A Pre-Thanksgiving Brunch: Like most pilots, The Hunni worked on Thanksgiving Day.
And so like most pilot wives, this is how we celebrated Thanksgiving Day–a Skype phone call from The Daddi.
But since we knew that Thanksgiving Day would be spent apart, we celebrated Thanksgiving a week early. We traveled down to my parent’s farm the week before Thanksgiving and ended the week with a Pre-Thanksgiving Brunch with the whole family. Well almost everyone. My sister who lives in sunny Florida couldn’t make it home this year.
Generally we begin with a “wee small smakerel of something.” A brunch is coming, but it isn’t here yet, so we get a coffee and some toast and the kiddos get a bowl of cereal, and then, the games begin. . .
In honor of our Pilgrim forefathers and our Second Amendment and all, we celebrate Thanksgiving with guns. (That handsome young man was a boy just a month ago. At least it seems like it was only a month ago. He is my handsome nephew.)
We celebrate Thanksgiving by donning “camo.”
. . .and Carhart jackets, and orange ear plugs.
We celebrate by shooting pigeons.
And for those who haven’t ever shot pigeons before, this is a pigeon thrower.
And these are the “pigeons”–clay pigeons. You can also call it trap shooting.
“In trap shooting, the shooter stands 16 yards behind the throwing station. Clay pigeons are then thrown forward, either 1 or 2 at a time. In skeet the shooter rotates between 8 shooting positions that are located in a half-circle pattern. Clay pigeons are thrown from 2 throwing stations, so the angles and direction of the pigeons vary every time.”
And this is a tender Thanksgiving moment between an Uncle and a nephew. Here is Uncle Brad with his nephew teaching him how to celebrate Thanksgiving.
Don’t think for one moment that we didn’t have a tender father/son moment.
Actually, I think our son had the moment all by himself.
All of our noise. . .
. . .attracted our neighbor “Uncle” Bob. He had visitors from Mexico staying with him for a week.
We realize that there is a lot of crime in Mexico right now, and we are so glad that you were able to get away from it all and come up to the United States for a peaceful week in the country. Kind-of.
But look at the son; he is having fun!
Two more of my nephews join the pack. They are both in high school now, and Andrew on the left has a great daily YouTube video which is part of the “morning announcements” at his high school. I was very impressed. Jeremy on the right takes after his dad and pretty much knows a little about everything.
A younger nephew joins the group, so my brother makes sure he has ear plugs. I love this about family–they take care of each other.
Watching this nephew grow up is like getting to watch my boy all over again. They may not look exactly alike, but they resemble each other enough to make me do a double take–especially when he has on one of LGB’s hand-me-down outfits. (Okay maybe guys don’t wear “outfits”; maybe hand-me-down-old-worn-out-game-shirt is better.)
So far, the shooting had mainly been from the male sector of the family. It was time to get some guns in the hands of some females. My niece (in the purple jacket) and I had a shoot out.
Ready. . .
Aim. . .
Now it is a commonly known fact, that women are better shots than men. My daughter is a great shot. Annie Oakley was a crack shot.
However, I am not a common woman, and therefore the rule doesn’t apply to me. I think I only hit one pigeon out of 5 or 6 shots.
Well. . .Maybe it was the apron that I was wearing. Maybe I had just better get back into the kitchen. This was a man’s party and I had better take my apron-wearing=self right back to the kitchen where I belonged.
That didn’t bother me in the least. The kitchen is where the food was! And this handsome man. (The Hunni gave him a haircut before we visited the grandparents. Notice the home-made straight bangs look.)
Now these two cousins are double-third cousins. Because their moms are double second cousins. And this could be a picture of Jinny (my double-second cousin) and myself 30 years ago. Sad circumstances brought Jinny into town (a funeral), but we were still glad that our girls could spend some time together. I wish I had gotten a picture of Jinny and I standing right behind them. Jinny and I are a month apart and these two cousins are also a month apart.
One little girly didn’t join the party. She had woken up in the middle of the night in need of the “stomach bucket”, so she started the day above the family on the balcony.
She made this little “nest” with a down comforter and some American Dolls.
And with Grandma’s camera to entertain herself she didn’t feel too left out.
Aunt Grace took the time to read her a book when all the other kids were outside. Eloise stayed inside through the meal, but then she crept downstairs. Then she was on the back porch with all the cousins. Then she was outside playing. And around 4:00 I realized that she was on the balance beam BAREFOOT and with her coat thrown on the ground.
The call went out, and brunch was served. Men will stop shooting for food.
The cousins ended up on the screened in sun room.
This table was rather quiet. I believe their focus was food. Now a few years back, they would have been telling Knock, Knock jokes and snarfeling at their answers, but now they have matured and they converse with occasional grunts or by texting.
Two of the high schoolers stayed in the kitchen to make lattes for everyone. (She won’t like this picture, but I love her profile.)
If you are like me and crave Starbuck’s Pumpkin Spice Latte, Prairie Farm’s Pumpkin Spice Milk is even better. And remember, whenever you buy Prairie Farms brand, you are buying from the farmer. Prairie Farms is farmer owned.
“As the early twentieth century population grew, many dairy farmers across America’s heartland created local cooperative groups to pool excess cream with the hope of finding a market that would add value to their by-products. In central Illinois, 1938 was the start for Prairie Farms Dairy;. . .Prairie Farms services a vast area of the Midwest and Mid-South including locations in each of the following states: Missouri, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Oklahoma, Ohio, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, and Mississippi .” (from here.)
And by-the-way. Prairie Farms doesn’t charge extra for being “local, farmer-owned, no RBST, etc. . .” It isn’t a recent fad. It is the way things have been done since the 1930’s.
The adults sat in the dinning room–right next to the buffet. This is my brother and Lily.
Here is Mom Amie!
Here is The Hunni.
Here is the family.
And here is the Thanksgiving Brunch Feast. There was also Bread Pudding in the oven, and some pies which aren’t pictured. Plus an assortment of chocolate candies, and cheeses.
Our family wouldn’t be the same without this guy. In fact. We might almost be boring. But Uncle Brad is any thing but boring, and it was his ammo we shot, one gun was his, and after dinner when the 4 hour paint ball war started up. . .It was all his idea and his supplies. Without Brad in the family we might just have sat around and visited and ate again, but with him there wasn’t a chance to be bored.
A family game of soccer, and then. . .
. . .Clay pigeons are fun and all, but this is the real thing–PAINTBALL!!!!
And here is Sol from Mexico being introduced to yet another gun. (There was an air soft war inbetween the trap shooting and the paintball war.) She opted not to let her 7-year-old participate.
The ladies visited, then visited a cousin who was adding on to her house. We talked flooring and wall color and closet space while the men marched a quarter of a mile to some woods then shot at each other for four hours. The kiddos played in the yard. Grandma cleaned up and Grandpa headed to the prison where he preaches every Saturday.
Eventually, we all regrouped. We came back from wars in the woods, the WORD of GOD in the prison, the clean-up in the kitchen, the sick bay, the soccer game, the neighbors new addition, we all came back for another round at the buffet table. Like good Americans we simply went through the line again, but this time we piled everything on fresh rolls. I have heard it said (Bill Cosby) that a true American can eat anything as a sandwich.
But then we all said good-bye.
I would be hard to match that Thanksgiving Brunch. It was close enough to perfect for me. (Except for my sister not being there.)
Hopefully next year,
P.S. Not all my Thanksgivings are like this one. You can read about some of our mis-adventures in this series of posts–A Thanksgiving That Really Happened.