1. Did you go elsewhere for the day, or did you have visitors at your place instead? How was it?
We went to Mami Deer’s. But it is always potluck. So everyone cooks. Also at Mami Deer’s was Bear (my brother) and Giggly Girl and Giggly Girl’s sister. As well as five dogs, four of them pugs. It was fine. Bear and I practiced being ducks – i.e., any remarks that might be construed as criticism slid off our backs like water off a duck. This mostly worked. The conversation over the meal consisted of praising all the food which was all ridiculously good. We tried to avoid saying how much butter, eggs, and/or cream went into our individual dishes, suffice to say that we should have our own dairy to save money. And it’s a good thing this dinner happens 1x a year otherwise one of us would have to become a cardiac surgeon, also to save money and well, lives. Everyone picked a prayer to read from ones Mami Deer had chosen. I left “Lord” and “Amen” out of mine. The sqvirrel got one by Robert Burns which he did in accent. There was the semi-annual holiday fight between Bear’s husky mix and one of Mami Deer’s older pug, and lots of screaming and yelling ensued by the humans. We played VisualEyes and Catchphrase. And there was lots of laughing.
2. Main course: If it was the turkey, the whole turkey, and nothing but the turkey, was it prepared in an unusual way? Or did you throw tradition to the winds and do something different?
Snacks to start– dried (local) apples, baked brie with pecans
Main course: Turkey (brine & herb roasted by me; 1 stick butter), stuffing (by Mami Deer; 1 stick butter), mashed potatoes (by Bear; unknown but large amt. of butter, half-pint of heavy cream), sweet potato souffle (Mami Deer; 6 eggs, 1.5 sticks butter), brussel sprouts (braised, by Giggly Girl; 1/2 stick butter), cranberry sauce (whole berry by me), orange-cranberry relish (by the sqvirrel), gravy (Giggly Girl).
Dessert: Pumpkin pie (totally homemade from scratch- local pumpkins and lard-butter crust, by the sqvirrel; 1.5 cup heavy cream, 2 eggs in pie filling; 3/4 cup lard, 3 tbs. butter in crust plus whipped cream on top), pumpkin pie topped by hot brandy sauce (by the sqvirrel; butter in this too), apple pie (by the sqvirrel; lard and butter in crust), vanilla ice cream for some, with apple pie.
3. Other than the meal, do you have any Thanksgiving customs that you observe every year?
We play games.
4. The day after Thanksgiving is considered a major Christmas shopping day by most US retailers. Do you go out bargain hunting and shop ‘till you drop, or do you stay indoors with the blinds closed? Or something in between?
I don’t go to malls normally. They depress me horribly and I can only be in one for about 15 minutes before I totally freak out. So the idea that I would go shopping TODAY is quite ludicrous. Instead, we went to the next most crowded place in town– to the Walker Art Gallery to see the Frida Kahlo exhibition. Despite the mass of people, it was AWESOME. I just finished her biography, by Hayden Herrera, and Frida by Frida (letters, notes, writings), both of which I thoroughly enjoyed and which made my visit that much more informed. Frida was a complicated, many-faceted, fascinating person and an extraordinary artist. Her paintings I found tragic, funny, thoughtful, deeply emotional, macabre, witty, ironic, personal, universal….. I’ll have to go back again, maybe when there are less people. If this exhibition is coming near you (only Philadelphia and San Francisco), GO!
5. Let the HOLIDAY SEASON commence! When will your Christmas decorations go up?
I don’t really do indoor decorations. Outdoor christmas lights will go up when it’s a little bit warmer (today’s high was like 34 F). Need to have use of hands not frozen. And full use of lungs and vocal chords for yelling and swearing. I’m thinking of buying some LED lights to replace some incandescent xmas lights….