I thought it would be interesting to find out, not only your "traditions" but any favorite "dishes" that your family has come to expect!
We have all the kids in for dinner. Well all of them that can make it.They are sort of scattered around.
I bake the turkey, make dressing, fix cranbery's. Joan does the pies,sweet potatoes, salads, rolls and every thing else. we usually have 16 to 20 for dinner.
We always do Thanksgiving at my in-laws. My husband deer hunts during the day, and his Mom and I usually make Thanksgiving dinner for his entire family.
Before I was married I always did Thanksgiving at my Grandma's house. However my in-laws live an hour and a half from our house, and my Grandmas are a little over an hour the opposite direction. Our first Thanksgiving together we tried to do both. My DH has to work at 2am (post office) the day after Thanksgiving, so it was just too much.
This year we are doing Thanksgiving the weekend before, since I will be having surgery the day before Thanksgiving. Corey said he is going to make me a cornish hen and pretend it's a turkey. He's hoping I'll be so drugged up I won't know the difference!
My tradition is letting someone else cook! LOL!
Actually, my sister-in-law hosts the day and does the big stuff. Everyone else brings a dish or two.
Every other Thanksgiving, I either have to leave early for work, or if I've worked the night before, get up early for Thanksgiving! That's my nurses tradition! :-)
I am the oldest of seven kids. All live pretty much locally, except a Brother in Japan. I "tackled" Thanksgiving for all of us the first time in about 1983, because I have always been a cook, and Mom got tired of having Christmas and Thanksgiving both. Now, in 2006, I will have at least 30 people here. My Dad brings the pies, and one brothers' wife always brings cookies and bars, so I am off the hook as far as dessert/sweets go.
I just started making my "list" today of what to buy!
I usually make up the menu at the end of October, and buy a few things every week so it doesn't hit me over the head on one paycheck. Yes, I do it all. Call me a control freak, whatever. I enjoy it. Every year, everyone gets to be a guinea pig for a new dish, LOL. This year it will be Seafood Louis. I talked to Mom today, told her what was in it. I got a big thumbs up! Hope it turns out. I do have a few dishes I make every year, besides the biggest turkey I can find. If anyone is interested, let me know. I will post them.
Besides the meal, we all spread out here. We have 3 TV's downstairs so people can spread out, socialize. Gives the kids a chance to play video games if they want, the others can watch the football games or parades, and on a few nice years, we have even gone outside and played horseshoes!
Later in the evening, we usually play cards (euchre mostly) or board games, and of course...Eat some more!
Wish I could say I have holiday traditions, but that's not the way with my family. We never were what you could say 'close' and or 'traditional', us kids were pretty much on our own from the time we could walk.
But I do have some fall traditions that I have made for myself. Maybe that counts in this thread.
One of my favorite fall traditions is fried green tomatoes. I know in the south you can buy green tomatoes year round, but it seems to be a northern thing, especially with northern males, that no tomatoe shall be picked unripe until there is absolutely no chance it will ripen. These past couple weeks I have been stuffing myself on fried green tomatoes, I want to get sick of them now because I know that I won't have them again for another year. If anyone is interested I do have recipes for green tomatoe pickles, I just never learned how to can so can't use the recipes, but have them because I collect cookbooks and read them like novels, lol.
Another fall tradition is the collection of black walnuts. I only have one tree, but since me and the squirrels are the only ones eating them, that is more than enough in most years. Right now I have them laying in my driveway, it is easier to get the husk off after running over them a few weeks with the cars. But please, only do this on a blacktop driveway, they will stain concret something aweful, it will never come out, don't want anyone coming after me when black walnuts stain their driveway, lol. Soon I will be cracking them, drying the meats and then it's black walnut cake and cookies. Most of which I freeze and eat in bits and pieces since black walnuts is an aquired taste, I know very few people who love it as much as I do.
Another fall favorite is the ornimental chard I put in just because I think it's pretty, namely bright lights. Just before it's about done for the season, I cook it the old fashion southern way, wilt it in bacon grease (all southern cooks have a container of bacon grease in their fridge) and add some vinegar.
I also have some flowering quince that actually produce fruit from time to time. It is too bitter to eat as is, but simmer it in some sugar water, kind of candy it, and it is a tasty toast spread.
And in years I am able to garden, I grow my own pumpkins and use them to make real pumpkin pie. Do you know that most canned pumpkin you buy in the stores is not real pumpkin? It's mostly squash because that makes a prettier color. My real pumpkin pies may be lighter in color and have more texture than what most are use to, not all like it, but there are some who beg me to make them a real pumpkin pie, don't want anything else once they taste mine.
Oh yea, and there are the late ripening apples that I have learned to appriciate, namely Mutsu, makes about the best apple pies. Again, anyone who wants about the best apple pie recipe you could find, ask, has a special twist to it.
Dang, got myself in a baking mood, might have to take advantage of all the cheap pumpkins around and make a pie or two or three or four, no problem getting rid of them, lol.
Everyone--feel free to add recipes!!! I know I'd love to have what you think is special and yummy!
I'm always open to them!! Maybe I should start a thread for recipes that could always be brought
back to the top, as we add to it!
BTW--I am enjoying reading about what you do at this time of the year, Fall, Thanksgiving, etc.
any "holiday" you like!
we go to my in-laws for the holidays...
the normal turkey fixins and everthing...
then we watch football and try to keep the dogs from fighting and/or eat the turkey...."Large" yellow lab,,,rat terrier,,,and our pug....
p.s....hope your surgery goes well jen
Janice, I hop in the car with my BF and we drive out to his sister and brother-in-law's place near Gettysburg, PA. It is the most wonderful area in the country IMHO. She cooks a 21 pound turkey and all the accoutrements for the four of us (I help where ever I can, and clean the kitchen afterward). We're usually there for four or five days, so I cook dinner on other nights. They always ask for one particular dish I make...I'll share that in your other thread Janice. Its easy and tasty.
I miss my family on Thanksgiving, but I spend Christmas with them. That is a day I love! Nothing like being the first up, making a pot of coffee, plugging in the lights to the 11 foot Christmas tree. Its all decorated in the old German tradition, with the figural glass ornaments (including a glass pickle) and wax candles. Put on Christmas music, and sit there with my coffee soaking it all up, and reflecting on the meaning of the day. I get a similar sense of euphoria sitting in my garden in the morning looking at my hostas, reflecting on creation.
Once we get into the Christmas holidays, I'll take and post some pics. I guess that'll be another thread on traditions won't it Janice. Two months from today is Christmas!! Wow, where did 2006 go??