My Thanksgiving gathering is fairly small compared to some of my other friends. We usually have 10-12 people at the Thanksgiving meal. The first thing that happens, usually right after Halloween, is I get a phone call from my brother and it goes something like this:
“What’s happening for Thanksgiving this year?”
(Me) I don’t know. Who had it last year?
“I can’t remember. Let me think.”
(Me) I don’t remember yesterday so I’m sure I can’t remember last November. Give me a few days and I will think about it. You ask your wife and see if we can piece this together.”
Then I spend zero time thinking about it because I already forgot I was supposed to try and figure it out. I text my brother:
(Me, days later) I can’t remember who had it last year, so we will host.
“Great! I think we hosted last year because don’t you remember (choose one)
a). We toasted with the shots of Slivovic (a plum brandy that tastes like lighter fluid) and it was watered down by one of the kids?
b.) The turkey was burnt because we fried the hell out of it?
c.) We had 9 desserts and a green bean casserole?
d.) Water started leaking out of the walls and hallway?
(Me) Oooh, NOW I remember! It is definitely my turn to host. (Mental note to check the Slivovic before Thanksgiving).
Thanksgiving is one of those fun holidays that revolves around food and what can be better than that, except food AND football. Throw some family and alcohol is the mix and it is a perfect combination! Gathering around a Thanksgiving table with adults and 20 somethings is always fun in our house. No one wants to sit at the “kids” table so we have everyone squashed around the dining table or we utilize rectangle pop-up tables and make weird shapes so everyone can sit together.
There is always the “Can I invite so and so?” and of course the answer is always, yes. Then the family gets to witness the facial expressions of our guests as they interact with our family and join in our traditions.
I love when we are all sitting around together and someone starts telling a story about someone at the table. Instantly, family recognizes each other’s body language and facial expressions to know whether to proceed or not. Sometimes we all laugh and sometimes it is clearly a “Danger! Danger! Will Robinson!” situation. Each member of our family is keenly aware of each other’s pasts and, of course, holidays are the perfect time to bring them up! (<sarcasm>)
Politics always makes an appearance because the younger crowd likes to exercise their independent thinking. Often, they keep track of how many times “Obama” is mentioned. They give us the tally at the end. It seems that my husband has been the winner for a few years now. That always brings a laugh.
Each year as the twenty something crowd grows up, we have those who can attend and those who can’t due to work schedules, locations, or something. None of the younger crowd is married yet or has children, but girlfriends, jobs and one living in Jordan keeps us wondering who will make it every year. We miss those who can’t attend and are grateful every year for those that can, political views and all. Time is fleeting and we take what we can get.
Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful. Smile when you are gathered this year and take it in. Look around and see what amazing people you have in your life. Life changes fast so make it count!