It's here folks! That wonderful, to die for (and sadly, some may if folks keep acting like animals at these sale events), and dream about too for some folks as they plan for this day from one year to the next!
My older daughter and two of her bestest friends ever - from high school - started their own tradition a couple years back of getting together on Black Friday, going to Altoona to hit the malls there - although they don't go the really, really early morning route to catch the really big sales - and thus, by spending the day together, just the three of them, shopping, lunching, gabbing, catching up on everything and anything by being "alone" - without kids or spouses or significant others, they have one heck of a good time.
Last year, they invited my younger daughter to join them on this bonding expedition along with the elder daughter of one of Carrie's friends in the group. They figured at 16 years old, she was old enough for a day with her Mom and her friends I guess.
This year, the five of them will be heading out from here to Altoona at about 8 a.m. to have a good time together. It's been nice to see my girls wanting to do something where they can become closer in some way - as sisters should be, you know. Well, that's my theory on how sisters should be but what the hell would I know about that aspect anyway since I am an only child. Or as Carrie loves to point out to me that I was an only child and therefore a spoiled brat too. Gee, do ya think? Personally, I think that's a bit of the pot calling the kettle black there because in many ways, each of my kids can show a good bit of the "spoiled brat" syndrome too from time to time.
Don't ever think just because there's more than one child in a family that kids don't or can't also get "spoiled" cause they can! To prove my point there, I refer to something a son-in-law of the family who lived next door to me when I was a kid once said on that subject. You see, the Little family next door had 13 children - 11 girls and 2 boys - and this one son-in-law once asked Mrs. Little to please explain to him how on earth his wife, one of their 11 daughters, could possibly have become so spoiled while growing up in a family that big. It does kind of boggle the mind to think how Mrs. Little managed the extra time there with that many children to do any spoiling but, if you'd have ever seen how she (and her husband too) were around children, how they both managed to show the little "extras" of love to each one, you'd know then how that could have happened!
Gotta say this too - having grown up around that family and darned near living over at their house too much of the time - that's another thing to point out - since I am still in the "Thanksgiving" mode - to be really, really thankful for. That family and the one on the other side too - the Nelsons - gave me so much as a child and the giving continued from Mr and Mrs Little and Gert and Howard Nelson right up until they died! Good people, such very good people and so grateful I am to have had the privilege to have known them!
Our Thanksgiving here went very well. Got lots of compliments from all present at the table about the food of which there was plenty! We feasted on turkey (naturally), mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole with the marshmellows on top, green bean casserole, stuffing and applesauce and for dessert, pumpkin pie along with some really, really yummy (Slovak) Nut Rolls and Ladyfingers. Mandy did the mashed potatoes, I did all the rest for the main course and the pies and the nut roll and ladyfingers, we bought from two very good friends here in town who make nut rolls, ladyfingers and some other stuff too for Thanksgiving and Christmas. They take orders and then make up what is needed to fill the orders - nut rolls I think are $6 each and $4 for a dozen of the ladyfingers and boy, are they ever good! These two entrepreneurs are Nila Force and Sue Little Humenay and Sue has another last name now which at the moment escapes me! Drat! I can't keep that straight there but think it is either Croyle or Dunlap and for the life of me I can't remember what it is! Sorry Sue! Well, heck she will always be Sue Little to me anyway! But in my house, my kids and I always just refer to her as "Aunt Sue" because all the kids from the Little family get called Aunt or Uncle by my kids and by me and we've done that for many years now too! That way, we always know who we are talking about in case there are others with the same first name and it saves on remembering last names that way too!
