The only thing Corelyn and I do better than panic is plan. When it came time to plan the Thanksgiving of 2008, we were young, broke, and neither of us had ever roasted a chicken on our own, much less a turkey. Panic ensued, so planning took over.
I did a dry-run with a roast chicken and made us get up at six am to start roasting. I didn’t know it at the time, but that was a deep sign of friendship – Corelyn most likely will never get up at six again. Corelyn held the turkey while I shoved apples and onions into its cavity and she explained what aromatics were. She bravely cut the onions because my eyes were watering so much. There was no oven schedule.
It was a wild time back then, but in the past five years we have vastly improved upon our system of planning, plotting, scheduling, and Thanksgiving is becoming a science.
This is a picture of this year’s oven schedule. It keeps us in line as the day goes on and we forget what we’re supposed to be doing, and when we’re supposed to be doing it. It gets us to dinner with mostly heated side dishes, delicious gravy, and room to spare for watching the parade and doing a crossword puzzle.
We start talking about Thanksgiving…in May. Right around the time of Memorial Day, we start planning – where we’re going to host, if we’re going to give brining another chance (usually the answer is no.) Then, come September, Corelyn and I get planning in earnest. We look at turkeys we’ve made in the past, we revisit our recipes, and we start to soft sound ideas of our very obliging friends.
We really start to get antsy in October, and a few days before Halloween, we send an Evite to our friends and start rounding out our menu with dishes from our guests. Then, with three weeks until Thanksgiving, we place the order for our 28 pound turkey.
If all of this makes us sound crazy to you, or if the idea of putting this much planning into Thanksgiving gives you stress, relax. We do all of this planning because Thanksgiving is our favorite holiday of the year. We plan so we don’t panic, and we plan so much and so early so we can squeeze as much joy out of the holiday as possible.
We’ve come a long way since 2008, and we’re still adding new traditions. This year will be our first year buying 90% of our Thanksgiving vegetables at the local Farmers’ Market, and we plan to do so every year from now on. To mark the occasion, we asked Jeff to tag along on Sunday and photograph us (and Eva, who met us for the adventure!) We felt like Thanksgiving enthusiast celebrities.
Tomorrow, be sure to visit the blog to find out just what we’re planning on making – the results are in, and we think you’re going to be pleasantly surprised!
What do you do on Thanksgiving? Do you host, or head somewhere for the holiday?