Black Friday: A Poem

I do not like Black Friday, sir

I do not like the brrr, grrr, whirr

I do not like to fight over socks,

I do not like to get crammed in a box

store,  you will not see me at the Mall

I do not like it, no, not at all.

The crazy, scrambling, hunter’s race

Doesn’t fit my ambling, gatherer’s pace

I like to feel, I like to sniff

I like to take my time and if

I take more time than Sally and Sam

It’s the way I shop, and it works for me, ma’am.

So you will not find me camped outside the store

You will not find me standing at dawn at the door

You will not find me wedged in the mall’s lot

Or crammed in traffic, with wares newly-bought.

For I do not like Black Friday, friend.

Well, except online shopping maybe – they’ll send.

–original poem by Karen “Wingoov” Molenaar Terrell

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Karen’s Kitchen: Drifts of Flour and Cold Rolls and a Happy Thanksgiving, Eh?

First, I will don my way cool apron that my friend from Canada sent me, and that has the Canadian word “Eh?” written on it in really flamboyant letters.  Of course, putting on the apron isn’t going to actually keep me from having flour all over me by the end of my culinary adventure – but I think I look sort of cute in it. And that’s the important thing.

Next I will haul the turkey out of the fridge, where it’s been thawing since Sunday. I will dice home-grown onion and garlic, apples from our orchard (yes, apples – using apples in turkey stuffing is a Wingoov tradition – because I, traditionally and invariably, FORGET TO BUY CELERY!!! and then I find myself scrambling around the kitchen, looking for something crunchy I can throw in the dressing…and…yeah…well…apples…and, true to tradition, I just realized that I, once again, FORGOT THE CELERY!!!), and toasted Dave’s Killer Whole Grain Bread (the bread will be toasted, not Dave).  I’ll sprinkle sage and rosemary over everything that’s within arm’s reach (this includes the dog, the cats, the sons…).  Then I will yank out the turkey’s innerds, and replace it with toasted Dave, and put the whole shebang in a pre-heated 325 degree oven.

Pie-making comes next. I love making pies. There’s something kind of comforting about pie-making. I especially love making pies when there’s rain pounding against the windows, and a fire in the woodstove – the rain adds a certain ambiance, and it looks like we might be getting a lot of ambiance today.  I’ll combine the flour (2 cups), and butter (2 tbs, plus 2/3 cup) and water (6 tbs) in a bowl, and then grab half of it and roll it out on a floured cutting board, and lay it in the bottom of my glass pie plate.  The bottom crust will be a picture of perfection – it will be seamless and smooth.  Next, I’ll put the frozen blackberries that I picked last summer into the pie shell. I’ll add 4 or 5 tbs of flour, and 6 tbs of sugar, and loosely mix the pie’s filling.  Now it’s time to roll out the top crust and place it on top of the pie. The top crust is the crust that everyone will see. It will have holes and tears in it. That is another Wingoov tradition. Once I’ve got my holy crust attached to the pie, I’ll lightly sprinkle sugar over the top, to make the pie look sort of sparkly when it’s done.

By the time we sit down for our feast, our plates will be full of turkey, stuffing,  mashed sweet potatoes with butter and cinnamon, and cranberry sauce, and we’ll be half-way through dinner before someone – probably one of the sons – will ask me about the dinner rolls.  And they will either be burning in the oven, or still sitting in the cupboard. It is another Wingoov tradition.

I love Thanksgiving. It is my favorite of all holidays – a time when we celebrate gratitude for all the good in our lives.

May your day be filled with a feast of love and laughter.  And don’t forget the dinner rolls.

– Karen Molenaar Terrell

(originally published in 2011)