Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Top 5 ways to Spruce up your Thanksgiving

"Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." 
Thessalonians 5:18

I know that everyone is talking about this crazy Black Friday stuff starting on Thanksgiving day this year...and I just wanted to throw in my 2 cents.  It is messed up.  I know Thanksgiving is not as awesome as Christmas, but really people...this is getting ridiculous.  Each year I feel like we keep pushing Thanksgiving farther and farther down the totem poll, and soon it may not even exist!  Maybe Thanksgiving is considered lame because most people think it is just about a turkey, just like they think Christmas is about Santa and presents...and let's face it...a whole day dedicated to a large bird or fat old man...yeah - that is lame.  Nobody wants to invest time and energy into something as non substantial as that.

Is it really asking too much of us to take some time and be thankful, grateful, and count your blessings?  In scripture there are so many quotes about giving thanks and praise to God for the things you do have, that it is obvious how much God wants us to have a spirit of Thanksgiving in our lives.  It is so easy to get overwhelmed by the chaos of the weeks leading up to Christmas, and we really take for granted how awesome this chill time of Thanksgiving is and what a gift it is to us all.  Take the time to sit with your loved ones, be grateful for what you do have, thank God for all the blessings in your life, take a deep breath and just appreciate all around you with a full heart of Thanksgiving.

"And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." 
Colossians 3:15-17

Top 5 ways to Spruce up your Thanksgiving: 

1.  Don't be afraid to play around with your tried and true pie recipes.
One of my favorite pies is my apple cranberry pie - which came about when I was making apple pie and cranberry sauce at the same time and decided to throw some cranberries into my pie.  Boom - deliciousness!!!  Whatever your traditional apple pie is, throw in 1 cup of fresh cranberries (rinse and cut them in 1/2 first).  Adds a nice tang to your pie!

Also - instead of your traditional pumpkin pie - try shaking things up and making a gingersnap crust instead...I plan on making this one from Alton Brown this year!

2.  Get fancy with the crust designs.
Martha Stewart has a nice little slide show to give you some ideas

Also - get creative with this!  Look around your house and find something fun to stamp your crust with.  If you have crazy whisks lying around like a vinaigrette, twirl, ball, or dough whisk use those!  Have fun with it!

3.  Make homemade marshmallows for your sweet potato casserole recipe!  
Yeah, you heard me right!  I am trying this out myself - will let you know how it goes!  Going to use this smitten kitchen recipe - looks so yummy!

4.  Make your own Cranberry sauce - without refined sugar!
Not that the canned jellied stuff is gross - because honestly I love it...but making homemade cranberry sauce is just so divine!  This version doesn't even call for white sugar!!!!  Thanks to Pioneer Woman for this winner!

5.  Make a Leaf garland and have all your guests write something they are thankful for on each leaf.  Currently I am at work and my niece and I are working on this using random office supplies : )  OR you can make this really sweet "Give thanks" Banner....oh yeah, wicked awesome!

Have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!
Eat your heart out!


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