Author Topic: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese  (Read 18760 times)

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CaptainObvious

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #45 on: December 17, 2012, 11:26:32 AM »
One other thing strikes me.  Maybe its because I work in nutrition, but I think its notable that she brought a prepared green salad by choice and an unprepared box of mac & cheese by demand.  Maybe she doesn't want to encourage junk food for her kids, and just in general wanted some healthful, low fat, low calorie "real food" options available. I know for me one of the big negatives of potlucks is they are generally high fat high calories foods - cheeses and creamy sauces and meats and baked goods, etc.

But if that was the meaning, she was delivering a passive-aggressive nutrition lecture, which is also rude, and should have just addressed her concerns when OP's mom called, something like "Oh, I'm trying not to feed the kids so much cheese, can I bring a salad instead?" And if she doesn't have any kids herself, then the perceived quality of the diet of other people's kids isn't really her business.

No she didn't, she still brought the mac & cheese as directed too.  And as many people have already posted bringing it unmade might well have been because she thought to herself "it takes 10 minutes to make and is nasty reheated."  She simply didn't go to the effort of making home made mac & cheese and instead also brought a home made green salad. If everyone else gets to choose what they bring, she should get to choose to as well.

If the Hostess wanted a box of Mac and Cheese, she could have just picked it up at the store herself. The point of asking people to bring dishes is to relieve the burden of cooking the entire meal. She can bring whatever prepared food she wishes, and she could have refused if she didn't want to prepare macaroni and cheese.

JenJay

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #46 on: December 17, 2012, 11:30:01 AM »
If I was asked to bring Mac & Cheese and decided to use Kraft I'd ask if it would be okay for me to show up early and fix it there. I can understand not wanting to prepare it ahead of time because it doesn't reheat well.

I think where the SIL messed up was 1) not arriving early enough to have it ready at meal time, and 2) handing the box to the host. That was bad.

If I'm asked to bring a veggie tray I'm not going to show up and hand the host a grocery bag containing a few celery stalks, some broccoli crowns, a package of cherry tomatoes, a whole cucumber, a bag of baby carrots, a can of olives, a tub of sour cream and an envelope of Ranch dressing mix. If you agree to provide a dish you provide it, not the ingredients for it.

Yvaine

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #47 on: December 17, 2012, 11:53:29 AM »
If I was asked to bring Mac & Cheese and decided to use Kraft I'd ask if it would be okay for me to show up early and fix it there. I can understand not wanting to prepare it ahead of time because it doesn't reheat well.

I think where the SIL messed up was 1) not arriving early enough to have it ready at meal time, and 2) handing the box to the host. That was bad.

If I'm asked to bring a veggie tray I'm not going to show up and hand the host a grocery bag containing a few celery stalks, some broccoli crowns, a package of cherry tomatoes, a whole cucumber, a bag of baby carrots, a can of olives, a tub of sour cream and an envelope of Ranch dressing mix. If you agree to provide a dish you provide it, not the ingredients for it.

Yes, this. If she wanted it prepared on the spot, which makes sense for a dish like Kraft mac and cheese, all she had to do was ask the hostess if it was OK if she brought the box and made it there on the spot. She was rude to bring more work for the hostess.

Moray

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #48 on: December 17, 2012, 12:04:09 PM »
I agree with Yvaine. Why does it matter whether SIL thought mac'n'cheese was unhealthy, or didn't put a high value on it, or whatever else? If you don't like what you've been asked to bring, say you'd rather bring something else. You don't show up with the unprepared version of it and hand it to the host.

Perfectly stated.
Utah

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #49 on: December 17, 2012, 07:11:35 PM »
While I think it's a little odd to bring unprepared food to a party, I guess if I was told to bring boxed mac-n-cheese, I wouldn't necessarily prepare it, either, to avoid the yuckyness that is not-immediately-fresh mac-n-cheese.  I probably would have called and asked if it was okay, though.

Gumby, what did you and your sister bring?

