Thursday, November 26, 2009

Talking Turkey

It's funny to think about the things that end up as traditions. I seriously doubt the Pilgrims put little marshmallows on top of their yams but a Thanksgiving table today hardly seems right without them, right? They flavor our memories, along with green bean casserole, pumpkin pie and the never ending argument about which is better -- cornbread dressing or breadcrumb stuffing. And at our house, no Thanksgiving would be complete without hand-shaped turkey cookies.

In fact, making and decorating sugar cookies spans all holidays around here. It started when my four year old daughter was 18 months old and a TV commercial for Pilsbury Christmas cookies caught her attention. She giggled, clapped and squealed at the display of multicolored treats ... then sobbed when the commercial ended. The next day we made a big batch of cookies with drippy globs of toddler-applied frosting. It was so much fun we made more cookies on New Years Eve, too. (Those candy sprinkles look a lot like confetti.) Valentine's Day sent us out to buy heart shaped cookie cutters. Easter? Of course, we had to have bunny cookies. There have been St. Patrick's Day clovers and Fourth of July flags and Halloween pumpkins. We even tried to make little worlds for Earth Day but they ended up looking more like paint splattered balls. Hey, the technique worked for Jackson Pollack! Maybe he decorated sugar cookies with his mom, too.

May you enjoy a Thanksgiving filled with traditions that comfort, amuse, enliven and inspire -- and by all means, feel free to add your own. This year my daughter decided that in addition to the gaggle of turkey cookies we should make a peacock. (It's the one on the lower left of the picture.) You know, I'll bet when those Pilgrims started cooking that first Thanksgiving someone probably said, "Here's an idea ... let's put marshmallows on the yams!"

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

16 comments:

Shanna said...

Great cookies!!! Have a very, very Happy Thanksgiving!

TheChieftess said...

Our new Thanksgiving tradition is to have our Thanksgiving dinner early...we had ours a week and a half ago...and then we go away for our anniversary weekend!!! Our anniversary is Nov. 2 and conflicts yearly with the opening of hunting season...the kids have multiple family stops for Thanksgiving and they were always looking at their watches and skipping out...we discovered a few years back that if we have T-day a week early, we had a better family gathering and no one was tired of turkey!!! So now we're sailing on the high seas of the Biscayne Bay on our way to Vigo Spain (rockin' and a rollin'!)...the internet is iffy and expensive so I won't be joining you much til we get back!!! Love the turkey hand cookies Laurie!!!

Judy Williams said...

Tradition is what makes us sane in a crazy world. It's something we can always count on. It's those things that we know to be true.

I always yearn to try a new recipe or add a new ingredient to the dressing, but I know I'd hear "but, Mom, what about the tradition?" so each year I crank out the same things with maybe a new one on the side.

As Tevye, the main character in Fiddler on the Roof said "How do we keep balance? That I can tell you in one word: TRADITION
."

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.

Tanya said...

I love those little turkey cookies, adorable, what an awesome tradition! And I really enjoyed your post as well! Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Mister Earl said...

Wonderful cookies, Laurie. At first they reminded me of my first baseball glove, which was completely flat. You needed to use both hands because that glove could not catch a thing on its own!

Chieftess: I love that you celebrate Thanksgiving on another day. When my niece was young, my mom would tell me, "Were celebrating Passover on Saturday instead of Wednesday because Alissa wants to be able to study." So a friend of mine would always rib me saying, "Does your family celebrate Labor Day on December 23?" "Are you celebrating Hanukah during spring break?"

And oy vey, Judy, I never thought of Tevye as a Pilgrim!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. Did you know that the first Thanksgiving menu probably consisted a lot of fish and eel?

WV: rerowls - holidays that are celebrated on other than their intended days.

Leif Hagen said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Laurie, to you and yours! I love the cookies - what a great family tradition!

Sharon said...

Happy Thanksgiving Laurie!! Great cookies. Enjoy!

altadenahiker said...

And let's put onion rings on the green bean casserole!

These turkeys are fabulous, especially the peacock turkey. Happy Thanksgiving.

Dixie Jane said...

As your Mom I remember many, many Thanksgivings, especially the one when I made you your first long dress. Like Judy said, tradition prevails. But I like it all and having family and friends around to hug. Judy has taken over dinner where I left off but I did make a mincemeat pie this year. Only Judy and I will probably eat it. The cookies are adorable and you have started your own tradition. Missing you and your family. But you all reside in my heart. Also Happy Thanksgiving to all your blogger friends that I have never seen but feel like I know.

Judy Williams said...

I feel as if the regular bloggers are just an extension of my family. Maybe we can start a tradition here to do every Thanksgiving. I'm trying to come up with it.

wf: beadre

thoa little drop of sweat that appear on your upper lip after cooking over the stove for 3 hours

Heather said...

Cute cookies, and what a fun tradition! Happy Thanksgiving!

Petrea said...

The cookies are darling and your little girl is growing up with happy memories.

Margaret said...

Go away! You did not make those cookies! Adorable!

Laurie said...

Hi everybody,

Chieftess! I can't believe you checked in from your cruise. Have a wonderful adventure!

Mister E, I love what your friend said.

I hope everyone had a grand and overstuffed Thanksgiving. Most of our cookies are now gone!

til next time...

Kaori said...

Maybe you can give us the recipe? Those turkeys look great! Happy Thanksgiving!

Virginia said...

OMG, Send me one of Sweet Pea's cookies NOW. They are just the best. I love how we all celebrate according to our faith, our culture, our family dynamics ( oooh I can relate to that one big time). Love ya L. and hope you had a good one.
V