Hey, Where’s My Turkey?

Gratitude is one of the most powerful means of attracting positive energy and good things to our lives. So I try to remember to be thankful all year long for all I’ve received and all I’ve been able to give others. But in the little northern corner of the earth where I was born and raised, we did not celebrate Thanksgiving holiday in the same way it’s done in the US and Canada. That makes me an implant into this strong tradition.

As you may guess, there’s been many trials and tribulations over the years in adapting to this tradition, particularly in regard to the center piece at the dinner table, Mr. Turkey. He’s not always been very cooperative, to say the least.

During the first Thanksgiving holiday here in the US, just a few months after moving here, Mr. Turkey was missing in action in our home. I didn’t realize that he is an invited guest, no matter what. So I made a nice steak dinner. What a mistake! Our son who was in the fifth grade at the time couldn’t believe his eyes – no turkey on the table! He had already picked up this tradition from all his friends, whose mothers had been preparing their turkey the previous night. He was visibly disappointed and I felt really bad. The next day he went to his best friend’s house and had turkey…and I promised we’d have a turkey the following year.

The following year came and to make good on my promise, I bought a huge frozen turkey well in advance. I was extremely busy at work and travelled a lot, so I didn’t take the time to read the instructions. Early on Thanksgiving morning, I took it out to allow a couple of hours for thawing. But the bird didn’t want to be thawed! By the time I had planned to put it into the oven, its skin was just about free from frost. It was solid frozen!

I made all the mistakes described in the turkey cooking books! To cut the long story short, we had a Thanksgiving dinner that night with the turkey on the table. It was about 9 p.m. and the poor turkey was…very dry. Our son was hungry and very kind, he just poured a lot of gravy and ketchup on the turkey. My hubby quietly asked me if it was supposed to be that dry. What did I know? I remember we managed to eat about half of the bird by the time the weekend was over. Luckily I had not invited any friends over to taste my first ever baked whole turkey.

Then, of course, little by little I became a master of the turkey cooking art, and we enjoyed a well prepared turkey for many years. Until one year much later…Our son was away in college and flew home for Thanksgiving. As all mothers know, it’s so wonderful to have them home again! That particular year, I had found a nice whole smoked turkey that would only need to be heated up just before dinner time. It was small, like 6-7 pounds, but it would only be the three of us that year, so that should be fine.

On the night before Thanksgiving, our son went out with a group of his closest friends, all of whom we knew well, and told me that they would be coming back later in the evening to play pool in our basement, like they had done so often in the past. I had prepared the turkey and left it in the kitchen fridge on a plate, so when the guys came back home, our son asked me if they could make some cold sandwiches of the turkey later on. I said why not as it would be only the three of us eating it the next day, and I had plenty of other stuff prepared as well.

In the morning, I came down to the kitchen to make coffee. Everything was nice and tidy, no sign of the guys making sandwiches, no dishes in the sink. Nice, I thought, they are all in college and have finally learned to take care of things. Then I looked into the fridge. No turkey! We had another large fridge as a reserve in the storage area so I ran there. And there it was! The plate with the turkey bones, nicely covered in aluminium foil. It still had the wings. I had to laugh!

Later that morning, our son said he was sorry they ate so much, the turkey had been too delicious! I couldn’t be angry, just went back to my grocery store. I could no longer find a whole smoked turkey so I settled on two large smoked breasts, put them creatively on both sides of the breast bone and heated it all up for dinner.  With some imagination it looked like a turkey. And it was just fine!

A few years ago I met the exactly same group of our son’s friends. They were all grown up now, out of college, and stood there in the church as handsome groomsmen at his wedding. I smiled again, reminded of the disappearing act of the smoked turkey!

I’m all adapted now. And giving thanks for everything in my life, including the turkeys, past, present and future. Gratefully signing off for about a week in the northern wilderness – with no internet connectivity. Take care and Happy Thanksgiving to those of you celebrating this wonderful holiday later in the week!

Awards! አመሰግናለሁ!

I knew it! By writing  “thank you” or “ameseginalehugn” in the most difficult language I’ve ever learned (just for daily use when I lived in Ethiopia), Amharic, I got you to read this post 🙂 where I will showcase some excellent blogs by fellow bloggers. So please continue reading…and check them out!