Back to our Thanksgiving Day and dinner, etc now for a bit - there were 9 people here today but only 6 adults and one child around the table, Maya in her high chair and little Kurtis in his exer-saucer! Present and accounted for at the table were: Son-in-law Bill, daughter Amanda, Bill's dad - "Pap", me, my son Clayton, Bill's sister, Kathy and her son, Jared. Everyone had a plate well loaded with food with the exception of Jared. How that child manages to exist on what he eats is beyond me! Today, he had a small serving of mashed potatoes, with no gravy, and a tiny bit of turkey and he barely even touched any of that! He is now I think 7-years old (maybe 8, I lose track there) and this child is something to behold! Cute as a button he is, but boy, now there is the epitomy of a spoiled child, for sure! I will say this - before any of my kids would have a chance to say it first - if one of mine had ever acted the way this boy acts out in public or at other folks' homes, it is highly unlikely mine would have lived to see adulthood - or at least would have had difficulty sitting for a while! He is rude and disrespectful to his mother, his grandfather and it doesn't stop there either! He holds back no punches! Everyone gets the same type of treatment! Although I do have to say today he must have been warned in advance that he best watch his mouth because he and I have often had run-ins in the past when he has been over at our house simply because I will not put up with kids acting like little brats that way! He knows I am the old ogre here and he also knows that his Uncle Billy is not too far behind me in expecting him to act civilized here too. I was a bit concerned when Mandy said he would be coming over with Pap and Kathy about how he and I might manage to get along today if he began to act up but thankfully, he was, for a change, on his best behavior. So, you see, there is just another thing for which I can be very thankful!
Last night, Bill's two middle children - Shane and Sierra - were here and spent the night. This morning, he got up early and cooked breakfast - French Toast - for all of us and then about 10 a.m. he had to have them back to their maternal grandmother's for their Thanksgiving Dinner celebration there. (They live with their maternal grandmother year-round, which probably is a very good thing to help maintain some semblence of "harmony" for Bill and his dealings with his ex-wife, their mother!) When they left, Maya threw one royal fit - crying, howling, sobbing - because she didn't want them to leave! She just worships her half-brother Shane when he is here - follows him around and he pays lots and lots of attention to her, plays with her and keeps her out of trouble by keeping a really close eye on her moves too! She likes Sierra very much too but it is really obvious by her reactions to Shane that she favors him - a lot! Now, if she ever decides to accept her full brother, the little guy here, Kurtis, all will really be right in her (and my) world!
After eating breakfast this morning and getting the veggie dishes ready to put in the oven, turkey already in there cooking away, I hit the sofa and managed to snag a nap for about an hour from 1 to 2 p.m. Got up, finished up the dinner preparations, made gravy, and we sat down to eat around 4:30. By 6 p.m., the only one still here was Clayton, my son, and he was enjoying some quality time on the loveseat, playing with his little nephew, making him chuckle and laugh and taking so much pleasure from being able to do that with the little guy!
I fell asleep on the couch then about 6:30 and didn't fully wake up until around 10 tonight! Wasted is the word that comes to mind to describe my nap time there! I can't really say I was that tired because I overate today - I had only one helping of everything prepared and a piece of pumpkin pie for dessert. There must really be a lot of truth to that bit about turkey making one very, very sleepy cause it sure did a number on me today!
And here I am now - it's almost 2 a.m. and I'm typing away on my blog so as to have at least one posting up on my site for today! Since I will be the babysitter all day today for the two little ones - and because of that I should really be in bed, sleeping away, but I have to get myself re-tired now so I will be able to go to sleep and still get up early in the morning when Mandy leaves to do her "Black Friday" shopping event with her sister and friends - Deb, Gina and Deb's daughter, Alina! And no, I have no desire - narry a one - to join them at the malls and shop till I drop! Cause in my case the drop part would probably take place within an hour after the shopping trip began! I'm too darned old for that stuff any more is my excuse but really, I just have no desire to be out among the throngs looking at very over-priced (usually) merchandise that even on sale, I probably couldn't afford to purchase anyway!
Hope everyone reading this had as nice a day as I had here and that your table was set with as much bounty -or maybe even more - than was ours so that your physical needs were fed. But even more, I hope your emotional and spiritual needs were fed as well and will continue to have that take place throughout the rest of our time here on earth.
Be thankful now that I am signing off from this posting and going to bed! If I can fall back to sleep fairly quickly that will give me yet another thing for which I can say I will be very, very thankful, won't it?
Nite now! Sleep tight and don't let the bedbugs bite!