11.23.2011

Gobble Gobble Gobble!

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It be a marathon day. The cast iron is out an' I'll be up to mah elbows in Pappy Cracker's dressin' recipe by 9:00. Collard greens too--though this year Pappy tries his wif' smoked turkey necks instead of the ham hocks that go in Aunty's greens.





What about y'all? Whas' in the makin' at yore house today?

We's enjoyin' a mild lovely week, puffy clouds sailing along in a blue blue sky....so I'll walk out to the back an snip some Sasanqua branches, an' check on the herbs an' tomatoes, cawffee cup in hand.





I seen how the tangerine tree's leaves is yellowin'--I called up Pappy about this trouble; he say, "Better git some minerals on it! " Next Uncle examines the bird feeders--is we this old? We roam around inspectin' the littlest thangs in life? Years ago we used to laugh about the nerdy thangs ole folks did...now they's smilin' at us.

Back inside Uncle thumbs a dawg-eared catalog whar' he mentions ( fer the 12th time!) how he whish't he had a programmable cawffee maker down at the huntin' camp so when he wakes a 4 am the cawffee is ready. Santa, take note.

First cup o' cawffee is definitely au lait!

Uncle din't git no wild turkey this fall, so we's takin a domestic bird over to the clan Thanksgivin' gatherin' whar' there will be a giant ham, an' all manner of side dishes an' countless pies an' cookies...oh how the clan dawgs will beg! Chillen' will be whoopin' an' menfolk yakkin' football, an wimmen folk will debate the success or not of new recipes--an' it will seem fer a few hours that all is right wif' the world.

But today, while the preparations is in progress, Uncle will snitch a taste heah an' theah. No day-before-the-feast fasting fer him!




Neighbors sent along some shelled pecans from their trees, ain't that a treasure?? Munchin' this bounty Uncle "suggests" that I make this or that dish "jes' to have on hand" which means: "In case they ain't got enough leftovers tomorry," or, in case whoever makes this or that dish doan make it to his likin'. In short, Uncle would like Aunty to make an entire Thanksgivin' dinner "jes to have on hand." All this while he sips egg nog (organic, but not homemade) an waltzes down memory lane.

Thar' wuz the Thanksgivin' some years back that the whole tribe spent at a state park nawth of Hogtown Creek -a park wif' a swingin' bridge over a river, a huge camp kitchen an' cute wee cabins peekin' through the stand of pine trees--cabins not wif' heat, so of course it were one of the coldest Novembers in history. Brrr!

Uncle made hisself famous fer stealin' into his Mama's cabin, what had a fireplace. He settled his hide all cozy like in front of the fire on the rug wif' a blanket he snatched offa poor kid in a bunk--when the chile went to whinnin' that he were icing up wif'out his blanket, Uncle growled at the poor boy-chile' "Doan be such a big baby!" Only after his Mama investigated did it come clear--Uncle thought that boy had gone to his own daddy's bed fer warmth, but wanted the blanket fer "blankie" not fer warmth. Heh. Serves Uncle right fer abandonin' Aunty to the cold in the next cabin over.

That were also the time Uncle played his best Turkey Bowl. Yep. He showed them collich nephews he could still catch a pass, tackle 200 pounds, an' run a fancy play or two--but he paid, oh how he paid--he be crippled fer a week thereafter. Uncle insisted thas' on account of the egg nog not bein' spiked enough.

Oh! How Uncle loves to reminisce: Does I recall how he won the big penny poker game Thanksgivin' night in 19 and 92 ? (No, he din't, his own Mama did!) How he made his Pa's Famous Egg Nog one year an' folks came from miles around to sample (no, AUNTY made the nog, Uncle jes' taste tested all day long)

I reckon iffin' youse cookin' today youse rememberin' too...share some of yore favorite times wif' us. Or recipes. Or plans fer this year's feast.



We be thankful fer the many, many blessin's of this year.

