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Happy Thansgiving
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Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you are spending time enjoying the family gatherings that surround the holidays. If you have not started your holiday shopping, remember that time, instead of expensive gifts, may be exactly what your family needs this year. Create your own traditions that exemplify your values. Time spent playing board or card games together; going to a movie or enjoying a sin-a-long can help define the holidays in a way that is meaningful to you.
If one of your goals during the holiday season is to teach your children that we are all part of a larger community, consider delivering meals on wheels or visiting a shut in. remember that during and just following the holiday season are the most difficult time for almost all individuals who are not with loved ones. Levels of depression rise alarmingly during this time. This is especially true if someone has lost a loved one or has experienced other stressful events such as a divorce or the loss of a job. Take time to celebrate your family during this holiday season!

Avoiding Food Disasters
When company is coming for dinner it always seems like Murphy’s Law kicks in. Keeping a good sense of humor through it all will help. Here are a few food disaster remedies that may help you make it through the holidays.
When the sauce is too thick, stir in more liquid a tablespoon at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. Just a tablespoon at a time prevents you from having to fix the opposite problem. When guests arrive late, turn the oven down to warm and keep the meat and potatoes covered with foil. Turn vegetables off and remove the cover to avoid overcooking. Quickly reheat to serve.
When there is just too much seasoning in a dish, add more food or liquid to dilute it. Or try to absorb the extra with a peeled potato. When the holiday cookies seem to be drying out, add a slice of bread to the container to restore moistness. When you forget to chill a fruit salad or beverage, stick it in the freezer for 20 minutes. Be sure to set the timer!
And finally, when a food burns to the bottom of the pan, place a slice of bread on top of the food and let stand, covered, about five minutes to absorb the burned smell. Then dump out whatever comes easily without scraping.
Donna Krug is the Family and Consumer Science Agent with K-State Research and Extension – Barton County. You may reach her at (620)793-1910 or