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Glou-glou! How to get out of cooking for Thanksgiving (hint: be a turkey)

16D47309-C6A0-4238-998C-E53BD12D28FETurkeys or dindes at Château Miraval, in 2005. "Glou-glou! Gobble-gobble!" turkeys say, in French and in English. More turkey talk, and some mischief, in today’s story.

TODAY'S WORD: glouglou or glou-glou

    : gobble-gobble
    : glug-glug* (the sound of wine pouring out of a bottle)

FRENCH SOUND FILE: Click below to hear Jean-Marc pronounce the French words in this post. Then scroll down to the vocabulary section to check your French comprehension.

For the sound clip click here

A DAY IN A FRENCH LIFE by Kristi Espinasse

Turkey, in our Franco-American family, is a term of endearment and not a bird for roasting. I say the word often, as in yesterday when my daughter grabbed my favorite lipstick  (“In love with Olivia”) and beelined it to the front door.

"You turkey! Give it back. Now!"
"Just this one more time," Jackie pleaded.
"Alright, then. And good luck with your job interview, Turkey.” 

Then there's my son, who loves to lock me out of places—the house, the car.... "You turkey!" I squeal, as Max pulls out of the restaurant parking lot, making me chase him down the road for a ride. “Open the door! Let me in. You are SUCH a turkey!” (See video below...)

“Turkey” for me equals "mischievous person"—someone who causes trouble in a playful way. I may be using the slang term, the American argot, incorrectly, but I’m sticking with it because of the warm, nostalgic feeling it brings this Yankee, decades away from home. (Am I using "yankee" improperly too? I don't mean to say it any other way than with yearning and affection. Gosh, Thanksgiving must be getting to me!)

That mischievous look. Jackie, when she was little--before she discovered make-up.

Meantime, a very warm and nostalgic holiday is upon us and this year I will try not to be a turkey by pretending I don't have to cook a Thanksgiving dinner because I'm in France. That's a turkey of an excuse to get out of preparing a bird, some stuffing, and greens, isn't it?

For now, I wish all of you turkeys a delicious celebration, generously salt-and-peppered with mischief.

Happy Thanksgiving. Joyeux Action de Graces. Though the French don’t use that expression, they are wonderfully full of mischief--and therefore amusing tablemates who would be more than grateful to join in and break bread with all of us here! So tell us, dear reader, what you are eating on T-Day? And please note the city where you'll be feasting. We turkeys want to know!

Gobble-gobble, glou-glou,
P.S. I've just changed this post's title for the nième fois. Here's the new one: "How to get out of cooking for Thanksgiving (hint: be a turkey)". On second thought, that doesn't seem like a very good idea...

Also: Check the side-bar of this blog for two additions to the Books section. Merci!

Se Maquiller - a bilingual story by my daughter about wearing makeup. Read it here

glou-glou = gobble-gobble, glug-glug
l'argot (m) = slang, jargon
Joyeux Action de Graces = Happy Thanksgiving
nième fois (énième fois) = nth time, umpteenth time

VIDEO: click on the arrow in the center of the screen below, to start the clip

A local turkey living here at the Bastide Marin sanctuary and garden in La Ciotat

A Message from KristiOngoing support from readers like you keeps me writing and publishing this free language journal each week. If you find joy or value in these stories and would like to keep this site going, donating today will help so much. Thank you for being a part of this community and helping me to maintain this site and its newsletter.

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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety


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Hi Kristi,
Your blog and long-distance friendship have me giving thanks today! Maybe one day we will meet either in France or here in Charlottesville where I will be preparing a small feast for two.
Many blessings to you and your family!
Tell Jules “cou cou”


As I'm not American I'll not be having to cook anything other than the usual sort of repas tonight, however may I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving Day and much to be thankful for! Bon apetit!

Kristin Espinasse

Thank you, Eileen. Meeting you is on my wishlist. I will be sure to give Mom your hello!

