Thankfulness With A Touch Of PMS

This is Gilda, the famous toilet paper roll turkey. I put this on here because I’m thankful for my kids. And toilet paper.

I tried the whole thankful thing on Facebook for awhile.  After a few days I just stopped.  It’s not that I stopped being thankful.  Does the world really need to know that I am thankful for yogurt?  It just seemed silly.  But really I AM very thankful.  I just feel weird voicing it.

Thanksgiving is in two days, and lo and behold I’m stricken with PMS.  It will make for some AWESOME holiday eating, if nothing else.  Here I wanted to write this post, and I’ve been weepy and crotchety all day.  Then again, this could be fun.  Let’s see what comes out of my little head.

What Am I Thankful For?

My Kids-We had a moment today.  All of the money crap came to a head today, and I lost it.  Sitting in the living room in the middle of what could only be described as a laundry stonehenge, I sat bawling my eyes out.  My daughter came in, concerned, and asked what was wrong.  I told her I would be ok, I was just having a hard time not being able to help out with the money right now.  She smiled, kissed me on the head and said “I know what you can do.”  I didn’t say anything.  “You can just do Mommy things.”  And she walked away.  Wow, what a smart, sweet, awesome kid she is.

My son makes sure that he lets me know on a regular basis that despite the fact that we eat things like pasta here, that he is very lucky to have me as a parent.  We struggle a lot with his ADD and other issues, but he is a really neat kid.  And you should see him dance-it’s like nothing you’re ever quite experienced.  No coordination, no control, just crazy arms and legs going everywhere and a great big grin on his face.  I love it.

My Husband-He works and works and works and works.  Occasionally he even spends time with us, and often the gears are still going in his head while he’s with me.  That’s ok.  Someday I hope maybe I can work too.

My Parents-If it weren’t for my Mom and Dad and all the help they have given us with different things throughout the years, I’d probably be laying out on the railroad tracks somewhere in my underwear.

Our House-It’s old, like 112 years old.  It’s not pretty on the outside- it needs painted, a new roof, windows replaced.  The inside isn’t much better-appliances need fixed, we could use new furniture, new everything.  But it’s a roof over our heads, and I’m good with that.

Blog People-These are not like the Pod People.  I’m talking about the gals (and some guys too) who do this thing too.  We all get each other.  I don’t really have any friends around close, so it’s nice to have someone who is there when you need it and will help you out.  Thanks!

Bill Collectors-If it weren’t for these guys, I wouldn’t know my phone worked.  I’m hoping they are happy for people like me.  After all, we’re what keeps them in business.

Mountains of Laundry-I am thankful for all of those heaps of laundry because that means we actually HAVE clothes.  I just hate washing them.  And folding them.  And putting them away.

Those Little Things-You know, that thing that happens when things seem hopeless that keeps you going a little longer.  I had one this past week.  Just when I thought it was the bottom rung, I got a letter in the mail reminding me that we still had $100 left in our food stamps from the beginning of the year that we needed to use as soon as possible.  I called and got another card.  That could not have come at a better time.  We really needed that.  This isn’t the first time this has happened.  Two years ago, our basement flooded with sewage and the furnace was ruined.  I was working but making very little money at the time, and my husband was laid off.  Insurance does not cover sewer back up.  This was it, there was no extra money to buy anything.  But miracles do happen.  Since we had people weatherizing our house, they were able to include a brand new furnace as well as a sump pump as part of the weatherization.

Food-In particular, comfort food and wine.  You know what I’m talkin about.

And everything else-I probably forgot about 3,529 things that I should probably also mention.  It’s not that I don’t feel gratitude, it’s just that I can’t write a blog post that long.  And there’s too many holes in my brain to retain them that long.  😀

I can most of the time.

Thanksgiving: Brown Paper Bags and Toilet Paper Tubes

We always made the hand turkeys for Thanksgiving art. I like these variations!

Thanksgiving.  What does the word conjure up for you?  For me it brings forth images of pilgrims, Indians, turkeys, and brown paper bags and construction paper.


Oh come on, didn’t you do the reenactment of the First Thanksgiving when you were in school?  If you were an Indian, you had a vest made of a brown paper bag, and a headband with a feather made out of construction paper.  No one wanted to be a Pilgrim.  They were so not cool that I can’t even remember what the kids that were the Pilgrims wore.  Something with a construction paper buckle somewhere on it I’m sure? The fact that I can’t remember could have something to do with the fact that I am some percentage American Indian and can’t prove it.  Or something like that.

