Haute n the Kitchen

Entertaining Inspired by my Travels & Traditions

Mom's Farm

I have a gazillion pics, recipes and notes to post about my Thanksgiving Farm to Table Dinner!

While I had every intention of writing about that tonight, I just settled into a big plush chair by the roaring fire, in my Mom’s amazing farmhouse, and just feel thankful. Not the standard Gobble Day “I am thankful for…”, but truly deeply thankful.

I agreed to be guest chef for a Farm to Table Thanksgiving Dinner at Mom’s B&B, The Martyn House last summer. Invites went out, online registration went live. Tickets were purchased. On November 14th, I canceled. Oh yes I did.

Exhausted from work, birthday celebrations and life in general a two-minute disagreement over the phone regarding the menu resulted in me selfishly saying “I am not going to do it”. Click. Click. Good thing we are family lol.

Next day, I redid the menus and sent them with a shopping list. Game back on. I loaded my tiny car with fresh local Brooklyn Buratta Mozzarella, Italian salamis, San Danielle Prosciutto, Caputo Bakery bread, an 85 lb Weimaraner, books and a sack of wooly warm sweaters, tall boots and a few pashminas. I bought a coffee. I hit the open road, leaving Brooklyn at 12 noon on the dot.

14 hours, 2 coffees, 6 red bulls, 3 tanks of gas, 1 speeding ticket and 886 miles later, I pulled into the farm drive.

The past 6 days have left me thankful for many things that I, in my too busy life, have forgotten a bit about. So here are my Top 10 things I am thankful for right here right now.

1. American Farms

Silos in the Sun

Sula and I enjoyed the open road even more with the passing farm silos standing proud in the fields. We are losing our farms. We are losing our crops. I am thankful for those that continue to work the land. The Martyn House, Mom’s farm, still yields a heavy crop each year of herbs, veggies and fruits. More than Mom can cook with, can or give away even. Abundance from our own soil is something to be thankful for.

The Martyn House

2. Co-Pilots

Sula & Silos

Although she was a very quiet co-pilot and her movements, from front seat to back, seat nearly resulted in me losing control a few times, Sula was a great co-pilot. She didn’t complain about my loud music once and slept like a babe curled in a tiny ball for more than 9 hours. Just when I was losing interest, she would give a good sloppy kiss on the cheek to wake me up. For this, she gets to stay on the farm for an extended vacation.

3. Fans

Book Siginings

Book signing at LL Beanery in Blue Ridge GA. Thanks to Mom for arranging. Thanks to Linda, the proprietor, for having me, thanks to you. Yes you, the ones that bought my book. You made my day.

4. Home Cooked Dinners

Cider Roasted Pork Crown with local apples & garden sage

Something we should never take for granted, even on Thanksgiving. Everything top to bottom was fresh prepared this year. Does it taste different? Can you really tell? Hell Yes. Just sayin. While trying to work off a few of the sticky toffee pudding pounds yesterday I read a great article in Newsweek about food differences and choices among the classes in the US. Not all of us are having home cooked meals. We all should be. I am thankful for mine, but also thankful that I have the power to do something about those that are not.

5. Small Town Traffic


Enough Said.

6. Woman’s Best Friend


My girl is happy. She has Free Pee. No leash. No Sidewalk. No City. She is running the trails every day with me and her two buds Maya & Grace (farm dogs). She chases squirrels. She lies on the porch. She is happy dogz! I am thankful she has this place in her dog life.

Farm Girlz

7. Relaxation

Fire pits Rock

Post Gobble Feast we sat around a big bonfire, turkey glazed eyes staring silently into the flames. No smores, no idle chatter, just fire, sky and fresh air.

Then we went back into the dinner tent and watched a movie on the BIG screen with candles and popcorn and warm woolly blankets and friends around. Sometimes it’s so nice to just sit in the dark and be the passenger for a while.

Dinner & a BIG movie

8. Small Town Lighting of the Tree Ceremonies

Blue Ridge GA had their annual “Light Up” tonite with a live animal nativity, a parade, live music, food and of course the lighting of the town tree. It’s America at its finest to me. It’s how I grew up. It’s real, like it or not. I am thankful for traditions.

The Claus's in for a visit!

9. Angels

Kidz Float!


Children help us remember how to be authentic! The town was filled tonite with little angels, sending letters to Santa, petting the animals, going to Candy Land (ahem,  a big kid ended up there too) and riding in the parade. Big silly smiles say it all. Have a chat with a child sometime. It will remind you of what is really important.

Big Kid Fun

10. Toy Soldiers

The perfect man turns out is not the gingerbread man at all! It’s a toy soldier. He can protect you much better than ole Ginger. He is handsome. Never speaks. Has great posture. Is well dressed. I sort of had a fling with one tonite. He won’t even tell his friends about it. Gotta be thankful for that. LOL.

Boy Toy, hahahaha

I am also thankful this week for sous chefs name Elaine, talented fashion designers named Martha, town Mayors named Linda, fabulous fans named Jim, tech support & graphic design mavens named Rick, old friends named Cooper and most of all one of a kind best friends and mother named JoJo.

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