Sunday, November 30, 2008

Carolina on my mind

Conquering Kings Mountain, N.C. l to r: David, Dan, Jenny, Katie and Mark.

It was a landmark Thanksgiving for us. We all gathered at son Dan and his wife Jenny's home in Charlotte, North Carolina. Four of us drove south and oldest son, David, drove north from Tampa for three fun days together.

Except for a few Thanksgivings with extended family, we have spent most holidays at home. I've roasted a barnyard worth of turkeys, green bean and sweet potato casseroles. While I can't say I've minded the assignment, I welcome this new season of being the hosted rather than the hostess.

Jenny's passion is healthy cooking and she planned and prepared an impressive array of breads, steamed carrots, salad, 2 kinds of potatoes, a completely new kind of cranberry stuffing and a layered ice cream-brownie-peppermint trifle to die for. And did I mention 2 dinners preceding the Thanksgiving spread? Pretty outstanding for a 24-year-old!

My assignment was the turkey, gravy and 2 pies. Easy. Besides washing a few dishes, I got to knit and read. Kind of like being a grandma without the grandkids.

My two gorgeous girls create a beautiful dessert!

Jenny cooks while I watch.

Dan on the hunt for more to eat...

My oldest, David, and youngest, Katie. Yes - he's holding a knife near his sister's throat.

We were blessed that my brother Mark, his wife Kathy and son Robby joined us!

Mark hits the books...

OK, lest you think all we did was eat, we also had some physical activities: boys chopping wood out in the woods, spirited games of Risk and Cranium, a round of putt-putt where half the holes were underground, and a hike to the top of Kings Mountain west of Charlotte, where my kids - I'm not making this up - had to push and pull me onto a rock ledge for a photo. Wow, I felt old and out of shape and my calves still ache. After all, I live in the FLAT midwest. This was a steep and rocky 3-mile hike lasting 3 hours.

Our four watching dad take a shot ...

Hole in one!

A favorite pic of mine. The game of RISK was a strictly male, late-night pursuit for the 3 days!

Suffice it to say, this was a Thanksgiving packed with blessings. Thank you, Dan and Jenny!


D&JHaller said...

We had a BLAST and it was fun to be with the family at this time of the year! And, I loved coking my heart out. It made me feel happy, blessed and confident in my future hostess-ing! Love to you.

klrodman said...

Love the first picture of you & Bill!!! You look blessed. :)