Oh I’m sorry, they are Native Americans.  I grew up in the 70s and 80s.  Old habits die hard.

I asked my son what they were doing at school for Thanksgiving. All he could recall was that they got to eat turkey and mashed potatoes on Friday for hot lunch.  Yet today, he turned to me and announced that “In 1620, the Pilgrims came to Plymouth Rock.”  Oh good, he IS paying some attention.  Meanwhile, my daughter is making a turkey out of a toilet paper tube and a tracing of her handprints and paint.  I’m not sure if either of them really gets what it’s really all about.  All they care is that Grandma and Grandpa are coming up to eat with us.  And that they may stay over a day.

Last year my parents got the unique opportunity to visit Disneyworld on Thanksgiving weekend. I guess it’s not SO unique.  I remember visiting Disney on Thanksgiving.  It was the best day ever.  I got to ride Space Mountain with NO WAITING.  I think I rode it ten times that day.  Visiting DisneyWorld in my family is really not that unusual.  When we lived there I did go five times in a couple of years.  My Aunt Evie is the youngest of the six kids in my Mom’s family.  Somewhere along the line, she was infected with the Disney bug.  She goes at least once a year.  They were the ones that convinced my Mom and Dad that maybe they were ready for a nontraditional Thanksgiving.  I don’t blame them.  I’d blow off a turkey dinner for a trip to Mickey Land if I had it in my budget to do so!  Hell Yeah!

Our Thanksgiving dinner at our house last year.  Why is the butter right next to me? I don’t even LIKE butter.

Anyway, back from my tangent.  Thanks to this trip, my husband found out that he had found possibly the most perfect turkey recipe ever.  For the first time ever we made our own Thanksgiving turkey.  All it took was a bucket, a bunch of spices, and an oven.  It was the most amazing turkey ever.  In fact, my husband was so excited that it turned out that well that he insisted he cook dinner for everyone.  Invitations sent.  My parents, of course, were the only yesses.

So here we are hosting Thanksgiving dinner.   On a budget (thanks for finding and sending that gift card Mom, that really helped!).  The turkey isn’t as big as he hoped.  The store was out of the cheap green beans, so at his insistence we got the ones with no salt added.  Have you ever eaten canned vegetables with no salt added?  One word:  Ew.  And the store was out of fresh sage.  The more I think about it, the apple pie may be replaced with apple crisp.

The menu:

Turkey and gravy

Stuffing of some sort

Mashed Potatoes

Green Bean Casserole (it’s famous, you know)

Cranberries (Mom will make sugar free)

Pumpkin Pie (Mom will make sugar free)

Apple something or other

He’s in charge of turkey.  I’m in charge of making something edible to go with it (that’s a bit scary).  My daughter is in charge of decorating.  She wanted to make snowmen, because she saw kits to make little tube shaped snowmen in my Oriental Trading Post catalog.  I told her that a) we can paint toilet paper tubes white and it will look the same and b)  there are no snowmen at Thanksgiving (at least there had better not be).  We settled on the toilet paper tube turkey because she was determined we were going to use those rolls (we save everything because she will turn it into art at some point).  I think it will turn out pretty cute when it’s done.  Perhaps she can make placemats or something as well.

Up until last year, we usually went to Mom and Dad’s house every year.  They are hoping that eventually we’ll establish our own traditions, and I think Mom deserves a break!  Thinking back, though, I don’t really think we have any big traditions outside of the meal itself.  As kids we used to watch Charlotte’s Web every year.  I tried to pull it out last year, and Evil Genius promptly vetoed it because it might make him sad (honey you’ve seen the movie, you KNOW how it ends.)  Here at our house, our one tradition is that we put up the tree in the days following the Thanksgiving holiday, or whenever I can convince my husband to lug all of the stuff up the stairs.

So the prep is getting in to full swing.  I feel like we should sing some Turkey Carols.  What?  You say there isn’t such a thing?  Oh yes there is!  A page I follow on Facebook shared a fun post from Red Vines and Red Wine yesterday that had exactly that.  Click the link and enjoy!

What does the word Thanksgiving make you think about?  What is on your Thanksgiving menu?   Do you have any special traditions?

Actually, some of us like the legs too.