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Monday, November 24, 2014

Thanksgiving "Fowl" Up

Article by Linda Swift

We had just moved to Alabama a few months before Christmas. My husband returned to Kentucky to bring our daughter home from college for the holidays and he also brought my widowed mother, his mother and her husband. They were to arrive in the early afternoon, so I had the morning to prepare the turkey and dressing.

Not bothering to dress while cooking, I wore a faded chenille robe, floppy houseshoes, no makeup, and had my hair in rollers. Things were going well as I attended other tasks while the bird basted in a plastic brown-n-serve bag. 

The stove timer alerted me that the bird was done and I removed the roasting pan and placed it on the stovetop. I was eager to get those succulent juices into the bowl of dressing I was mixing, so I attempted to move the pan to the counter across the room. It was heavier than I anticipated, and the bird started sliding then ended up on the kitchen floor. The bag burst and turkey broth spilled onto the floor and my fuzzy slippers while I stood in horrified shock. Then I went into action, grabbed a roll of paper towels, and mopped up as much as I could. I managed to get the turkey back onto the pan and hoisted it to the counter, lamenting the loss of that essential broth.

While I mopped, I had a few choice words for Tom Turkey and the bag he browned in as I tried to figure out the best way to save the day. At least, this disaster had occurred while I was alone in the house and still had plenty of time to clean up the kitchen and myself. It was a moment before I heard the sound of a car horn in the driveway above my dark mutterings.

And just then, my husband stuck his head in the kitchen door and said with a wide grin, "Surprise. We got here early."

"Go drive around the block!" I snarled, as he crossed the kitchen with open arms to greet me with a kiss. Instead, he slipped on the still-slick floor and clutched at me to steady himself, bringing us both down in a tangle. And we were thrashing about like two lovers in the throes of passion when the others appeared in the doorway.

"Don't come in," I yelled.

"Well, did you ever?" my mother-in-law said to my mother as they stopped in the doorway in shocked disbelief.
I finally disentangled myself and struggled up, while I tried to explain the situation. My daughter led her grandparents to the front door while my husband got a mop to clean the floor. I went to greet the family properly, then got dressed and returned to cope with the situation. I found some canned chicken broth in the pantry and my mother mixed the dressing while I grappled with the bird. He was nice and brown and looked rather regal when I placed him on a platter.

"Did you remember to take the giblet bag out of it?" My M-I-L asked as she eyed the bird with suspicion.

"Oh, yes, I did." I would have thought she'd forgotten that incident from my early marriage by now.
M-I-L made slaw while my daughter set the table. The men brought in the luggage and presents while we finished dinner preparations. 

I reminded myself that all's well that end's well as we sat at table savoring the holiday feast. Though, I couldn't help but notice – my M-I-L was eating dressing without any turkey.

Linda's debut story for our Victory Tales Press Romance Anthologies appears in the  
2014 Christmas Collection.

 A Season of Miracles

As John and Caroline keep a vigil for days at Danny's bedside, a close relationship develops between them. John longs for a family and wants to make Caroline and Danny his own. Will his wish come true in this season of miracles?


Also available in print.

This Time Forever

~ Civil War Romance ~ Clarissa Wakefield remains to work in her home, transformed into a Confederate hospital when the Union invades Tennessee. Philip Burke, a Union prisoner, barters medical skills to avoid prison. As opposing armies fight, Philip and Clarissa wage their own personal battles. Caught in the passions of love and war, will they be faithful to their vows or listen to their hearts? 

This novel was chosen as the basis for the short film, Clarissa's War, currently being filmed.

Please sample the first two chapters free.
and at other online bookstores

Also available in print.

Please visit Linda's Social Media sites for information about all her books and stories.
Website:  http://www.lindaswift.net/
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/linda.swift.359
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Linda-Swift/e/B004PGXCTQ/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0
Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/lindaswift2


  1. Hi Linda,
    I am still chuckling over this story. Reminds me of the time our house was full with all the relatives from both sides and my very PROPER S-I-L took the Parker House rolls out of the oven. Her attempt to help out. Two rolled off the baking sheet and onto the floor. Before I could pick them up to put in the scraps, she scooped them up and tossed them in the bread basket without missing a beat. After she dumped in the other rolls, she turned to me and put her fingers over her mouth. Then she whispered, "Did I really just do that?" She and I had never shared so much fun as we did that day with her winking at me across the table as we wondered who got the dropped rolls. Needless to say, she and I ate dressing and no rolls. The floor was clean and no one got sick, or knew until much later, thank goodness. LOL
    I hadn't thought of this in years and I thank you for sharing your "fowl" up and bringing it to mind. We lost this S-I-L to cancer a few years back and this memory is special.

  2. Rebecca, I'm still laughing at your story. And I hope you got some mileage out of it in your own writing as I did mine in Full Circle.
    I wish a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving to you and all who are reading this.

  3. Good save, Linda. You should have been awarded a metal for that one.
    I really liked This Time Forever. Wonderful story.
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope you have no incidents to report after this holiday. May it all run smooth as silk.

  4. I suppose we've all had a disaster just before company arrived. But I can safely say I never rolled my hair in those huge rollers! Love the pic--I think it...almost...looks just like you. I hope your Thanksgiving is super this year--it should be with all that's come your way--your plate is full...your cup runneth over. Happy Thanksgiving.

  5. Lolololololol. Sorry, I can barely type for laughing. I could see and your MIL, hands on hips, as you and hubby thrashed about on the floor. Excuse me while I laugh again. Lolololololol. Oh-h! My side hurts.

    One Thanksgiving my Bird was locked in the garage and Son-in-law was in Timbuktu with my keys. Two years ago the eve of Thanksgiving my oven locked on my Sweet Potato Casserole, (my main contribution to the meal at my sister's). The next day it finally unlocked.itself around noon. No matter what we researched and tried by the manual we could not open the oven door. Needless to say, we purchased another range before the next Thanksgiving.

  6. Thanks for commenting, Sarah. And this Thanksgiving, for the first time in a long while, I won't be doing TG dinner. But Christmas will be a big celebration for the family in Florida. And mor thanks for your kind words about my Civil War novel.

  7. Celia, I will agree the woman in the picture above looks a lot like me except for the chubby hands. And yes, I've used all kinds of hair rollers in my day. I have bony fingers. And the old lady serving turkey on a platter resembles me, too, sad to say.

  8. Laurean, I'm glad you enjoyed my true story. And you have had quite a few disasters of your own. I hope you have been able to use them in your books as I have. If we can't laugh at ourselves and let others laugh with us, the world would be a very glum place.


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