Just over a month ago my blog for nominated for One Lovely Blog Award by Tazein at http://transcendingbordersblog.wordpress.com/. Thank you so much for the honor! Tazein’s touching blog tells her inspiring personal story of difficulties and discoveries in the form of stories, poems and inspirational quotes. If you are not already following her blog, please check it out today!

Kat who writes at http://crosshearted.wordpress.com/ nominated tiny lessons blog for a Very Inspiring Blog Award. Thank you Kat, I am happy you find my blog inspiring. Kat is a student in Edinburgh and she sees her blog as the place where she can be honest about her life and how she thinks through stories, poems and pictures. She is one of my newer acquaintances and I am learning to know her world through her blog. You can do too, by clicking on the link above.

A few days ago, my dear blogging friend at http://exceedingspeed.wordpress.com/ nominated me for a Liebster Award. Thanks so much for this added encouragement! She is a bloggess whose blog I check every night for any new writings.  She makes me laugh a lot, nod or shake my head – her writing is humorous, sprinkled with sharp observations and so vivid that I feel I’m experiencing the situations she describes. Our lives have been very different but I feel like we’re old friends. If you are not already her regular reader, you have to check out her blog today!

All these award nominations come with a set of different rules, but as my readers already know, I am really poor at anything that requires me to do things in only one particular way.

So…now I will combine some of the rules a bit creatively by first answering a few questions and then nominating a few interesting blogs, that I have discovered more recently, for awards. I hope that will be fine with everyone.

I have told so many things about me in the blog and in connection with previous awards so I have selected the questions from the Liebster Award just because they are a bit different and definitely make me think a bit:

1) Is there a book you would never want to be parted from? Why?

This is a very difficult question for me because my interests are so multi-faceted. I am looking at the inbuilt bookshelf that covers a whole wall here in my office…it has my favorite sections of books: Art, travel, nature, earth & sciences, spiritual growth & self-improvement, some classic novels in several languages, poetry books and of course management books. My mystery novels and thrillers are in another room…several boxes! But if I have to choose, let it be “Change your thoughts – change your life” by Wayne Dyer. Why? Because I am still working on these issues, far from ready, and need to be constantly reminded!

2) Which six authors, living or dead, will you invite to join your new reading group? 

    The Persian poet Rumi, Mark Twain, Sylvia Plath, Virginia Woolf, Agatha Christie and Wayne Dyer.

3) Book or Kindle? Would anything change this decision? 

I’m afraid it’d be my Kindle. It gives me so much freedom to read what I want, when I want and those books are stored in the cloud and do not require more bookshelves. What might possibly (but maybe not) change this decision is if someone donated me a huge mansion with a huge library…I simply do not have room for many more books here at home…

4) If you could study full-time or study full-time again what would you choose to learn about?

I think I might study sustainable community driven development or maybe psychology. 

5) Who would you write a biography of? What’s so special about them? 

I’d probably write about my paternal grandmother. She was an absolutely wonderful person and her life experiences spanned from the late 1800s to the 1990s. She lived through several wars and witnessed all the modern developments. But above all, she was an exceptional person, kind, wise and understanding, always there for anyone who needed help. A role model for a wide range of people, including me.

6) You’ve been asked to write an article for Condé Nast’s Traveller magazine on your favourite holiday destination. What is your opening sentence?

Driving towards the Luangwa River, we found a lioness with three cubs. They were partly hidden by bushes but the cubs were bouncing around playing so we spotted their movement in the high grass.

7) If you had to paint every wall in your house one colour what would it be? Why? I do not allow you white or magnolia.

I’d paint every wall in the color we have now (help! what is it called?). It’s a fairly light mix of natural earth colors (light green/light taupe’ish). It is the best color I’ve ever had in my home. It’s calming and allows other natural colors to be exhibited on the walls and throughout my home.

Thank you again for the nominations, much appreciated!

Now, the rules of the three awards call for 7-15 nominations, so I’d like to nominate the following blogs I have discovered more recently for a Liebster Blog Award (the same questions to answer and 7 blogs to nominate, if you accept the “tag”, please). They are very different, but all worth checking out:















If you are not already familiar with these blogs, today is a good time to pay a visit!

I wish all my dear blogging friends and all visitors a wonderful Thanksgiving week in the true spirit of gratitude and appreciation of life.