Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Giving thanks

This year I am thankful for:

Those who lead the charge for planting natives and the results of said charge:

The thrills and results from hard labor:

Realizing the benefits of drinking and gardening:

My kids still OK with being photographed together:

Still finding new ways to “attempt” to control weeds:

Blooms witnessed for the first time:

Large, sharp objects:

Bulbs that actually survive the wet winter:

New interests that evolved out of gardening:

Any efforts by my children to enjoy the outdoors with me:

The battle:

Safer power tools so I can make my children use them:

Snowy/icy conditions:

Where I live:

And finally, a huge thank you to all of you who stop by and read this nonsense. 
I am beyond grateful. 
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and safe travels. 
John

Thanksgiving weekend

Grab your favorite beverage and kick back because this is going to be a long one today. 
I considered breaking this post up into smaller versions but I know once I set foot back at work tomorrow, the long weekend will be a distant memory and I will have moved on. So you’ll just have to hang in there and do me a solid by patiently wading through this post. Gracias.
One of the greatest benefits (or drawbacks, depending on your point of view) of hosting a holiday is it forces you to get your ass in gear to make sure the house is in good shape. Those small “yeah I’ll take care of that tomorrow” projects become a top priority. My wife is a saint for putting up with my lack of skills when it comes to “indoor” projects, but when forced to get something done, I usually pull through (assuming the project is a relatively easy one). While most consider hanging a picture to be an easy task, I get all sorts of pumped up when I pull it off; but I act all humble like it’s no big deal. Case in point:
I hung this sconce after some serious mathematical calculations to make sure it was centered correctly:

And hung this little vignette of bird art (in a grouping of three naturally). Trust me, they are all straight, this photo is an illusion:

                         
It wouldn’t be a fair representation if I didn’t mention that my wife was about 98% responsible for all of the Turkey Day prep. She busted her hump and I just played the role of sous chef (but a damn good one at that). 
Thursday arrived and we were ready to go. We had a smaller crowd this year (miss you Adam/Ali and Jay/Beck) but enough that a full spread was necessary. 
To kick things off, the fire was started, even though it was in the 60’s outside:         

My daughter took care of the place cards and through some mediation with the two kids, we were able to determine seating assignments:

A sprig of rosemary tied to each napkin gave off a tremendous scent and set the mood:

As did some wine, football, my roaring wood burning fire (never gas) and good conversation. I think the discussion here was about how awesome the sconces looked in the dining room. Or it was about how damn interesting this blog is:

First course (and my personal fave) was butternut squash/apple soup accompanied with maple bacon and homemade croutons (my food photography leaves a lot to be desired, sorry):

After a bit of a break, all of the food was out and it was time to gorge ourselves:  

We pretty much ignored each other as we ate our asses off:

It was a great day as we all enjoyed each other’s company without a care in the world. My mother and the two kids would appear to agree:

My nephew entertained us all as only he can and it was a riot to have a young one running around in our house again:

There may be no better sleep than the one had on Thanksgiving evening and this year was no exception. Wine/beer/food/tryptophan/pumpkin pie will put you into some serious REM sleep and it felt GOOD. And, we still had three more days off. Nice!

Friday was all about sleeping in,  followed by an excursion to the movies. It felt great to just chill and it felt great to eat the leftovers that night. All was right in the world.

Saturday was an absolutely perfect weather day (upper 60’s) and we made the most of it. Even the bulbs were thrown off by the warm temps:      

My daughter was ready to join me outdoors for some gardening chores and she couldn’t wait to show off her new tools:

I also promised her I would share her cool “gardening boots” with you all:

While she planted some acorns in some containers, I managed to perform some serious hard labor as I reduced my never ending topsoil mountain to this:

Which looked like this only a day ago. It may not look like much, but that soil was damn heavy and wet:

After busting my arse for an hour or so, I threw in the trowel (I may trademark that phrase) and took some photos of plants that were still providing some visual stimulation:

Feeling this good about my garden and being outdoors this late in November was a welcome pleasure. Scratch that … family, good food, no work and the garden were a welcome pleasure this past weekend.

Hope yours was just as enjoyable.

John

What I am thankful for this year …

My newly healthy 12 year old lab that may be the kindest creature of all time:  
The invention of ornamental grasses which makes the fall/winter that much more palatable:
The addition of native trees to my landscape (pats on back):

Witnessing the beauty of nature up close and personal and exposing my children to it:

The joy  I get from the interplay of flowers:

 The beauty of bulbs in spring when I really need it:

The ability to know how to draw in creatures like this:

And most of all, this gang:

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

John