The Thanksgiving Experience

I thought I would share a little blurb about my Thanksgiving this year to give readers a feel for what the holiday entails for us in the states. As you can imagine, I was quite busy with organizing, traveling, and keeping the kids occupied as is normal this time of year. Despite all of the chaos that will ultimately ensue as with most family celebrations, I managed to find some peace in the cool autumn morning at my parents’ place before the feast.

The fall is my favorite time of year in northern California. The air is crisp and the cold nips at you just a little. Most of the trees are turning various shades of reds, oranges, and yellows which sharply contrast the dull greys in the cloudy sky, seeming to add to the beauty of the image. As the sun rose that holiday morning, I took a few long breaths and felt more refreshed. I watched as the resident animals came to life that morning, seeming to enjoy the morning as much as I was. After some time in my one on one with nature, I heard movement and laughter from within the house. Yes, the kids were now awake!

Both my daughter and son were eager to lend a helping hand in the feast’s preparation. I watched as their grandma coached them in their kitchen activities. Bianca rolled out the pie crust and cut it into strips for the black berry pie, while Tyler helped mix carefully measured doses of spices to the pumpkin pie mix. Immediately I was thankful for such helpful children (yes I am aware that this stage will likely not last forever).

We had a smaller turkey this year as it was to be a somewhat smaller gathering. Mom stuffed a 16 pound bird and put it in the oven for its 4 hour bake. As it approached turkey time, people began to arrive, the kids’ duties became lighter, and mom became the super-multitasking cooking machine my siblings and I remember as children. She made all dishes come out hot at the same time, which still baffles me, and my brother took the turkey carving honors. This is the family’s designated position for my brother as his palate can only be described as extremely carnivorous. My sister followed up with bringing several nice varieties of wine from the Napa Valley and we were ready to eat!

The food did not disappoint. Dinner was filled with the hum of satisfied palates and bellies. In my case, even a little pain as my stomach was not quite as large as it once was due to a recent bout of dieting. Still we all managed to eat, drink, and be merry in our bid to show thankfulness and appreciation for each other. The event was a success and the holiday did its job in giving us pause to consider the fine things we have in our lives, despite the grayness of the clouds that seem to follow us at times. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day even if it is not part of your custom. Cheers!

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