Belly Full of Turkey

HIMYM episode 1x09 (9)

Belly Full of Turkey
First aired:
November 21, 2005
Pamela Fryman
Chris Miller
Phil Lord
Barney's Blog

Images (9)

Lily and Marshall head to Minnesota to spend the holiday with his family. Robin and Ted want to volunteer at a soup kitchen and are surprised to learn that Barney works there year-round.


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It's Thanksgiving time, and Marshall and Lily are going to visit Marshall's family in St. Cloud Minnesota. While Marshall is enjoying a game of BaskIceBall (a combination of basketball and ice hockey put together that the Eriksen brothers play, although Marshall later tells Lily that he doesn't want their kids playing it because it is too dangerous), Lily is in the kitchen. While helping in the kitchen, she hears how big the babies Marshall's siblings have had are, and begins to get scared thinking that she will have a huge baby (at 6'4", Marshall is the shortest of his brother). Finally, at Thanksgiving dinner, Lily feels completely scared when she sees Marshall's three-month-old nephew is the size of a toddler, and runs off and buys a pregnancy test at a convenience store. Later Marshall finds out Lily has been arrested for urinating in public, and goes to the station to get Lily out and talk to her. Lily tells Marshall her concerns about raising a family of mayonnaise-eating giants in Minnesota, but Marshall assures her that they are not going to settle down in Minnesota, and alleviates Lily's fears. Finally, Marshall and Lily discover that Lily isn't pregnant, so they return to the Eriksen home, much relieved.

Meanwhile, Robin and Ted have no plans for Thanksgiving, and decide to help out at a soup kitchen. When they arrive there, they find Barney volunteering there already, and ask to help. The organizer tells them that they have enough volunteers, but after some pleading, they are allowed to help. Soon after, they find out that not all the food received as donations to the soup kitchen is actually distributed to the needy; many volunteers walk away with food, especially rarer food items. Ted, seeing that this is selfish, begins to distribute rare food items to the needy. Ted, Robin, and Barney are kicked out, and Barney (who was volunteer of the year) is pissed at Ted because Barney needed to volunteer there because he was arrested for public urination one night. In order for Ted to make it up to Barney, Ted and Robin agree to go to the strip club with Barney for Thanksgiving, and Ted, as an act of charity, pays for a stranger's lap dance. Seeing this, another lap dancer compliments Ted on his good nature, and reveals her real name: Tracy. In the year 2030, Future Ted tells his kids "And that's the story of how I met your Mother", shocking the kids before Ted reveals he was joking, much to their relief. 


  • Robin being Canadian is first mentioned.
  • Lily worries that she might be pregnant when her period is late, and in The Duel, Marshall tells Ted that he and Lily aren't that careful with their birth control.
  • This episode marks the first appearance of Marshall's family.

Future References (Contains Spoilers)

  • Mayonnaise being a favorite ingredient amongst the Eriksens is referenced again in Game Night and Atlantic City.
  • In Brunch, Barney mentions that he volunteers serving food at a homeless shelter.
  • Lily tells Marshall and his family that she isn't going to take his last name. In Something Blue, Lily and Marshall discuss not having the same last name, and in Big Days, Lily tells Marshall about his father calling her to inform her he started the process of getting her name changed.
  • Robin informs Ted that Canadians like her celebrate Thanksgiving in October, and in Slapsgiving, the gang makes fun of her for calling Canadian Thanksgiving the "real Thanksgiving". 
  • This is the only time where the gang are seen not celebrating Thanksgiving together. In Slapsgiving, Future Ted mentions that from then on, they always celebrated it together.
  • Barney complains that he will have to complete his community service by picking up trash on the side of the road after Ted gets them kicked out of the shelter, and he mentions having done this when he and Ted get sued for assault in The Fight.
  • The Eriksen Seven Layer Salad is seen again in The Fight and Last Words.
  • Future Ted mentions that "at 6'4", Marshall was the runt of the Eriksen clan". Marshall brings this up again in The Stinsons.
  • Lily's issues with her in-laws, particularly Marshall's mother, come up again in The StinsonsBig Days, and Bad News. Despite Lily and her mother-in-law appearing to resolve some of the issues between them in Last Words, they continue to persist, as seen in The Drunk Train and Who Wants to Be a Godparent?.
  • Lily being a gourmet cook, first mentioned here when she offers to make a frisée and endive salad with a coriander lime vinaigrette instead of the Eriksen Seven Layer Salad, is brought up again in The Front Porch and The Sexless Innkeeper.
  • Lily's hips not being "Eriksen baby compliant" is again referenced in later episodes, including Jenkins and Home Wreckers.
  • Marshall's father mentions that Eriksen men are extremely fertile, claiming that their "swimmers" have "two tails and a drillbit for a head". In Subway Wars, Marshall mentions that Eriksen men are "hella fertile".
  • Barney calls the Thanksgiving dinner at the Lusty Leopard "surprisingly good", and in Baby Talk, Marshall is seen agreeing with Barney that the strip club's prime rib was "surprisingly good".
  • In Bass Player Wanted, Robin tells Lily that the reason Barney wants Marshall to accept the judgeship offered to him in Something New is that he has a penchant for getting arrested for public urination.
  • Future Ted tricks his kids by claiming that Tracy the stripper turned out to be their mother. As revealed in Last Forever - Part Two, the Mother's name is indeed Tracy.


