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Happy Thanksgiving 2013

Our day began with a loaf of cranberry bread. The recipe comes from the final page in the book.


I made this loaf for the first time last year, but it fell apart. I think the secret is the way the food processor diced up the whole cranberries.

Selah didn’t care for it so she had Cheerios – a breakfast tradition she will have to give up when we return to the east side.

After breakfast, Bible reading, and adding a leaf to our Thankful Tree, pajamas were changed, teeth were brushed and beds were made at record speed so that the kids could watch the Peanuts classic: “The Mayflower Voyagers”.

Around 8:30am, everyone moved on to coloring pages and painting.

At 9:15am, I turned on the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. We joined in just as the cast from “Matilda the Musical” was singing “Revolting Children” where they acted like they were hitting each other and throwing their coats on the ground. I kept telling the kids to wait a minute and a float would appear.

But a float did not appear. A commercial did.

My kids aren’t accustomed to watching commercials so naturally, Schäfer asked me to fast forward. But I explained that this was TV – not a DVD – so we had to wait.

Then a commercial came on promoting a dramatic TV show that involved a fire. My kids looked nervous.

Finally, the parade came back on, but Matt Lauer announced that the cast from a new Broadway show called “Kinky Boots” was about to perform. The show began with a man, wearing a dress, who was introducing women in sparkly less-than-bathing-suit type outfits.

I turned off the tv.

Really NBC? At 9:30am!

I asked the kids if they would like to watch “This is Thanksgiving, Charlie Brown”

Thank you Charlie Brown for being timeless.

So there I was nursing Senna and avoiding trash tv while Hubs was in the kitchen cooking. Cooking. And more cooking. I joined him when Senna decided that she was full.

Thankfully our neighbor allowed us to used their oven, so the turkey could bake over there while we worked on the multitude of side dishes and desserts over here.

We made the discovery that the aforementioned food processor speeds prep time up considerably.

At last, by 2pm everything was almost ready and our friend, Kristen, had arrived. Thank goodness she came with small toys, a craft, festive headbands and even play dough for the kids.

Hubs and I spent the next 30 minutes frantically wondering if it was all going to come together. Hubs kicked me out of the kitchen to get a shower while he fried the onions for the green bean casserole.

At 2:30 there was a plump turkey, well seasoned stuffing, fresh cranberries, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, and a corn casserole thanks to Nanamaw. For dessert we enjoyed homemade whipped cream with pumpkin pie and pecan pie.

Of course, Senna nursed while everyone ate. The meal was over by the time I got to the table. Hubs ran the kids around outside while I ate. Kristen and my Mom kept me company.

Around 4pm, our dear, old friend Auden came for a visit. It was a treat to see her!

By 6pm, we gave the kids a little bit of leftovers, but they were still full from our late lunch. The Grouchies were in full swing from a lack of afternoon naps.

We had the kids in bed by 7pm and I thought about going to bed myself. I felt so tired. Hubs started the turkey soup (aka Carcass Soup) while I nursed.

Are you picking up on a theme here? Thanksgiving 2013 looked a lot like me sitting in a chair nursing while Hubs worked in the kitchen. Just when I would get to the kitchen and start a dish, one of the kids would need something. I don’t think I actually started and finished  a single dish this year. I came and went on several dishes. I was very much a Sous Chef this year.

My Mom was also such a big help when she wasn’t entertaining the children or simply holding the baby, she was in the kitchen washing dishes! What a blessing! Her service to our family did not go unnoticed.

Later in the evening, Schäfer came out of his room. On his way back to bed he said, “The house smells so good. Is that the turkey soup? It smells like another feast!”

Hubs and I crawled into bed at 9:30pm. We were so very tired. I have no clue how anyone could go Black Friday shopping on Thanksgiving evening.

We are truly thankful as we head into the Christmas season and essentially our final month here in California.

This November, for 28 days we added leaves to a bare, paper tree to show just how much we have to be thankful for.

Our tree is full.
Our lives are full.
God is faithful and good.

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