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MAKING MERRY & GIVING THANKS (PLUS EATING STUFFING)
Would you believe that the ONLY photos I have of the 2017 Thanks-Friends-Giving-Aganza are a montage of my antique mini silver salt and pepper shakers being filled? SO EXCITING. Back in the day, we used to record our gathering for posterity, posing on and behind the sofa, which children in our laps, etc. Nowadays, we just wait hungrily for everyone to arrive already, throw things in the microwave to heat them up, and stampede to the tables to stuff ourselves. Nary a photo in sight! No one even lifts a camera, 'cause their hands are full of forks and knives, which are full of food, food, glorious food.

I invited all our best buds and shockingly, this year, they ALL said yes, which, EEK, shit, now we have to buy and cook FOUR turkeys. We have to do this because Swedish turkeys are basically the size of chickens and it takes at least 3 of them to make up 1 American Butterball + enough for leftovers. And then one family (of 5) had to bail on us (for a sad reason) a week before and Anders and I figured 3 turkeys would be plenty. Until I went to the store to get said turkeys and saw that they were only 4.5 kilos and called him, and he said, "Get four." We have a LOT of leftover turkey, not that I'm complaining.

In addition to the turkey quartet, we had 4 kinds of stuffing (including LIVER stuffing), cornbread muffins with jalapeno, spaghetti squash, mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, black olives, gherkins and pickled onions. There was also some vegetarian main dish that I never even saw, that Kelly brought for her 2 girls. And for dessert? THREE pumpkin pies with whipped cream, 2 blueberry & raspberry cobblers with vanilla sauce and a full tray of individual pannacottas: chocolate on top, vanilla on bottom, with a dark chocolate wedge.

We had 14 adults, plus 9 teenagers/children, and 1 dog. And in that mix were 5 Americans, 1 Canadian, 1 Brit, 10 Swedes, 6 Swedish-Americans..and a labrador mix, It was very loud. After dinner, while we women were all in the kitchen cleaning up and washing dishes, Kristian turned on Netflix and dialed up (does anyone dial up anything anymore?) the Chargers vs Cowboys football game and it all felt so American and traditional and fun. Ola asked me if I could turn the noise down because he couldn't hear the game, and then I smacked him because he meant the women. We had a great time.

We've been hosting this Thanksgiving potluck with most of these same people for nearly 20 years. Some years, someone can't come, and some years another someone can't come. There have been other people added to the mix, new additions, and some who have moved away, but every year, we gather friends who feel like family around us for an evening that makes me miss being home with my first family just a little less.

This year, Martin wasn't here again. Last year, he was in Peru, and this year, he celebrated the holiday at my mom's with my grandmother, 2 of my mom's cousins and my sister and her family. I wished I could have cloned myself to be in two places at once, but I was very grateful that he has my mom and family to spend the holiday with if he couldn't be with us, for the second year in a row.

Today was still a busy day, washing more dishes, doing laundry, cleaning up and moving tables and chairs. I watered plants and ran to the grocery store to replace milk, and I baked a gazillion cookies for the annual AWC cookie exchange on Tuesday. This year: Iced Peppermint Sugar Cookies! YUM!

I hope everyone had as lovely a weekend as we did, and that even if it wasn't a holiday for you, that you took some time to think about the things that you are thankful for, and the things that make your year, and your life, a little bit better.
 thankful
mood: thankful


Comments
(Anonymous)

Lovely post (last one) but I find it sad to go back....

As for Thanksgiving, it was great. much quieter than usual with so few people but still wonderful. I wish you could have cloned yourself too, that would have made it almost perfect. AND we would not have forgot the black olives. which were forgotten again on Friday and FINALLY remembered on Saturday. :)

Love, Seester

It didn't seem like few people to me, with mom and Martin and grandma and you 4 plus Pam (and Judy), but I guess everything is relative! (HA! DOUBLE PUN!)

(Anonymous)

double duh.... UGH... you are awful! But Funny...

Another ridiculously constructed, caps using sentence, JUST (and only just) to make you roll your eyes, okay and groan, and then laugh, because.... well ... it's me!

Hugs!!! Seester

We still have really fond memories of your fantastic Thanksgiving dinner - it was my first (and only) look at the tradition and I think it's terrific. The atmosphere was so friendly and relaxed, the food fabulous (I still remember Lambi training after Anders everywhere like a little shadow in the hope of scoring some turkey) and I thought that this was a holiday tradition that ought to be exported everywhere, as it gave you time to reflect on everything good in your life.

This year's feast sounds as legendary as they usually are - I take my hat off to you for all of the hard work and preparation you guys put into it every year. I guess it's a labour of love and I'm sure greatly appreciated by all of your American friends so far from home.

It is a labor of love and I'm glad it's so appreciated by all our friends. It was tough on me this year, because I can't eat all the leftovers I want to! WAH! I have frozen turkey and stuffing though, for after the surgery!

(Anonymous)
From Megsie

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love that there are no presents, just people, and good food to gather around. We only have my mom and Jeff's dad who join us, but it is still a special dinner, and the roses on the table are my favorite part! Aside from the reason for celebrating in the first place...a whole day for gratitude. That is the ONE thing we got right in all of this. I know the historical stories are skewed with racist points of view, but if we can look toward the future instead, and count our blessings I think THAT is headed in the right direction. I count you as one of those blessings by the way...

Re: From Megsie

I saw some of that stuff online this year about Thanksgiving being a holiday that celebrates genocide and racism and whatnot, and thought, SERIOUSLY? People need to calm down.

(Anonymous)

You were definitely missed along with your brother! It was a nice gathering. We all shared what we are most grateful for And, somehow - by Sunday noon, almost all the leftovers were dispatched...if not in stomachs, then in the freezer (turkey stock & soup, and a small portion of sweet potatoes. Only left with pie! Lucky for me! I have enjoyed it all- 2 kinds of cherry, pumpkin, southern pecan,apple, and chocolate. Plus a batch of delicious lemon bars. I think we had more pie than dinner!
I took Martin back to the dorm via Royal Oak, so I could see "Loving Vincent" again. We both totally enjoyed it. I'm hoping to get a dvd of it - it moves fast, so then I could freeze-frame it when I want a longer look. Don't miss it!
Love, Lizardmom

Holy moly, you had more desserts than we did and we had 23 people! :D hahahaa! I'm most grateful for YOU, mamma!

May 2018
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