  • Lily helps Marshall's mother prepare Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Lily's very big welcome at the Eriksen house.
  • Barney is named Volunteer of the Year, while on probation for public urination.
  • Barney and Ted's Thanksgiving.
For a listing of all images on the wiki tagged as being from this episode, see Category:Belly Full of Turkey images.

Memorable Quotes

Lily: Happy Thanksgiving? As in, "Check out the girl buying a knock up test, everybody! Wonder what must be going through her head!" Yeah, well, since ya asked: A family of mayonnaise-guzzling giants is trying to suck me into their suburban nightmare and there's a solid chance that I have an Eriksen the size of a fifteen-pound turkey growing inside of me!
Lily rants to the supermarket clerk while buying a pregnancy testing kit.

Barney: I have 40 hours left on my community service and now I've gotta spend it spearing trash on a freakin' median strip. (Screaming at Ted) Volunteer of the year!
Ted: I'm sorry. I'm sorry, okay? Look, if there's anything I can do to make it up to you just tell me. I'll I'll do it.
Barney: Ted, I'm glad you asked.

Robin: I am Canadian. Remember? We celebrate Thanksgiving in October.
Ted: Oh right I forgot. You guys are weird and you pronounce the word out, oot
Robin: You guys are the world's leader in hand gun violence; your health care system is bankrupt and your country is deeply divided on almost every important issue.
Ted: ... Your cops are called "mounties".

Ted: This is crazy! When did it get so hard to do charity work?
Robin: I do charity work all the time. Remember when I said I'd find you a girlfriend?
Ted: Delightful. How's that little project coming along anyway?
Robin: I'm working on it. I'm gonna introduce you to that girl you've been staring at.
Ted: What? That's crazy, I haven't been staring at any girl.
Robin: Have you met Ted?
Ted: Hi. I'm the afore mentioned Ted. And this is um, gone.

Marshall: Dad, you're embarrassing me!
Marvin Sr.: Oh, don't worry about it, son, she's cool. She's going to be an Eriksen. Yeah.
Lily: well, well, not literally, 'cause, you know, I'm keeping my name.
Judy: But the apron.

Stripper: I'm Amber.
Ted: Oh, I'm Ted. [Shake hands]
Stripper: Actually, I'm Tracy.
Ted: Still Ted.
Future Ted: And that kids is the true story of how I met your mother.
Kids: What!!!
Future Ted: Haha, I'm kidding.

Robin: Thanksgiving in November... weird.

Lily: Look, we may have some really big decisions to make in about 10 seconds but right now, I don't care where our kids grow up as long as they have you for a father. Gosh, I hope you're the father. Just a little joke to lighten up the mood.
Marshall : What does it say?
Lily: I'm afraid to look.
Policeman: It's negative.
Lily: Thank God...And hey!

Notes and Trivia

Ted reveals the name of the mother way back in season 1, during the scene where Ted is buying the lap dance for Walter, the homeless man. The stripper says "Actually, my name is Tracy" and then future Ted said, "And that kids, is how I met your mother," before saying he was just kidding.

Goofs and Errors

  • Robin has no problem being in a strip club in this episode and in The Stamp Tramp, but in Double Date, she has major objections to strip clubs and calls them disgusting. This is likely because she is dating Barney at the time and disapproves of his desire to visit them.
  • Marshall says that Barney cooks naked, but in Blitzgiving the stove in Barney's apartment stove is shown to be a cardboard display.
  • In this episode both of Marshall's brothers have wives, but in Tailgate, Marshall says that Marcus still lives with his mom (which would suggest that he is single). A year later, in Who Wants to Be a Godparent? Lily and Marshall are surprised to find out that Marcus has recently left his wife and two kids.
  • When Kendall rejects Ted and Robin's help, he was bending as he wrote on his notepad, but in the next scene, he was seen standing straight.

Allusions and Outside References


Other Notes



  • The St. Petersburg Comic Review gave this episode 8 out of 10 stars. "A look into Marshall's family and the insanity he possesses."


External Links

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