Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving Door Buster ... and Belly Buster!

Last Thursday was my final day as manager at the animal shelter, and although I do miss my employees and the animals, I am so thankful this week to be back with my family, cooking them meals (that didn't start out frozen in boxes) and visiting with them.  I feel like I've been away for six months.

I was reading on Facebook about how large the newspapers are going to be this week, stuffed with holiday specials.  I thought it might be fun to offer y'all my own little door buster.

Euphrasier Enout's French Cathedral Sampler

This is a sampler I picked up a few years ago, one of the first ones I purchased, actually.  I am still charmed by the cathedral, the acolytes, the birds and CATS!  The saying at the top says that fortune fades, but beauty is forever.

Anyway, I still really like this one, and it was fun to stitch, so I'm offering it to you through next Monday for just $7.00 (regular price is $20).  You can find it on my Etsy shop, Letters Great and Small at  I also just listed some great holiday patterns by The Primitive Hare and Lizzie Kate, and this week, I'll be beefing up my store with lots and lots (and lots) of hand-dyed linens.

I am stitching on a primitive Christmas sampler.  I worked on it yesterday while watching Ken Burns' documentary about prohibition.  After that one was done, I started another of his films about the dust bowl.  If you've never seen any of his work, you should.  He's got great films about the national parks, Mark Twain, Thomas Jefferson, jazz, baseball, and most famously, the Civil War.  Netflix has got them where you can watch instantly from your computer.

This morning I prepped my grocery list for the feast on Thursday.  Steve and Harrison came in and tried to see what I needed to add, but I hadn't forgotten anything.  I've been making this meal for years, and think it's the most delicious meal you can make, and it's not that hard to do.  Everything is homemade here at the house -- and I can't wait for those familiar smells: turkey, potatoes and gravy, stuffing (outside the bird), cranberry sauce (with apples and orange juice), green bean casserole, Mississippi sweet potatoes, apple pie, pumpkin pie.  

Our friends Joy and Michael will be joining us this year, and they have ordered kuchen from South Dakota.  Kuchen is sort of pie, sort of cake, sort of pastry filled with a custard-like's a dessert commonly served in areas of the country settled by the Germans.  Peach and strawberry are my two favorite flavors, but there are lots of other varieties, including fig, apple, rhubarb, blueberry, cinnamon, you name it.  If you're looking, there's a pretty authentic recipe here:

We start Thanksgiving Day with the Barefoot Contessa's favorite party starter: whiskey sours and dill dip.  The boys help with cutting up the vegetables.

Ina Garten's Herb Dip:
1 brick cream cheese (8 ounces)
1/2 c. sour cream
1/2 c. mayonaise
4 minced green onions
2 T. chopped parsley (fresh)
1 T. fresh dill (minced)
1 tsp. Kosher salt
3/4 tsp. black pepper
Sometimes I run this through the food processor, or sometimes I use my beaters.  It's always good with cut up cucumbers, carrots, celery, and bell peppers.  I also add to the tray various pickles, olives, and cherry peppers.

Ina Garten's Whiskey Sours:
3/4 c. whiskey
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
1/2 c. fresh lime juice (about 4 limes)
2/3 c. chilled simple syrup (simmer in a saucepan 1 cup each of white sugar and water until the sugar is completely dissolved)

We sip these while we make the food -- the citrus flavor is so refreshing.  Make sure to serve on ice with a maraschino cherry (or two...or three).  We always make a sticky mess of the counters with all of that sugar syrup and hand-squeezed citrus juice, but it is worth it.  These put a little blush on everyone's face, and soon everyone is relaxed, chatting and having fun.

Whatever you'll be doing this week, I hope you'll be doing it with family.  Happy stitching, and I am thankful for all of you!


marly said...

Sounds wonderful. Enjoy your blessings!

Krista said...

Thank you for the holiday savings, and I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family.

Chris said...

It sounds like a perfect holiday and celebration.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Katken said...

Welcome Welcome Back!! I admire you for following your heart, but I'm happy it led you back our way. I'm delighted you will get to have your traditional family Thanksgiving....definitely in the threads of life! Enjoy! Rest Up!
Happy Family Day!

Jen said...

Hope you all had a great day!

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