Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Preparing ...

So. Thanksgiving. Otherwise known as my absolute favorite holiday. Christmas without the consumerism, and with more gluttony!

thanksgiving table
{thanksgiving table 2009}

So far I have:
Procured the necessary groceries (except for Pippin apples, which are crucial to my favorite pie, and which I haven't been able to find - anyone in LA seen them somewhere?)
Chosen the wines (D picked the festive beers)
Purchased a gigantic office door that will serve as a table*

On Wednesday I will: 
Make pies
Roast sweet potatoes, assemble dish for reheating
Blanch green beans, refrigerate
Cube and dry bread for stuffing (20ish minutes in a 300 degree oven)
Make cranberry relish and sauce
Make dough for dinner rolls
Roast pecans, nibble
Post about my leaf project, if I actually finish it

On Thursday I will: 
Wake up early, drink tea
Make the drive home
Pick sage from the garden, chop and saute it with mushrooms, garlic, onions
Mix the stuffing together
Toss the turkey in the oven
Reheat sweet potatoes
Saute the green beans with shallots and garlic
Bake the rolls
Set the table
Drink champagne, revel

Last year I lead up to Thanksgiving with a little holiday sanity series, which I made sure to re-read this year. It's easy to swept up in the rush without stopping to slow down and actually allow yourself to feel grateful, to savor the little bits, to love your family even when close proximity to them makes you a little crazy.

Holidays, managed (part 1)
Holidays, managed (part 2)
Holidays, managed (part 3)

and for the pictures ... Thanksgiving last year

* You can squeeze in with 18" of space per person around the table if you all like each other - if not, you'll want 24-30" instead. We have 12 adults and one skinny kid - our current table was not going to cut it. A solid core office door came up on Craigslist and it measures 36" x 105". We'll rest it on sawhorses and cover it with the heirloom tablecloth and no one will be the wiser. We couldn't face carrying the door up to our apartment (it's going to my parent's house, so it would have to come back down in a few days) so we just padlocked it to the gate in our parking space. Classy. Fingers crossed that our landlord doesn't complain.


  1. a door, you say! god, i love hearing about your holiday prep. i made the rookie mistake of reading the passage about picking the sage and sauteeing stuffing components prior to eating my breakfast - now i am starving twice over.

  2. I love this post! It's nice to see how you break up the day and still enjoy it :)

  3. @ lauren - and you could actually eat the stuffing! it's my veg sister's favorite part of thanksgiving. starts with best quality bread (ours is from la brea bakery), piles of mushrooms and sage sauteed in butter with onions and garlic (she's not vegan anymore, and i'm grateful). cream and eggs + some fruit (usually sliced tart green apples, sometimes cranberries). we've never done meat stuffing in our house.

    @ anon - thanks! thanksgiving really is my favorite, and i'm so comfortable with the cooking part (very few real recipes, mostly just tasting as i go) that it makes it easier to relax, provided i've done enough work in advance.

  4. I completely agree with you about Thanksgiving.. it's my favorite, hands down.
    And I love that you have everything so structured. I definitely need to do this before Thursday sneaks up.

  5. wow that is seriously intense, but somehow sounds oddly calming/exciting. i hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday. x

  6. That T-gives table is gorgeous! Btw...which wines did you choose? Anything worth noting?..On the hunt for new wines when I get back to the states for the holidays..


  7. what's your dinner roll recipe? i'm still hunting for the best one...

  8. I love how organized you are! Such a great way to minimize holiday stress.

  9. :) i love the idea of a door for a table. very cute. today i boiled the chicken and eggs to go in my dressing. cleaned a bit. picked up the ham, turkey and two cakes. i made the cream cheese and pepper jelly that my nephews adore and began making the cheese pinwheels to nibble on while waiting on the family to arrive tomorrow.

    have a beautiful and wonderful holiday.

  10. looks beautiful! i'm living vicariously as it was difficult to prep anything with new baby! {wouldn't have it any other way though!}

    happy thanksgiving! xox

  11. ok, i just discovered your blog via cupcakes & cashmere - and am loving it. Congrats on the recent engagement, as a recent newlywed, I still remember that feeling oh so well. Looking forward to digging into your archives!


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