Geraldine Ventura

A blessed Thanksgiving to you and your family! We will have a traditional Thanksgiving dinner here in Valparaiso, IN. Turkey(with herbs de Provence), stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn casserole, brussel sprouts, Caesar salad, and pumpkin, apple and pecan pie. Enough for a couple days of eating!

Deb Locke

We have wild turkeys that roost in the trees here in Patagonia, AZ, where we are serving as on-site volunteer hosts for a Nature Conservancy preserve! Our "caravan" is parked in a small mesquite grove. These turkeys will NOT be part of the traditional Thanksgiving buffet feast-with a Southwest twist-that we will enjoy tomorrow at the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, within full view of the beautiful Sonoran desert and the mountains. I suspect you would enjoy it! Happy Turkey Day!!

Suzanne Bandy

Thanksgiving greetings to you and yours, Kristin from St. Simon’s Island, Georgia. Tomorrow we will gather around the table to share in turkey, ham, sweet and mashed potatoes, cornbread stuffing, green beans, brussel sprouts, cranberry-orange relish, pecan and pumpkin pies with whipping cream. A Midwest upbringing requires too much food for Thanksgiving ;-). First and foremost, thankfulness and love will be the main entree. Wishing your family the same.

Sharon L Marchisello

Happy Thanksgiving!

Ellyn Austin

When I lived in France I always gave a Thanksgiving dinner!~ I used to go to Harrods to get cranberry sauce and some other fixings. The French didnt eat cranberries, sugar with salt at the meal?? Horrors! I went to London until I got friendly with a Marine at the American Embassy. He had access to the PX... He would bring me everything in return for being invited to the T dinner (Of course I paid him for the food, and that way too I was able to get a turkey more easily..). Best thing I ever did! The first thing I did when I moved to Lisbon for a while was to go the Embassy and get friendly with a Marine! The PXs are divine. But you dont celebrate T Day in France? Best holiday we have here, T-Day and the 4th of July... And the certain foods we eat only at T-day... I gave up serving the sweet potato casserole with marshmallows baked on top to my French friends, Not only didnt they not like sweet potatoes, but they would scrape off the expensively bought marshmallows from Harrods... YUCK! happy T-day to you. all...


Happy Turkey to you! We will be celebrating in Indianapolis, with my Belle-Mere. She is elderly (85) and is treating us to takeout Cracker Barrel thanksgiving dinner. We met her there last year and ate in and it was surprisingly good.

Leslie NYC

Happy Thanksgiving!
I will be taking the train up to NW Connecticut to be with friends. I made split pea soup with smoked dulse(seaweed) to honor a vegetarian tonight. Otherwise, there will be lots of cheeses, the grand turkey shebang, many pies.
Looking forward to walking in the country & visiting 3 friends for the first time in over 2 years.

Del Lancaster

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your beautiful family from New Orleans. We have a big family and will all enjoy a bug feast of turkey, ham, corn bread dressing and also oyster dressing and several vegetables and salad. Dessert will be flan, pecan pie, rum cake and/or bread pudding with a French custard poured on top!


From La Porte, very near the above respondent in Valparaiso, we are ever so thankful for our daughter-in-law, who "takes on" Thanksgiving dinner. I am only bringing a green bean casserole, which magnifies to my attitude of gratitude!!! However, over the many decades I've been on this planet, I've fixed numerous Thanksgiving dinners ~ and other wonderful celebrations. One of the perks of getting older is that not as much is expected of you. But you still get to enjoy the fruits of others' labor. Thanksgiving is the perfect example, thus giving me even more reason to be thankful!


We'll be spending the day feasting with Baby Girl and her boys in Sonora, CA.
Their pet Turkey is so thankful she's not on the menu! 😀

I'm bringing some bread dressing, and desserts while The Handsome Surveyor (son-in-law) makes the Turkey, Ham, mashed potatoes, and gravy.
I'm very thankful he's doing the bird this year, and very thankful to be spending the day with them.

