Friday, November 29, 2013

This IS the Big Time

Thanksgiving held her own this year.
All she was asking... was forrrr alittle respect just-a-little-bit. Right?
You give her a chance, and she knocks your socks clean off.

This was our family Thanksgiving and it was completely perfect, especially after we managed to wrestle Robert's cell phone from his hands. Just before we prayed, Calvin raced upstairs and came back down with a strange, stained button-down thrown over his t-shirt. He felt a sudden and visceral need to be "dressy" for dinner.

I'm really so proud of all our kids. They're so quirky and rad. They just make life better.

I cooked alllll day long, but it's what I wanted. I wanted to honor them with my time and effort.
They didn't hold some glowy, swirly ideal of what Thanksgiving dinner should be.
We just like each other. Our history keeps wrapping us tighter.
And it's easy to think about who might have been missing, but all that really matters is that all of us weren't.

I kept looking around the table thinking, I can't imagine if it was just 5 of us. I truly couldn't picture it. This is who we are, right now. And sometimes there are others and I'm sure things will keep shifting and moving, but this is today and today is just right.

This was our main course since I had roast in the freezer. YUM. (Mine slow-cooked an hour or two longer than what the recipe recommended.)

I made two desserts from scratch - a pumpkin cheesecake that Robert linked on my facebook wall (he's subtle like that) and this buttermilk chocolate layer cake.

Doesn't this look delicious and beautiful and very, very impressive?


For one thing, the cakes came out of the oven swirled. I don't know how that happened. The batter was lovely and delicious. For another thing, my frosting didn't come out rich and shiny looking. Basically, mine looked 15% like the photo on the recipe. Please don't look. You'll lose all faith in me.

Then I cut it, and let's just say, I had to push down on the knife with a bit more force than I would have hoped. The kids all ate it like champs. Haven had my back saying, "It's not's...flaky!" Like that was a compliment. :)

It's the thought that counts, and that's no joke.

So, are you people Black Friday Maniacs? We're watching the news right now where all kinds of weirdos are saying they lined up at Best Buy on Wednesday at 7pm. WHAT???!

I'm not a Black Friday girl.
Unless Black Friday is celebrated by staying in bed until 8:30 then schlepping around in pajamas until noon and curling up with this book whilst tuning out cooped-up, arguing, shorties. In that case, yes, I'm definitely a Black Friday kind of girl.

I do have my eye on one deal - my homies at Canvas People are running a special for a free 8x10 or $40 off larger sizes. Whenever they lose their good sense, I try to add to my collection. But, you know, you could go a different route and wow a parent, friend, or husband.

And with that, I give my official blessing for Christmas Mayhem to commence.

See how reasonable I am?

Hope your day was a stunner.


  1. Happy-day-after-Thanksgiving!
    Cake looks great in the pic.
    My brother called yesterday, a little later than usual, but he called. Then it felt like a solid holiday; never does until we talk to him.
    I can't get down with Black Friday.
    I'm totally down with some Christmas Chaos though.


    1. And I mean the cake looks great in YOUR pic, YOUR cake. :) Didn't want that to sound like some underhanded jabby jab. I didn't even look at the recipe pic. Swear it!

  2. Your Black Friday sounds pretty much PERFECT! The faces that sat around our table this year were different than I had pictured in my "perfect" picture...BUT it was one of the best we have had. We are those people...I am grateful and blessed.

  3. Thanksgiving is shifting a bit for us as our extended family continues to grow but I'm down with that! It was calm and grown uppy!! We trekked to MD at 7:00 to visit said extended family and stayed until after 10!! Lets say it was a wild spontaneous night for my little family unit and we all kinda digged it!! Now its definitely time to assemble the Christmas Chaos!! Bring it baby......after Black Friday -I want no parts of that kinda crazy :)

  4. You know, FPFG, a few years ago I couldn't imagine Thanksgiving with more people than were in our family which is already loud and chaotic as heck. Then we started inviting people -- international students from a local U, the cleaning lady from church, our handyman -- and now I find myself in the weeks before T-Day casting around in my head for people who might not have a place to go. It was for so long out of my comfort zone, but God is very patient and I am learning and enjoying this lesson.

    "I cooked alllll day long, but it's what I wanted. I wanted to honor them with my time and effort." -- yes, exactly. In a nutshell. And then I sent them home with tons of leftovers. I hope they feel loved (accepted, included, part of something) when they dig into the turkey and potatoes and leftover cherry pie today.

    And like you, I am jammie girl today. Shoot -- I am even debating whether to expend the energy to shower (shower is losing as of right now). Can't even imagine the effort required to go shopping. Not a chance. Not very articulate today, because I am the best kind of tired, but wanted you to know I appreciated your words.

  5. Great post hun and thanks so much for sharing with us all today. :-) Have a great day!

  6. This hit me just right. Ours too was smaller and quieter but, truth be, I couldn't pull off any more anyway this year. It wasn't a Martha Stewart kinda day but it was a way to ease into the holiday/family feeling AND I COOKED. I about bumped into Christmas without seeing it coming and have much to do to get caught up. My visit here restores my mojo and I'm off to shop my attic only.
    xo to you and your beautiful, crazy family!

  7. We headed north to see some extended family we hadn't seen i a while. Lunch yesterday ended up including 32 people, most of whom we had never met.....a family (without family nearby), new "marriage" family, and 3 exchange students (Iran and Cambodia) who were experiencing their first Thanksgiving ever. While the introverted part of myself had to breathe deeply a couple of times, it was a fantastic time and we all left with our hearts and eyes opened a little further.....for that I am SO thankful!

  8. a lovely family feast - a gorgeous blog...happy to have found you from down here in Australia....
    Bec x

  9. Thanks for sharing! Your day sounds perfect. We were flooded with cousins from EVERYWHERE. My kids got to see cousins they have not seen in 6 years! It was perfect for us.

  10. Thanks for sharing! Your day sounds perfect. We were flooded with cousins from EVERYWHERE. My kids got to see cousins they have not seen in 6 years! It was perfect for us.

  11. Looks like a great Thanksgiving! I'm not a Black Friday girl either. Normally I stay home and miss all the mayhem. This year we headed out to Costco to get our Christmas tree since we'd have time over the weekend to decorate it. That was plenty Black Friday for me. I couldn't wait yo get home.
    FYI- The tree is up, but the rest of the house still says fall. One step at a time.

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