Surianne

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #50 on: December 17, 2012, 08:08:54 PM »
I don't know that if I'd been instructed to bring mac and cheese, I'd have realized the hostess meant prepare it in advance and figure out some way to keep it hot and tasty.  I don't eat mac and cheese and have never made it in my life, so I really don't know enough about it to manage that.  Since I was already bringing a side I was comfortable with (the salad), I think it's possible the assumption to bring a box of max and cheese was perfectly reasonable. 

Unless we know the sister is deliberately a jerk at potlucks, I don't see the point of assigning nefarious motivations.  She did bring a prepared dish -- the salad -- so it's not like she didn't do any work at all here. 

Aeris

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #51 on: December 17, 2012, 09:01:34 PM »
I don't know that if I'd been instructed to bring mac and cheese, I'd have realized the hostess meant prepare it in advance and figure out some way to keep it hot and tasty.  I don't eat mac and cheese and have never made it in my life, so I really don't know enough about it to manage that.  Since I was already bringing a side I was comfortable with (the salad), I think it's possible the assumption to bring a box of max and cheese was perfectly reasonable. 

If you're asked to bring a salad, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag with a head of lettuce, a bunch of unchopped veggies, and a bottle of dressing and hand it to the hostess right at mealtime, then walk away?

If you're asked to bring pie, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag of flour, a few sticks of butter, and a bunch of uncut apples and hand them to the host at mealtime?

Surianne

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #52 on: December 17, 2012, 11:50:26 PM »
I don't know that if I'd been instructed to bring mac and cheese, I'd have realized the hostess meant prepare it in advance and figure out some way to keep it hot and tasty.  I don't eat mac and cheese and have never made it in my life, so I really don't know enough about it to manage that.  Since I was already bringing a side I was comfortable with (the salad), I think it's possible the assumption to bring a box of max and cheese was perfectly reasonable. 

If you're asked to bring a salad, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag with a head of lettuce, a bunch of unchopped veggies, and a bottle of dressing and hand it to the hostess right at mealtime, then walk away?

If you're asked to bring pie, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag of flour, a few sticks of butter, and a bunch of uncut apples and hand them to the host at mealtime?

Aeris, I think she did make a full salad, and didn't just bring the ingredients.  I'm not really sure what you're trying to get at here. 

Yvaine

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #53 on: December 17, 2012, 11:52:33 PM »
I don't know that if I'd been instructed to bring mac and cheese, I'd have realized the hostess meant prepare it in advance and figure out some way to keep it hot and tasty.  I don't eat mac and cheese and have never made it in my life, so I really don't know enough about it to manage that.  Since I was already bringing a side I was comfortable with (the salad), I think it's possible the assumption to bring a box of max and cheese was perfectly reasonable. 

If you're asked to bring a salad, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag with a head of lettuce, a bunch of unchopped veggies, and a bottle of dressing and hand it to the hostess right at mealtime, then walk away?

If you're asked to bring pie, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag of flour, a few sticks of butter, and a bunch of uncut apples and hand them to the host at mealtime?

Aeris, I think she did make a full salad, and didn't just bring the ingredients.  I'm not really sure what you're trying to get at here.

What she's getting at is that this is what the SIL did with the mac and cheese. She brought it unmade and gave it to the host to make.

Surianne

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #54 on: December 18, 2012, 12:03:17 AM »
Yes, I understood that -- she brought a fully made salad (which is why Aeris' question about the salad confuses me), and a box of mac and cheese.  As I said in my post, I agree with previous posters who noted that it may have been a misunderstanding and thinking she was just asked to pick up a box, rather than that the mac and cheese was her contribution of a fully cooked dish to the dinner.  (Her dish being salad; picking up the box of mac and cheese being an extra favour she was asked to do.)

Also, Aeris' two examples -- a salad and a pie -- are things that can be pretty easily made at home and transported still tasting good.  A few posters have said this isn't as easy with mac and cheese.   I know that as a non-mac and cheese eater, I wouldn't have a clue how to do it!

So I think there are enough totally plausible reasons here to not see the sister as being a jerk about the dinner on purpose, especially since she did make the salad in advance.  It's not like she didn't contribute anything at all.  Why assume rudeness?

