Two weeks ago, Adam and I decided that as my crazy season kicks off the day after Thanksgiving that we would just go with flow that all the plans we had half made for Thanksgiving had fallen though and kind of ignore the day. I had to get ready for the weekend anyway. Then three days before the actual day, there was a conversation between Adam and one of his friends who had custody of his son for Thanksgiving this year, and a turkey in the freezer, that we should have it together. This could have been a simple decision and we should have just made a few side dishes and called it a day.
However, 10 years ago I had hosted my first Thanksgiving and decided to fry our turkey. Unfortunately, no one thought to check the fryer box after purchase (because who does that?) and when we went to set it up a few hours before dinner, realized that a crucial part was missing and no stores were open to get the missing part. There were many methods attempted to rig it, which all failed and my mom ended up hacking off parts of the raw turkey and microwaving them…which was as bad as it sounds. My ego would not let another horrible Thanksgiving dinner ever happen again on my watch so last week I went into hyper crazy holiday mode.
I started planning out the timing for cooking the many, many dishes (that I had never cooked before) being prepared with one oven and braved the grocery store with the masses. I asked Adam what had to be present to make it feel like Thanksgiving, and he listed every generic dish there is and insisted that they should all be prepared from canned goods. Um, no. We compromised…I made all the dishes he wanted but with no canned goods…because ew, they’re like 88 cents a lb, thats cheaper then a can of them! Anyway…I had researched and found recipes for everything and had them all printed out and everything ready to go on Wednesday night. At about 5:30 after I got home from my run, I popped into the kitchen to brine the turkey. That’s when I realized what a mammoth challenge I had taken on.
Let me preface this by saying that in my family, I am the cleaner. My sister Gillian is a chef and cooks everything with my mom, with the help of my other sisters, Holly and Thea. I help clean as they go and then organize/clean the entire kitchen at the end of the night. I do nothing with the food. Wednesday night I realized this and started to panic. I ended up making the pie dough, apple pie, cranberry sauce and green beans for the casserole that night. I also laid out the buffet table, decided on serving dishes and set the table for our 2pm dinner. At 1am, still in my running clothes I finally left the kitchen.
Adam got home 20 minutes later just as I was getting out of the shower and said that our friends who were on the fence confirmed that they were coming the next day as well. Then he let me know that 3 others were coming as well. I kind of freaked out at that point and started texting his phone with things that he had to buy first thing in the morning so we had enough food as we went from 4 to 9 people.
I also was going to have to unset the table, take down the buffet as it was blocking the door to the garage, bring in our bigger table from the garage and redo everything. Lets just say that I couldn’t even pretend to sleep that night, I tossed and turned and kept texting his phone so I could double the potatoes, make another pie…etc. I got up at 8:30 to start cooking the next morning (I usually get up at 11, so that was ROUGH). I cooked the turkey, made a pumpkin pie, reset the table, cooked 2 types of stuffing, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and candied yams. I set the table and set up the buffet again. By some miracle, everything was ready at exactly 2pm and perfect!
The only down side was the 3 guests who we had to move furniture for canceled at 1:55. They will not be invited to dinner ever again. No matter, we had a lovely time without them. Our friends 3 year old son terrorized Faye, the guys watched football and the massive amounts of leftovers due to 3 people not showing up were forced on our friends when they left. I was in the kitchen cleaning until about 9pm and then had to work for a couple of hours.
Lets just say that this weekend was spent in a zombie state, which is unfortunate as I was so busy with holiday orders coming in (yay!). Fortunately though, I think after a good long sleep last night though that I am finally recovered…and have started planning the party for 25 at our house Christmas night. You can start thing positive thoughts for me now please…
p.s. don’t forget to checkout Manic Trout for the perfect holiday party accessories and presents!