Saturday, November 29, 2008

after the eating

The most glorious thing about having Thanksgiving at my house is the actual state of my house. The floors are all clean, the laundry room is neat, the granite in the kitchen is polished to a high sheen, and there are even tablecloths on both my tables. There is no dust, grit or grime to be found. Even the children's bathroom is still in a state where I will use it in a pinch. That, my friends, is saying something.

Last Sunday, I made a big meal for my side of the family. And I do mean big. There are five of us, plus my parents, my brother, and his girlfriend. I roasted a 17 pound turkey, made stuffing, three side dishes, cranberry sauce, gravy, and two pies. I worked for two days. Due to unforeseen circumstances, my brother and his girlfriend did not attend. I managed to not kill my mother. I was quite proud of myself. We had enough leftovers to feed a small army. The children happily ate leftover turkey, dressing and such for two or three days.

On Wednesday, the older two kids left for San Antonio, and I started cooking again, this time for hubby's family. I scaled the turkey down to twelve pounds, made a wonderful dressing with roasted garlic and mushrooms, changed the sides up to suit his family, and left off the baking, since hubby's mother brought lovely Marie Callendar's pies. I served it all with a bottle of Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling and two bottles of Georges DuBoeuf's Beaujolais nouveau. Talk about wonderful. I fell into a pleasant stupor from the combination of turkey and wine. We watched Dirty Jobs, stared at Mike Rowe (well, we girls, anyway) and laughed a lot, then watched the Cowboys play the Seahawks. My lovely MIL cares nothing for football and was quite annoyed that we chose to watch the game. SIL and her husband are Seattle fans, while hubby and I and our nephew all pull for the Cowboys. Obviously, half of us were very happy campers when the Cowboys ran away with the game.

After everyone left and the leftovers were safely stowed in the garage fridge, hubby and I opted for naps. He woke up sick. I mean sick. I spent the last two nights sleeping in middle son's bedroom to avoid the plague. At least I think that's what he's got, based on the sheer amount of whining, moaning, and pleading coming from my bedroom. Of course, this raging sickness has given me the perfect excuse to avoid shopping for anything at all during the nuttiest shopping days of the year!

I have learned several things from this experience:

Number one: always, always offer to cook for Thanksgiving. No travel and a sparkling clean house are included.

Number two: middle son's bedroom is actually quite nice, and his bed is incredibly comfortable.

Number three: sleeping alone is preferable to sleeping with a sick, whiny, snoring man. I actually slept through the night, in the perfect temperature, without waking once because of snoring or a big hand being draped over my chest. I even read in bed until I fell asleep without once hearing, "What time is it? Aren't you sleepy?"

Number four: always, always offer to cook for Thanksgiving, because of leftovers. I haven't cooked for two days!

The dogs and the cats have been in hog heaven, too. Turkey! Stock poured over their kibble! Strange, wonderful people to scratch their ears and their bellies. Sleeping in middle son's bed with the mama! Who could ask for more?

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and avoided all of the stores on Black Friday. Now I plan to sit right here on my sofa and pretend that Christmas is still more than a month away. I think I can get away with it until at least December 12th. But when our lovely daughter's birthday is over, I'll probably have to face up to reality and start decorating and shopping like the rest of the free world. Bah, humbug.