Natcherly, it's sweet an' sad fer me, missin' Granny Cracker such that mah heart be near to broke, an' mah eyes stingin' jes' writin' these words--she used to stop in fer cawffee on her way to work on the day I went grocery shoppin' fer Thanksgivin'--oh yes! I'd be at the grocer's door at dawn -thirty, an home wif the buggy full of provisions by 8 o'clock. An' Granny would go to pokin' in the bags to check that I done all I should.

I know some of y'all is missin' the presence of family and dear souls now gone on afore us to cheer us on from their side of the universe. Doan grieve. Try not to. Them loved ones is still lovin' us, an' we hold 'em close in our own hearts. Missin' them simply means they's loved...an' so were we.

I almost cain't sign off wif' out a bit of preachiness: Please say a wee prayer, folks, if ya will, fer this country we love so dearly. When we give thanks tomorry, be thankful we CAN give thanks wif'out goin' to jail. Be thankful that, much as we lament the tough economic situation, most of us still have our basic needs covered, an' some leftover to share wif' those who don't. An' try to find a way to share--nothin' like bein' a blessin' to others to make ya' really appreciate all yore own blessin's.

Among the real good thangs I'se thankful fer is all y'all-- this quirky, fun, smart, generous blog family. I' wish't y'all wuz heah in mah kitchen to jabber an laugh, an' speak in Haiku, make garlands, show off yore dawgs, or shoes, or photos an' tell us'uns tall tales.

May God bless y'all!

Happy Thanksgiving from the Porches!


22 comments:

Floridacracker said...

Hey Auntie,
Dang.
That was an awesome post.
I'm thankful I get to cross paths with folks like you that move in different circles from my own.

Turkey in greens? Let us know how that compares to proper pork.

You could make a pecan praline cake with those beautiful pecans ... I pronounce em P-cans, not P-cahns.

We have divied up the cooking chores and will be converging on Mom and Dad's house for this Thanksgiving ... and the rest to come I hope.

I am in charge of the turkey and gravy.
There will be two turkeys to ensure that I get turkey sandwiches on the following day.
No more repeats of the "turkey sandwichless Friday" from a few years back.
THERE WILL BE LEFTOVERS BY GOD!

Dad is laid up in the living room in a hospital adjustable bed with a broken polio leg knee and mostly he's driving Mom crazy with a combination of absent mindedness and needs due to being immobile.

But, he's here and I cherish that. I know you miss your Granny Cracker and it makes me more aware of enjoying these times, even if they do present some challenges.

I hope you, uncle, and the whole Aunty Belle clan have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Pam said...

Amen Auntie, amen. I saw a little quote earlier this week that came to mind after reading this post -- goes something like this: When the people you love become memories, those memories become treasures. Sigh! We had that period of loss some years ago now but holidays always bring those loved ones to the forefront of our memories. Thanks for being my online Auntie!

Boxer said...

What a wonderful post; full of all good things Aunty. :-)

The first year of holidays/birthdays/special occasions is the most difficult. I tried to stay in the moment, but it's not easy and sometimes? We just need a good cry.

and then it's good to go back to doing things with our heart and hands.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family Aunty. I hope it's a wonderful day.

(I love the dirt pillow.)

Troll said...

My Thanksgiving is going to suck from a culinary standpoint compared to yours. Horrible menu aside from my stuffing which won't even be appropriate because, as I just found out, there WON'T BE ANY TURKEY!

But I have other stuff to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

moi said...

The Holidays are difficult when loved ones are no longer with us, that's for sure. I hope your day is filled with good food and good company, nonetheless.

Oh, and au lait, is the only way to start the day. Anything less is uncivilized.

Karl said...

Good afternoon Aunty Belle,

Sounds like a tasty menu. Hope it all turns out perfect.

Uncle and Troll need to compare football notes. It may help both of them.

We're off to the In-laws and I honestly don't know what is being served. It doesn't really matter, the food will be good and it will be fun. That's all that does matter. We're bringing appetizers, pies and wine.

May you, Uncle and your entire family have a wonderful holiday.

Caroline said...

That is one fine looking collection of cast iron tools! Anything produced in those will be yummy!

