- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.TapQ9hQj.dpuf gap creek gourmet: Trader Joe's and Holiday Traditions

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Trader Joe's and Holiday Traditions

My child shares my affinity for Trader Joe's, so we didn't skip a chance to bounce by there on our way home after errands this week.  These are our finds:  Sweet Potato and Corn Tortilla Chips: I ripped them open and let them go for a swim in red pepper hummus as soon as I got home. Some things need not wait on hunger. The Minty Mallows and Cocoa Truffles didn't escape our wrath either.  Creamy, rich, melt in your mouth goodness.  Both of the boxes of heaven would make great Christmas gifts for the adult sweet-o-holic on your list, corporate gift baskets, etc.  The Pear Cinnamon Cider was a whim.  A tasty whim...though not to different than the roadside stand apple cider also in my fridge (but much less expensive).  The warmer than I like weather for this time of year is making it hard to stay in my holly jolly holiday mood, but I'm working on it!

I have to rant: I've been on the phone with SiriusXM customer service twice in two days (my least favorite thing in the world is talking to people in another country about my problem in the US with a product they have only seen on their current computer screen), so SiriusXM is on my boo-boo list for the week.

I'm not getting my Holiday Traditions Channel, which for some, is not a big deal, but for me is a HOLIDAY TRADITION! I live for November 15th when the classic Christmas tunes from the 40's-60's spill out of my satellite radio.

Day One on the phone with customer service:  "You have to be a Premium subscriber and your current model doesn't support Premium."  I cussed and then thought about it and decided to upgrade my system so I called them back the next day.  Day Two: (This is no exaggeration.)  "That Christmas Channel is only available at 3am."  Really?  3am?  Who the heck is listening to Christmas music at 3am?!  Please revisit your assessment.  "Okay. That station is only available online." Problem.  My internet sucks and I can't stream music.  Besides the fact that you are t-totally WRONG as it clearly states on my screen that channel 147 should be playing my holiday music, but channel 147 is not available on my gadget screen. Please reassess.  "Ma'am, I see here our technicians are trying to fix a problem with the older models because they are not receiving the holiday channels.  The problem should be cleared up within 24 hours. And you don't need the Premium service to get that channel."  Much better. And 45 minutes of my life is wasted on the phone with an incompetent person... BAAAA!  Once my Holiday Tradition is restored... I'm a stickler for traditions... obsessively so... I'll be peachy.

I've been sipping on the Box-o-Shiraz... another TJ find.  Of course it's not the best quality wine in the world at $6.99 a box (the equivalent of 3 bottles of wine) but you definitely have the sweetness and tannin of a typical Shiraz...  just not as bold as I typically like. Fine for sipping while waiting on the phone with customer service, or eating leftovers... chatting with friends on the phone, etc...but I wouldn't take it to a friends house for holiday dinner.

So there.

I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving.  I have a split family, so every holiday has multiple stops. We begin the turkey day holiday with the annual cussing of the turkey at my Mom's.  My sister, my daughter and I sit around the kitchen table and watch Mother cram butter under the skin of a giant bird, cover it with Spike seasoning and wrangle it into tinfoil.  Poor turkey.  The boys sit around a fire in the woods and drink beer and who knows what else since girls aren't allowed.

mom wrangling, the bathroom beauty session, my little sister Ashley loves black olives and she's goofy, ready to eat!
We eat pizza and flip through sale mags and review our Christmas lists...And we watch Home for the Holidays.  On Thanksgiving morning I watch the Macy's Parade and shed a tear for my MaMa Plumblee (my dad's mom).  I used to call her every single Thanksgiving day morning to see if she was watching the parade and she'd say "I'm cooking, but it's on!"  I can picture her standing in her small kitchen over her stove stirring while staring at the reflection of her television in the mirror in her den. She loved marching bands.

While mom cooks (she won't allow us to help cause we just get in her way) we take over her bathroom so my sister can fix our hair and put on our makeup... like we're teenagers.  So fun!  Then my in-laws join us and we eat the food it has taken two days to prepare in about fifteen minutes and its the best meal of the year... the men go sit outside and the women sit around and talk about how full we are and pack up leftovers to eat for the rest of the week.

Later in the day, my little family unit will head out for a meal with my Dad's side of the family.

My little, but taller, brother J.
It's a day full... I mean really FULL of eating.... I guess it has to be to keep us running on Black Friday, which we attack with a vengeance. Probably  more out of tradition than necessity, but it's fun to get in the hustle and bustle and we always hit the See's Candy booth at the mall!

Have a great holiday!  I can't wait to share my holiday pics with you!  I'm brining a turkey this weekend.... Butterflied Turkey with Apple-Cranberry Glaze...my favorite recipe from Food Network Mag's November 2009 issue...  Freeze half/eat half.  The holiday gatherings have started and I'm beside myself excited.

What are your holiday traditions?

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