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Celebrating a Montgomery Thanksgiving

by The Hat Team

Ode to Thanksgiving

thanksgivingTo our national birds
The American Eagle
The Thanksgiving Turkey
May one give us peace in all our states
And the other a piece for all our plates

What did the Pilgrims eat on Thanksgiving

It is commonly believed that the first actual celebration of the harvest and blessings from God took place in Plymouth in 1621. The festivities lasted three days and included feasting, entertainment, and competitions. For more about the holiday’s history!

Who Doesn’t Love a Parade?

The first annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade took place in 1924. That first year, it was known as the Macy's Christmas Parade. It was created to launch the holiday shopping season. Today, the parade is attended by an estimated three million people each year. Approximately 44 million people around the country watch the parade on television.

Other large parades which commemorate the holiday are the IKEA Thanksgiving Parade in Philly, McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade in Chicago, and the UBS Parade Spectacular in Stamford.

Find holiday-themed wallpaper or screensavers here!

Want some holiday music to enhance your gathering? Get free, fast downloads of 30+ songs.

If you want to turn your life around, try thankfulness.”  …. Gerald Good

Thanksgiving Around the World

Thanksgiving is essentially a harvest related festival. It celebrates communal harmony.

Canada celebrates Thanksgiving on the second Monday in the month of October.

India also has a number of harvest related festivals in different regions.

Other Thanksgiving traditions around the world.

Money-saving tips for Thanksgiving--something we would all be thankful for!

1. Have a BYOD (bring your own dish) celebration. Asking your guests to contribute to the meal is a great way to save on expenses--and on your own cooking time.

2. Keep it simple. Cut down on the number of side dishes you have. A festive table doesn’t have to be extravagant.

pumpkins3. Serve boxed wine or large bottles of soda. Cans and individual bottles are far more expensive.

4. Use natural items for decorations--leaves, fruit, squash, gourds, pumpkins, and dried flowers from your garden. A large candle and colorful fruit make a lovely centerpiece. Visit a dollar store for inexpensive holiday items.

5. Check store ads for sales and coupons before you shop for Thanksgiving Day goodies.

6. If time and your schedule allow, bake it yourself. Baking all your pies at one time will also save energy costs.

7. Plan ahead for using the leftovers. In addition to the tradition soup and sandwiches, think about turkey chili, tacos, frittatas, enchiladas, salads, and even paella.  Note: price per pound of a turkey decreases with weight. The bigger the bird, the less the cost--and the more for leftovers!

8. Volunteer. Soup kitchens, church outreach programs, and ‘Meals On Wheels’ can certainly use help, so skip the shopping, share your time with others, and let your family members see how fortunate they really are.”

“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “Thank you,” that would suffice.”         Meister Eckhart

Interesting facts:

More than 40 million green bean casseroles are consumed each Thanksgiving!

Tofurkey, a soy-and-wheat based turkey alternative, was created by Sam Tibbot in 1995 and continues to be a popular choice among vegetarians.

And speaking of vegetarians…there are lots of websites with fabulous vegetarian recipes and ideas for veggie stuffing, gravy, sides, and all foods Thanksgiving. Prefer organic? How about diabetic recipes for appetizers, sides, breads, and desserts?

Here’s a complete holiday planning guide. Menu ideas. Everything you wanted to know about turkey.

Videos on choosing, thawing, stuffing, roasting and carving the bird. Wines ideal for thanksgiving dinner. Don’t forget dessert!

Tired of the same old, same old? Here are alternatives to turkey.

Thawing, cooking, and serving the bird:

To calculate the amount of food you’ll need, follow this guide.

  • turkeyWhole turkey--1 lb. per person
  • Bone-in turkey breast--¾ lb. per person
  • Boneless turkey breast--½ lb. person

Time required for thawing the bird: for each 4 ½ lbs. of frozen turkey, allow 24 hours of thaw time in the refrigerator. Once fully thawed, the turkey may be refrigerated for 1-2 days.

Quick" thawing method: Place turkey in its original wrapping in sink and cover with COLD water. Change the water every 1/2 hour to maintain the temperature. Allow 1/2 hour per pound to defrost the turkey. Most turkeys will take from 5 to 10 hours to thaw.

Share Thanksgiving greetings with friends via email or send a mobile greeting free of charge.

Don’t forget the kids!

There are so many Thanksgiving activities for the younger set to take part in, especially while they’re waiting for the turkey to cook.

Make memories with these turkeys made from tracings of your child's hands and feet.

Use fresh and dried leaves for art projects like the creative ones at Squigly's Playhouse.

Make a simple banner using coffee filters and printed letters looks more complicated than it is. Children will love folding the filters to look like turkey tails.


This Thanksgiving Feast is a fun arcade-style food game for kids to learn about nutrition.

Celebrate the Thanksgiving with holiday coloring pages.

Create your own log cabin on paper using Popsicle sticks.

Think you are smarter than a TURKEY? Go on a turkey hunt and find out!

Get games and puzzles that are too numerous to count and just plain fun!

Everyone will love the Thanksgiving word scramble, a fun word search and the color and print eye chart.

Holiday Humor for the young--and young at heart

  • Can a turkey jump higher than the Empire State Building?
     Answer:  Yes - a building can't jump at all

  • Which side of the turkey has the most feathers?
    Answer:  The outside

  • Why do Pilgrims have trouble keeping their pants up?
    Answer: Cause they wear their belts on their hats!

