Just a warning up front - I am going to use lots of adjectives like wonderful and fabulous in this post. So if you are in a crabby mood and don't want to hear it, then this is not the post for you.
Thanksgiving was fabulous. (See what I mean, I have already used that word!) Visits from American friends put us in the Thanksgiving spirit.
It was wonderful to have friends here to help us celebrate such an American holiday.
My friend Cindy and her 13 year old daughter, Megan, arrived the day before Thanksgiving. My mom also had 2 friends visit, Jim and Joanne.
On Thanksgiving the kids went to school - it is a normal day here after all. Mom and I took Cindy and Megan to the grocery store to pick up a few items. Cindy wanted to experience a French grocery store.
Cindy had e-mailed me before she came and asked if she should bring gravy mix and stuffing. I told her that it was her choice. She could bring stuff or we could try to figure it out here. She opted to figure it out here. So at the grocery store she was in charge of finding ingredients to make stuffing and gravy. While she went in search of the unknown, I went and shopped for my regular stuff. yeah, I gave her the harder job.
After the grocery store we met up with Jim and Joanne and took 2 cars over to La Rochelle for lunch. It was fabulous and French. A long lunch with several courses. Lots of laughter.
Jim got a heaping bowl of mussels. He made the mistake of offering to share. They were so good he ended up sharing with the whole table. We all agreed that they were the best mussels any of us had ever had.
After lunch we did a little shopping. La Rochelle has some really cute little shops. We could have spent the rest of the day there. But it was Thanksgiving after all and we still had to go home and make Thanksgiving dinner.
On the way back home home, we stopped at a little winery to pick up wine for dinner. A little wine tasting of course.
Then we had to head home to start cooking Thanksgiving dinner! We had ordered a turkey from the butcher and we were curious about how it turned out. What would we get? Here I go with those adjectives again, I just can't help it - the turkey was fabulous. I don't know if you know this, but the French know how to cook!!
Here is a picture of the turkey. The pans were the butchers, he asked us to return them later. This turkey never would have fit in our little oven!
We only had side dishes to cook. Cindy was in charge of the stuffing and gravy. She made the most wonderful stuffing. She used crusty baguettes, sausage, celery, chicken stock and I don't even know what else. She made a lot of gravy and in true Thanksgiving style we ate a lot of her wonderful gravy. Our mashed potatoes were made with creme fraiche. The kitchen was a flurry of activity. We had enough traditional food to make it feel like a real Thanksgiving dinner.
Here is the kids end of the table.
After dinner the kids watched Charlie Brown Thanksgiving and left the adults to chat.
After such a big lunch we were all a little surprised at how much we ate for dinner! We all stuffed ourselves. True to the holiday!
In between all this activity we got a little bit of skyping in with family - who we dearly miss.
It was a fun Thanksgiving in France, but next year I will be happy to return to the normal Thanksgiving at my mother-in-laws. I can go one year without her Thanksgiving dinner (and pies!) but I don't want to go any longer than that.