Monday, November 26, 2007
This will be my first Christmas without my (blood) family. But my first with my new family. All alone here we want to create traditions for our new family. At home (the coast) we forewent turkey for ham, an exchange I heartily support since I never liked turkey. My new family and I decided, though we like ham, it's not our favorite, so our family Thanksgiving fowl will be duck. We both worked on Thanksgiving. It was hard to feel thankful not sorry for ourselves. Zeb got home mid afternoon and put the duck in the cranberry stoneware dutch oven (thank you Cindy Swanson) in the oven. He was excited - it was a DUCK KIT. He's a sucker for anything with 'KIT' in the title. It came pre-wrapped with a heat-n-serve l'orange sauce and a pop up timer and cooking instructions. The instructions said remove the neck and giblets before cooking. He wasn't quite sure what all that was or how to remove them. He opened the kit and the neck and giblets were neatly packaged in a plastic bag inside the duck's skeletal cavity. He followed the instructions and removed (tossed) them. This is why he loves kits. The only worry was that our fifty year old oven wouldn't heat up in time, but by the time I got home from work at 8 pm I could smell in the air that the kit was a success. Duck is the meat of the gods (until Christmas when we have steak). I brought home an Oregon Pinot Noir, I could tell I was homesick. But Thanksgiving dinner was wonderful. We laughed and talked and cuddled and marveled over where we are. It was as meaningful as a new tradition could get. And I reflected on what I was thankful for last year - it was him bein' around. And this year, now that I actually have him and get to keep him - how much more thankful.