Friday, November 24, 2006

A Day to Remember

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
Here's our whole family on Thanksgiving Day--if you can find Clara Anne behind our frosty mugs!

On this side of the world Thanksgiving Day is already past. What a day it was! We had a wonderful time celebrating with some American friends, and I think we turned out a pretty impressive Thanksgiving spread, especially for living in a foreign country. Look and see for yourself! At left: the appetizer table, complete with festive decorations colored by Miss Clara Anne and Miss Emma!

Here's a shot of the inside of the oven: That's stuffing on the bottom rack, green bean casserole, cheesy potatoes, and chicken on the top rack. The chicken was deemed necessary because originally we had planned a turkey and a ham for our Thanksgiving feast, but at the last minute the import store could not deliver the ham. However, a 12 pound turkey proved more than enough for 6 adults and 2 children, plus leftovers! Oh well, the chicken will be tasty tomorrow...

Outside the oven, we had a huge crock-pot FULL of homemade macaroni and cheese, another crock-pot full of the turkey which I had roasted the day before, taken off the bone (well actually John did that part) and then warmed in the crock-pot with some homemade turkey broth on Thanksgiving morning. We also had a platter of homemade dinner rolls, a pot of mashed potatoes, and gravy to go with it all. And don't forget the cranberry sauce! I think you HAVE to have cranberry sauce on Thanksgiving, but I couldn't buy any canned stuff and fresh cranberries were simply not available. However, I improvised: I had a bag of dried cranberries that I stewed over low heat with some orange juice and orange marmelade and voila! Cranberry sauce!

Here's the dessert table: Cherry Crisp, Cheesecake Ball with graham crackers for spreading, Pecan Pie with whipped cream, Apple Cake with cream cheese frosting, and Hello Dollies, sometimes known as 7-Layer Bars. WOWZA! It was truly an abundant table!

It was funny this year--there were three couples coming to this Thanksgiving dinner and so the ladies made the plans...but unbeknownst to us, our husbands all had a few ideas of their own. We ladies hadn't planned on making stuffing, until one of the husbands said, "Oh, no stuffing? Too bad!" Then another husband said (at the last minute after four desserts were already planned and made) "Aren't you going to make a cherry crisp?" The third husband mentioned several times his preference for sweetened whipped cream (not plain!) and thick gravy. Happily, we were able to oblige everyone, and I think that everyone rated this Thanksgiving meal one of the best, ever. Now that's saying something!
In the afternoon after the little girls went to sleep, us adults played a "Couples" game together. It was sort of a version of the Newlywed Show, but with more interesting questions. We had a great time! John and I put our almost-10 years of married experience to a good test and did well--though I missed an obvious question about his family Christmas tradition. Oops!
We decided that we were having such a good time, we would just stay...and after Clara Anne and Emma had a fun time in the bathtub together, we put the girls to bed again and had one more round of games, after cleaning up the kitchen and dividing up all the leftovers, of course! It was a great day and one I won't forget.
We hope you all had a truly wonderful Thanksgiving, filled with meaningful conversations, thankful hearts, and good food!

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