I have always loved the Thanksgiving holiday. I love the traditional holiday dishes, the turkey, dressing, and good ole green bean casserole. I love the desserts. I love being so stuffed your tummy hurts and you have to take a nap – thanks tryptophan. When I was young, I loved seeing extended family, as well as the misfits that my older siblings would bring home with them. Oh, and don’t forget watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade and playing flag football between dinner and dessert. So, yes, I love Thanksgiving. No presents just a great family day.
This year, I managed to get all my children in one place for the holiday, at the beach in Florida. With the typical winter weather storms snarling flights, it was a miracle that everyone’s flights arrived smoothly. The Florida weather was perfect and we had several great play at the beach but don’t get in the water unless you’re from Canada days.
As I have for years, I made all of my traditional holiday favorites, but here was my realization. My family does not like traditional Thanksgiving dinner, well, other than the ‘canned’ cranberry mold, plain mashed potatoes, and the desserts. They. Do. Not. Like. It. They politely eat a bit but really they are just humoring me.
How did this happen? My husband has downsized the turkey over the years to a disappointing turkey breast which always seems to be too dry. I smother it with my must-have portobello mushroom gravy but wait I seem to be the only one who likes mushrooms. I have to have my Dad’s sausage dressing but wait nobody else likes sausage. I spent a lot of time on the sweet potato casserole, which come on, is almost like dessert, and you guessed it, they don’t like sweet potatoes.
Now in my husband’s defense, he has historically been all in on my Thanksgiving dinner but as he is a diabetic now, well let’s just say it’s not ideal and he did take a post-dinner nap! So, with slightly hurt feelings it was time for a walk on the beach and some reflection. From now on, we are either going out for dinner on Thanksgiving or ditching the turkey and building our own, new, holiday traditions. My middle wolf has been lobbying for a Kentucky Fried Christmas for years now, it started as a joke but heh, he might be on to something.
Because the important part is getting together, wherever that location is and however many of our friends and family can join us. That’s what it’s really about and I was truly blessed to get to love on my family over the long weekend. So, I’ll hang on to a few of my traditions, albeit in smaller batches, and make room for new ones.