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A Very Thankful New Years

One of the perks of Chris working for NATO is the annual opportunity we have to order real Butterball turkeys for Thanksgiving every year. The only thing is, we have to order them a few months in advance and you can only order in a size range (e.g. 10-15 lb or 16-20 lb, etc) so it’s kind of a crap shoot how much turkey you will actually get. Chris and I had talked about having a bunch of friends over for Thanksgiving, so we played it safe and ordered one in the 16-20 lb category back in September. And, since Chris REALLY likes leftover turkey, he played it extra safe and ordered an additional 10-15 lb turkey thinking we could have a smaller one just for leftovers.

 

Then as the months progressed, Chris’ little brother decided to get married around Thanksgiving so we bought plane tickets home instead of planning Thanksgiving dinner in Norway. Then the turkey shipment came in and we were given a 19lb turkey and a 14lb turkey! So we spent the holiday in the US with the Hills with two giant turkeys waiting for us back home. Yikes.

 

We had to do SOMETHING with the turkeys because as much as Chris loves Thanksgiving turkey leftovers, 33 pounds of turkey is a bit more than even he can handle. Since Thanksgiving isn’t celebrated in Norway anyway, we decided we could celebrate our own Thanksgiving whenever we wanted to! So we picked New Year’s Day and had a bunch of our friends join us for a Thankful New Year’s feast!

We were lucky to be able to book the NATO boat house for the night, since we were still table-less and couch-less at our apartment. Eating Thanksgiving on the floor with 20 people just seemed like a bad idea…
I’m still on my quest to make the PERFECT Thanksgiving turkey. You know, like the ones on the cover of Martha Stewart Magazine with the perfectly even brown skin and juicy insides. I got pretty close this year! It looks a little charred in the photos, but in person it wasn’t far off. I think next year might just be the year I finally get it!
The group shot
Chris photobombing his own photo.
We spent the evening enjoying good food, fun games, and fantastic company! We couldn’t have asked for a better start to 2014!

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Hill Thanksgiving 2013
We’re really digging this two-Thanksgiving thing. I think it needs to happen every year.
Twice the turkey.
Twice the pie.

The rest of our time in the States was much more chill. Most of the siblings left after “Thanksgiving” so when the time came for actual Thanksgiving, we just lazy-ed around and avoided doing much of anything besides enjoying our time spent with family. We hot tubbed with friends, ate cake with cousins, and of course, saw Frozen on the big screen.

As our two-week whirlwind of a trip came to a close, we headed home to Norway, ready to officially move into our new apartment!

 

Category: Family, Food  Tags: ,  2 Comments
Thanksgiving x 4

Here at the house of C², we love Thanksgiving. Particularly the Chris half of the double C. This year, Chris was in turkey and pie heaven because we “accidentally” ended up with 4 Thanksgiving dinners in a row!

The first Thanksgiving we planned was our own. We had to put out orders in for Butterball turkeys from the NATO base by the end of September… so naturally we went ahead and got one, despite not having plans. And Chris, who adores turkey and leftover turkey sandwiches, was the one who placed the order. So naturally we ended up with a 16lb turkey for the two of us (which we discovered later is the MAX size that will fit in our little oven!).

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Fast forward a few weeks, and we get an invite from our dear friends, Bethany and Joe, to have Thanksgiving dinner at their house with a bunch of NATO friends on Thanksgiving day. Of course we weren’t going to pass up Thanksgiving with friends, so we decided to cook and eat our turkey (and more Thanksgiving fixin’s) on Friday instead. And since our turkey was 16lbs (!) we invited the missionaries to join us.

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On Saturday, we had planned to make Chinese food at Anna and Mike’s house, but then on Friday Anna calls us to tell us her turkey didn’t defrost in time for Thursday, so we switched Chinese food to another Thanksgiving feast. 

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THEN we find out that some of the Americans from our church are planning a Thanksgiving potluck on Sunday, and really… who would say “no” to that?

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So there you have it. 4 Thanksgivings in a row. We were happy, slightly heavier, lycopene junkies who definitely had a lot to be grateful for this year!

And let’s not forget one of the best parts of Thanksgiving:

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The BIG vat of turkey stock you get from all the leftovers! Mmmm….

 

We are so grateful for all of you and we love you very much!

We hope all of your Thanksgiving dreams came true :)

A Word from the Bird: Thanksgiving

“Hi guys! It’s me, Skittles!

Sorry you haven’t heard from me in a while. I’ve been pretty busy these days. I’ve been chewing apart all the new toys Chelsea bought me over the summer,  practicing my flying skills, climbing up and down my new spiral swing, eating at least half an orange per day (quite a lot for a bird my size!), pooping out said orange, and the other day Chelsea gave me a WHOLE ROLL of toilet paper to shred because she’s been busy with all this bakery nonsense.  My days are quite full.

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Anyway, I just wanted to wish you all a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING from all of us! A happy one for you at least. I don’t like Thanksgiving. For one thing, I’m not allowed near the kitchen because I might fly into the hot oven or slip into the gravy or something and secondly…there is another bird in the house that is getting more attention than me. It’s so unfair.

At least at the end of the day I don’t get eaten.

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So I have a lot to be thankful for :)”

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

It’s Sunday, and a bit past the time of Thanksgiving for most of you, but we celebrated our Thanksgiving yesterday instead of Thursday so it’s still pretty fresh for us :) Chris doesn’t get American holidays off of work, so we opted to do Thanksgiving dinner on Saturday instead of trying to fit it in on Thursday after work. It was a good thing we did too because I ended up getting 5 last minute cake orders so I was up to my neck in frosting on actual Thanksgiving Day!

Thanksgiving was definitely a different experience for both of us this year. For one thing, we BARELY managed to squeeze 13 lbs of turkey into our tiny European oven! We did it though and luckily it still turned out! It was also a little sad not being home for Thanksgiving this year. We definitely missed the family gatherings and all the fun that goes with them and we discovered that it is A LOT of work to prepare Thanksgiving dinner with just 2 people cooking! We had lots of fun doing it together though, and to compensate for the lack of family we had a bunch of friends over instead :) It was a mix of Americans, Norwegians, and a Dane and it was fun to be able to share our traditions with our Norwegian friends since they’ve been sharing so many of theirs with us!

 

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Skittles helping pick out Thanksgiving treats.

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The Pie

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The Feast

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The Food

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The Friends

It was an adventure coming up an entire Thanksgiving menu all on our own for the first time! We came up with lots of ideas…and had way too much food. But leftovers are half the fun of Thanksgiving right? I tried to use as many local ingredients as I could from the farmers market downtown and for the most part I was pretty successful!

Here was the lineup this year:

Garlic-Rosemary Turkey with Mushroom Gravy

– The. Best. Turkey. Chris (a turkey fiend) has requested that we never ever use another turkey recipe. It was delicious! Definitely make sure to brine it if your turkey doesn’t already come pre-brined. It makes for a super moist, fall-apart turkey!

Chive & Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Rutabaga with Caramelized Onions and Apples

Butternut Squash Crumble

Paula Deen’s Sweet Potato Casserole 

 – You can NEVER go wrong with Paula!

Maple and Rosemary Glazed Carrots

Stuffing from Food Network Magazine.

-I wish I had a link to a recipe, but it was a “Mix & Match” feature in the magazine. We used wheat bread, leeks, onions, celery, bacon. Comment or email me if you want a more specific recipe, because it was yummy!

Josh’s Mom’s Pineapple Bread – Gluten-free version brought by Josh

Plain ol’ normal salad

Pumpkin Pie with Vanilla Ice Cream

We hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving too!