The voters here asked for roast beef and Yorkshire pudding with their favorite pies, but cranberry sauce is also necessary, so the cooking here will have a sort of English farmhouse kind of style.

Happy Thanksgiving to all y'all down in the Sunny South. Blogfriends are a gift we add to our thankful things.

Doom said...

Your dinner sounds to be splendid. Even in my wilder cooking days, since I did it all myself, I never could quite get that much of a spread for my company. I need to find a wife who is on her game in the kitchen, that's for sure. A woman who can compliment me, and vice versa. Taking turns taking point or playing back-up on a meal. A little heat in the kitchen, aside from the fire, and in more ways than one (romance and competition) makes for a fun time as I see things.

I lucked out this year, sort of. While I love to cook I really have no one to feed, so... I have been invited to a meal. I don't know the menu, but half of that family cooks. The matron, father, and even the grown kids bring something, so it is has always been a top-notch event. A friend received a turkey, he will be giving it to me since he doesn't cook. I will make a good meal with it next month though.

You know, I need to find bachelors and bachelorettes and start having a monthly feast, at my house if no others will do so. A little "t" thanksgiving. And, well, spoiling for trouble. Get menfolk and ladies together and all sorts of things are bound to happen. Oh, they all grumble about the others, but put them together and they remember why they used to not grumble. Ha!

Aunty Belle said...

FC!

Thanky-happy the post brung ya' by fer a visit.

Yep, Pappy tryin' smoked turkey in his greens, but Aunty done hers up wif' ham hocks. AN' a praline cake do sound fine.

Youse so funny--we's roastin' two turkeys too! Same reasons--hilarious.

My best wishes to yore own Daddy an Mama--hopin' yore kin all have a delightful day together.

PamOKC!

Thanky fer them sweet consolin' words--Kiss mah Caleb!

Boxer-Babe

Awwwww...thanky. Chile' Aunty has had the sniffles come over her fer Granny at the oddest times, jes' the silliest thangs put a lurch in mah heart. I know this is a process ya has learnt--so I do 'precicate yore wisdom. Have a wunnerful day tomorry!

Aunty Belle said...

Troll?

There won't be any turkey??? Fer goodness sake. Sorry fer the lackluster menu--can ya git in yore buggy an' head this way--this clan be real proud to take ya in--yore Trey J too iffin' youse of a mind. Hope yore day turns out better'n ya' think.

Moi,
youse a sweet thang --dear, kind words. AN of course, au lait is THE cawffee fer mornin'. Is y'all eatin' Cajun? southwest? Traditional?

Karl,

Well, sir, thas' the perfect attitude--all is well when the company be good an' the food too.
I'll put Uncle on Troll to see whas' up.

Caroline!

Hi HI! I luv Yorkshire Puddin'. Yum. Why jes' today I'se in the Pac'N 'Send place to ship off some stuff an' the owners is British transplants--I asked if the Mayflower and Plymouth Rock were still la sore spot or did they celebrate Thanksgiving? He said, "oh certainly we do, but we have roast beef, now, for in England Turkey is Christmas you see?"
Have a lovely Thanksgivin' Caroline.

Doom!

Hey you--well now yore report please me so--happy youse had a good invite an' the food will be stellar. Ya landed in a good place.

I think youse on to somethin'--have a month he/ she dinner and cook up a storm. Thas' great fun.

Hope your day is terrific!

foamorama said...

First of all .. Happy Thanksgiving to you, your family and the rest of the clan. This is a very poignant post .. and I know you sorely miss your mama. For some reason I've been dreaming a lot about my husband's grandmother who passed away 15 years ago. Odd, isn't it?

I suppose I'm lucky not to have to cook to much this year, just a couple of side dishes. But you know, we never have collard greens at Thanksgiving and I truly love them. I'm going to start making those as a sidedish from now on.

It's been remarkably mild here too .. disconcertingly so actually. Last week a tornado blew through a town less then an hour from where we live and killed 3 people.

It looks like uncle picked out a decent coffee maker. We also have the kind where the coffee drips into a thermos .. We are not much into burnt coffee, ya know?

