Monday, November 26, 2007

What I Learned Over Thanksgiving Weekend

Over the last few days, I re-discovered that Thanksgiving weekend is my favorite time of the year. It starts with the planning and the lists. Actually, it starts with the elder members of my family, otherwise known as The Sisterhood, fighting over who gets to host. Then we decide who brings what, when do you start cooking, etc. The gringo husbands have to put in their requests for real Thanksgiving food while lodging their protests against rice in all forms. There are many logistical details to cover.

This year, my happy day was the Wednesday before the big day. My mom came over for a while to help cook, my cousin from the East coast was in town and hung out for a while, and it was just a great day to be home, cooking and looking forward to the next day.

The whole weekend turned out to be pretty great. We spent the day at my cousin Sissy's, something we hadn't done for years. Thanksgiving itself was lovely, and so was the extra long weekend. As much as I love the relaxing and the shopping and the cooking and the eating and just the festive vibe of being together eating and drinking and enjoying loved ones, I managed to pick up some lessons here and there. In the seasonal spirit of giving, I hereby share them with you:

  • It's nice to break tradition and spend the holiday with a different group of family members. The more the merrier, right?
  • The thought of celebrating Thanksgiving with among others, 7 children age 7 and under, is less desirable than a root canal to many people.
  • It's not Thanksgiving without corn with butter, according to 4 year old Ethan. Apparently, it's also not Thanksgiving without 2 kinds of rice, salmon, and guacamole.
  • Turkey breasts have been engineered to be so big that turkeys can no longer reproduce naturally and need to be, ahem, assisted. So, no turkey sex. Strangely, this doesn't bother me as much as it probably should.
  • Peeling sweet potatoes is much easier for 7 year old hands than 6 year old hands.
  • Apple butter doesn't contain butter. Actually, I already knew this. What I didn't know that it is fairly easy to make and makes a nice gift. More to come on this.
  • Caterer turkey that is cooked in the same bag it is stored and transported in ends up kind of stewy and not great. Everyone should learn to make turkey like my mom: breast down, with saffron. The end.
  • There is nothing better than a 4 day weekend.
  • I can survive my daughter being out of school all of Thanksgiving week. Barely.
  • Black Friday is much, much more enjoyable when you spend those early hours asleep in your bed.
  • My good friend from 4th grade, whom I hadn't talked to in 25 or so years, is doing well and living in the Bay area. She's lived all over the world, is writing a novel, and has had some really interesting jobs, including a stint as a dominatrix.
  • My cousin is an, ahem, naturalist. I didn't peg her for this one.
  • My life seems to be quite boring in comparison.
  • You can have pumpkin pie and pumpkin pecan pie and all kinds of other desserts at the Thanksgiving table and still think you'd really like some pumpkin cheesecake.
  • Hannukah is way too early this year.
  • It turns out that I'm more of a "Board Game Night" person than a "let's see how many chemicals we can ingest" partier.
  • I've never been more thankful for my home, family, good health and all the loved ones who enrich my life every day. Bring on the holiday season!


Jodi said...

Glad that you had a good Thanksgiving!

OneScrappyChick said...

sounds like a good time was had by all. Happy Holidays!!!