I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! It has been a whirlwind week for us and I tried to document as much as I could with pictures. In previous posts I mentioned the family turkey business. They have been doing this for 19 years and I never have posted many pictures of the process. This is also documentation for my children to look at one day, so I tried to capture some of the day's activities on camera. Obviously this was the first year to do turkeys without Papaw. It was more emotional than I thought it would be. Customers that I recognized from previous years would mention Papaw and I would start tearing up. I know it was especially hard for Matt, Mark, and Aunt Lou as well. But we also know Papaw would be giving us choice words if he knew we were down here sulking. Matt and Mark did a great job of carrying on the family tradition of frying almost 475 turkeys and selling out early Tuesday. The kids had a ball hanging out with GiGi and then coming down to the shed where the turkeys were being cooked to help out with all the customers.
As hard as this Thanksgiving was, we are still so thankful for the memories we have of Papaw. If you knew Ralph Tyler, then you know that he was truly one of a kind! We shared more laughs in the short 9 years that I knew him than most people. Cherish the time that you have with one another. You are certainly never guaranteed tomorrow. We didn't have a clue this time last year that Papaw was sick..nor did we at Christmas. I do make a point to talk out loud about him so that the children can hold on to the memories they have.
Matt made the comment last night that he just wanted to be half the dad to his children that his dad was to him. Over the past 8 months, I have seen my husband struggle and rise above many challenges our family has been faced with. He never complained although I know he worried. His strength and dedication to our Lord and our family is evident in everything he does. I am just so proud to be married to a wonderful man that loves us and although he isn't perfect, none of us are, he is making his daddy so proud. I love you Matt!
Here are some pictures behind Matt's parent's home where they fry the turkeys:
Jake and Landry were having a ball on Tuesday hanging out!
This is the walk-in cooler where the turkeys are kept after injection of the Cajun dope the Saturday before they are cooked. They cook all day Tuesday and Wednesday. It took approximately 29 hours to cook all the turkeys.
Here is a batch of them after they have been cooked:
There are 4 fryers, each can cook 4 turkeys and they cook for 55 minutes....so they can cook 16 an hour.
And here is Jake waiting for customers.....
And then Landry Grace is just looking cute!
Here is Matt and our beloved helper "Boo" bagging one of the turkeys. Boo made Landry Grace's prayers one night last week. He was so proud!
Uncle Mark and Boo getting business taken care of.
Tuesday night I came back to Ruston to deliver some turkeys and take the kids to Barnes to get their pictures taken with Santa. What I love about Barnes is the "Santa experience". They can take their time with him and it isn't as rushed. This was the first year Landry Grace sat in his lap and talked to him. They loved it! She does look as though she is petrified of seeing him here and she was. Luckily she snapped out of it!
WARNING!!! J and L were playing in the den on Tuesday morning when Jake came screaming to me. He had jumped off the couch with the roman shade cord around his neck(at least that is what I gathered from his explanation) . This is what resulted. TIE UP YOUR CORDS! I took for granted that my children were old enough to know better. WRONG
These are from Thanksgiving Day. I wish I'd gotten more with family but didn't. It was a tough day.
Landry Grace being silly!! And below they are playing in the tractor out in the country.
Thought this was cute of Jake playing on the farm equipment.
More to post soon. I normally have my Christmas decor out before everyone else but there was no time this year. Tomorrow I plan to conquer that task.