Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Gobble gobble gobble! Thanksgiving 2012

Sorry that I took forever to post this, my dad just left yesterday. And we all were enjoying our time together so much, all of us. We had a fantastic visit.  So better late then never...as they always say. : ) This was my Thanksgiving meal last Thursday. But let me back up in the posts down below. Back track a bit.
This pic was taken the day before Thanksgiving. Last Wednesday. November 21, 2012.  Both Branden and Noah were at school and I started making and baking the pies. The butter is for the butter crusts that I make for the pies.
Add in some pumpkin spice. Yumm.
Just the amount the directions say. Gave it a stir. Then rolled out my crusts.
The crusts I let chill for a bit. Rolled them out. Then poured the pumpkin mixture in them... put the two pies in the oven. Pumpkin pies homemade are pretty easy and the butter crust is easy as well.  I also cut up my salad stuff, washed my salad stuff real good, dried the salad stuff via my salad spinner. Then threw the salad mixture into a ziplock for the next day/Thanksgiving.  I also chilled the black olive can and cranberries in the fridge so the next day everything would be nice and cold and prepped. So very easy for me the next day.
The pies right out of the oven. They cooled on the counter. And then when they were totally cool, I wrapped them and put them into the fridge for the next day.
Not sure which picture of the pies, I like better, this pic or the one above this one. Hmm, tough call. Either way, I'll just put both up. ; )
Remember how we had 5 turkey pans. Well, Noboru had an idea, a really good one. He said let's poke holes in one of the pans so that when we drain the turkey later when it gets too full. We can just lift the platter/foil pan with holes and then drain the other pan. We basically used 2 pans, 1 with holes and one with no holes, just made it easier to drain while cooking. And it worked awesome. So, probably next year we should buy another 5 pack of disposable pans just in case. But yeah this idea worked beautifully.
Thursday morning, I knew my dad was on the airplane on his way to Japan to be with us/his family for Thanksgiving. And meanwhile the boys were at school. As soon as they were at school, I cleaned and put the turkey into the oven. And then I left the house for about 25 minutes, Noboru stayed at home and kept an eye on the turkey. I went to the bakery to get some delicious bakery bread sliced in 8 slices each for the perfect leftover turkey sandwich. So 16 slices total enough for 8 sandwiches. And I did go back to the bakery Saturday to get 2 new fresh loaves of 8 slices each again so 16 slices total on Saturday. For more sandwiches. But yeah, I want the best sandwich I can make for my family. That big round sliced provolone cheese omg! So good for turkey sandwiches.... fresh lettuce, Miracle Whip, I was so ready for the sandwiches for afterwards. Plus my dad also brought sliced swiss cheese also for the sandwiches.
Two packs of Lay's potato chips from the drugstore near the bakery. And leftover turkey sandwiches...I was ready for em' already!
About 6 pounds of potatoes. Running out of food....yeah just not going to happen! Hahaha.
My white table cloth underneath was all freshly washed and dried the day before. The house was all clean. I was ready! Last finishing touches I got the table all set. Noboru was off work last Thursday and Friday. So that was great too.
The pilgrims have landed!!!! ; )
I had all the potatoes peeled, diced and boiling. They were 98% done in boiling water when I turned off the pot. And my dad's plane landed at 1pm, but by the time he deboarded, went through immigration and customs etc and got into the MPV and drove back with Noboru to our home. Noboru went and picked up my dad, the boys meanwhile both got off school last Thursday at 2:45pm. So as soon as they came home. I did the last minute things, like boiling the potatoes again, just basically heating them draining them and mashing them and we ate around 4pm. This is a huge bowl and the potatoes filled this bowl. We also had more mashed potatoes in another container as well.
