Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving, it ain't, but that's alright with me.

We’re at our half way mark for NaNoWriMo and I just want to offer encouragement to all those participating! You can do it guys! Keep up the good work. In the words of Tony Little, “You can do it!” I only have one tip for you guys, Ctrl+S. Save and save often.

Remember how I said I’d like to try to keep things simple this holiday season? I have to confess that I say this to myself every year and every year, it’s never simple. It’s not difficult. It’s just not simple. I’m not complaining though. Mothra thrives on this. In my past life I must have been a caterer or something involving large get-togethers. Hey, that’s what you don’t see often, Caterers to the S&M clientele. Maybe I should look into that. I can make spreadable tables and sexual desserts.

Well, now, I’ve got this brilliant idea to invite Dave and Judy over to share our Thanksgiving Day favorites dinner. Why? Well, they may be joining us in volunteering on Thanksgiving. Plus, I’ve had this recipe for Pumpkin Stew for years and haven’t had anyone to taste test it with. I know this is purely selfish and in no way altruistic. I know stew doesn’t sound so Thanksgiving-like but come on people, our Thanksgiving day meal isn’t historically accurate either. Unless you’re living in a forest, twigs, berries and some root vegetables is not our idea of a feast.

So I’ve been grinning from ear to ear as I flip through my notes on ingredients and wondering if I will finally attempt the Pumpkin Stew. In the words of Justin Long, “I’m super-psyched and ready!”

On the menu is Roast Turkey Breast, Garlicky Mashed Potatoes, Bourbon Sweet Potatoes, Chestnut Stuffing, Homestyle Creamed Corn, Cranberries in a Jar because everyone loves that jiggly stuff, Southern-style Biscuits, Glazed Almond Carrots, Apple Pie and if Dave and Judy pop by, Pumpkin Stew. Wow, that’s a lot of orange. Maybe I’ll skip the carrots.

Since most of my morning and early afternoon will be volunteering, I’m planning to make foods I can make easily and if possible beforehand. Pretty much everything except the turkey, mashed potatoes, biscuits and pumpkin stew can be made in advance.

Oh, and I almost forgot the turkey loaf for the dogs. This is where you begin shaking your heads. Yes folks, for Thanksgiving, I also make my dogs a turkey loaf. Essentially it’s a meatloaf with turkey sans onion and garlic. Hey, until I have children to spoil, my four-legged kids are getting the affection.

Turkey loaf began when my MIL decided to bring 3 of her 4 pooches with her to Thanksgiving dinner. I swear, we should have taken a picture with all the animals that packed our 1 bedroom apartment. If I didn’t know better, I’d expect to see us on Animal Precinct next to the lady with 300 cats in a studio apartment.

To keep the dogs from begging and bothering us at the dinner table filled with goblets and fine china, I made mini-turkey loafs for the dogs which kept them occupied for a large chunk of the dinner.

Since then turkey loaf has been a semi-tradition. One year I deviated to pumpkin cookies but that didn’t keep them at bay as long as the loaf.

As you laugh and shake your head, I’ll also let you in that I buy Christmas presents for them as well. I know they could care less but everyone in the house should have a new toy. I’m sure many do this too but can you say you have paw stockings on your mantle? Yes, I’m one of those crazy people with paw stockings.

Every Christmas, the dogs get new squirrel toys. So far, I’ve been able to purchase distinct squirrels each year. This year, I found a chew squirrel that squirms around. You pull something on it’s butt and it zig zags around the floor for a few seconds.

If you could see how many squirrels they have in their toy bin, you’d laugh. After a usual romp, you can expect to see at least 3 squirrels, a tennis ball and a pig hoof in our living room floor. To Lrudlrick’s enjoyment, some squirrels are missing their squeakers. Others have eyes missing. It looks like s CSI: Central Park crime scene in my living room.