As we do most years, this year we spent New Years Eve at Dallas’s cousin Jeff and his wife Heather’s house in Schaumburg. We always sit at home hungover on New Years Day and debate whether we should go or not. One of the biggest motivating factors for me is always the pork shumai they make. They’re not like the traditional pork shumai that I get when I order in restaurants, more like a pork dumpling, but they are so delicious. Heather and Dallas’s Aunty Gail make so many that it’s basically all-you-can-eat pork shumai, plus they always send some home with us. We also always have homemade maki sushi, cone sushi, sashimi, somen, mochi soup, chicken salad, char siu, teriyaki chicken, and about 100 other things, including a red bean for luck. .. but it’s those pork dumplings that I load up on. Then sit for a few hours, then eat some more. It does wonders for the hangovers. .. though I am starting to wonder if I’ll always associate this dumpling with being a hangover cure!
This year most of the kids were all in the downstairs playroom for almost the entire party. We played with Hideto a bunch. He’s visiting from California and is about 4 years old. I think the play room was a little much for him, so he was up in the living room. Fun kid. He can totally do this belly roll from the top of his belly all the way down and is happy to demonstrate! We also played a lot with Kenji, who is 2 years old. Kenji has always been a major mommy’s boy, but this time we played football with him in the living room using a little water bottle for a loong time. This is probably the most open to people as he’s ever been. It will be interesting to see what happens when his mom, Naoko, has the new baby in just over a week!
Basically we ate, watched football (Badgers lost in the Rose Bowl), played with whatever kids were in the living room, ate more, and watched more football. Oh, and drank sake whenever Jeff came around with it. This is about how New Years goes every year, which is totally fine by me! Can’t wait for next year’s shumai!