Quick Turnover

We hosted for Thanksgiving again this year, and it was dinner for 17 with 6 people staying over at one point or another as well as more people for the day or staying at a nearby hotel. We welcomed family in time for dinner on Wednesday and said goodbye to my sister-in-law and brother-in-law last night, which was fortunate, since we all sort of feared that their flight today would get cancelled and they’d be snowed in.

While folks were in town, we ate Thanksgiving dinner and many, many Thanksgiving leftovers, had an old reliable soup of ours that was so well-received that I guess I need to share the recipe with y’all, ordered in pizza and got treated to Thai food, explored downtown Schenectady and discovered that Bittersweet Candy Co. has opened a candy store on Jay Street, took several walks that didn’t begin to make a dent in all that we ate and drank, and saw Knives Out (really liked it).

Thanksgiving is always very fun but also exhausting. I want to stay up late every night to be social, and I drink and eat way too much, and then I drink a little more. In the morning I attempt to sleep in, but then at the first moment of consciousness I start remembering that some food item needs to be prepared or that this is my chance to whisk the disgusting tablecloth off the table before everyone starts hunkering down and eating again. Plus it is a small-ish house, which means that there’s a great deal of rearranging of furniture and clutter and linens to keep things humming along. So I am in recovery mode, doing things like moving tables and chairs back to where they belong as well as taking care of tons of laundry.

But meanwhile, along with recovering from Thanksgiving, there’s this huge snowstorm, have you noticed? We had already tentatively planned to go cut our Christmas tree today, partly because our next several weekends are pretty booked up. But along with getting the tree, decorating the tree is a big event in our house, which requires a very particular menu (potato leek soup, cheeseball and assorted “snicky snacks,” and a selection of Christmas cookies). It was too much of everything to fit into a single day. And with school and practices and the first track meet coming up, we figured that we’d get the tree and let it wait during the week until we could set aside Friday night for decorating. But by this morning it seemed likely that we’ll all be snowed in on Monday. So the New Revised Plan was to get our tree and get just enough provisions to see us through the storm and move our Gala Decorating Extravaganza to tomorrow. Which means that last night, just before bed, I was rummaging through the storage containers to locate our traditional Christmas-tree-outing soundtrack, John Denver & the Muppets, because we simply couldn’t drive to the tree farm without it.

And this morning, Cute W was preparing traditional Christmas-tree-outing bagel sandwiches for the road as I was still rubbing the sleepies out of my eyes. It was very, very cold when we were looking for our tree (c. 20 degrees), but the good thing about frigid weather is that it makes all of us less picky as we choose. After we got the tree, Cute W and I braved the weekend-snowstorm-holiday season grocery trifecta to get ingredients for our most essential Christmas goodies, then Cute W did final pick-up for the volleyball carpool in the quickly-accumulating snow. And now that means that already tomorrow we’ll be baking some more. But tonight, for dinner? It’s salad, baby.

Of course, this means that I’ll need to pull out all of the rest of our Christmas decorations as soon as possible, and I’ve already gotten started. Every time I start decorating I feel particularly pleased with myself that I made such adorably crafty items back in the Olden Days when I had free time. Here is my lovely Santa cross stitch

and my super-adorable (if I do say so myself) homemade advent calendar.

Tomorrow: baking, more decorating, and snow clearing. But for now I’m going to take a break!


  1. Aunt Sue

    Katie, just wanted to say Uncle George and I had a great time on Thanksgiving. It was so good to see everyone. Thank you! We certainly have a wonderful family and a whole lot to be thankful for…..XXXXXOOOOO

  2. Claire

    We did a quick turnover this year too. Normally I like to keep the fall decorations up for a few days after Thanksgiving, put them away, and then wait a few more days before decorating for Christmas. But this year, with Thanksgiving and Christmas being so close together, and the fact that my husband had four days off (which never happens), it made sense to do the Christmas stuff this weekend. Between that and the snowday today, I’m in really good shape for December for a change.

  3. Mary Ellen Whiteley

    Thanksgiving at the Beltramo house is a wonderful experience! Thank you for your hospitality. The soup along with everything else was delicious!

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