Happy Thanksgiving, Kristi! 🥰

Dawn Anderson

Happy Thanksgiving Kristi from Ann Arbor , Michigan. You and your wonderful blog are among my blessings. Tomorrow my daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren are coming for a traditional Thanksgiving feast: Turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing, green beans with bacon, salad and pumpkin pie. Friday all of us go with my son’s family to cut down our Christmas trees. Venison chili after (all true boys are hunters). I am very grateful to have my kids and grandchildren around me. Life is good!

Dawn Anderson

I meant to say all THE boys are hunters!


For the Americans in France and if you like the dark meat, turkey hindquarters are often available at Carrefour for a very reasonable price per kg. We often had turkey hindquarters while living in France and miss being able to purchase just the hindquarters here in Washington state.
Bonne fête.

Beth Fiacco

Happy Thanksgiving, Kristi! We will celebrate in Gilbert, Arizona with family and others who are alone this year. Turkey, Mashed Potatoes, vegetables, pies, dinner rolls - the usual traditional things will be served. Looking forward to time with family and to remember all of the many blessings of our beautiful America, and also those that the Lord brings to our lives ♥

Suzanne in NJ

We will be dining with friends in Lawrenceville, NJ who are serving a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. I am bringing dessert which is an apple and cranberry crumble with orange zest. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

Carolyn Rider Chase

Visiting with daughter and her family in Logan, Utah. Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, squash, sweet potato, cranberry sauce, cranberry/orange relish, pumpkin pie, apple pie.

Janet M

Thanksgiving greetings from Novato, California. We'll be feasting with a nephew, niece-in-law, and their two little ones, ages 3 and 5. Plus two sets of grandparents! Thankful that the young ones are doing the big cooking. We're bringing spinach gratin.

Laurence S

To be honest there is no turkey on our Thanksgiving table as we eat vegan. But there is plenty of delicious food with my very own fine pumpkin soup, yams, mashed potatoes, stuffing, vegan sausages (that could fool you :)), salad and dessert. And hopefully we will take a nice walk afterwards!
Happy Thanksgiving Kristi & Everyone!
Thankful for you 🧡


Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone: And thanks for the link to the "se maquiller" post, which I used for years when I taught reflexive verbs. It was a true to life post from a "real" person, as opposed to a made-up dialogue, which always seemed so forced.

Kristin Espinasse

Thanks, Joan. Jackie will be happy to hear that too!

Ellen A.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and all of your wonderful rafter of family "turkeys." We are in Paris and will be picking up a turkey from an American food store you may know called The Real McCoy. A local bakery roasts turkeys for them in their huge ovens. Said turkey will be served along with many appetizers, sides, wines and apple tart at an AirBnB apartment rented specifically by our visiting friend from L.A. for its big oven and large table to accommodate us and several other expat friends!

Hi Family,
I am sending you all a jacquilawson ecard, via your personal email address because I can't figure out how to send it here.
Glou Glou...Betsy


Bonjour, Kristi! Ma famille aiment jouer un peu du golfe et puis prendre un grand déjeuner en plein air. Alors, c'est comment nous avons l'intention à célébrer Le Jour de Grâce. Néanmoins, vous et vos amis avez me donné beaucoup de bonnes idées pour les nouvelles façons de célébrer cette fête. Merci à tous!

Joanne Fischer

We will be celebrating Friendsgiving here in Santa Fe with dear friends and yes, there will be turkey!


Toujours dans notre prieres et dans notre pensees, our dear Kristi.A vous et votre famille, joyeuse action de grace!

Jennifer Taylor

Bonjour! For the first time ever, we are going to a country club for Thanksgiving dinner.
I’m secretly thrilled. No work for me! Tee hee



C'est l'hiver ici a Wyoming! Blowing snow and cold out there but cozy and comfy inside the lodge. Can't believe were were just in beautiful, sunny and warm La C just a few months ago~bons souvenirs!

