This year's Thanksgiving plans went through some twists and turns before we all finally ended up at Cracker Barrel together for lunch, but that definitely didn't take any of the fun out of it! My family had originally planned to meet at my brother's house (where Beth was going to cook a delicious organic turkey from the CSA they subscribe to), but then Hurricane Sandy hit and Jon got sent off to New Jersey for a month to help with the recovery. We didn't want to leave Beth with the job of cooking for everyone and taking care of a two year old on her own, so we all decided that we'd meet up somewhere and let someone else do the cooking.
Cracker Barrel is crazy busy on Thanksgiving Day, and there's a bit of a longer wait if you have a larger party. Darren and I have gone by ourselves before and only had to wait 20 minutes or so for a table, but it took an hour for our party of 8 to be seated. Totally to be expected when there's a big crowd, and it gave everyone a little "Sophie time" (that's Dad browsing toys with her above).
It also gave Mom a chance to shop for a little present for Sophie Clare, who was quite exuberant as she opened it.
What little girl wouldn't love an adorable pink sock monkey purse?!?!? :)
The peg game was awesome for keeping her occupied until the food came. And if you're wondering why I mostly have photos of Sophie here, it's because she's one of the few members of the family who doesn't get skittish around the camera.
After the food arrived (totally delicious, by the way!), I had to put the camera away because there simply wasn't room to have it out among all the plates and glasses and people. I did manage to snag a couple of shots of the lovely food before putting it away, though.
This was pretty much the best group shot I could arrange in such a crowded spot (there was a wall directly behind me), but I think it turned out okay. Dad grabbed my camera after I took the first one so that I could be in one of the photos, too.
And, even though we were eating out, there were still plenty of leftovers, including pumpkin pie for dessert. It was like having all the best parts of Thanksgiving- the family, the food, and the refrigerator full of goodies the next day- without having to actually cook it ourselves!
Back at Beth's house she did have some yummy desserts for us, and we all hung out for a while and browsed Christmas sales (I did a little sneaky shopping on my iPhone).
We'll all get together again at Christmas when everyone comes to our house for the day. I'm so looking forward to it!