Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Cross Country Spaghetti Feed
One of our traditions since starting High School cross country is to host a spaghetti feed for the team. Every week a parent signs up for a spaghetti feed, to give the team a much needed carbohydrate boost.
Our spaghetti feed has become legendary - I guess. Every one speaks really highly of ours and the team cheers when they know it is my week. That makes me feel extra pressure each year to make it great.
This year we had an extra challenge, Timberlake High School from Northern Idaho from a town called Spirit Lake. I don't know where that is.. But, they were coming for the huge Bob Firman race on Saturday. They asked if they could join in our spaghetti feed.
At first, Coach Rusty wanted the spaghetti feed to re-locate to the Launch Pad (A religious seminary - non-LDS) by the school. I wasn't too happy with this request when Brady told me. It would be hard and challenging to transport all that food and I didn't even know what the kitchen facilities would be. After I thought about it - I decided I would move it by the school. I called Coach Rusty to confirm the arrangements, and he told me that it would be OK to have it at our house.... After all that fretting (on my side) we had it at our house. The weather was great, which allowed us to have it in the back yard.
We had an additional 20 people from Timberlake --- just a little bit more pressure. Our team averages about 35 - 40 people that attends the spaghetti feeds each week. With Timberlake that was around 60 people - and I planned for 70.
On of the things about our spaghetti feed is that I SPOIL the kids ROTTEN! I don't make them sit on the ground - I rent tables and chairs.
I was smarter this year and ordered them to arrive the day before. In previous years, I always have them delivered the day of the spaghetti feed. It's been hard to set up and get the food ready all at the same time (Plus, with Brady at school - I had to set it up by myself). This year, Brady and I put the tables up and I made Brady put all the chairs around the tables - YEA! It was a lot easier and I felt better prepared to have this done the day before.
The other thing about our spaghetti feed is that I make all the spaghetti sauce from scratch... No store bought sauce at our house. We had 4 crock pots full of "meat sauce" and 1 full of vegetarian sauce with mushrooms, green peppers, zucchini... It was good. I start cooking the sauce a week before the feed and then freeze the sauce. The day of the feed I thaw the sauce and throw them in a crock pot. It works out great!
There are assignments for the kids to bring items for the feed. The list is:
Sophomores: Salad or Bread
Seniors: Nothing - just themselves.
My first spaghetti feed, nobody brought anything. I think that happens still, but through experience, I put the assignments on the map to our house. Just as a reminder. This year the kids brought their assignments - Yea! we had salads, lots of bread, desserts. We had lots of food - which was great!
I also make the following - just to make sure we had something of everything on the list:
We made a large salad, a large bowl of watermelon and cantaloupe, and a bowl of strawberries with a fruit dip.
I made 4 loaves of homemade bread - I didn't purchase any french bread this year - but the kids brought a lot.
I also made 2 batches of chocolate chip cookies, scotcheroos, and rice crispy treats. (They ate all the cookies and all the scotcheroos - we had rice crispy treats left over which I was surprised about).
We also had coolers full of bottled water and a orange 5 gallon cooler full of water. We also have the individual crystal light flavor packets for the bottles of water. We did this when Brady was a freshman and the kids like it - so we do it every year during our spaghetti feed.
With all the food I make.... this is the huge reason the kids like our spaghetti feeds. SOOOOO MUCH FOOD!!!!
The day of the spaghetti feed, I start making noodles as soon as I get home from work. I cook them in salt water, drain and add olive oil over the noodles to keep them from sticking and keep them moist. Then I put them disposable roasting pan that have a little water in the bottom for steam/moisture. I cover with aluminum foil and put them in the oven at 100 degrees. It's worked out great to have enough noodles ready when they arrive and the noodles are still warm. I also put the pans of noodles on a griddle (on low) on the table to keep them warm.
Here is the first kids to show up to the feed.
Lela wanted to wave. :-D
They are all great kids. I can't believe that I didn't take more pictures of when Timberlake kids arrived. There were tons of kids. It was great!
I ended up making more food then the kids ate. Which is great! I'd rather have too much then not enough. I gave quite a bit away.
Lela and a boy runner (I don't know his name) wanted to do a drinking contest.
Jug ..... Jug ..... Jug...
Lela won! They are funny!
Over all it was a great spaghetti feed this year too. Now I only have one more to do - Senior year.
It's a lot of work, but great to do it for all these terrific kids. They thanked and thanked me - over and over...
I must not take appreciation very well.. It felt awkward - to be thanked over and over and over again. It's nice to be appreciated - but once is good enough :-D
The parents even came up to me at the meet on Saturday and even told me how much their child loved the spaghetti feed.
But, you know what the kids like the best?
My chocolate chip cookies.
It makes me laugh that they just love them soooo much.
Even Timberlake students raved about my cookies. It was funny!
Yes ... I'm an overachiever --- But it is worth it!