Turkey hangover

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I had fully intended to come up with a long, windy list of fabulous links for this Friday after Thanksgiving. But somehow, Thanksgiving morphed into a three-day, non-stop event that took me far from my computer (well, into the kitchen anyway). I haven't cooked a Thanksgiving dinner in YEARS, and I wanted to do this one up right -- wanted my kids to remember beauty, and laughter, and tons of food. I think we hit it pretty darn close. In the middle of it all I remembered that it's just as bonding to work with my family as it is to vacation with them. So, check, for now on 'teaching kids to work', and now let's move onto playing.

And just so you don't think I'm living in la-la land over here, let me detail to you the worldly amidst the wonder. 

  1. Last Sunday our dishwasher developed this malady wherein you press start and it starts . . . but then about 10 minutes into the cycle it MAY decide to turn itself off. So, you press start again. AND, it may run the whole way . . . or may turn off in ten minutes. Frankly, it's tired. We went to three different stores, none of which could get us a new dishwasher by Thanksgiving. 
  2. I bought two fresh turkeys on Tuesday and put them in the refrigerator in the garage. On Wednesday night I went to get something out of that refrigerator and had the feeling that it wasn't quite cool enough. Hmmmm. We took the kids out to dinner (which ended up taking FOREVER), and I mentioned to Sterling my refrigeration concerns. After dinner, Sterling ran to Walmart to buy a refrigerator temp gauge. 47 degrees!!! Oops. So, at 11:00 PM on WEDNESDAY NIGHT, Sterling had to go out in search of two fresh turkeys. Luckily, he found them easily. But I had an anxiety attack for about 27 minutes.
  3. Right in the throes of cooking on Thursday morning, the ignitor on our gas stove goes beserk. It will NOT stop firing. Sterling digs around in the cabinetry to unplug the ignitor -- after which we have to light the burners manually. I was all, "This is just like Little House on the Prarie!" Sterling reminded me that the Ingalls did not have a gas stove. Oh. Right.

But guess what? We overcame faulty appliances and put out a massive feast (and were still all friends by the end)!! It was incredibly gratifying to work side-by-side with my family to make this holiday happen. I was exhausted, but I did sleep in a bit this morning to recover.


Happy Holidays to all of our readers!!

Here it is Internet . . . Thanksgiving

Let me just put this out there -- I'm having a really good attitude about Thanksgiving this year. I've never been a big Thanksgiving fan (although I do think gratitude is important). I mean, a whole day for eating? Well, let's be real, three whole days for cooking and 25 minutes IF YOU ARE LUCKY for eating. And then, naturally, VERY MANY DAYS for cleaning up.

But now, I'm choosing to see the whole shebang -- the planning, the shopping, the cooking, the table decorating, as one BIG PARTY. And no, I'm not being sarcastic. 

I do find that I sometimes have a hard time getting people to take my heartfelt sentiments seriously.

One reason for my positive Thanksgiving outlook is Sterling's excitement over preparing the meal. Yep. He WANTS to cook. And I'm all . . . "right this way, sir." Last week, he purchased all the equipment necessary to fry a turkey and oversaw a trial run right by the pool in the backyard. WHO WANTS TO GO SWIMMING? Maybe we'll serve hor d'oeuvres in the spa. Really, my mind is opening up on a whole bucketful of possibilities.

And, of course, I've been consulting with my BFF the Internet over all of it. Here's what I'm considering so far:

Napkins! I do love a cloth napkin, but my tastes tend to run to the expensive. Who charges $10 per napkin anyway? Martha proposes a fairly cool (and cheap) alternative. All I need to do is track down some iDye. I'm penciling in Monday as traipse-all-over-Houston-procuring-napkin-supplies day. 

I'm also still very interested in this chalkboard table runner. Basically, if it's made of chalkboard, I'm in. Why the cultural obsession with chalkboard stuff? Talk amongst yourselves.

We will be having a kids' table . . . and the possibilities for kid table paper crafting are pretty darn exciting. I'm totally in on the paper bag turkey. Also, as if she doesn't have enough to do already, Martha totally made a VIDEO on how to construct the paper bag turkey. Do you see why the Internet is my BFF? It just keeps on giving.

And tiny paper pies -- the sure-fire way to my heart.

As for food, I'm still percolating on that. I'm going to start things out with this Puff Pastry Wrapped Cranberry Brie.

I'm also interested in PW's newly-posted Wild Rice Broccoli Casserole

I do like a schedule, so I'll try to draw up something similar to this or, naturally, I'll do up a schedule like my very good pretend friend, Pioneer Woman. (Dear PW, Please, please, please invite me to your lodge. I won't eat much. Love, Sarah)

In closing, I want to share with you a super cool Thanksgiving book that my SIL, Josie, gave me several years ago. It's the story of Sarah Hale, a forward-thinking woman who lobbied to have Thanksgiving made a national holiday. It's sort of a kids book, but with sufficient text and facts to really interest bigger kids. And you can Prime it to yourself for $5.05. Man, this is a great country!


So . . . Happy Thanksgiving planning! 

P.S. One time, a million years ago, I made a paper bag turkey filled with popcorn for Jordan to take to preschool. (Excuse me while I run sobbing into the next room). The End.