Thursday, November 24, 2011


Here in southern California where I live, our temperature is 64ยบ, it's bright but gloomy out.  Just the way I like it.  If going out, we might take a jacket along in the car "just in case" the weather turns cooler.

I've been sitting here thinking of the traditional Thanksgiving dinners we had when I was growing up.  When we were a family of five living in Chicago, and before my parents divorced.  My father fashioned a big plywood board over our kitchen table to make it over sized and have it fit not just our family but also the friends my parents would invite for dinner.

1983 Thanksgiving at Mom's

Mom got out the nice tablecloth, her "good dishes," the silverware, crystal water goblets, wine glasses, special serving platters, etc.  It was up to my sister and me to set the table.  Depending on how many people for dinner, my mother would either cook a 23 pound (or maybe larger) turkey or she might make a smaller turkey and a ham.  Of course mashed potatoes and gravy, mashed sweet potatoes with marshmallows, a vegetable, biscuits, a dish with olives, celery, radishes and maybe pickles too.  A plate of jelled cranberry sauce (when I got older, it was sometimes me who sliced the canned sauce into "disks" and fanned them around the plate).  Oh I almost forgot, there would be a jar of spicy cinnamon-apple flavor, red crab apples. We'd put them in one of the fancy glass dishes.  These were a favorite of mine.

My parents and in-laws have all passed away.  I now have my mother's "good dishes" and used them in the past on Thanksgiving.  But not this year.  My married daughter now lives in Austin, TX.  She and her husband are having a house full of friends and co-workers over for dinner.  My brother lives in Reno, my sister is house sitting, elsewhere.  So this year its just our oldest daughter, my husband and myself for dinner.  We're going out to a nice restaurant.

Maybe I'll bring the dishes out for Christmas when there will be more people for dinner.

©2011, copyright Gayle Ficarra Wolcott

Monday, November 21, 2011

Facebook presence

I'm very excited to announce that my local genealogy society is on Facebook!  Please check out Ventura County Genealogical Society.  I'm one of the administrators and I'm looking forward to keeping this page updated with current genealogy related news.

©2011, copyright Gayle Ficarra Wolcott