The eve of Thanksgiving is my all time favorite day to grocery shop. It is clear that the holidays have begun as you wait for a parking spot and manage the busy aisles and check-out lines. Yes, there are moments of pure madness – but what a wonderful madness it is. I miss that day back home.

And today is our day of giving Thanks for all that this amazing life has offered us. We are thankful for our family and friends both near and far, for the opportunity to be coming home very soon for a holiday visit, for our health and wellbeing, for the breath we receive every moment, for our connection to Spirit and Goddess that is alive inside of us and all around us, for all the living creatures on this planet, and for this life given to us to behold, cherish, and enjoy. On this day we remember to say, Thank You.

As I am far from home, feeling a bit homesick on this special day, I remember the special foods we prepare create a ceremony. Our day of feasting is postponed a couple of weeks until we return to Minnesota, but we are remembering and giving many thanks on this day.

I remember my first attempt at preparing the Thanksgiving Dinner in 2007 while living in Santa Fe, New Mexico. We returned home to Minnesota only for Christmas, so we would be spending Thanksgiving with friends in Santa Fe. Seven of us gathered on that day, all contributing to the Holiday Table. In the role of host, I made the turkey. After much research I determined to try the water and salt brine method of preparing the turkey wherein you mix gallons of water with the salt and herb mixture and pour into a large turkey bag with the turkey and refrigerate for a couple of days. I vividly remember while pouring in the final drops of water into the bag, wondering how on earth I was going to drain out all of this water without flooding our kitchen floor. It must have been intuition.

On that Thanksgiving morning I woke at 5am to get all of the preparations for the meal started. The first job on the list was getting that 16 pound turkey out of that bag of salty, briny water. I started to open the bag while it was still on the counter, not in the sink and the inevitable happened.

The next thing I remember I am shrieking and standing in raw turkey brining water and a bewildered Gabe shouting from the bedroom, “What happened?!” He jumped out of bed at the sound of a tidal wave hitting our kitchen. Yes, it is true, salt water everywhere. In all of the kitchen drawers and cupboards and the kitchen floor. So with all of the jobs I had on my to-do list that morning, cleaning every nook and cranny in my kitchen was suddenly at the top! It was a good thing I woke up at 5am. Together, Gabe and I cleaned up the mess, including every single utensil, pot and pan. It required great mental strength to not have a total and complete melt down. But you know what, to this day, that was the best turkey I have ever made. And now, I do a much easier, dry brining method for my turkey.

May your day be blessed with family, friends, and joyous feasting.