Get to Gather: Christmas Eve Dinner

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Every year since I can remember my family has done the real Christmas celebrating on Christmas Eve. We go to a Christmas Eve candlelight service, eat dinner, and then open all of our gifts. Not one, all of them. Yes, you heard that right, we open all of our gifts on Christmas eve. Okay, I suppose we save our stocking gifts for the Christmas morning, but all of the big-ticket good stuff is received on Christmas Eve. Patience is not a family virtue.

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This year for dinner I volunteered to make the same ham I feasted on at Thanksmas. The rest of the meal was left to my mother.  I’ll take the rest of this post to share our meal and the semi-homemade cooking style she exudes.
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Get to Gather: Thanksmas

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I’m pretty sure you understand that if you read any of my Thanksgiving associated http://wp.me/p2UOdB-1U. The sadness that accompanied the end of my Thanksgiving leftovers was just too much for me. So I decided to celebrate Thanksmas! I was so proud of myself thinking I made this up, but I didn’t. I suppose everything can be found on urban dictionary these days. For me, Thanksmas is that special time of year between Thanksgiving and Christmas and is meant to be spent with those special friends that aren’t family, but might very well be more fun to hang out with.

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Christmas and Thanksgiving can be stressful, that is not what Thanksmas is about. I am a virgo, so I can have a hard time letting go of control sometimes. That’s why I usually make everything for my dinner parties. Everything. You can’t have a coursed meal if someone might be bringing some random crap. Okay, it’s not crap. It’s just not what I can work with when planning a nice meal. Well I decided to throw that psycho attitude out for Thanksmas and have a potluck! Each person was asked to bring a traditional holiday meal side to accompany the main courses I made. I am happy to report that no one brought any crap, just amazing food that I’ll share with you!
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Get to Gather: Ladies Luncheon

This weekend I had the pleasure of making lunch for two of my oldest friends, Kara Lee and Kristin Diane. I am lucky to say that I’ve known each of these ladies for over a decade. There are things I’ve done with these girls that I cannot share on a public forum, but I am able to give you the details on the meal we shared.

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The agenda for the afternoon was strictly catching up so I offered to make us lunch chez moi. The menu for the meal was Carrot and Squash Soup and Turkey Popovers. I was running late (surprise, surprise) so I was still in the kitchen when they arrived. They pulled up some chairs and we gabbed as I impressed them with my kitchen skills, which included my first use of the the vita-mix I recently inherited from my parents. I can verify that the vita-mix does an awesome job of pureeing soup and that if you don’t have the cover on right it can splatter onto your ceiling.

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Get to Gather: Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving. Here I sit in a food induced stupor on my parents couch watching Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. I regret nothing.  Earlier my mom informed me that turkeys only go to the table whole in Norman Rockwell paintings; I decided he is my idol.  Though now I understand why my Bon Appétit magazine had a beautifully carved into pieces bird on their cover.  There’s always next time.

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I’m lucky enough to be the magic maker in my parents’ kitchen on this day of giving thanks. A few years back, with no big Thanksgiving plans on the horizon I volunteered to do the cooking at my little apartment. When I think of it now it seems insane that I would have attempted this, because I couldn’t even make a descent pasta salad on my own. But my obsession with the food network paid off with a brined turkey breast and all the fixings and a little tradition was born; I now cook Thanksgiving for my parents each year. Today I’ll share the feast I planned and prepared for my parents and our lovely Texan guest Amanda Rae.

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