Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving prep day

I reveled in today. *I* woke up with smiles (the rest of my house didn't).

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year. This goes back to when I was a kid. The first memory I have of Thanksgiving is probably from when I was about 6. I looked forward to wearing my long skirt and baking with my mom. She always made fresh bread and pies on Thanksgiving.

Dinner was always at my grandmother's house with games afterwards. We had to cross the North Platte river to get there and I envisioned myself a pioneer girl crossing the river while I sang "over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house we go". There wasn't any through the woods though. In fact it was more like, down the street, over the river and down the street again. She lived about a mile away as the crow flew. By the time I finished my song, we were there.

I loved the smell of baking bread and my mom always gave me little bits of dough to shape and bake in my own little pans.

That year I was so excited to be baking with my mom that when the neighborhood boys came and inquired as to if I wanted to go sledding, I turned them down. I remember my mom saying I could go if I wanted to, she could get things done without me, my only hope was that she didn't MAKE me go sledding. I loved sledding, and the neighborhood boys were nice enough. But cooking on Thanksgiving happened only once a year. And at least in Central Wyoming, snow happened all the time.

My first year in grad school we didn't go back to Colorado. Instead we had a few people up to our place in Reno. I think that was the year my sister flew in, JB (AB's best friend) came over the hill from San Fran as did Brian and maybe Josh too. I am even thinking JB's sister came out too. Our turkey was late. (The plastic popper thing never popped.) I discovered AB really didn't like mayo, it wasn't just his imagination. I tried to convince him it was yogurt in the spinach dip - he replied, "well I guess I don't like yogurt either" - it was a year or so before I could convince him to try yogurt again. We had mashed potatoes, lumpy gravy and not much else.

My first Thanksgiving was a real learning experience.

My second Thanksgiving though was different since I had a little cooking experience under me with a real professionally trained chef. My stepbrother cooked the rehearsal dinner for 50 people as his gift to my other stepbrother on the eve of his wedding day. I was thrilled to act as his sous chef. I am not sure I have ever learned so much on one topic in 48 hours. I still apply all that knowledge I learned that summer in any large dinner I cook.

I bought my last minute groceries this morning and picked up some different cheeses. In preparation for the games on Friday I bought a couple six packs of beer which resulted in a marriage proposal from the guy bagging my groceries. (Apparently his ex-wife never brought beer home and the fact that I did just made me the ultimate potential wife to him.) Ok, it made me smile. (He said nothing of the wines I happened to score... so much for him.)

Today I made the turkey broth/drippings for the gravy - all that needs to be done tomorrow is the roux base and mix it together. The cinnamon rolls are done and doing the final rise in the fridge. The components of the dressing done and ready to be combined and baked. The pumpkin pie is baked.

Tomorrow I will do my mushroom soup, make mashed potatoes, brussel sprouts and act as bartender while AB smokes the turkey and makes his yam and apple gallete with pomegranite reduction.


I picked Leif up from daycare and his mood was vastly improved. I am wondering if it has to do with the fact I let him haul HIS blankey in. I fear this is going to be a routine now. My little Linus dragged his blanket in and out of preschool today with a smile on his face. I had a blankey too.

Leif has AB's speech patterns down to a science. This morning he was watching Skadi play and he said to me, "did you see what your daughter just did". It was all I could do not to just completely bust up laughing at him.

Oh and speaking of my daughter. Three forward crawl steps today. She has yet to reproduce it, but I fear my days are numbered!

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