Monday, 10 October 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

I would like to wish a Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who celebrates it. Today is a day filled with good food, laughter, often some over-indulging in alcohol and even a football game or two. We had our Thanksgiving dinner yesterday, and today we are back to trying to finish the harvest. It is coming to a close, which will be a relief.

Thanksgiving is one of the holidays where the kitchen is filled with the smell of a turkey or ham cooking, as well as all the trimmings. My house didn't have those wonderful smells this year, as we celebrated at my Aunt and Uncle's farm. When dinner was finished, we moved equipment out to the field and continued with the harvest.

I love cooking for the holidays as there are so many things to eat; things we don't normally have. I make nachynka (cornmeal), nalysnyky (cheese rolls) and kycha (wheat) for Christmas dinner. This year I will get brave and try my hand at holopchi (cabbage rolls) and perishke (cheese buns). I also tend to go a little overboard on the dessert tray with brownies, almond squares, Rice Krispie squares, mincemeat tarts, fudge and cookies. I am sure I gain ten pounds just thinking about all the baking; not to mention eating it.

Aside from the meal, I enjoy spending time with family. It is a time when there are minimal other commitments and everyone can relax and enjoy the visit. My children and my niece are in their teens so they do not get as excited over the gifts; my nephews on the other hand - that is another story. It is so much fun to watch them tear open the wrapping paper to reveal the gift inside. We try to get them what they want without spending a bundle; with all of the toy commercials this time of year their lists are a mile long.

As the holiday season quickly approaches I will be busy in my kitchen and at my computer finishing Cooking 101. I reflect back on my early years as a homemaker and realize how much I didn't know. Time and experience, as well as mistakes, has shaped my culinary and homemaking skills. My purpose with each book in the series is to educate those just starting out, to include the basics and to make homemaking a positive experience. Granted it is not the path everyone chooses, but the skills are beneficial to have.

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