Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Giving Thanks

I hope everyone who celebrates Thanksgiving had as lovely a one as I had. It's really a nice holiday if you think about it. It's really a good thing to reflect on your loved ones and things to be thankful for.
Growing up, my sister and I were the only people under the age of retirement at our holidays becuase all of our cousins lived in other states. We spent our holidays listening to the elders in our family discuss whose bunions were worse and whose retirement home food was better. My sister and I were really thankful when we were finally of an age to enjoy my father's margaritas.
Now at holidays, we have my cousin Ashley and her new hubby, Chris, DiscoJen and the family, and my Aunt and Uncle are back in the holiday group. It's so much more fun with all of them. The hubby would prefer a smaller group, but I feel the more, the merrier.

And since inherited the so called Abodanza gene from my Italian Great-Grandmother, having enough food is never a problem! Most of my friends and family like to cook, so everyone brings something to contribute to the meal.

The Hubby also doesn't understand why I feel compelled to cook for three solid days for a 4 hour meal, but he just doesn't understand that my Martha-esk urges can't be denied. I have to mold butter into holiday related shapes, make my own cranberry jelly, pumpkin puree, and ice cream! And DiscoJen's little guy sure enjoyed the pumpkin pie! Ok, maybe it was really the whip cream he liked best!
I actually started back in September when I made my tablecloths. I'm quite thrilled with them. I was able to find brown napkins at Home Goods for a very reasonable price, so I didn't need to make those.
I looked everywhere for napkin rings, but they were hard to find and ridiculously priced when I did find some I liked. $36 for 4 napkin rings! I'm not spending $144 on napkin rings! I ended up at JoAnn Fabrics to get ribbon to tie around the napkins when I happened across the Christmas garland section, which was 50% off. I was able to get 12 beaded napkin rings out of the bronze pine cone garland! I think they are fabulous!
Thank goodness Chris was in attendance this year because he is apparently the only one who knows how to set a table! I asked the hubby and Uncle Tom to set it and they yelled for Ashley, who claims she doesn't know either. I think she's just wiley and got out of setting the table by saying she didn't know. She and Chris did the napkin rings for me. They did a lovely job, don't you think?
Now, just for Donna, my molded butters! They amuse her. The acorns are honey butter for the sweet potato biscuits DiscoJen made, which are amazing! This year I raised the bar by making my own cranberry jelly too. It turned out really well, but made a ridiculous amount, so next time I will only make half of the recipe. I used a mini bundt holiday pan to form them.

And because I like to form things, I made the apple pie crust into little leaves and acorns. I forgot to take a photo of the whole thing, but it was pretty! I made vanilla tea ice cream and cinnamon ice cream to go with the pies. Yum!
I found my floral centerpiece on Tuesday in downtown Crystal Lake when I met Jennie and Paige for lunch at Benedict's Strata for the hand off of Jennie's gorgeous "Fine China" quilt that Paige quilted for her. There is a small shop across the sidewalk from Benedict's, called Mum. They have some wonderful and different arrangements. I actually still have this on my kitchen table! The Gerbera Daisies are the only thing that I had to get rid of so far, and I just threw those out yesterday.

I gave Carolina her birthday quilt on Thanksgiving since her 4th birthday was just a few days prior. It was the cutest thing ever! She exclaimed "It's gorgeous!" then "It's just perfect for me Vicki!" Doesn't that just all make it worthwhile? I think so.

1 comment:

Jennie said...

Your cooking is over the top!! I am glad there are people like you in the world who do all that stuff... so the people like me can admire it! Thanks for all your kind comments on my blog- see you Saturday!- Jennie