Turkey with Fungi

We don’t dress up for holiday dinners anymore, so there is no more of the tradition of ruining an outfit playing outside. It was just straight up, regular play.

Kate may have inherited my athletic prowess. Just check out how she throws the football…

(What is that football doing behind her in that picture below? Oops.)

The good news is that the fact she can’t keep pants on (note picture above) may be a sign that she somehow missed the voluptuous gene which has been passed down in my family from Mother to Daughter since time immortal.

Will got into the action, too. He even kicked the ball to me a few times.

There was plenty Daddy-tackling.

At some point, I proposed a walk to find pine cones. I figured we could find something crafty to do with them… somewhere in my head are memories of pine cone turkeys, pine cone people, pine cone bird feeders, pine cone holiday decorations, and more. All that thinking of crafty pine cone projects made me start to think all artsy, and I started to play around with the camera. Note Will, my unwilling muse, holding the pine cone… normal picture:

Then the ZOOOOM into the pinecone! I’m all about playing around with the shutter these days.

I also tried the technique with a Japanese maple in my parents’ front yard. The breeze meant that I needed help keeping the branch steady — so I didn’t get to play for all that long, but here’s a sample:

My contribution to my Mother’s usual spread of veggies, turkey breast, and stuffing was Mushroom Gravy. Randy made this for us one Thanksgiving in Blacksburg. The same Thanksgiving my future in-laws came to visit and I decided to make squash soup ahead of time… only to discover that my allergy to pumpkin innerds extended to squash. It was a brilliant plan, really, since everyone was very willing to help out to make the meal — no one wanted the woman with huge, swollen, hive-covered hands touching the food.

Randy’s gravy became the stuff of legend. The recipe, in nearly direct quotation from Randy, goes like this: “Put a LOT of onions, a LOT of mushrooms, and a LOT of oil into a pot. Add some liquid. Let it cook. Add something to thicken it.”

Which is pretty much what I did this year. It was really good, even if this picture makes it look a little funky?