We're doing the normal turkey thing. Sometimes I would rather make lasagna or tacos!

Hope all is well with you and that you got your lipstick back! Did Jackie and your mom like the Burt's Bees lip gloss? (or did you hide it, you turkey! :)

Love and light to y'all over in La Ciotat!


Cerelle Bolon

Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving, Kristi! Once an American and a westerner, always one, it seems. Enjoy the best of both worlds and surprise your French friends sometime and make pumpkin pie, rather than soup! I have a great recipe, if you need one. Probably what you really need is the kind of canned pumpkin we get here. Hugs!

Karen Cafarella

Have a great Thanksgiving. We will be celebrating here in Phoenix. Making the normal Turkey things. Such a wonderful post. Love to you and the family. Give Jules a hug from me.

Angela Sargent

Happy Thanksgiving to all our American friends on here. I'm English, so this isn't our party, but wishing you all the best of family celebrations, wherever you are.

Diane Heinecke

I really enjoyed your sharing the fun in your family! Have a wonderful day, no matter how you spend it or what you eat. We'll have roast turkey, gravy, green beans, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes cooked with crushed pineapple. For dessert a choice of pumpkin pie or pecan pie--or a sliver of each. Make every day thanks giving! :-)

Kristin Espinasse

Thank you, Karen. I will give Mom your hug. 

Kristin Espinasse

Good to know you made it to Wyoming, Audrey. Yes, the Burts Bees was a hit! Thanks and hugs.

Chris Allin

Dear Kristi,

Happy Thanksgiving from Kansas, where sunflowers and wild turkeys abound.

I spent Thanksgiving in Paris decades ago with a friend whose mom was French and dad American. Her parents would bring a turkey and cranberry sauce to Paris and we would share a meal with her French grandparents. For years after, her French family served chicken with confiture. It became a tradition. To this day I love to eat chicken with preserves. Mixing up the cultures…

Amidst the strife there is so much to be thankful for, especially when people come into our lives and leave footprints on our hearts. You and Jean-Marc have certainly done that for so many. Wishing your dear family a Happy Thanksgiving!

Larry Mason

Dear sweet Kristi,
We'll be joining our kids and grandkids tomorrow in Ellitcot City, Maryland, for the typical T-day feast. And after open-heart surgery and other heart procedures this year, I'm incredibly thankful to just be around. Hope your and Jean-Marc (who we met in Washington DC many years ago now) and your kids have a marvelous Turkey day, not matter what you eat!
Larry and Sarah

Marilyn Whalley

Happy Thanksgiving Kristin from Dromana, Victoria, Australia. A first time here for us. Glou Glou Mazzie


Bonjour and Happy Thanksgiving, Kristi. We will celebrate on Friday, Nov. 25, because that is when I can have all of my children and grandkids. Problem is that some others came along and now we will be 25 people too. One of our favorite dishes is succotash made with frozen summer corn off of the cob and lima beans! Yummy.


Having a turkey cooked on a Weber grill with charcoal. Dressing, mashed sweet potatoes, baked garlic, parmesan sour cream mashed potatoes, spinach salad with oranges, strawberries, dried cranberries, pecans made with my special dressing of raspberry vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, & maple syrup, cranberries with lemons & oranges, & pumpkin pie with Paul Prudhomme’s recipe for chantilly cream with cognac, Grand Marnier & vanilla extract. Used to make sweet potato pecan pie, also Paul Prudhomme’s recipe from K-Paul’s Kitchen in New Orleans.
Angie from Ann Arbor MI.

Tara  Zantow

Hi Kristi, I will be enjoying Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes & gravy, Brussels sprouts, cranberry sauce, biscuits and sauerkraut salad in Boxborough, Massachusetts with family visiting from Connecticut and New Hampshire. We’ll be topping it off with homemade apple and blueberry pies and vanilla ice cream! Happy Thanksgiving! I am grateful for many things! (Including your e-mails!)


