Thanksgiving 2013: Priorities

In case you all missed it, and maybe some of you did (I’m looking at you.  Yeah, you!  With the light-up reindeer in your yard.  That’s right—walk away in shame.), Thanksgiving 2013 is fast approaching.  I’ve always kind of loved Thanksgiving, although I couldn’t really tell you why.  Maybe it’s just the sort of “kick-off” to the holidays that it gives you.  Maybe it’s because in my mind, the best holidays involve a good road trip, cold weather, and mountains of food.  But, for whatever reason, it’s one of my favorites.

Jon and I have been going back to his parents’ house in Washington “The ‘ton”, KS, gosh, basically since we’ve been dating.  When it was just the two of us, this meant days of napping, eating, seeing his old high school buddies, and watching whatever college football game happened to be on at any given time.  There was the obligatory Wednesday night spent at “The Horn” (the one bar in town).  Thanksgiving dinner would be the next day at 1:30 or 2 p.m., with the obligatory left-over crawl at 8 or 8:30, whenever anyone felt slightly hungry again.  Friday usually found the Jon and his brother trying to recapture past high-school glory, participating in the “Turkey Bowl” on the WHS field.  (And then complaining for the rest of the weekend about how sore and old they were.)

Now that we have the girls, it’s a little different.  It’s still fun, but the whole relaxation bit I was schlepping earlier?  Not so much.  We still do “The Horn” except now it’s Mayberry’s because The Horn got super dirty and scary/then closed, but that 6 a.m. wake-up call certainly takes some of the shine off the evening.  (It’s a really good thing they don’t serve much stronger than Miller Lite.)  Dinner has been moved from 1:30 to STRICTLY AT NOON because with four hungry kiddos, if you want them to eat at all, you need to feed them at lunch-time.  Otherwise they will fill up on the crescent rolls and M&Ms they charm out of their Nana, and they’ll just sit at the table complaining about turkey and asking endlessly when the rest of us will be finished eating because PIE.  Since the children require so much adult-supervision (seriously, it’s like they’ve changed our lives or something), we instituted a traditional Thanksgiving Night Tasting after they all, angelically of course, go to bed.  Usually there’s a theme, but everyone brings a beverage or two to share, and there’s snacks and whatnot.  We all sit around the dining room table talking about whatever nonsense occurs to us—although, you can guarantee that at some point 1) someone will try to bait me into going on some sort of “Liberal Rant*”, and 2) my father-in-law will insist that we watch You-Tube clips of the original Pink Panther movie.  (It actually is funny—just don’t him I said so. [I’m kidding—he already knows; he reads the blog.])  Most years now the boys admit they are too old to be running up and down a football field in the cold, preferring to run around the park in the cold, chasing small children and pushing swings.

Still over the last 11 years or so, some things haven’t changed.  If you asked me to write a desert-island, top-five list** of my favorite things about Thanksgiving then and now, it would pretty much be the same:

  1. stuffing
  2. Stuffing
  4. STUFFING!!!!!
  5. Leftover Stuffing.


What?  I love carbs and sage, okay?  Just be glad I managed to publicly admit being thankful for something and leave it at that. 

Happy Thanksgiving/Thanksgivukkah, y’all!  May your travels be safe, your turkeys cooked-through, and your stuffing plentiful.***


* I’m no longer the “token” liberal in the family, but my sister-in-law is much better about keeping her mouth in check than I am.  This is why she is a lawyer, and I am only allowed to talk to people via email. 

**  If you don’t get my Nick Hornby, High Fidelity reference, we can’t be friends.  Seriously, please don’t talk to me again until you’ve read that book.

***  If you, ahem, have any extra, I’d be more than happy to take it off your hands.  Also, we’d be best friends.  I would even forgive you for not having read High Fidelity–that is how much I love stuffing.