Saturday, November 28, 2009

Our Own Turkey Day

For the first time since Matt and I started dating in 2001, we had a Thanksgiving in our own home, without traveling to family. Though we love seeing our families and enjoy spending the holidays with them, we were also excited to try out some of our own family traditions this year in our first ever at-home Thanksgiving.

The morning started out with the fire alarm blaring. Not an auspicious start, but not totally my fault! I had a friend recommend a turkey recipe and then they also told me they always cooked their turkey in an oven bag. So, I prepped the turkey, bagged it, and put it in the oven. Didn't realize that the oven bag wasn't supposed to be under temperatures over 400 degrees, which my recipe called for. It started burning and smoked up the whole downstairs. I really hoped that no neighbors would walk by and stare as we aired out our thanksgiving cooking mistake! I almost cried, so anxious to have a successful dinner, but we made it though okay once I ditched the oven bag.

Despite the rocky start, we had a good morning. As good Americans, we introduced our kids to the Macy's parade and this was probably the first time they had any interest in it, recognizing characters in the parade. Then they had fun with a variety of Thanksgiving crafts ("projects" are definitely Nathan's current fetish!), including these fun little toilet paper roll pilgram and indians. Gotta love for continual supply of craft ideas!

Then dad took the kids outside to get some energy out on bikes while we had a special guest come over for a visit. After a little "preparation" I rushed outside and told the kids they had just missed a special guest - Terry the turkey! He had brought surprises for them but got so scared when he saw the turkey in the oven that I had to chase him all over the house for them before he disappeared. Good thing he left a trail of feathers for us to follow to find where he left their surprises (wink wink ; ). So, we went on a turkey treasure hunt. Matt laughed when he realized that I purposely alternated hiding the clues between upstairs and downstairs. Hey got to get their energy out somehow! They loved it and I think it will be a tradition for years to come.

The boys played the Wii while I put the finishing touches on dinner and then we had our feast! It consisted of our scrumptious turkey, mom's amazing crescent rolls, stuffing (stovetop - nothing but the box stuff for my honey), mashed potatoes, and green bean casserole. We couldn't wait and everything couldn't have turned out more tasty! I was very nervous about cooking my first large piece of meat EVER, but thanks to a great brine recipe from local friends it was the most amazing turkey I have ever had. It even pulled a "wow" out of Matt, who is not a turkey eater.

We followed stuffing ourselves with a family movie (Spiderwick Chronicles - if your kids aren't scared by realistic goblins and mythical types, it's very well done!) and then called it a successful family day. Hope you all had great turkey days!


Brandan and Becky said...

Wow, Autumn! For a first Thanksgiving, you pulled out all the stops. Games, crafts and dinner! Cute, cute photos.

A couple of years ago, we were hosting friends for Thanksgiving dinner and our oven broke-- thank goodness for kind neighbors with an empty oven.

Kristi said...

It sounds like it was a great success. You managed a treasure hunt while piecing together the meal? You will have rewards in heaven for pouring your effort into entertaining the kids like that. I think I said something like, "what's dad doing?" to divert our kids. Here's to turkey leftovers!

Kimberly said...

So much fun!! Sounds like you guys more than made up for not traveling this year!! You are amazing, and looking so cute with that baby belly :-)