We keep things superly simple at our house. There is definitely no "black tie required" at our dinner table for Thanksgiving or Christmas. And if you've been reading for a while, you'll know that and probably be smiling. Because you probably already know... we dress for comfort around here. In fact Noboru was wearing sweatpants, when I snapped this picture and I was wearing yoga pants.  We concentrate on family...togetherness....gratitude, being thankful. And the meal. If you'd like to wear a pony tail, headband and sweatpants too. In all seriousness...totally more then welcome! We do not dress to impress for dinner. That's just not the way we roll around here. lol. It's just not our focus and focal point. The food and family time is though. : )
On this side of the table, there is, mashed potatoes (this isn't even half of the amount we had) whole cranberries, stuffing, gravy and turkey.
And from this side, we have salad in wooden bowl on the left, black olives, green beans, croutons for the salad and we have 2 salad dressings, a balsamic vinaigrette and goma dressing.
My dad was giving grace, which is why Noboru had his eyes closed. And then we went round the table real quick and said what we were grateful for...for this year, 2012. I was grateful that we have Noboru's grandma still with us. And that hopefully she is on the mend. And I was also grateful that we are all healthy and happy. And I was grateful that Noah has not had any problems with switching to elementary school from yochien, at all. We all had a lot to be thankful for this year and I was happy to share mine with my family. We all started to eat.
Branden's a little blurry because he dug right in! : ) Noah giving me a little smile.
Ahh, a little smile from both Branden and Noah. Pardon the note on the dish cabinet. It says "pots this side" Both boys unload the dishwasher and sometimes I leave little reminder notes. I also currently have a note on the microwave that says "popcorn 3min 40 seconds" again nothing critical but it helps to have tiny reminders like this for them. : )
Aha this is the same pic at the top of this post. It was a nice big portion, I missed lunch and boy was I hungry!  Dinner conversation was great and fun! My dad told us about his flight. My dad also brought us a good amount of goodies inside his suitcase, so we were all chattering pretty much nonstop in between eating. We had Christmas music lightly playing from Denver that we stream via my ipod. Just a very nice simple quiet family night.
We all had pumpkin pie for dessert with whipped cream. Coffee for us adults that went with.  And with Friday being a holiday in Japan, the boys didn't have school, Noboru didn't have work the next day and so we were all sorta just chilling at the kitchen table. The boys went upstairs and showered, came down in pjs. I ran up real quick afterwards. And then next person showered and then so on and so on. Until we were all in our pjs in the living room. The central heating is on, as well as the floor heating is/was on also. So toasty warm house. We all sorta just enjoyed TV.  After a few hours someone went to the fridge, came out with a few black olives. Another came back with a handful of chips from the food pantry. Another with another slice of pie from the fridge again. It was cool! No worries and we had more then enough food. So please...eat eat! : )
My dad was the first to fall asleep around 8:15pm (in dreamland and snoring). Then Noah around 8:30pm (zonked to the world). It was then just Noboru, Branden and myself, awake. I made my way into the kitchen around 9:30pm. And I usually don't eat a whole other meal that late. Graze on popocorn or pretzels sure. I'm not perfect..... but whole other meal...not really a common thing well unless you're talking Thanksgiving leftovers are in the house tempting me like crazy! : ) So considering it was indeed Thanksgiving....I made myself a turkey sandwich around 9:30pm. I was really wanting this sandwich for a long time. Miracle whip, fresh crisp lettuce, provolone cheese, white meat turkey salt and peper, some chips. OMG! Heaven.  Branden was zonked and asleep around 9:45pm. Noboru and I stayed awake until 11:30pm. Just chilling watching TV.  We have a big L shaped couch so he had one side and I had the other. We each had fleece blankets to cuddle with and big fluffy pillows. And enjoyed TV until we were nearly nodding out downstairs. So we went to sleep. Anyway, there you have it, our family Thanksgiving 2012.  Again sorry I took a thousand years to post this, but I do hope you all..... if you celebrate it...had a Happy Thanksgiving. And if you don't celebrate it, I hope you at least enjoyed your 3 day weekend, if you are in Japan. : )