From the mauka (mountain) side of Hualalai in the village of Holualoa, Hawaii, we will be eating swordfish and fresh green beans from our little lanai garden. Thanks for all the delightful posts that connect all of us French loving folk from around the world!

Kristin Espinasse

Larry, It is so good to know you doing well after open heart surgery. Thank goodness! Jean-Marc and I send our best to you and Sarah and your dear family. Take good care.

Kuna, Idaho... Smoked Turkey and scalloped potatoes, fresh baked rolls(thank you Rhodes). Yummy deviled eggs, and yams with bourbon and marshmallows.Traditional green bean casserole,and pies, pecan, pumpkin, banana cream. Yes, we repent the next day and eat lots of green stuff. My favorite thing though is making turkey stock when the bird is all but gone. Making the noodles from scratch(Thank you dear momma for teaching me). Best way to use left overs.
May your turkey day be filled with love and joy. And give your mom a extra special hug from
me. I will be remembering our child hood hijinks today, gratful for the fun and friendship she added to my life. Life is Good!


Happy Thanksgiving and Indigenous Peoples Day to you and your family, Kristi! I left family (and 50 degree temps) in Seattle to spend the holiday week with my younger son in San Jose, CA (temp today is 70!) We are making roast chicken, potatoes, celeriac, and sweet potatoes à la boulanger, cornbread and sausage stuffing, and cranberry sauce. Dessert is an apple crumb-top pie.
Usually when I'm home we have both turkey and ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, vegetables, and cranberry sauce. And I can't forget the dressing, the legacy of my aunt's French-Canadian mother-in-law, handed down over the last 200 years at least. The family name is faud (who knows the ancient origin of this word?). A chopped onion is sauteed in butter, then we brown 3 lbs hamburg (ground turkey can be substituted) and 1 lb pork sausage. The meat is covered with water, seasoned with salt and pepper, cinnamon and a bit of ground cloves. We simmer until the liquid is gone. In the meantime we peel and cook potatoes. We mash the potatoes and add to the meat mix, then re-heat in the oven. Amounts of ingredients are subject to the whim of the cook! We have plenty for leftovers, for making hand pies, and even for snacks! Our tradition is to prepare this dressing for all holidays and it is delicious with all meats. As Chef Pepin says: Happy Cooking!

Kristin Espinasse

Thank you, Susie. Big hugs from Mom 💕😘

Anne MacIsaac

Interesting ... your dressing sounds like the filling for a tourtière (French-Canadian meat pie), but without the pie crust. Tourtière is often served at Thanksgiving or Christmas, as I understand it. I'm from Ottawa, Canada - not Quebec, but on its border :) In Canada we celebrate Thanksgiving in October, so no turkey for me today, but Happy Thanksgiving to all those who are celebrating.

Karen in NY

Aaand here's Fasting Friday. I'm taking a break from retirement so the 4 day weekend is nostalgic joy. I had the dinner with a friend's family in Port Jeff, Long Island, NY. There's a restaurant in the family so the goodies were catered...all the standards plus ziti and eggplant parm. Good fun, lots of NY humor, and 2 of the next generation scampering around seeing it all with new eyes. The only thing missing was my family traditional "Great Depression Stuffing". Leek, onion, thyme, bread and a little bacon
if ya got it. Cooked then smooshed together, into the bird and/or baked separately. Amazingly good and the thymey scent is Holiday at my house.
Add texts and phone calls to all the long distance friends & relatives. One text to this delightful peek at the world outside my neighborhood. Now on to laundry and hanging some Christmas lights.....

Frances in Napa

Happy Thanksgiving! I learned recently from a video clip of Julia Child that the Spanish explorers brought the turkey to Europe from Mexico. Famous French chefs liked cooking with it, and one had to flee from France during the Revolution, and he roasted his own turkey when in America. Since then, turkeys have been famous in America as well as France, and we all have Mexico to thank!

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