Friday, November 23, 2012

Our THANKSGIVING IN A BOX dinner and family cooking day

We are on a mini vacation over the Thanksgiving holiday so we celebrated our turkey feast the weekend before.  We enjoyed a  Thanksgiving in a Box for our family this year!  I wanted to get the entire family in the kitchen (instead of just ME!) to teach our boys some cooking tips for this traditional holiday dinner.  To keep it simple for the kids, I designed our menu to be part homemade and part quick cooking from the box so they wouldn't get too overwhelmed.  I set up 2 boxes: one with the boxed and canned ingredients and the other one full of the kids' cooking tools.  I set the boxes out on our table as a surprise as I told the boys our plans to cook all day as a family.  

Roasted Turkey
Homemade Mashed Potatoes creamed
Homemade Savory Gravy
Stuffing from the box
Homemade ClassicDinner Rolls
Cranberry Sauce from the can
Homemade Tart Pear and Cranberry Mini Pies
Homemade Spiced Pie with Pumpkin (both pies using store bought pie crust not homemade)

Again, I wanted to keep our menu as simple as possible since it was the kids' first time helping me prepare a big dinner!  Homemade rolls aren't so simple so I made them the day before!

photo via my new Instagram account

We started in the morning, ready for a festive day together in our home sweet home, listening to Jack Johnson and just being a family because that's what we enjoy best of all. 

I left Chris in charge of preparing the bird because...ewww...I can't stand that job.  It has been known to make me cry real tears of disgust.  True story.  

The boys intently riveted to the turkey as Chris shows them how to prepare it for the oven.

Aprons tied, oven on, ready to stir together love and magic. 

We made mini Tart Pear Cranberry Pies, embracing the fruit of the winter season. 

And here we are, not even half way through and I'm seeing a YAWN.  This cooking stuff is hard work.

Whispering a little cooking tip to my favorite boys! Throughout the day I taught the boys different cooking tips and techniques and threw out pop quizzes while washing dishes.  

And soon (actually not so soon) our hard work paid off!

Oh and, 
by the way,
 did you know?

Our Casual Colors table was set!  I made the table decor fun, colorful, and casual to embrace a kids' atmosphere since they helped make our Thanksgiving dinner.  

We all brought the traditional family feast to the table.  It was extra satisfying for the boys to sit down to a big meal that they had actually helped cook! 

Throughout and after dinner we wrote gratitude lists on our kraft paper tablecloth!  It was such a meaningful and fun experience to share around the dinner table.  To see all of the details and to see more photos of our Thanksgiving Table decor 2012, click here: Casual Colors Table.  

It was a full day in so many ways:
full cooking schedule
full tummies
full hearts. 

I'm so very thankful for each of you! 
From our home to yours...

This is PART TWO of a two part series.
Please CLICK HERE to view PART ONE.

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This post is linked to: Under the Table &; DreaminNifty ThriftyMade by You MondayMet Monday, Tuesday Tutorials and TipsHOMEWORK: Be InspiredTasty TuesdayTip JunkieGet Your Craft OnWorks for Me Wednesday,Transformation ThursdayTablescape ThursdayStrut Your Stuff36th AveFoodie FridayI'm Lovin ItTickled PinkFriday FlairBe Different Act NormalFunky Junk Interiors, Weekend Wrap Up sew many ways Six Sisters Saturday
Between Naps on the Porch


Pinky at Designs by Pinky said...

This is th BEST idea I have seen in a long time!!! I love that you did this! Those boys will be either great cooks or great helpers one day. And WILL remember this. My husband is the one who taught me how to do a turkey! He knew, just from watching his Mom. Cooking together is a wonderful bonding experience. I LOVE the tablecloth too! XO, Pinky

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

What a fabulous idea! From the food to the table this group effort was what family and Thanksgiving is all about!!!! LOVE it!

KC Coake said...

What a neat idea! I love the picture of your husband and boys working together in the kitchen...priceless!

Jenny said...

I hope you know how much I admire you!

You are truly one of the most creative people I know.

And you pull off your ideas with style and panache!




Tricia said...

Just delightful! My very favorite pic is the one with the boys clustered around your husband while he shows them how to prepare the bird! Your future daughters-in-law will thank you for raising capable men!

Martha said...

Looks like a great Thanksgiving!

The Howell Blessings said...

I LOVE this idea! When my son was little he and I used to cook together in the kitchen, today as a husband and new daddy, he is the main cook at his house. Good memories and great results as he still loves to cook!

Our Pinteresting Family said...

Such a great idea. :)

Kim @ Too Much Time said...

Wonderful! I absolutely love this idea-you made Thanksgiving feel manageable and not so scary. This would be great for a newbie hosting the holiday as well. I will be remembering (and pinning) for the future!
If you have a sec this weekend, I would love for you to share at Get Schooled Saturday!
Kim @ Too Much Time On My Hands

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