Let’s talk turkey and a word of thanks

Take a moment to think about what you are thankful for in your life.

Maybe those around you see that you have a wonderful family, a beautiful home, a dream job, reliable vehicles, well behaved pets, a time share somewhere exotic, etc. you get the point. You have these things, but what did you sacrifice to get them? For most people, it’s time. Time away from family, friends and loved ones. Missed opportunities of walks, talks and, you guessed it, time. You can’t get that back either. Every day is a fresh start of 24 hours. Take it. Make the most of it.

Thanks to social media, we show the world what we want them to see. How did we ever live without photoshop or beauty filters? Heaven forbid we have a wrinkle or a pimple. We hide our warts and flaws and act as if our lives are perfect. Andy Warhol, and I’m paraphrasing here, said in the future, we would all be famous for 15 minutes. Quite a prophetic statement. Anyone and everyone can put themselves out for the world to see with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Periscope and so on. We don’t show the pictures of our children’s tear-stained faces when they don’t get picked for the elite team or dance production. Nobody gets to see our hand-me-down clothes or failed garden attempts. We don’t post the photos of the boiled over sauce or our burnt pan. Ok, some of us do, with the hash tag #nailedit. Thank goodness some folks have a sense of humour. 

Being thankful should be simple. Live in the moment. Forget about those damn Jonses, stop trying to keep up with them. Maybe all this time, they are trying to keep up to you. Be with those around you. If you have a roof over your head and food to share, you are ahead of many. Too much emphasis is placed on having the latest device, car and so on. Be thankful for the company of those around you. No one has a guaranteed amount of time on this planet we all share. Not every baby has the luxury to grow old. Life isn’t always fair. 

Be genuinely happy to spend time with those invited into your life. Unplug yourself from your device. Stop staring at a screen and look into the eyes of the people around you. Appreciate those who accompany you on your journey. Young faces are blank canvasses. Nourish their minds with well-told stories. Weathered faces have history and tales to tell. Listen to their stories, even if they are often-repeated yarns. This is how family histories and wisdom are passed down. Don’t interrupt. Enjoy the tale. Let the magic of the story unfold the way the raconteur intended. Don’t nit-pick for accuracy, as embelishment is the better part of any story. When the story-teller is no longer with you, you will long for those tales. 

Let’s talk turkey now.

This year, I ordered a fresh turkey from SPUD. (Yes, I know I talk about SPUD a lot) My folks were out of town this year for Thanksgiving so I opted to store the turkey in their empty fridge as mine was full of all the other accroutemants of our dinner. My plan was to have the turkey on the Sunday so I could relax and enjoy the holiday Monday by doing very little. (remember I’m talking about Canandian Thanksgiving, which was in October, but being thankful has no country of origin or time and datestamp) Through a miscommunication, my beautiful fresh turkey was placed in the freezer portion of the fridge. When it was shuttled to my house along with wine and a table top roasting oven, I was quite confused. I didn’t see the bird the day it was delivered, so I began to think the bird arrived frozen instead of fresh. After some questions, I learned how my bird came to spend the night in the freezer. So now my plans of cooking it Sunday went right out the window. Plan B: we had meatballs and spaghetti squash that night instead. 

I woke on the holiday Monday at 6:00 am and placed the still slightly frozen bird in a deep sink with cold water to thaw. I knew if I cooked it unstuffed, it would cook faster. That bird was given a lovely ghee massage and a jacket of bacon. Don’t judge me. It was amazing!  I threw some frozen poultry bone broth pucks into the roasting pan. The bird had some seasoning and garlic cloves tossed into it’s cavity and the lid was closed. The resulting gravy was rich and needed no further gussying, except to reduce and thicken. While the bird was roasting, I prepped the rest of the dinner. The beautiful thing with using a table top roasting oven, I was able to cook everything else at once in the regular oven without a game of Tetris to make all the dishes fit. Plus, the house stayed a cool temperature as the oven wasn’t going all day. Basting the bird was easy as can be, just lift the lid and go to town. 

By having dinner a night later, we had the privelage of having some of our teenage kids friends join us. It was a casual meal. Everyone grabbed a plate, picked what they wanted, buffet style, and found a place to sit. Some went downstairs and some stayed upstairs. Stories were shared, including the tale of the frozen-fresh turkey, and laughter echoed thoughout the house.

Listening to the conversations and watching everyone enjoy themselves, I was very thankful the turkey was inadvertently frozen, forcing a reschedule of dinner, to allow us such great company. 

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