Number 6

Thanksgiving Plans

It’s time for Thanksgiving planning.

{And my favorite:  Christmas planning.  Though I’ve promised myself to save that for its own post.}

There are so many great cooks and wonderful crafters online.

Seemingly billions of blogs and websites, bursting with delicious, inspiring recipes and gorgeous creative crafts.  One is continuously inspired as one surfs and stumbles about the web.

{Unfortunately, if you’ve arrived at Its Own Sweet Will imagining it to be one of those glorious blogs you’ve come to the wrong place.}

But wait!  Don’t click away just yet!

I do a lot of interesting Thanksgiving and Holiday traditions, meals, and crafts.


I may not be quite as organized as my “friend” Dawn, whom I’ve never met though I’ve read her blog for years and watched her three boys grow from little guys to young men. {Kinda chokes me up a bit just thinking about it.  Perhaps because my boys have done the same thing!}

And I am certainly not as famous (infamous?  I have read both opinions though I think she seems ok), as the multi-talented Pioneer Woman who has built an empire from her blog including books and a cooking show.  (I once read she took 56 photographs to illustrate the mixing and baking of one cake.  And I thought I was the queen of overkill…..)

But I do enjoy planning, making lists, trying new recipes, taking photos of said recipes, celebrating the old traditions which we’ve enjoyed for years, and finding new ones to further complicate enrich our lives.

I have a few rituals which I do every year to begin my Holiday Planning.

First I retrieve my Christmas desk basket from the Christmas Section of the basement.


{Yes we have a Christmas Section.  Also a Decorating Section, Kid’s Stuff (ie: bin upon bin of things I can’t bear to part with) Section, Toy Section (bins of toys we rotate), Halloween Section, Easter Section, Electronics Section (this belongs to Scott), Magazine, Cassette, & VHS Section, and finally a Books/Homeschool Stuff Section. 

Our basement is a happenin’ place.

But back to business.

My Christmas Desk Basket is filled with all the things I will no doubt need:  coupons, holiday themed pens and pencils, holiday stickers, cards, etc… Right now it also contains A Christmas Carol on cd, which I plan for us to listen to this year (I usually read it aloud, but have decided to read a different Dicken’s tale aloud instead.  Probably The Chimes or The Cricket on the Hearth.


Then I choose a new Holiday Notebook.  I used the same Holiday Notebook for many years, and it’s very well loved and nearly full; of lists, ideas, receipts (yes – from 1996!), notes to self, ect…  Then several years ago I purchased a bunch of these at Michaels for a dollar each and have used a new one every year. 


They’re small, easy to stuff into my gargantuan bag, and have the added benefit of being kinda cute!


Into the first section of the notebook goes my Thanksgiving menu (with references to where to locate the recipe if I’m trying something new), along with our list of “must see” Thanksgiving movies.  Also a list of other meals comprised of “non holiday food” – meals we think of as summer fare perhaps; El Pollo Brasa on the grill with a fresh salsa for instance.  I mix these in among the traditional holiday fare, pairing up meals and movies for Sunday Family Evenings to create those themes I tend to be so fond of.

The next section of the notebook (taking up at least ¾ or more I would think), is reserved for Christmas traditions.  We have a lot of these, and this topic is deserving of a post all it’s very own!

So here is our Thanksgiving menu so far.   We were hoping for over twenty guests this year, but I think there will only be eleven; though naturally we’ll cook up a feast and enjoy the leftovers for (hopefully) days.

{I’ve always been extraordinarily fond of that part of Thanksgiving!}

~Thanksgiving 2011~

(a rough draft…)


Cheese roll/crackers

Baked brie/artisan bread or crackers

Veggies & dip

Chips of some sort, perhaps a new dip??




Cranberry Salad (Krystal’s recipe)

Jellied  Cranberry (yes Dear Reader, plunked out in the traditional American “can shape”, then sliced ).

Cranberry Chutney

Plum Conserve


Feta Cheese Stuffing

Candied Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potato/Pumpkin/Apple Casserole

Mashed Potatoes/Gravy

Corn Bread


Pumpkin Cheese Bread

Green Salad (just to make me feel better about the whole thing.  Probably no one will actually eat it!)



Pumpkin pie/whipped cream

Pecan pie

Cookies?  Vanilla Maple Chip?

Date Roll

Candies/Cookies (the variety depending on how early I get started!):  fudge, divinity, toffee, gingerbread, sugar cookies…..

Strawberry/Pretzel Salad

Cranberry Bread

I’ve also a new recipe or two for various pies and cakes  I need to choose from.  (More on that later)

And I would love to attempt a Banana Cream Pie using my mother-in-law’s delicious recipe.  But I am not the pastry chef she is, so I fear it would not turn out so well.  I’m hoping she’ll make one or two at Christmas and we can all snag a slice then!

Well it seems quite a long list, though I feel certain there are several things missing…….

To be continued!


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