Happy Thanksgiving Wishes from Me to You
We eat Thanksgiving dinner early in my house, around one, because that’s how we did it in my parents’ house. I always think of my mother at this time of year. I remember waking up Thanksgiving morning, already smelling the turkey cooking in the oven. It was a big deal whenever she got it out to baste. We all gathered around the oven to take a look. My dad always bought the biggest turkey he could find, and it became a contest every year once we all left home, who could find the biggest one. We listened to Christmas music for the first time that year, and I clearly remember Mama starting to cook the night before when she got home from work. She usually made the stuffing and packed it into the bird, the cranberries, green beans, and all the pies after a full work day. Of course, everything was made from scratch.
The first Thanksgiving dinner I made all by myself was the year I lived in Colorado, when I was pregnant with my first child, who was born in December. I used all my mom’s recipes she’d typed up and sent to me, homesick as I made everything. It turned out great, but man, was I exhausted and had the swollen ankles as proof that I’d overdone it!
For years, I did the whole shebang, just like my mom. I’d get home from work Wednesday night and bake everything plus make several side dishes, then I’d get up early on Thursday morning and put the turkey in the over and finish everything up. I wanted my kids to share some of the same memories I had growing up.
Fast forward fifteen or twenty years. I started making changes with buying the pies from Village Inn, instead of baking them myself. It felt weird, but by then, I was older and more tired, so I gave in to the temptation, unless of course, my parents were coming to town. I would never have served my dad store bought pie! Oh, the horror! And it was a given that paper plates were never put in front of my father. He always got a ceramic plate. No paper napkins, either. He got a cloth napkin or towel.
Fast forward another few years, and being still older and even more tired, I decided to add a couple side dishes to the non-home cooked food, namely the stuffing, because it’s a pain in the rear to make from scratch by the time you bake the cornbread and…