Tuesday, December 29

hosting our first thanksgiving

The past two months have been a whirlwind.  I've loved a lot of it... we've had some great times in the new house and really celebrated with friends and family.  

This was our first year hosting Thanksgiving.. and boy was it a wild one.  We had about 13 people over, and cooked enough for a small army.  This was also my first time making a few dishes from scratch.  Overall I would say it was a success!  And I didn't burn anything!
I started with fresh cranberry sauce the weekend before, 11/21/15

Knocked out two pecan pies that weekend as well...

And then the Wednesday before, I started on my Oreo turkeys.. a little creepy at this point.

The Man got the turkey ready for the smoker.. lots of butter, brine, and seasoning happening here.

Our oreo turkeys were a-dor-able! I loved my little flock.  These were so easy to make and were a perfect break from all the cooking I had going on that required concentration.

Like my first ever from scratch cheesecake!  

We had the buffet setup and ready for everyone to dig in!

It's just not a Southern Holiday table without deviled eggs and pear salad.

Our menu included:  two turkeys, fresh cranberry sauce, two styles of dressing (my MIL and my grandma's recipe), gravy, fresh creamed corn, green beans, two sweet potato souffles (one with pecans, one with marshmallows), rolls, a cheese ball, a multitude of desserts, watergate salad, and the previously pictured deviled eggs and pear salad.

We had both smoked and fried turkey.. it was so good!
A few hours later, I finally had room for some cheesecake.  I'm so glad it turned out as well as it did!

 We had bought a bean bag toss game on a whim when we moved into the new house, and though I don't have the photos to document it -  it turned out to be a HIT!  We set it up on the front lawn and there were some serious competitions going on. It worked out well since the day was sunny and warm (we are in the South) and I think it gave everyone a break from their food coma. 

I hope everyone had a good time.  It definitely made me feel like we've got a good chance at hosting again in the future.  I mean, could you turn down this little cutie?
I didn't think so!