  • What is the Turkey's favorite black tie celebration?
    Answer:  The Butter Ball

  • Want more?

Thanksgiving Traditions

Here you can download Over The River and Through the Woods.

Nothing says Thanksgiving more than traditional football rivalries.

Holiday Travel

If your ‘over the river and through the woods’ trip is not taking you to Grandma’s, you might want to visit Road Trip America to help plan.

Traveling with kids? Here are tips to help entertain them.

So there you have it--facts, tips, humor, recipes, quotes, and websites to guide you to everything you have ever wanted to know about Thanksgiving.

May your Thanksgiving be an enjoyable celebration shared with friends and family, and one filled with gratitude for all your blessings!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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Montgomery Homes For Sale: 1307 Summerfield Place Montgomery, AL 36117


Love feeling tucked away? You'll appreciate living off the beaten path in this darling home. The cul-de-sac location at the rear of Wynbrook means no through traffic or uproar. And because the home adjoins a protected wetland, you'll never have neighbors to the rear. Enjoy watching nature from the covered deck while tall trees block the setting sun. Great condition, too, so see this one today!

Learn more about 1307 Summerfield Place and other Montgomery Real Estate by visiting

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Good News On the Economic Front

by The Hat Team

There is good news on the economic front which will eventually translate into good new for the Montgomery real estate market.

  • The number of first-time filers for unemployment benefits fell by 24,000 last week to the lowest level in nearly four months, the Labor Department reported Wednesday.
  • real estateKeivan Deravi, the AUM pundit, says the demand for diesel fuel and cardboard are both up.  That means more things are being manufactured, packaged and shipped by truck.
  • Rick Sharga of Realty Trac reports Montgomery’s foreclosure rate is trending downward and is 3 times better than the national average.
  • Jimmy Lowder explains September new home sales were up slightly over August and days on market is down 4% Sept 10 vs Sept 09.

Other great observations:

  1. You cannot create prosperity with austerity.  Therefore, Mayor Strange’s various initiatives (buying One Court Square and the buildings along Dexter; floating a bond issue to renovate Cramton Bowl and add the sports complex just as two examples) are the right approach.
  2. Recovery in the residential real estate market will come as a result of investors’ buying up the distressed properties currently bloating our homes-for-sale inventory.  So consider the acquisition and renovation of the “greasy little houses” as a wealth-building strategy for the future.

Should You Walk Away From Your Montgomery Real Estate?

by The Hat Team

A new category of homeowners has emerged in recent months--those who voluntarily walk away from their mortgaged property. The rising ranks of this group are not comprised of people who can’t afford their mortgage payments and thus go into foreclosure; rather these defaulters are homeowners who choose to let their Montgomery real estate holdings go rather than continue to pay on a home which is worth less than what they owe.

lock and keySuch a phenomenon is new to the United States, where proud homeowners of the past would make every sacrifice necessary to keep their home--and their dignity--and it is a thorny issue in terms of moral responsibility and finances.

The Mortgage Bankers Association has voiced concern about the message these “walkers” send to their families and the community, and even President Obama has urged homeowners to follow the responsible course and honor their financial obligations. Such words too often fall on deaf ears, however, as anxious owners of Montgomery real estate watch lenders unload their mortgages with impunity and private businesses practice “strategic default” by letting a company fail rather than continue putting money into it.

One prevailing viewpoint is that homeowners must operate under a moral constraint while lenders and businesses are free to maximize their profits--an unfair and unbalanced system in the eyes of the “walkers.”

There are, of course, many social, moral, and financial arguments against voluntary default. An increase in foreclosures in a community depresses the value of the homes and drives prices down, thus making your neighbors suffer the consequences of your choice. In a May survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, nearly 60% of Americans believe it is ethically and morally wrong to default on a mortgage contract with a lender. Perhaps having a greater impact, however, are the financial repercussions of simply not paying the mortgage on your Montgomery real estate, including the following:

  1. Your credit score will suffer, thus making it extremely difficult to get loans for a car or for another home, renting a house, and possibly having a negative effect on insurance rates and job possibilities.
  2. Debt consequences: In many states the lender can get a deficiency judgment against you to recover the funds you did not pay. The term of their ability to do so may be as long as ten years.
  3. You will lose your tax break. Property taxes and mortgage interest often give you a sizable tax advantage in terms of deductions, which you will no longer have.
  4. Returning to the housing market may prove quite difficult. Although renting a home is a tempting solution, more and more landlords are hesitant to rent to someone going through foreclosure. Buying another property presents another obstacle. With stricter requirements being placed on loan current loan applicants, a “walk away” will not have an easy time overcoming his poor record with lenders.

If you are considering walking away from your current home, do weigh carefully the consequences of doing so. You can calculate the financial impact of such an action here.

Montgomery Real Estate For Sale: 1205 Pondcypress Drive Montgomery, AL 361117


Seclusion...tranquility...peacefulness. Qualities you won't find in most Montgomery neighborhoods. Tucked away on a new street in the back of Dexter Ridge, this one owner home has all the benefits of a new home without the price! Kitchen is a cook's dream with custom cabinets, center work island, and cool stained concrete floors. Split plan allows for master to be separated from other three bedrooms for privacy. Plenty of room in the large back yard to play or entertain, or relax under the covered back porch. Lot backs up to pretty wooded area. If you want to disappear from the world, yet be minutes from all conveniences, check this home out today! 

Learn more about 1205 Pondcypress Drive and other Montgomery Real Estate by visiting 

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