As we all know, I'm not one for skipping Holidays. It frustates the heck out of me when I walk into a store that's all fancied up for Christmas/Yule/Chanukka/Festivus and all other holidays on or around Winter Solstice before we've even hit Halloween (or even Patriot Day in some cases!).
But I'm breaking my cardinal rule and skipping ahead a holiday. This skipping, however is necessary and is only preparatory. Heaven knows I would never fully gloss over Halloween/Samhain! But poor Thanksgiving really gets short shrift anyway, being sandwiched right between Halloween and the Soltstice holidays.
Why start thinking about Thanksgiving so far ahead of time? Honestly, I should have been thinking about it a few months ago and I totally dropped the ball. The answer is simple: TURKEY!
Thanksgiving is a holiday that supposedly centers around giving thanks, but we all know what it really centers around, at least culturally: Meat. Turkey meat, to be more precise.
Just because turkey is a less popular poultry meat than chicken in no way means they escape the sick horror of factory farms. Every year, hundreds of millions of turkeys are raised in sickening, tourturous conditions in factory farms.
I, for one, cannot stomach the idea of sitting around a warm family table discussing all the blessings in life that we are greatful for only to celebrate those blessings by feasting on an animal that lived its entire life in painful, sickening, deplorable conditions. That is just simply WRONG.
But I really don't think I can get the fam on board with a meat free Thanksgiving this year, and I also don't see it as necessary. We still eat meat occassionally. Probably about 3 times a month. But we restrict ourselves from humanely raised meat from local farms.
So I set out on a mission to find a humanely raised turkey for our Thanksgiving feast, and it looks like we're in luck. I found this awesome site: Eat Wild. Eat wild provides state by state information (with maps) on TONS of humane farms, many of which will even ship meat to you. Not only was I able to find turkey, I also found pork, beef, chicken, eggs (not that we need any), and goats. And I'm sure that's just scratching the surface. It is a GREAT SITE.
I highly recommend everyone check out Eat Wild. You might just be surprise by what you find in your area. I know I was. Before I found Eat Wild, I only knew of one or two local humane meat producers, turns out there are tons.
Now, in all honesty, I should have started looking for a turkey earlier in the year. Some of the farms start taking reservations for the turkeys back in June when the turkeys are babies. But I've sent emails to a number of farms to see what's available. And if I can't find anything in the state, I can always click Eat Wild's "Farms That Ship" link and find a farm that might be able to ship me a humanely raised turkey.
Where are YOU getting your turkey this year? Or are you even having a turkey? How are you going to make your Thanksgiving a day of thanks not just for you, but for all the animals and humans who played a role in bringing your food to your table?
And be sure to check out the recipes site for lots of Thanksgiving deliciousness before and after the day!