until done to your liking (I like my asparagus crisp-tender)). Everybody loved the asparagus. We also had mashed potatoes, but I don't think everybody else likes them as much as I do. I bought some artisan breads at the bakery. I was going to make my world-famous biscuits, but decided I didn't want to be that industrious. For dessert we had a sour cream poppy seed cake with an orange glaze -- yummy! That cake is Beverly's favorite.
Since I did most of the cooking, Richard cleaned up after dinner. That was awfully nice to just sit and vege while someone else did the work.
Everybody seemed to enjoy the gathering and although I was tired afterwards, I absolutely loved having them all come down here. Richard's parents and our two nieces stayed in a hotel and Beverly and Paul stayed with us (sounds a little inhospitable to the parents, but they preferred it that way). After everybody went to their hotel, we had a good time talking with Beverly and Paul. We are now planning to have just the two of them come down some weekend this summer to hang out and relax and maybe watch a Braves game and a bunch of movies on our nice HD television.
I hope we can arrange to do this again next year. I thought it was a lot of fun. I love my in-laws.