We spend every Thanksgiving Eve celebrating the holiday with my Father-in-law, et al. His home is certainly adequately sized for his needs - only he and his wife live there, but there are guest rooms for when the grandchildren (or out of town children!) come to visit. After about 5-6 people, it starts to get a little crowded. Mister and I spent the evening navigating one of those puzzles with the blocks you have to shift around to make a picture, where this person needs to go left so this chair can move in so I can go over there. We definitely had the opportunity to test the bounds of Mister's "natural" claustrophobia and my people-in-close-proximity claustrophobia. We love our family, but sometimes, things get a little scrunched up.
The spread, as always, was magnificent and we were given the tour of which food was "safe" for us and which was not. "Greek Rice" is not terribly descriptive, but when Mister skips it and it appears that there is as much grey ground beef as there is rice, you don't need much of an imagination to think that's probably not veg-friendly. Obviously, the dead bird on the table was also not something veg-friendly. For us, though, there were mashed potatoes, haricots verts (no, we can't just say green beans, that would be uncouth), broccolini, rolls, and a big oval Le Creuset dutch oven filled with sweet potatoes swimming in brown sugar broth. Despite Mister's hatred for yams, I think I need to roast yams for Thanksgiving next year just to show people that there are actually other ways to prepare those suckers.
By the way, I am deeply in envy of my Mother-in-law's cookware. They are definitely a couple who abide by an "only the best" philosophy of life, so their plates are Lenox, their silver is real silver, and their cookware is All-Clad and Le Creuset. They were so pleased when we registered for Waterford china that they bought us all 8 place settings, then gave us a mahogany chest of the same silver they have. To quote my FIL, "It's what Greeks do."
Anyway, dessert consisted of two pumpkin pies, pecan pie, French apple pie, lemon meringue pie, cherry cheesecake, and a cranberry cake a cousin made, which was vegan :) That's a lot of pies considering that though it was crowded, that was still about 1 pie for every 3 people, including the little ones, of whom there were 4. Speaking of entertaining little ones, has anyone else seen the movie Polar Express? If so, how freaking terrifying was the animation on those children? It was horrible!
On the way home, we drove through West Philly via Market Street for the first time in the 9 years we've been going to Thanksgiving Eve, because until now, they had the area closed at 63rd St for work on the Market-Frankford line that took nearly a decade. It was quite a ride - just because they took their construction vehicles away doesn't mean it's not still a ghetto. Woo hoo.
Tomorrow, we'll be heading out to my parents' home again. Mom wants to cook together, so we'll be making Savory Vegetable Cobbler. I never quite got the hang of cooking on electric ranges, so we'll see how that goes, but the idea is for Mom and I to have fun together - if dinner is a fail, there are always the side dishes!