Saturday, November 24, 2012

Next stop: Christmas

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration. Truly, it does keep getting better and better each year. 

Two things I learned this year: 

- How to get the turkey perfect: brine, stuff with apples, oranges, and onions, keep the oven door closed and don't baste, and don't use the pop-up timer because it WILL overcook the turkey. Thanks to friends on Pinterest pointing me in all the right directions, this year's turkey was absolutely fabulous!!!

- Precook as much as possible the day(s) before Thanksgiving, including Thursday's breakfast. So much easier than trying to cook that much food in one day with excited kids around. It was 1:30 am on the night from Wednesday to Thursday when I finally went to bed, but I managed to: brine the turkey, wash and cut potatoes for mashed potatoes, make cranberry sauce, make fried onions, make green bean casserole, bake shells for pumpkin pies and get the filling mixed and ready to just pour and bake, made pecan bars and cheesecake, prepared cinnamon rolls ready to just finish rising and bake for breakfast, and did all the prep work for throwing the spiced cider in the crockpot first thing in the morning. I am tired all over again just thinking about it all.

Is it just me, or does the "Black Friday" madness get worse each year? So far, I have received over 200 emails advertising this or that great deal that I just cannot miss - and I'm only getting them from less than a dozen companies!! First the "Pre-After-Thanksgiving Sales", then the "Black Friday Week Sales", stores being open on Thanksgiving day themselves (so we can buy more China-made junk because we are so thankful for all the things we have been blessed with throughout the year), then all day my email was blown up with today's incredibly lame "doorbusters", and I guess "Super Saturday"/"Shop Local Saturday" and "Cyper Monday" are still looming. For all that, the sales aren't even anything spectacular, so why the big hoopla? 

My favorite - a set of 5 knives for $1000, which is the 45% off price. That's $200 per knife, folks. It also comes with a whet stone, though I think for that kind of price, the knife should never need to be sharpened. But what do I know anyway, I cook with knives from the restaurant supply store.

We are still in holiday mode, and will continue with the Thanksgiving theme through the rest of this weekend. Come Monday, we're on to Christmas.

The kids are ahead of us in that respect. The boys set up this little tree in their room, and John and the girls were having a "Christmas party" with the coffee maker that Becky just bought from some of her birthday money. It was hilarious listening in on them. This was right before bed, and based on how much "coffee" (water) they drank, I'm guessing they'll be making trips to the bathroom all night long.

Only 31 more days until Christmas!! :)


  1. Glad you all enjoyed Thanksgiving! Your dinner looked delicious too! Loved looking at the kids happy faces in your pictures.

    We are so looking forward to Christmas, it really does get better and better each year doesn't it? Of course we'll be celebrating Meg's 2nd birthday too, just after Anna's if I remember rightly?

    Thanks for sharing! :)

  2. Your children are so sweet! What precious faces they have. Truly, children are a gift from the Lord.

  3. It seemed you had a very happy Thanksgiving, you have so much (and many!) for which to be thankful. The meal looked absolutely delicious--Pinterest makes me waiver between feeling very clever (occasionally) and very inadequate (frequently!) and I have to remember it's akin to reading a Martha Stewart Magazine--and OF COURSE I have one book I need to follow!

    I love it when children mimic adults, the Christmas party must have been such a hoot to listen to and hear their comments, I wish I could have been there! And I'm sure they must have 'paid' for it throughout the night! It reminds me a little of what my mother made me for me when I was young; 'fairy tea' or 'fairy coffee,' which was a good deal of milk with just a touch of coffee or tea. Ah, it made me feel like such a grown-up to drink it!

    Now up with the advent calenders and on with the Christmas hat for all of us!

    God Bless You, Dad, and the Seven,


  4. So if you do the turkey with onions, apples and oranges do you make stuffing? I love stuffing and like it best when it's cooked in the turkey. But I saw a chef on the local news who used onions, oranges,and apples. He also used a rosemary butter that he smeared under the skin, over the breast. He said the turkey was very moist and very tasty. Maybe I'll try it with my next turkey.

    I thought the knife ad was a joke or misprint. Amazon once had a misprint on some under $10 item, it was marked $999.99 by mistake. If I had the money I still wouldn't pay that for a set of knives.

  5. My husband just bought a VAN for $1500 and it fits our entire family in it. I can't imagine paying a thousand dollars for some KNIVES. I could imagine paying a grand for a Norwalk juicer, but that is where I draw the line......

  6. I just figured out why I follow your blog. As a child I read all of the Little House books. Laura Ingles was the blogger of her day, writing a family and farm centered newspaper column in rural Missouri. Copies can be found of her collected columns. She later kept a diary of a California trip to see the San Francisco World's Fair on a visit to her daughter has also been published.
    For me there is nothing like the minutia of ordinary daily life distilled to it's essence in a persons view.

  7. I don't do black friday. I prefer to shop for what I need (not for what I want) on a safe and docile day. I'm definitly looking forward to Christmas. This will be my baby girl's first Christmas and I know she is going to love all the lights and all the pretty colors.

  8. Your children are so beautiful! May God richly bless your family, and may His precious Word, presence and perfect love for you bless all of your days.


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