As a challenge, for the questionable glory, just to say I Did That on my death bed, and, most importantly, to have a free pass on having to do cleanup or *shudder* outdoor activities (maybe even sports!), I offered to do all the cooking. For 17 people. For two days.
To make it somewhat manageable I squished breakfast and lunch into a meal I like to call Very Late Breakfast. And dinners were all dishes I'd done before, just on a much grander scale. With so many burners and ovens going it's a game of efficiency, the "What can I have going at the same time as the other thing while at the same time being something that I don't have to worry about burning oh god I forgot that other thing now everything is late by three hours" game. I ended up like Rainman, counting out numbers to myself and staring at the clock. Sauteeing one thing while counting down the time for something else to finish in that pan over there. It was, for a certain slightly not quite right frame of mind, actually pretty fun.
On Saturday there was bacon, sausage, home fried herb potatoes, fruit, eggs over easy, crepes with apple pie topping. Then roast chicken with roasted root veggies (onions, garlic, carrots, potatoes) and gravy for dinner. Sunday was eggs benedict, bacon, sausage, fruit, toast for brunch. For dinner arather involved stew that featured an entire bottle of wine and garlic bread. None of those items by themselves were horribly complicated, no puff pastries or souffles and the like, but the sheer quantity made the cooking experience... lively?
Our 21st century kids were, I think, exactly the way I would be if I had interactive touch screens chock full of all sorts of games JUUUST within reach. Conniving, planning, and sometimes just plain whiny, trying to get 'screen time' . Time when playing games was allowed, in other words. We, being 21st century parents were equally chockful of guilt with allowing them too much screen time. But there would alway s be one parent, at some time or another, who's guard would be down, too tired or too cranky or whatever, and the kids would pounce and wheedle away an hour or 30 minutes of uninterrupted Minecraft or Angry Whatever.
And other times the kids, in their gaggly, wild way, would invent borderline maiming activities that were probably better for them in the long run than any number of touch screen devices. Games like Roll Down the Stairs and Laugh For No Apparent Reason. Or the never old Scream and Run and Make Far Too Much Noise game.
There was also campfires and unevenly enthusiastic sing-alongs. By the end we hadn't all melted down into a horrible mess of strained relationships and awkward silences. Which is a win, I think.