Saturday, November 24, 2007

Snow in the Beaver Moon

It's been a long time since we had snow - even THIS much - on Thanksgiving. At the risk of becoming unpopular, may I say that I hope this is a foretaste of a beautiful winter of deep snows. I would like the sort of winter I remember from my childhood (Whooah! Does that make me sound old or WOT?) where the roads are dry after being plowed but the snow is deep enough for skiing and sledding, and at night the huge sparkling flakes twinkle past the streetlights. OK - it's a start. Nevermind.

Of course this is the time of year we think of things for which we thankful; I had written a great list, but your lists are in your hearts, and mine in my heart. I daresay they match with a few differences and additions on each hand.

Our cozy little nest has no dining room, but the table in the kitchen can seat six if everyone is friendly and well-behaved. Therefore, for Thanksgiving, Mr Dearling brings up our Big Table (an ugly utility table we've had forever) and sets it up in the living room. We can seat ten to dine...of course, if Mr Dearling needs to leave his place at the head of the table to go to the kitchen, he needs to go out the front door and around to come in the back door into the kitchen. Some of our guests have to climb along the couch to get to their chairs and the rest have to suck it in and squinch past the television. However, once everyone is seated, it works very well. I think it looks very nice with my family silverware (it's Rogers Bros silverplate, but engraved with a lovely "G" for "Goldish", my maiden name - it was Grandma Goldish's). I also use my wonderful Spode, also Grandma Goldish's at one point, then used by her daughter, Aunt Lois - and finally to me. I cherish it, and only use it for Thanksgiving...although you know what? I may start to use it every day. Aunt Lo did, and it is a shame to let it languish.

OK -- yes, they ARE halloween napkins. With Spode. Nevermind. (The only other choice was paper towels and I MEAN! What kind of dolt would use paper towels with Spode??) Still, I thought it looked a fine table. We had the Lovely Daughter, #1 Son Ben and family; #2 Son with his friend and her 15-year-old daughter and the two of us. It made for a merry table.

Mr Dearling makes the delicious turkey, a very respectable dressing and the wild-rice-sausage dish. Dawn, the well-named lady of #1 Son (and Domanic and Xander's capable mommy) brings her flawless green-bean casserole. NOTE: she uses the GOOD stuff, French's Onions, on top. I make the corn pudding and this year, the pumpkin pie, from scratch. NOTE: the home-made crust, however, was also made by Mr Dearling. Any guesses if he's on my "Thankful" list? He appears on alternate lines on the list. Lovely Daughter brings the pecan pie -- she doesn't care for it, Mr Dearling doesn't care much for it either; MORE. FOR. ME! You can see here, the golden, moist, wonderful turkey, and next to it the Heart Bowl, which I've had for over 30 years and ALWAYS use for the corn pudding, which was my mother's recipe.

As Daughter and I were setting out all this amazing food on the table, #1 Son was watching very closely as each dish emerged. Finally, as we were preparing to sit down, he could hold his peace no more and he said, in panicked tones of dread, "Is that ALL there is? Haven't you FORGOTTEN SOMETHING?" The Heart Bowl was still in the oven, and his sister was headed for it even as he spoke. It's what he comes for, the corn pudding. Every year he tries to talk me into making it on a cookie sheet "so there's more crust!" but hey, I'm Jewish. You don't mess with Tradition, just ask Tevye. Corn pudding is made in the Heart Bowl. I may be short but I'm still The Mom. Shut up.

The meal was fine, and the company better. We all ate prodigiously, everyone eventually wandered off, and the house was quiet again. We prepared a care package with some of everything for our friend Sunawa and her partner, ESPECIALLY thankful that, on Thanksgiving Day, she was able to return home to their little nest, where she can finish her recovery surrounded by their beloved four cats and goofy sweet dog. They called later to thank us - that's one of the best holiday gifts I could have, seeing her restored to a modicum of health.

We did the dishes (I always wash the plates - then if I break one, I'll have only myself to blame!) and Mr Dearling got his yummy turkey soup underway (another tradition). If there's other thing you can always count on at the end of Thanksgiving Day it's a good, comfortable, NAP. Evangeline and Lilliane set the model, and we managed to follow the example very well, thank you. No knitting ensued all day, but it was made up for Friday, you'll see.

It's not lost on me that, in this country, those with the least, those with great need, live lives superior to that experienced by hundreds of thousands of people, our neighbors, who live in other countries. I don't minimize the poverty, bigotry, alcoholism, drug use and abuse that blights the fabric of our country. Grim as it is, there are people in parts of Africa, of India, of Asia who would consider it a great step UP to live those lives. And me? Well, it's not my fault if Donald Trump is jealous of me. I hear he doesn't even HAVE a stash!


kmkat said...

I had to laugh at the paper Halloween napkins vs. paper towels discussion. Yeah, what kind of a dolt would use paper towels. Sheesh.

Kathy in KS said...

Yay for traditions! Not to sound morbid, but you know after you're gone, it's that heart bowl that your kids are going to be fighting over. You're not making food, you're making memories.

Mr. Dearling said...

Sweetheart, please note that I happen to love pecan pie, especially that made by the LD. It is the pumpkin pie to which I am indifferent.

dale-harriet said...

O rats, he found me out. OK - it's true, Mr Dearling LOVES pecan pie. I ate up the PUMPKIN pie by myself :blush: but he IS sharing. I just ate a piece of the pecan pie. *burp* Delicious!

LD said...

I'm rather relieved to hear that! I *was* a bit concerned to think I was bringing pie to them that doesn't want it. (BTW, Mom...I'll bring a 2nd one next year just for you if you like, just let me know (grin))

Anonymous said...

I lived in a house with only an eat-in kitchen too.But when we put all the boards in the table (usually every day)cuz there were 9 kids plus always a few strays brought home we too had to "leave the building" just to get around. Fond memory - thanks for reminding me. J in Ottawa

Jane said...

I'm so happy to see you had such a wonderful Thanksgiving! Ours was, as well, and I do love traditions. We are making new ones now that son has a serious girlfriend, and hopefully, they'll soon be making some of their very own. I can always hope, anyway.