In case you hadn’t noticed, we are deep in the midst of the let’s make ridiculously large meals and gorge ourselves for days time of year. Being a person who loves spending time in the kitchen, the holidays are right up my alley. I love figuring out the menu, researching recipes, gathering up ingredients, and then spending a few days prior to the main event in the kitchen putting everything together. But I have to tell you, I totally hit a breaking point last week when it seemed that every blessed food blog I came across had about 900 different tips, tricks, and even schedules to help the home cook prepare for Thanksgiving. It just seemed overwhelming, especially to folks who are not accustomed to hosting a large meal, or even a small dinner party. Information overload for sure.
I mean really, as long as the family is together and the pie makes it to the table…who really cares? Even if it’s a store-bought pie, or a bakery pie, or a pie with store bought crust (I do this ALL the time). I think all this “advice”, while well-meaning, misses the overall point of the gathering completely. It’s about being around the table with people you love (and who usually drive you a little crazy too) and enjoying a meal. It doesn’t have to be the wild affair with 10 appetizers, 20 side dishes, and 15 pies, with a table set with painstakingly handmade place cards and pinecone arrangements. Who has time for that? And if you’re stressing out over all that prep work, how do you have time to sit down with everyone and enjoy the meal? (note: I’m pretty sure we’ll eat our Thanksgiving meal sitting around the coffee table)
Being in the military. DB and I don’t get to spend a lot of holidays with family. In fact, we haven’t spent any holidays with either of our families since we got married. In fact, we’re pretty happy at this point just to have had the privilege of spending our holidays together in the same house and same country. Our lifestyle puts things into perspective for me in a way I never thought of previously, and I hope it’s something that I can instill in the Bear and our new little one throughout their childhoods. The important thing is not the turkey. In fact, one Thanksgiving a few years back the turkey didn’t even make it to the table, but fortunately my sister in law brought down a ham so we had that instead. The important thing is us and the memories we make. So friends, don’t kill yourselves in the kitchen over these next few weeks, just sit back, have a festive drink, and think about how happy your grandparents are to see you.