I never understood why we sang that song, an ode to a Christmas tree. As a kid I knew that Christmas was not about the tree. We had a tradition of buying the Christmas tree on my birthday. The tree went up 8 days before Christmas and it was taken down the 31st of December. As we decorated we sang carols. It was a family affair. The first of January was started with a clean house, fried chicken or a ham, black-eyed peas, and a prune cake. Yep, you read that right, prune cake. Every year, once a year, prune cake. I remember eating a piece of cake so as not to hurt my mama’s feelings but I didn’t like that cake! Ever!
This year after being married almost 20 years we will be getting a REAL tree. We will go shopping for this tree the day after Thanksgiving. We shall water it and get the widest base available to keep the kitten from knocking it over as he climbs it with his claws. We have no hopes that he won’t climb the tree or bat the ornaments. Mochi might even try to talk the clawless kitties into giving it a go.
So today I am making homemade cranberry sauce. I take two packages of fresh cranberries and follow the recipe on the back, adding the zest of one orange and the juice as well. I also add the zest from one lemon which I will save to stuff inside the turkey tomorrow. I’m going to cook the sweet potatoes and peel them and let them cool. The corn will need to be shucked and the butter will need to be softened and the herbs added to sit overnight, ready to stuff under the skin of the turkey. I’m also going to make the burp bread dough. Half of it will go to make cinnamon rolls. They will be filled with raisins and walnuts, plenty of cinnamon and sugar, and butter. Guess I better soften the butter for those too. The other half will be readied for rolls. Great big, fluffy, yeasty rolls that melt in your mouth.
This year our menu will be Roasted Turkey, Candied Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans, Corn on the Cob, Hash Brown Casserole, Yeast Rolls, Cranberry Sauce, and Autumn Chopped Salad.
I normally make a brown bag turkey, I am doing the same this year but this time I decided to stuff a herb butter under the skin surrounding the breast first. Season that bird anyway I can and make sure it stays moist, I am going to stuff it full of celery, lemon, onion, and carrot (which I need to pick up today). I’ve never had a problem making a good turkey, but making a turkey that is completely moist and succulent isn’t always easy. This year I’ll give it a go and see what happens. I purchased a fresh turkey this year, a sixteen lb bird.
I mustn’t forget the pie making. Making pies the day before makes sure that they are set properly the day of. Bean has requested pumpkin and Matthew wants nothing more than his pecan. However, I know that he will be eating plenty of both. Berry wants it all, except the corn on the cob! I got cream to whip for homemade whipping cream this year too. We will feast and play the Wii. We will watch the Macy’s parade and most of all we will be thankful.
We will be thankful for what we have learned this year, what God has brought us through. We will be thankful for God’s provision of housing, clothing, and food, for everything we need and a lot of the things we wanted. We will be thankful for each other, for our health, for the love that we have been given. We will be thankful for the friends and support He has provided us and the loving families that He placed us in.
On Sunday we will be celebrating the eleven years that God has blessed us with Berry. My goodness, I can’t believe she is turning eleven! Bean and I have purchased items to redo her room. It’s a set that she has begged us for months to buy and I am so excited to redo her room and surprise her!
I hope your Thanksgiving is filled with just as many blessings and thankfulness as ours is going to be! Count them up, write them down, share them!! God Bless you!