Getting my Craft on and the Thanksgiving Holiday

So it’s Thanksgiving time again.  And I love it.  My favorite holiday.    Good food.  Family.  Arlo Guthrie.  A Christmas Story.  Pieces of April.  These are my traditions.

I was feeling a little blue this year and after the last trip home, decided I would skip Thanksgiving.  That was the plan, until about a week ago when the Christmas Cactus started to bloom, as it always does.  Just in time for Thanksgiving.

So I am scurrying to make last minute plans, after all, it’s only days away.  I’ve been pouring through my favorite magazines to see what’s good.  But we all know, I stick with my tried and true favorite recipes.  I may dabble in something new here or there, but . . . and I’m still searching for the elusive sweet potato in Turkey!

And the heck if I am cleaning my own house too.  I’m a working woman for goodness sakes.  Yes, I can bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan, and never never let you forget you’re a man.  But do I have to?  No! I’ve got B on the job of procuring someone to do clean.

So that left me with a few minutes to think about the “look” of T’day.  There’s a certain feel to it, eh.  This week it’s become a little cloudy, overcast, cooler.  Perfect.  It got me into the groove.

The art & crafts girl came out of me.  I started with a little shopping and found some great candles – at least perfect colors – for the day.  But no cheap candlestick holders.  Hmmm.  I needed cheap ones because eventually they will be covered with the table setting of leaves and berries that I intend to “borrow” from the neighborhood.

Recycling!  Yes, that’s the ticket.  I started guzzling wine and pouring vinegar down the sink so that I would have the perfect mix of bottles to use as candle holders!  Then I added bows, a mix a ribbon I have saved from gifts and bouquets of flowers.  If there is one thing Turks do well – it’s wrap gifts and flowers!

Hmmmmm . . . candles.  It got me thinking about the boxes of tea lights I have at home.  What to do  . . . what to do?  Well, there is a pile of jars sitting next to the sink.  (It seems pickling wasn’t the best idea because we can eat them as fast as we can pickle!  The tomato sauce too.)  So I broke them out and filled them halfway with whatever dried bean someone thought was a good idea to give to me (and have been sitting ever since).  Found a piece of I don’t know what to call it type ribbon that came wrapped around something and a button and glued them on.  Ta da!  Candles for the entrance.


Napkins?  There’s no way I’m doing paper!  At the typical Turkish table, you will find lovely cloth napkins rolled in a beautiful ring.  You are not to use these.  You must use paper instead!  I’ve got a bunch of environmentalists coming to dinner – so that will not happen here.  (And P.S., if you choose not to use the cloth napkin, it will be washed anyway.  How am I supposed to know which were left unused when even the used are folded nicely after dinner?  Scrunch those babies up when you use them!  Please!)  Um . .. little sidetracked.

The napkins are rolled and then tied with whatever ribbon or scrap of cloth I found  around the house.  And since we are serving buffet style (because I invited way to many people for my little house) I have tucked the napkins into a wooden box my husband found in his new office.  Should the box be identified by his co-workers, one of whom made the index card that used to fill the box, I am willing to take full responsibility!  I stole the box!  And I WILL NOT give it back!

Now . . . the door.  I’ve had a dilemma since I arrived.  It’s a steel door and I didn’t think I could hang a wreath.  And I have always had wreaths, one for each season.  I’ve been making them for so many years.  Used to go out in the woods with Steve and Pat, while they were hunting, and start pulling down the grapevines myself . . .

Anyway, we have a new neighbor.  She hung a wreath.  Small one.  She attached it to the knocker.  It is possible.

So yesterday I sliced up some apples and oranges and put them in the oven at a very low temp.  It took hours to dry them.  Today, I cut a wreath form out of a cardboard box and thanks to the hubby, used my new handy tool to assemble – a hot glue gun!

So now I have two new dilemmas.  First, do I add a bow?  I’m not a bow kind of girl.  But Mom says it’s not a wreath without one.  And if I go for the in between – a natural type bow, where the heck to I “find” that material?

My second dilemma?  Where do I stop?


You may also want to see my prior blogs on the subject of Thanksgiving:

An Expat Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Gratitude

Happy Hanukkah! World AIDS Day. And Thanksgiving Pics

My Second Thanksgiving in Turkey

12 thoughts on “Getting my Craft on and the Thanksgiving Holiday

Add yours

  1. “If there is one thing Turks do well – it’s wrap gifts and flowers!”I certainly agree with this. Turks do it very well. Here in Jakarta I realized that much better.They do not wrap gifts, they do not allow you to change any items you bought here in Indonesia. No custumors right at all. I also believe that there are lots of things Turks do very well too. It is esay to realize when you just leave Turkey.

  2. Don´t ever stop, please 🙂 We tend to take the celebrations of our national holidays much more serously than back home. ANd I think its important to have the time and willigness to do that. And substitue… oh yes, it takes a lot of creativity to substitue all the missing ingriedients, not only food. PS I have seen sweet potato on Besi supermarket on Filistin. Never bought, so not aware about the quality or price. Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Rafia! That’s the word I was looking for. And I think I have seen something like it here. We (my mother) have never done anything other than turkey for Tday. A ham with a turkey at Christmas. Perhaps a duck added for Christmas. And Ham for Easter. My favorite is when mom does ham and turkey at Easter. The next day you add them to the leftover salad, easter eggs, perhaps leftover cheese, for a nice Chef’s Salad. Afiyet Olsun!

  3. So glad to hear that you got in the mood for Thanksgiving after all, Terry! You are a whizz with all your decorations! I esp love your wreath – fab! Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Rafia would have been perfect…Maybe you have some fabric that you could make a bow with, like to use for rug making. Just a thought Maybe not on the wreath but above it and used as a hanger upper

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