I flew to Maryland for Thanksgiving this year. Back in Iowa, Caroline cooked a turkey and all the fixings for Bob and Warren (who says she is a better cook than me, and I'm absolutely fine with that).
It would be hard to beat my mom in the kitchen. I especially enjoyed the creamed mushrooms, as well as the sugar cookies, orange rolls, and cranberry relish. When I left to fly back to Iowa she was baking fruitcakes. One will arrive by mail soon. I can't wait.
It snowed the day before Thanksgiving. Right before I took this photo there was a clap of thunder.
By the next day, most of the snow had melted. Mom's Christmas cacti are unbelievable.
Dad found this tiny wooden yoke (for a goat?) in a local antique store. I bought it for him as a Christmas present and he hung it over the fireplace.
A second after I took this photo, the white rooster flew up and attacked my head. I screamed and then had a good laugh. The relative who owns the chickens (I will call her "Laura Jensen") wondered about his breed. I put his photo on the Facebook page for Living the Country Life and got hundreds of guesses. He's a crossbreed.
These mushrooms were picked fresh in Oxford, PA, and delivered to Mom's front porch one morning. She made creamed mushrooms and mushroom-pumpkin soup.
Fruitcake production began at 7:00 a.m. Fisher prepared the many pans while Meghan mixed the nuts and fruit. Mom handled the sugar, flour, butter, and eggs. Mom keeps a list on her fridge of who gets each fruitcake. When I called her from Iowa that evening she still had the last batch in the oven.
Close up of the nuts and fruit. The night before, I chopped the dates, figs, pecans, and walnuts.
Raspberry jam and blackberry wine gives the raw dough a purple color.
The final product.
We did our Black Friday shopping at the local estate auction.
I rolled out the refrigerated dough for Mom's thin, crisp sugar cookies, decorated with sprinkles by grandchildren. A tin of these made it to Iowa in my carry-on bag.
We visited a local artist and found this wonderful sculpture on her porch.
My friend Robin came over one night to cook a special mulled cider brew on Mom's stove.
Mom deserves a good book and a nap after the busy week.