Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Thoughts

My Dad, my Papa and my Uncle Tim rolling out the dough for the ravioli.
I remember my mom and my gram putting turkeys in the oven before the sun rose. I remember the big bowl of stuffing back when it was still ok to stuff the bird. I remember the smells and the noise from all the family and also the sounds of football on the TV. I remember getting together the week before Thanksgiving to make the ravioli while my mom made lemon meringue pie. All these things I can remember about this day in my past.
The almost finished product - that's my Gram

Then I started this tradition for my family, It was not always the finest experience. I remember the year we had to throw the turkey out because I put a candy thermometer (duuuh) in it and left it in while in the oven long enough for it to burst. I have gotten much better since then - knock on wood and keep the Food Network link on the computer. My turkey is in the fridge. It takes up most of the bottom shelf. I think in order to have dinner by 4, I have to put it in the oven by 11. Here is the video for the recipe I am going to use from Alton Brown at the Food Network.


I am short one family for the table (they went to his Mom's house) so we invited an old friend to come by and eat. I have Jesse and Renee' and the kids and me and Mark. I kind of overdid the size of the turkey. We like a lot of leftovers so I don't think it will be a problem. All the traditional stuff, but no ravioli (bad girl) ... enough calories with everything else -including the home made pumpkin pie alla Renee'. I would imagine Sofia will have her hands in that as well, she loves to bake.

Last year Sofia made cookies for Thanksgiving.

Enough about eating. It's all about being thankful, isn't it? Sometime it's a stretch, but in reality, we have so much in our lives. My kids live on the same street and I get to spend a lot of time with our grandkids. My home, although it is small and in need of some major remodeling, is dry and warm (mostly). We get to ride our motorcycles and we have a job.

I have no idea where we were going but this is Hal and Vicky,
me and Mark, Ernie and Linda, Randy and Sue.

 I don't have many family members left around, but get to be a part of their lives as well. All those things are more than some have and not as much as others. We are happy most of the time and never go hungry. If I am cold, it is because I am kickin' it outside with the kids or working in my back yard on a cold day. I have blankets for my bed and have never slept on a park bench with newspapers for cover. Don't get me wrong, I would like to have more. I would love to win the lottery and not have to go to work every day. Well, really I don't mind the going to work, it's just that stupid alarm clock. I don't have any affinity for that stupid thing and I find it hard to be thankful for it.


When all is said and done, I am very lucky to have such a great life. No, I take that back. I think luck is a small part, but in reality, Mark and I have worked very hard to be where we are today. A lot of it was not easy. We put in long hours 7 days a week to build our business. Our kids thought going to the truck yard was what you did on the weekend. My son started fixing flat tires on trucks when he could use a tire iron. He still does that today. We did not take vacations because if we weren't working, we were working on trucks. We worked hard to instill values and morals in our kids in a world that was coming apart at the seams with the onslaught of gangs and drugs. We moved 3 states away to keep them from as much of this as possible and taught them a work ethic that stays with them today.

Still working on tires...

And now the next generation begins work.

I think it is interesting that now, even though we are still at the 'going to work everyday we can' stage, we can take time to sit back and enjoy the fruits of our labor. As I said, some have more than we do, but I would not trade my relationship with my kids for all the money in the world. It would be nice to have 2 bathrooms in our house, maybe some tile in my shower instead of the vinyl curtain and a long lens for my camera, but I can make do. As long as we get to watch those little ones learn to walk, potty train, sing in their spring concert or play in the yard with the home made musical instruments.

Last year we made ravioli for T-Day at my sister's.
That's Mac rolling out the dough with mom's help and
my niece, Dorothy holding Radley in the back.

Kickin' it at Gram's ... all my babies are in the
toy room, Kinda messy but that's how we roll.

I know now why my Grandmother was always so happy. She had the right idea... just enjoy them! And I will. Thanks to my family for teaching me how important it is to love each other. Any of you looking at this, we will see everyone at the next family reunion if not sooner!

Gram and Mom. Hope St. Peter got you
a big bird to roast!

That is the best "Being Thankful" I can think of. Happy Trails, people. And Happy Turkey Day!


  1. Happy Thanksgiving Jordan Family! I love your walk down memory lane and I'm thankful to have the opportunity to share some of the newer memories of your life! May our friendship continue to grow, just as or Grandchildren sprout up before us!
    Love Always, Randy and Sue

  2. Many of your pictures bring back memories of my childhood. The difference being my Mom made the ravioli. She tried to teach me how, but I could never get the dough thin enough, and of course that's the secret. Just know I enjoy your blog a lot even though I don't write comments. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with the family. Love, Anna and Don.