Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Traditions - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly!

My family loves the traditions surrounding our annual holidays.  My mom really was the impetus behind most of these traditions because she loved holidays, parties, fun and merriment.  Thanksgiving is certainly one of the most traditional holidays in the U.S.  Turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie - what would the 4th Thursday in November be without them?

In our household, there are other traditions surrounding Thanksgiving that aren't quite as yummy as homemade turkey stuffing!  It's a pretty sure bet that my brother-in-law will arrive late in the morning and immediately make himself a pastis!  Over the freeways and through L.A. to Oma's house we go -- well, it certainly makes a man ready for a cocktail.  My 89-year-old father-in-law, John, will corner our son and son-in-law to preach the "Business Gospel According to John" - i.e., invest for the future in small companies that haven't a chance to make a profit for 20 or 30 years!

Our grandchildren will go on a walk with Grandpa to find "pretty leaves" to decorate the table.  Talia will insist that the leaf highest in the tree is the prettiest one and the one she just has to have for the table!

My husband will tell me to relax, take a break and stop stressing.  Sure.  With the people I love most in the world waiting for me to put Thanksgiving dinner on the table.  Sure.

My son-in-law will roust his family as early as possible in order to be at our house in front of the tv for the kickoff of the Lions football game.  The Lions will, of course, lose the game.

I will fail, once again, to make good, thick, turkey gravy.  My sister will tease me, once again, about my crappy gravy.  This year, I swear, I'm going to have her make the gravy.

My sister, once again, will tell me that she and her husband do not drink water with dinner so do not need water goblets.  I will bite my tongue, once again, and refrain from yelling, "It's my house, dammit, and I will set the table the way I want to!"  Did I mention that she's my younger sister?  Why is it that my sister, whom I absolutely adore and could not live without, drives me insane??

Everyone will say they don't want to ruin their appetites for dinner, but we will still eat too many appetizers.  We will promise not to have appetizers next year.

My sister will say grace and remind us of those who are no longer with us.  She and I will glance at one another and know that we are both thinking of Mom and Dad.

Our daughter will sit down to eat Thanksgiving dinner but actually will not eat any food because she'll be trying to keep her 3 babies happy and cheerful so the rest of us can enjoy our dinner.  That's okay - our son-in-law will go back for thirds!

Everyone will offer to clean up the kitchen and do the dishes so that I can relax.  Collapse is more like it!  We'll all be comatose and overstuffed until the first person says, "Who's ready for pie?"  Miraculously, we'll all want "just a sliver" of each kind of pie!

My husband will open all the windows in the house and turn the fire on even though it will still be in the 70s outside.  The whole gang will relax in front of the tv with the fire blazing until someone, probably my sister, says "Let's talk about Christmas."

Aren't families wonderful?

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