A Totally Not Martha Stewart Thanksgiving

I have read Bucolic Plague (and it was a WONDERFUL book… thank you Nook for making it much easier to carry around… and I understand that people want to have a perfect holiday table… kind of anyway.  I understand how you could easily get caught up in the wonderful-ness of it all.

I even watched (okay… I got the wrong channel… it wasn’t Planet Green… it was one channel up from it) a TOTALLY Martha Thanksgiving program.  Wine and butter for basting the turkey… 4 layers of cheese cloth over the top of it so it has a crunchy golden yumminess glow.  Okay okay…

But you know, that really isn’t the holiday that I dream of…

Turkey… yep… BIG turkey… basted in whatever juices fell out of the turkey naturally or broth from jiblets cooked on the stove with celery and onions.  No parsnips and onions and turnips and carrots under the turkey’s little rack.  We didn’t have a rack… we had a turkey and a pan and usually an oven that worked.

As I recall… we also had cold weather and a great ‘extra’ storage place… an old gas grill kind of thing on the back porch.  Unfortunately we also had a cat… and the grill had holes in it just big enough for a cat who hadn’t eaten a few pounds of turkey to get IN but not big enough for a cat who HAD eaten a good bit of left over turkey to get OUT of… hmmmmm

Gravy had lumps of stuffing floating in it… it did NOT have all of the grease pulled off through a special grease removing cup.  It was usually made with corn starch rather than flour because that left fewer lumps and Jeff always managed to get the feather/hair/shell/lumps and it was just easier to keep them out if there was any chance of him getting them.

When I was little we scrubbed the dining room floor right before everyone was supposed to show up to get the coal soot off of it and make it shine.  The floor was wonderful.  It was hand painted… literally… with blocks of color (stones) with white between the blocks (grout)… it was the best place to be a totally left of center kind of kid… I could walk around the block in just 4 steps… because there was a block on the dining room floor…

Pies were homemade (usually by me) and turned out pretty well if I do say so myself.  They weren’t Martha pretty, and sometimes the crust was a little over done or a little browner around the edges of the pumpkin pies than it should have been…. but you know what… they were really good pumpkin pies… I remember measuring out the thick milk from the little cans that we only got on holidays…

The house was FULL of people.  If I got lucky I got to sit over the register where the somewhat smelly heat was either easily floating up or blowing hard enough that you could make flannel night gowns look like Marylin dresses…

We didn’t have Martha holidays… and I’m glad.  I don’t dream of Martha holidays… her house always looks so sterile… my Christmas tree is a mutt tree and that is perfect for me..

2 responses to “A Totally Not Martha Stewart Thanksgiving

  1. Ok wonderful blessing of a daughter. You have made me cry again! Was it not a wonderful time. We may have snow for Thanksgiving night and you and yours are on your way back home for the holiday. The pain of being separated by the miles makes having you come home so very very wonderful. Never forget the past Thanksgivings, Christmases and pass it all on to your off center children…chips off the old blocks!!!
    Never read Bubonic Plague.


  2. OH MY GOD… mom… You have to read Bucolic Plague…
    It is by one of the “Beekman Boys” from Planet Green.


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