We woke early as planned, although the cats wanted us out of bed MUCH sooner than we did and did their best to make sleep a thing of myth. I turned on the parade and dug out one of my new saucepans to make fudge, gathering up my ingredients and setting them out so I would be ready for everything. rahirah started making up the appetizers she'd found recipes for while I waited for the fudge to reach soft-ball stage and I turned on the parade because it's just not Thanksgiving without Macy's. It was apparently 66 degrees in Herald's Square. Warmer than it was here this morning (it was about 58 on our back porch).
We got everything done and together in time to pack up and get on the road precisely at noon, and traffic was very light, so we made it out to the far end of Mesa in rapid time and were early. The family was all gathered and everyone was in a great mood. This was assisted by a wide and wonderful selection of wines. Barb's appetizers were absolutely MARVELOUS--especially these stuffed tomatoes, which tasted like little BLTs without bread. Yum! As well as melon balls wrapped in mint leaves and ham, and grapes wrapped in a delicious cheese mix and chopped almonds. Wow. I had also made up a cheese stuffing for celery, and folks seemed to like that, as well.
Dinner was amazing, turkey with all them fixin's: gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing (dressing, really), green beans, fresh cranberries, and wow, pie. Our brother-in-law is a devout Alton Brown fan and made up Alton's sweet potato pie, which is the best SPP I've ever tasted. Conversation was lively and fun, the kids were extremely well-behaved, and it was just really nice.
I'm still so full I can barely move. I am thankful for all good things -- sunsets and bossy cats and annoying dogs and happy nieces and geeky inlaws and chocolate fudge and wonderful brined turkey and good music and family in general and television and friends and friends and friends.
Hope everyone else had a wonderful day, too.