Monday, November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving Weekend

We made it through the Thanksgiving weekend without tears, stress, yelling or fighting.  It was a miracle. I guess it just proves again how lucky I am to have Stephen and the family that I do.

My dad and step-mom, Patti, drove to Atlanta on Tuesday and made it in time for dinner.  I had reservations for us at Parish in Inman Park.  What a great choice.  Stephen and I already love the place and my parents loved it just as much.  It turns out that the owners of Parish own two restaurants in Orlando that they frequent all the time.  Who knew?!

Wednesday morning Stephen and I had to go to work so the parents got to sleep in and Mabel started her 5 days not being in a crate all day, lucky dog.  After work I went to lunch and did a little shopping with Dad and Patti.  We went to the Highland Bakery for lunch - delicious.  It was packed and super loud inside, not ideal for lunch with your parents, but I'd never been there before, so who knew.  And after waiting 15 min to be seated, we weren't about to leave.

Wednesday night I made my French Onion Soup for dinner and we watched some TV.  It was a quiet night before the craziness of Thanksgiving cooking began.  Patti made the best cookies ever - see below.  I wish we still had some around the house, they're gone already.

I bought parchment paper at the store the other week.  Every baking recipe I have calls for parchment paper.  I've never used it and didn't know what the big deal was.... and then I tried it.  HELLO!  Use parchment paper when baking!!!  

Wednesday night the bird went into a brine to soak overnight.  I was so nervous about it sitting in a bucket all night on the patio, but it got cool enough overnight that none of the ice melted.  What a relief.  Stephen knows what he's doing, I learned never to doubt him in the kitchen, even on recipes he's never cooked before.  

While Stephen and I cooked in the kitchen, Dad and Patti got to watch a lot of football, some of the dog show and the Macy's parade and relax.  It was nice for us to take care of them and let them relax.  

The table was set and ready to go!  It looks so pretty.  I can't wait to collect more items for the table as time goes on.  One year at a time!

Here it is, the perfect turkey.  The skin is cooked just right, the meat was juicy and everything was fully cooked.  Stephen, you did an amazing job.

It's time to dig in!  I think the only thing missing from this picture is the mashed potatoes and the desserts.  There just wasn't enough room.  Yes, we had enough food for 12 people.  Stephen and I have been eating leftovers for days and we still have more to go.  Here is the menu:

Mashed Potatoes
Sweet Potato Casserole
Green Bean Casserole
Mac N Cheese
Corn Casserole
Candied Carrots
Carrot Cake
Chocolate Pecan Pie

Not one dish was turned down and everything was a success.

A tradition that Stephen and I are starting is signing Our Book of Thanks at every Thanksgiving dinner (or after dinner when the food is cleared away).  In the book, everyone who is at dinner that night writes what they're thankful for and we take a group picture at the table.  The top picture on the blog is the one we took just before we ate.  I can't wait to watch the book fill up each year.  It's going to be such a fun tradition.

In all of the hubbub of the weekend we also took a few minutes to take our Christmas Card picture, with Mabel, of course.

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