I was awake at 4 a.m. again but I'd fallen asleep just
before eight last night so that was all right. I spent a
few hours puttering--getting out things I'll need for dinner
and putting them on the counter, washing and drying the wine
glasses and cut glass dishes I'll use for cranberry sauce,
raw vegetables and the ambrosia, washed and ironed the
tablecloth and breadcloth, setting the little wooden table
up for the sparkling cider bottles (there's never enough
room for everything on the table) and making a list in my
mind of the order I need to do things so that everything
comes out at about the right time. I have a small turkey
this year--15 pounds--so if I put it in the oven at about 9
a.m. we should be eating around 1 p.m. or there abouts.
The menu is a traditional one for our family. Sometimes
I'll add an extra dish--a sweet potato casserole, for
example-- but there would be unhappy people if I began
changing the main parts of the menu. The most important
part is the mashed potatoes, gravy and stuffing. I don't
think they'd care if there was no meat, as long as there was
stuffing and gravy. And the ambrosia also needs to be there
even if they only eat a few spoonfuls with the meal. It's a
tradition! It'll get eaten as a snack dessert later.
There also always has to be two pies. At least. One has to
be pumpkin and, because Owen doesn't like pumpkin, something
else, usually apple. I've tried other desserts--pumpkin
cheesecake is one--but there had better be pie too or I'll
have some disappointed guys.
The boys are very good about doing the cleaning up after
dinner for me so I can take a nap or quilt or read or just
relax. The weather is actually pretty nice so perhaps John
and I will go for a walk. I don't mind the few hours I
spend preparing this meal as there are usually leftovers for
a couple of days so I don't have to actually make meals.
This doesn't mean I don't have to cook though. Tomorrow
I'll make a stock from the bones and make a turkey noodle
soup and bake some bread. They'll probably want more pies
and I have some bananas turning brown so I'm thinking I'll
make either banana bread or a banana cake.