Thursday, November 21, 2013

14 Days of Thanksgiving - day 7

Turkey Place Cards
Turkey Trivia

Grumpy Old Men
Description from IMDB:

John and Max are elderly men living next door to each other. They're continuously arguing and insulting each other, and have been this way for over 50 years. One day, Ariel, moves into the street. Both men are attracted to her, and their rivalry steps up a gear.

Honestly, it has been a rather long time since I last saw this movie. I don't really remember it having anything to do with Thanksgiving, but it came up on several lists of Thanksgiving movies.

Gracias The Thanksgiving Turkey

In this fun book, Miguel's dad, who works as a truck driver, sends Miguel a turkey to fatten up for Thanksgiving. Miguel names the turkey Gracias. As the days go by, Miguel & Gracias become friends. Can Miguel prevent Gracias from becoming dinner or will he have to eat his new friend? Some Spanish words are woven throughout the story, with a glossary in the back. We really enjoyed this one & my son enjoyed trying to guess the meanings of the Spanish words (he hasn't started learning Spanish, yet, but his knowledge of Latin helped).

Possible Activities:
Learn Thanksgiving related words in Spanish
Come up with a turkey-free Thanksgiving menu
An acrostic poem (choose a Thanksgiving related Spanish word)

Ankle Soup
This is a fun read told from the viewpoint of Carlos, a French Bulldog. His owner takes him to the parade & then to Grand Central Station to meet some of her family & go celebrate the holiday. Carlos tells us about all the people & animals he sees, as well as the things he smells. Since he is so short, all the people are described by their shoes, & legs.

The Thanksgiving Book

This is not a read-aloud book. It starts with 'A Brief History of Thanksgiving in America.' In this chapter, it quickly mentions that harvest festivals have been a part of almost every culture. It then moves on to discuss the so-called "First Thanksgiving," where it tells the typical & incorrect version of the pilgrims politely inviting the Natives to share a feast with them as thanks for all their help. Honestly, I didn't finish the chapter. The next chapter, 'Thanksgiving Psalms & Prayers' is quite short. It does include some prayers from various Native tribes, which is kind of nice.
The next chapter, 'The Thanksgiving Feast' is full of recipes. There are recipes for turkey, stuffing, vegetable dishes, desserts, even crab legs. It does argue that basting the turkey is very important, which is simply untrue. Basting doesn't affect the moistness of the bird or its flavor, and basting it every 15-20 minutes (as is suggested in this book) will make it take longer, cool the oven every time you open it, and waste time you could be spending on the other dishes you need to make or with your family. Next we get 'Thanksgiving Stories and Poems'. These are short enough that they could be read aloud. After that comes 'After-Dinner Games'. This chapter contains 5 group games. According to the book, many of them became popular in the late 1800s, so be prepared for some old-fashioned games. The final chapter is 'Thanksgiving Sing-Alongs,' just in case you want to gather round the piano & sing songs of Thanksgiving.
This would be a book to consider if you were planning an old-fashioned holiday. I, personally, would skip the first chapter, but that's because I'm not a big fan the 'First Thanksgiving' myth.

For today's recipes, let's look at breads:

Creamed Corn Cornbread
Skillet Cornbread with Figs, Feta, and Rosemary
Herb-Topped Sweet Potato Biscuits
Crème Fraîche Biscuits
Irish Soda Bread
Pumpkin Spice Bread