Hello everyone and a very late happy Thanksgiving! I know I'm about a month late, but I've just picked my face up off the floor and stopped crying from missing Thanksgiving back at home. Just kidding, I'm just super lazy and need to learn how to manage my time better now that I'm working! I'm all ears to any tips on how to be a better adult.
I mean, I am sad. I missed Thanksgiving for goodness sake! It's one of my favorite holidays to celebrate with the ones I love. It's the glorious holiday when you get to eat and nap all day and no one can judge you because they too, ate one too many servings of mac n' cheese, stuffing and pumpkin pie (all carbs of course). And let's not forget that Thanksgiving is the bridge that leads you straight to Christmas and New Year- it's the start of the most magical time of the year, and I missed it! It's kind of thrown off my Christmas game and timing as far as decorating, Christmas music and corny Christmas movies go. I should be well into the "N'Sync" Christmas album but I'm still on Nat King Cole's albums. Everything is off!
We did plan on having Thanksgiving with the family but no one had a break from work because they don't celebrate it here (duh Mia). Then that weekend, Jesse went out of of town to teach a seminar in Klagenfurt so we couldn't celebrate then. And then the following week, I had the full-blown flu so the thought of making and eating anything besides crackers and applesauce was repulsive and was not happening.
Needless to say, life was trying to take me out of the Thanksgiving/Christmas spirit. BUT NO! I couldn't have that! Being my first Thanksgiving in Vienna and as a wife, I had to set the precedence. Plus I really, really just wanted the taste of some American carby goodness! And so Jesus came to my rescue- one, because He always saves and two, because Austria celebrates the Immaculate Conception, to my surprise and delight, so there was no work or school for Jesse and I on Tuesday! So I decided to take advantage and do a small, Thanksgiving with just the two of us.
I went shopping and bought a ham for honey baked ham of course (Jesse and I aren't really turkey on Thanksgiving kind of people), some corn, eggs, milk, for corn soufflé because I am obsessed with all things corn and this dish was my responsibility to make for Thanksgiving at home, some green beans because sadly, I could not find collard greens to make greens, and lots of sweet potatoes for pies!
To start we had this.
Baked brie with cranberry jam and all the ciabatta. We ate all of it in a matter of 30 seconds and seriously ruined our appetite for the main course, but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!
Then came the real cooking. Or baking.
This beginnings of a not- so- beautiful but delicious sweet potato pie. I used my family's recipe for this one and it taste just like home.
She looks funny because I don't actually have a pie pan yet and had to use a spring form. Also, she got a little burnt on top but it was still delicious!
Next, the least favorite of every Thanksgiving group, the greens component.
The beginnings of a sort-of-green bean casserole. I've never liked green bean casserole, I just don't really get it. But I went against my own judgement and made this green bean recipe and it wasn't all so bad. And Jesse really liked it so it was a sort of success.
Truth: Those home-made fried onions were disgusting. They taste like crunchy burnt old oil, but I thought they looked nice so I used them anyway for the picture. Again, help me to be a better adult!
The start of my FAVORITE Thanksgiving dish: corn soufflé. Not a surprise because like I said I love corn everything; popcorn, corn on the cob, corn salad, a can of corn. If it has corn in it, it's a winner in my heart. Now this soufflé is delicious! I keep saying soufflé because it sounds fancier than casserole, but that's all it is. There are so many different variations, like adding jiffy corn bread mix, or sour cream or heavy cream or cheese, and I don't know which one is the best however, I've made it my life goal to figure out exactly what the best corn soufflé recipe is and to perfect it! Because I love corn that much.
And then the honey baked ham. I totally forgot to take a "before" picture because I just wanted hurry up and bake the thing so it would finish but this is the honey baked ham recipe that I used and it was yummy goodness. I don't know why, but I have an obsession with baked carrots right now, so I just threw them in there with some onions and they got all caramelised in the honey and ham juices so, yeah they were good.
After the loaf of bread and pound of brie settled, Jesse and I finally sat down to eat our first Thanksgiving meal as man and wife. The food was cold because we waited so long to eat, the apartment was a hot mess, which is why there are no pictures of the place setting and decor (there was none of that), not to mention we looked like crap because of the cooking frenzy that just ensued, hence no pictures of the two of us, BUT in the candle light you couldn't really see the mess that our apartment was in, Nat King Cole's Christmas album was playing in the background and filled our home with the Christmas spirit, our table was full of food and our hearts were full of gratitude. Thankful is all we could feel. Thankful for each other, that we can afford the food, thankful for our life together in our unfurnished but amazing, little apartment, for joy and love, for our health and family, for provision, and Jesus who lovingly and generously gives it all day after day, despite our many, many shortcomings. And that's something worth celebrating, not just on Thanksgiving day but even on a random Tuesday of December.