We have a friend who goes turkey hunting every year. To my great amusement he has yet to bag a turkey though.

This year, Thanksgiving is just a small gathering .. the in-laws and us. The rest of the family is too far away or on vacation. Presently, my husband and father-in-law are at church with other members preparing Thanksgiving meals to deliver to a couple hundred shut-ins. And now I really outta get ready and prepare those sidedishes .. :)

Anonymous said...

Happy Thanksgiving Belle to you and the clan!
Such an endearing post! I'm sure we all feel like we had a comforting visit with family. Like you mentioned, this is a blog "family" so it's a fine thing for us to get invited to the Porches to commence our hoidaying.

Ya know here at the Pond we are praying the
Great Blowfish Turkey Frying Innagural will happpen in safety and joy. We have a brand new, state of the art fire extnguisher, bags of sand and a negotiatied territory for cookin that ain't close to the house but doesn't put Blowfish up on the road surrounded by orange safety cones.

I've made note of which restaurants are serving Thanksgiving in case things go awry.

Mermaid is back home in the Pond which is always a joy. We will start our day making holiday oatmeal cookies and watching the Macy's Parade. We'll get all the chopping and prepping done and then maybe have a traditional breakfast, followed by a morning walk about. Later we will maybe play cards or a quickish board game before time to bake the casseroles or fry the turkey. Somewhere in there, depending on which teams are playing , there will be yelling at the TV before the pies are served.

Godspeeed to you all.
Fishy

moi said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Aunty! We're doing traditional both days, but with regional twists. I hope you enjoy a simply wonderful day!

Anonymous said...

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Here in the mountain west it is pretty traditional with a little twist. If it is Thanksgiving, there must be leftover turkey, so turkey will be part of the menu, along with a buffalo roast, butternut squash, cranberry sauce (2x), salad, mashed potatoes, and some veggies. Dessert is pies - my nephew's first apple pie, as well as my own homemade real mincemeat, and traditional pumpkin (all presently baking).

Hopefully you will all enjoy the company of family and friends.

Best wishes.

Serendipity

Intuitive Eggplant said...

Aunty, a very happy Thanksgiving to you and your clan! Among the things I am thankful for are your fine yarns, and your friendship. And you got this spot on: “this quirky, fun, smart, generous blog family.” And, of course, having Scout home at last.

I’m off to prepare a little Thanksgiving dinner for one. Bwahahaha, I doubt it would suit Uncle’s inclination to have a back-up turkey dinner on hand jes in case, but I’m looking forward to it.

xoxo, eggy

chickory said...

you have written many fine posts but I do believe this was a standout. I was howling out loud at the part about uncle growling at a boy-chile for being a baby when uncle had stolen the blanket! grherhahaha~~ I can see yall puttering around the yard - missing yore Mama - I know - and then finishing off with what is surely on the backs of all our minds. Thankful for so much AUnty - this blog is one of the big thanks. It is a treasure - you too. Happy Thanksgiving!

fishy said...

Happy day after Aunty!
Hope you and the clan families had a grand good time. Did Uncle make it home with some leftovers? Here at the Pond, the sun hardly gets set on Thanksgiving evening before Blowfish goes to rummaging in the larder to see if I remembered to fetch home a new jar of Durkees sauce for the leftover sandwiches. Our fried turkey was a might bit over and the blueberry pie ... well I served it to the garbage can.

Aunty Belle said...

Foamy!!

Happy Mornin' After--

Why I reckon I'se interested in this GrandMama by marriage--how come she sticks in yore mind so?

I think we gits "visitations" of a sort--no explanation.

Our collards were sublime--worth addin' to the Thanksgivin' line up.

As fer cawffee makers? Hmmn...we has a thermos style heah at home--like ya'll folks, we daon fancy burnt java. An' we has us a separate burr grinder fer the beans. But that little job Uncle dawg eared is a pricy item fer a camp, it seems to me!

I luved knowin' your sweetheart an' his Daddy be packin' suppers fer others--thas' inspirin' to hear.

