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thanksgiving you say? in october? well seeing as i'm canadian, yes indeed! i choose to live abroad, i didn't choose to leave all my customs behind, and honestly, any custom that involves enormous amounts of food, gathering the people you love, and the beginning of autumn, is pretty great. so we did thanksgiving, uk-style. which means we had chicken instead because turkeys aren't ready until december - but poultry is poultry right? and we used our teeny-tiny kitchen to feed 5,000 - ok 8, but it was a learning experience!
i've hosted thanksgiving before, but this time was definitely different, because we were hosting thanksgiving. it was a team effort - as i write le boy is cleaning up the teensy but fairly messy kitchen! (now that's something to be thankful for!!!!) and because it was new for us, i changed things up a bit, dishes which were stars around my parents' table were switched for slightly less involved items. i found great inspiration from this easy how-to guide, complete with downloadable timeline for a trouble-free thanksgiving from real simple.
the menu included:
- chicken, stuffed with a lemon, rosemary and thyme (the single best way to roast a chicken!)
- garlicky green beans
- easy (make-ahead) stuffing
- mashed potatoes
- crispy sweet potatoes
- salad (contributed by a lovely guest)
- gravy (of course)
- flourless brownies (recipe coming later in the week)
- apple crisp (another contribution)
i had a fantastic time placing little touches around the house - as seen yesterday. the centrepieces were candles and some squash with acorns we collected last weekend while in richmond park (i filled le boy's pockets!) and berries from a tree that grows in our garden.
printables for the place cards and wine glass markers can be found here. clairebella has some lovely printables! so much of my thanksgiving inspiration can be found on my thanksgiving pinterest board.
and here is my list of thanks - i'll never be able to list it all. his grace is enough, his mercy new every morning.
- a messy kitchen - i have friends to cook for and food to eat
- a husband who cleans up after everyone's left so i can post this
- friends gathered around a dinner table
- welcoming compatriots into our home
- candles filling the space with warm, soft light
- using the silver set that used to grace grandma's table, now feeding my family
- signs of autumn all around
- weather good enough to sit in the garden before the mid-afternoon meal
- the warm bath that's waiting for me
- good books
- a home to open to others
- telephone calls and text messages across oceans
- a dishwasher
- a saviour who has rescued this mess of a girl, called her by name and promised a future.