Friday, November 16, 2012

Before We Jump Headlong .....

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....Into The Next Holiday

The holidays are always such a rush, in more than one way. Yes, holidays. That's plural. Meaning that there isn't just one. In fact we celebrate 3....actually 5 counting St. Stephen's Day and Little Christmas (St. Stephens Day is December 26 and it's a time to actually just relish in all that we worked so hard for and Little Christmas- also known as The Epiphany- the day the Magis found the Christ Child), coincides with our Christmas celebration with our pals Tommy and Terry. We began our married life in a studio above their garage.)  However, instead of getting ahead of ourselves thinking of 'all the holiday' celebrations to come, let's remember what the season begins with, before we start pining for the next one?

As Thanksgiving nears, let's share some of the traditions we hold dear that make Thanksgiving special to us.

I'll start. I for one prep my apple pie the night before and stick it in the oven in the morning, so I can smell it cooking while I watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. Yes, it's corny, but it alls beckons the start of the holiday season to me, when I see Tom Turkey floating through the air, the NY streets lined with people, and of course, good Old Saint Nicholas ending the parade. Does anyone else remember the year a Santa stepped off that glorious sleigh, and a little kid wrapped their arms around him so forcefully that Santa started to loose his pants?  I enjoy noggy groggy while watching (that would be spiked egg nog with a little nutmeg....a nice rum is usually my choice). 

We boil and mash the potatoes for the big feast. Gar being the Irish lad that he is, makes us the official potato people for every holiday.

Then we head over the Maine border to my brother and sister-in-laws house where my sister-in-law has the house decked out in beautiful harvest colors.  She also is a good sport and puts out the 'pineapple' turkey my brother made in gradeschool. It's not nearly as over the top as Martha's below.

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via Martha Stewart (who else?)

Sister-in-Law Kel sets a beautiful table and my brother carves the bird. It's my duty to pick at at the turkey and the skin, while he's carving, just to ensure it's done properly.

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My father makes the gravy, with me as an assistant.  As this happens, the rolls go in the oven so they're ready at just the right time.

The buffet is set out. The wine and water are poured. We all find our places. Then comes Grace. A moment to reflect on how lucky we are to be gathered with people who we love, with a full bounty to nourish bellies and our souls. There are always many thanks to give. 

Then we rest. Watch some more football, move around, take a quick walk outside for some air, or sit and moan about how full we are. 

Of course, we are a hearty bunch and not easily detered from the Pie Off. 

Pumpkin pie, chocolate pudding pie, apple pie, and usually a couple of berry pies from my niece's high school fundraiser. There are only ever two finalists in the the Pie Off; nephew Pat and nephew Joe. They are both strappin' lads over 6" tall, but even they could not take one more bite last year. I think it ended in a dual forfeiture or a tie, depending on how you look at it.

We enjoy some more laughs, there may be someone napping in the corner, the dishes are cleared and it's time for the bird to go in the bag. You see, after prepping and cooking for the Thanksgiving Day feast my sister in law can't fathom the thought of doing anything with the leftover bird. I on the otherhand simply can't stand the thought of it not being made into some serious quantities of soup. So, we take him home in a bag and I work my soup magic the next day.

Then, and only then are we ready for the next holiday on the calendar.

What traditions do you have to celebrate Thanksgiving? If you don't celebrate Thanksgiving, what tradition helps marks the start of your holiday season?

Did You Get To The Party?

In case you missed it, we are doing some serious partying down in this neck of the woods. The new Gotta Have It/Gotta Blog It link up party started yesterday. If you're a shop owner or blogger, be sure to add your link. If you're not, take a browse around.

Also, if you're a quilter, crafter or sewer, I started to add some of my vintage supplies to Bates Mercantile Co. yesterday. My mother is probably saying, 'What took her so long?'. Right Mom?

Vintage Plaid and Lace Trim, Fabric Lace Trim, Vintage Plaid Trim, Lace Trim

There is of course, more to come.

Freeform Friday

Chilly, but we may have a campfire outback anyways....tonight or tomorrow. We'll see. No real agenda for the weekend other than winterize the yard. There are many leaves that need to go. In fact, you really can't see the lawn at all out back. That's what happens when your yard is lined with deciduous trees. Love that word. Deciduous. Sorry, had to say it again. 

Of course, if we're not out back at around the campfire, we'll probably be enjoying our usual YouTube Friday Night. 

Freeform Friday is going old school this week. Take a trip back to the 80s with one of the coolest rocker chics around.  By the way. I love it too. Click here if you're reading by email.

Happy Friday.

Ciao for now,


  1. Yum - you're making me hungry! I make my grandma's roll recipe (from scratch, of course) and the more cheese in them the better! I've been making them every year (usually twice Tday and Christmas) since college so that's a lot of years!

    1. ok, i confess (sorry Kel), ours are not scratch. I'd love the recipe to share!

  2. The steamy turkey picture is killing me! Yum!


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