Adventures in Cranberry Sauce

If I took the time to figure out the statistics, I would guarantee most of my time has been spent in a kitchen.

I grew up in a family of comedic cooks, one of the best being my Grandma Bateman. I have heard from many people who knew my grandmother that I am, without a shadow of a doubt, “Dot’s granddaughter.” My grandmother was a wiz in the kitchen. She could cook and bake and made most dishes from scratch. She was independent, stubborn, charmingly witty, and not afraid to speak her mind. I’m not sure what they mean by “Dot’s granddaughter.” Oh, did I mention she was also sarcastic? *Winks* She even had silver streaks in her hair and oddly placed dimples in her cheeks, and after realizing she is where I got mine from, I no longer dislike my dimples.

Needless to say, growing up in a house full of cooks meant that Thanksgiving was a big deal! I remember spending many Wednesdays before Thanksgiving in the kitchen. Usually with my mom. We would take the homemade bread she made earlier in the week and tear it up to leave it to grow stale overnight for stuffing, and we baked multiple pies and homemade biscuits.

Thursday morning rolled around, and I could be found in front of the television, awaiting my favorite parade! I still love the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!! It’s one of my all-time favorite things! I look forward to it all year long, ensuring I am up and coffee is ready to go, so I don’t miss a second of my beloved parade. I become a little girl all over again every Thanksgiving morning! My all-time favorite Christmas commercial always premiers during the parade, too!

My grandmother always had a decorative tablescape. It didn’t matter if it was a big Thanksgiving dinner with a table surrounded by family or just her and another person sharing sandwiches on paper plates; she still decorated the table, and I always aspired to be that kind of woman. The type of woman who takes the time to decorate the table. A way of saying, “Regardless of who is around my dinner table or what we eat, I appreciate you enough to decorate the table for you.” It’s one of those rare thoughtful things most people don’t stop to think about, but my sleuth eyes always paid close attention.

The one Thanksgiving staple I always found both humorous and so much like my grandmother was her “fancy” cranberry sauce. Earlier, I mentioned how my grandmother was a kitchen wiz, and Dot’s granddaughter is no different. If I ever want to impress you with my cooking skills, I will make you spaghetti and meatballs, and everything on your plate will be made entirely from scratch, including the pasta. Understandably, when I say “fancy,” you think I mean homemade, but that, my friend, is where you are mistaken.

My grandma had this white serving platter with pink and yellow tea roses (I LOVE tea roses) and gold trim. She would decorate the platter with lettuce, rosemary sprigs, or fruit. On the center of this beautifully decorated platter sat a blob of jellied cranberry sauce, still in the shape of the can. It always made me laugh that my grandmother put forth all this effort to decorate a platter that just holds a mold in the form of a can. I made such a fuss over this that it no longer felt like Thanksgiving without the decorated platter. My mom continued the tradition after my grandmother died, and now that my mom is no longer living, I continue the tradition, and I always will.

It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving for many people without the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and it definitely wouldn’t be Thanksgiving for me without it, or the decorated platter of jellied cranberry sauce.

Do you have any Thanksgiving Traditions? Are you a homemade or jellied cranberry sauce person?

Love & life lessons,


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25 Responses to Adventures in Cranberry Sauce

  1. Your Gran sounds fabulous!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Paula Light says:

    I’m a no cranberry sauce type of person, but I love your story!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mmmm…I love cranberry!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jeff says:

    I’m a fan of the can-shaped mold of jellied cranberry sauce. In fact, it’s the only kind I like. As for Thanksgiving traditions . . . the turkey has, for the most part, gone by the wayside. We are having one this year, but only because my SIL is brining one that was gifted her. We prefer ham. But we always have the green bean casserole, the mashed potatoes AND stuffing (all those carbs!!), and corn casserole, as well as too many desserts. Cherry-O Cream Cheese pie and Sopapilla Cheesecake are the standards. Sometimes Pecan Pie, as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Cans of cranberry sauce are almost always on my pantry shelves regardless of the time of year or whether a holiday is approaching. I even occasionally spread some on toast in place of jelly when I make a PB&J. I love the combination of sweetness and tartness!

    I, too, have great memories of spending time in my grandma’s kitchen, watching her make many meals from scratch. I have memories of the garden where we picked green beans, radishes, tomatoes, parsley (and I forget what else) and how she always made meals with whatever produce was in season as the main course. She knew how to stretch food to feed the family without breaking the bank!

    It’s nice to know someone who shares those same kind of memories!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The V Pub says:

    I can’t reconcile delicious Thanksgiving day dinner with what I imagine is written on your shirt. Sorry for the potty humor. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  7. johncoyote says:

    Cranberry sauce and stuffing. My favorite dear Kristian.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. joyroses13 says:

    Your Grandma sounds like a wonderful, fun lady, thanks for sharing. And oh yes on the jelled cranberry with whipcream on top! Not Thanksgiving without it!

    Liked by 1 person

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