Aeris

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #55 on: December 18, 2012, 12:05:41 AM »
I don't know that if I'd been instructed to bring mac and cheese, I'd have realized the hostess meant prepare it in advance and figure out some way to keep it hot and tasty.  I don't eat mac and cheese and have never made it in my life, so I really don't know enough about it to manage that.  Since I was already bringing a side I was comfortable with (the salad), I think it's possible the assumption to bring a box of max and cheese was perfectly reasonable. 

If you're asked to bring a salad, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag with a head of lettuce, a bunch of unchopped veggies, and a bottle of dressing and hand it to the hostess right at mealtime, then walk away?

If you're asked to bring pie, do you think it's acceptable to bring a bag of flour, a few sticks of butter, and a bunch of uncut apples and hand them to the host at mealtime?

Aeris, I think she did make a full salad, and didn't just bring the ingredients.  I'm not really sure what you're trying to get at here.

What she's getting at is that this is what the SIL did with the mac and cheese. She brought it unmade and gave it to the host to make.

Thank you Yvaine.

Surianne, SIL was asked to bring mac'n'cheese. Appropriate responses to this are either 1) preparing the mac'n'cheese or 2) telling the host you'd prefer not to bring the mac'n'cheese. In no circumstance is it appropriate to bring an unprepared version of the dish you have agreed to bring and hand the unprepared ingredients to the host.

That she brought some other prepared dish is completely irrelevant to the fact that she agreed (whether directly or by silence) to bring the mac'n'cheese and then did not fulfill that obligation.

Surianne

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #56 on: December 18, 2012, 12:07:25 AM »
Okay, we'll have to disagree on this one, especially re: what is relevant and what isn't.

Just offering my opinion as to why leaping to deliberate rudeness as a conclusion seems like overkill to me, as a few other posters did as well. 

Aeris

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #57 on: December 18, 2012, 12:10:58 AM »
Yes, I understood that -- she brought a fully made salad (which is why Aeris' question about the salad confuses me), and a box of mac and cheese.  As I said in my post, I agree with previous posters who noted that it may have been a misunderstanding and thinking she was just asked to pick up a box, rather than that the mac and cheese was her contribution of a fully cooked dish to the dinner.  (Her dish being salad; picking up the box of mac and cheese being an extra favour she was asked to do.)

Also, Aeris' two examples -- a salad and a pie -- are things that can be pretty easily made at home and transported still tasting good.  A few posters have said this isn't as easy with mac and cheese.   I know that as a non-mac and cheese eater, I wouldn't have a clue how to do it!

So I think there are enough totally plausible reasons here to not see the sister as being a jerk about the dinner on purpose, especially since she did make the salad in advance.  It's not like she didn't contribute anything at all.  Why assume rudeness?

Because she agreed to contribute a dish that she did not contribute.

If she had been clueless about mac'n'cheese and its transportability, one would think she would have simply made it at home and transported it, unaware that it didn't taste optimal. If however she'd had concerns about its transportability, the appropriate responses would have been either to 1) raise the concern with the host or 2) arrange to prepare the dish she'd been asked to prepare on location. In no way is it acceptable to simply decide not to prepare the dish you've been asked to (and agreed to) prepare.

No reasonable person hears "Could you bring <dish> to the family dinner?" and thinks that bringing the unprepared ingredients right at meal time is a correct interpretation. Just like you wouldn't bring a bag of flour, a stick of butter, and a few uncut apples - because it's an absurd response.

Sharnita

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #58 on: December 18, 2012, 08:05:28 AM »
I am not sure about your mother's end, either, though. Has SIL volumteered to bring mac and cheese before? Would she have preferred to bring one of the other items?

WillyNilly

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Re: Family Party. Please bring mac and cheese
« Reply #59 on: December 18, 2012, 08:10:59 AM »
But do we know exactly how the request was worded? I can see it being plausible it went something like "we're having the potluck on Saturday, please arrive around noon. Will it be all of you? Yes? Great, so all the grandkids will be here that should be fun! Hey do you think all the little ones will like the food? Hmmmm, could you bring some mac & cheese with you? The box stuff should be fine..." and SIL thought it was just something to have on hand for the party and not a dish that had to be prepared.