Rate the Hate the Tryptophan Coma edition

Ah, Thanksgiving. Twice. I am thankful for two excuses to cook Turkey in 6 weeks. I told you all of my menu a few weeks ago, but for this Thanksgiving, I didn't cook any of it. I made entirely new stuff (except the Stove Top). Now, if you think I am mentally unstable enough to spend 2 more hours typing the menu from Thursday, you'd probably be right you have another thing coming. I will, however, happily share with you the gist of dinner, and the surprise item of the day.

First, the turkey:

Porcini mushrooms with fresh rosemary and thyme

blended with butter and garlicrubbed under the skin of the turkey that brined all night in salt water with pepper, Worcester sauce and brown sugar. The turkey got stuffed with and baked for just over 2 hours (god bless convection ovens).

There were basic old garlic green beans, and Stove Top, and gravy made from cremini mushrooms, porcini mushrooms, turkey stock, pan drippings and cream. And then there were potatoes.

Josh LOVES onions and peppers. My hatred of both onions and peppers burns with the heat of a thousand suns. But since I had such a kick-ass Thanksgiving last year, and he had such a craptastic one, I thought I'd make him a little something special. A just for him thing. So, I julienned a medium red pepper, a medium yellow pepper, and sliced a medium red onion. I tossed them in olive oil with salt and pepper and roasted them for 15 minutes. Then I quartered what I wanted to be 1 1/2 pounds of fingerling potatoes, but I live in the motherf*ing suburbs of motherf*ing Canada and couldn't find any, so I went with small white potatoes, tossed them in olive oil, too, with salt and pepper, threw them right on top of the peppersand then roasted the whole thing on 375 for 50 minutes. I mixed in 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley and (I think) 2 tbsp fresh chopped mint and roasted the whole thing for 10 more minutes. I topped that with fresh chopped basil and voila!Seriously, I thought I was going to hatehatehate this. Turns out, it kicked serious ass. (It was shocking, even to me.) Throw that all one one not-nearly-big-enough plateand you have the very, single, most bestest Thanksgiving dinner I have ever cooked. Ever. I'm not kidding. And it was crazy easy. I even managed to bake a decent cookie for dessert.Those would be pumpkin cookies that I make....with molasses. Jumpin' Jesus on a pogo stick; I loves me some molasses.

But, did they like it? As they say, a picture says a thousand words...

On second thought

It has been two years today since I've spoken to my father. I had this whole thing I was going to write, but I'm busy eating turkey and frankly, I have nothing to say on the subject. Except this;

Dad, I'm sorry. I wish I could find forgiveness for you. It's a character flaw; I'm working on it. I miss you, though.

Enough with that. Thanksgiving Haiku is in order.

What smells great in the
stove at 6 PM does not, left out,
the next morn'.

Thanks; Giving of

This morning, all of my children were up at 7:30. This NEVER happens. I have to drag the last two out of bed, crying and screaming for the nearest Child Services group, at the latest possible minute. But today, they were all up. The boys got the baby out of her bed while I brewed coffee, and then, later, while I stood out on the deck with my morning coffee and cigarette (yeah, I smoke. I'm ok with it, so back off) and I listened to my children have a Smackdown Showdown in the living room. It was total WrestleMania 3000. I listened to the slightly-deeper-than-they-used-to-be ughs and the barely-audible-except-to-dogs eeks and the pre-pubescent-shrilly oh-my-balls! and it hit me just how much I have to be grateful for.

I am thankful for:

My children. If you need the whys of it, I have 800 or so blog posts I can direct you to. But I am so happy that there are 3, and that they have a huge age gap. I am thankful for what they teach each other when no one's looking.

I am thankful for the 8,429 stretch marks I have. Even after my kids are gone to college and grown up life, I have the roadmaps they left behind. I can re-trace their lives through them. They take their futures and do whatever they choose with them, but I will always be the keeper of their beginnings. I wouldn't trade those stretch marks for the world. I would, however, consider trading them for better boobs.

My husband, who allows me this privilege to dedicate the past 9 and the next 16 years of my life to raising our children. Lots of men give good lip-service to the importance of staying home with your kids; he gets it. He values what I do, and I will never not be grateful for that. He lets me spend way too much money at the grocery store, and is currently eating the babies toes so I can bake cookies even though there is a pile of laundry the size of a small elephant I should be washing right now. He is also starving himself today to keep room for my dinner. That's just flattering.

My brother, who taught me many things, including how to defend myself against duct tape while I slept, who taught me how to cook, and who showed me that anyone can be great, even those of us from the humblest beginnings. I am thankful for his wife, who gave him the reason to be who he is.

The 6 empty seats at my table today. Somewhere in Denver, 5 people will sit down to dinner, and we will not be there. Somewhere in Vietnam, a baby will spend the day being loved by her momma and daddy, her grandparents, uncle, and auntie who are too far away. I will wish they were all here, and I will wish it so much that it hurts, and I am thankful that I have them to love so much that there is a gaping hole in my world while I'm away.

I am thankful that my mother-in-law is in South Africa right now. Who in their right mind WOULDN'T be happy about that? Seriously, though, she is one year into two years in the Peace Corps, and thought I question her decision to go, holy smokes is she setting a good example of giving back and doing good for my sons.

My internet connection. Without it, I may have waited on Andy and David in a bar, and they may have hit on me, and that would have been that. I never, ever would have met The Retropolitan, or Kelly, or Diane, or Ron, or Beth and Chris, or any of you who share your lives with us all. I never would have found my brothers who are sweet and lovely and, I am sad to say, quite hot (thank you MySpace). You guys make it lovely. Thank you.

I am thankful that no matter how hard I try, my house is always a cluttery mess. That just means that we have more than we need, and I am thankful every day for that.

Oh, hell, I could do this all day long. I am thankful for every day that I have, for all the ups, all the downs, all the laughter and lessons. I am thankful that I can learn, and read, and that I can grow, and that I can love. I am thankful that I can accept where I came from, and choose where I'm going, and know that those two things don't have to be the same. And dear god in heaven, am I ever thankful for chocolate.

Sharing, and other traditions

Here at Chez Mr Lady, we have few holiday traditions. Excepting waging full-out warfare the day after Thanksgiving on tiny little Christmas lights (who in the hell came up with those things away?) it's kind of a free-for-all around here. We do have a few traditions, though, that are never over-looked. I thought I'd share them with you. Enjoy.

Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow you have to go shopping.

(Um, the videos are pointless, just turn up the volume)