Onc't, two years in a row, Uncle worked all day Thanksgivin' at the local homeless shelter. He warn't all pious about it a'tall, jes' said all his life he had reveled in close family--an' then one year drivin' home from the Pork Rind Bidness he seen a strugglin pair wif' a chile in tow. They's a linin' up fer the homeless shelter to open at 4pm--said he knowed right then the best Thanks he might give would be to take hisself over to the shelter an' hep out.

Yore Man is a good hearted soul, Foamarama.

Fishy!!

Mermaid be home ? Why ain't that a gift in itself? I luv thinkin' of yore leisurely day--an know all the fun it were. Store up them precious days like jewels on chain, Fishy.

Oh--hahaha, I see the day went safely. Ain't that a relief! Sorry about the pie--hope ya had ice cream or somethin' as a fall back.

Moi!

Yes we did, thanky. An' know ya did too--but what "twists" cajun? Southwest? Please tell us y'ain't off runnin' today--let them vittles settle some first?? After all, a girl's gotta keep her thighs up to playin' weight, I always say. If this warn't a sanitized an' delicate blog, I'd tell ya about Mae-Jean's first husband-- who tole folks that a woman's thigh oughta make a good pillow. But I cain't mention that heah.

Serendipity!!

Buffalo roast?? Oh mah heavens!! Uncle better not learn of that or he be knockin' on yore door! Yore menu is enticin'!

Hooray fer nephew --know his pie were terrific.

Serendipity --how do I find yore blog--please leave us a link in the combox.

Eggy!!

Hey hey happy lady--wif' yore wanderin' Sout home at least. Whew!! Hope y'all had a wunnerful feast.

Yep, we's a quirky group--ain't we? an' thas' why we's great group--overly homogenized ain't interesitin' is it? I treasure each one of this gang!!

Chickory,

hi hi! Why thanky ChickyChile'
That sweet comment brightens the mornin'. How wuz yore own day? Up in yore woods wif' V an the critter clan?

Fishy,

uh-huh, Blowfish knows what al lSouthern gents know--DURAKEES rules! (yes, Aunty DID make the spare turkey)

serendipitouswild said...

HAIKU MONDAY

Hi, the theme for this week is “ENERGY/ENERGIZE”.

There seem so many possibilities I am looking forward to seeing what this diverse and clever group can do with this theme. You need not include the word “energy/energize” so long as your meaning is clear.

Please submit up to 2 haiku in 5-7-5 format in the comments section at http://serendipitouswildmoments.wordpress.com/.

If you wish to post a visual please include a link so we can view your visual.

Have fun,

Serendipity

Anonymous said...

Seredippity

Thanky fer the note on Haiku Monday--now wif' this
Clickable link to your blog we can get..
Energized!!

Curmudgeon said...

Happy thanks giving all! Ain't never had smoked turkey necks, but Gran always gave me the giblets.

Went to Gunnison. Lots of -30 degree weather there. I call them eight dog nights as that's how many dogs you have to sleep with to stay warm. (That's why Three Dog Night named their band that.)Hon's uncle decided to fry a turkey. He fill it with flavor injections and dropped it in the fryer. It sizzled, sputtered and sprayed grease for a radius of ten feet. Saved him some money on Thompson's water seal next summer.

Turkey is considered big game and one of the hardest animals to hunt in spite of it being so stupid. Many is the morning I've sat on the cold ground with my back to a tree squawking with a slate box. I've never gotten a turkey either so don't be making fun of Unk.

There are a few curmudgeonesses I miss. I'm grateful my dad's still crusty and kickin.

I'm grateful I'm walking and living in a nation they can do the miracles they did.

Oh yeah, to answer your question. I squirrel stuff all over the net as I don't trust my computers not to crash, so I have a few redundant blogs Most writing is in draft though, so I have a similar one on word press.

moi said...

"Thighs as a pillow?" Bwahahahahaha! Funny, how tastes have changed, huh? Used to be, a bit of extra padding on a gal was all the rage. Then came Coco Chanel, that great arbiter of social and cultural sea change, and, voila, thin was in. We've been struggling every since.