First, I am sorry that I continue to complain about how busy I am, when in reality I should be thankful that I have a job, my health, and I live in the relative safety of suburban USA.
I work straight through 3:35 pm tomorrow…I know this is not as difficult as our members of the military who may not even get a break, so again no pity for me.
Tonight, the Hubster and I started to batten down the Thanksgiving hatches. He cleaned out the fireplace while I baked non-stop pies and cookies. For the first time in Pumpkin Pie baking history I created a monogram on our pie.
I don’t want anyone to mistake our pie for their pie. I plan to perfect the monogram next year.
Now onto the memories,… the next portion of this post is brought to you by last year’s post…enjoy.
I was born into a family with two loving parents…and through their good faith as practicing Catholics, they practiced quite frequently and I had three sisters and three brothers who came before me. Those sisters and brothers gave me wonderful “in and out” laws as well as many nieces and nephews and now many great nieces and great nephews.
The Thanksgiving holiday always found my mother up quite early putting the turkey in the oven to beat the neighbors to the gas as the pressure would drop in our little corner of Jamaica Plain. Sorry neighbors, she was ever the early bird, pun intended and no offense to the turkeys.
Sometimes my brothers managed to scoot out of the house early in the morning to attend the BC High and Catholic Memorial Football game, thus avoiding some of the tasks required for meal prep, etc.
The table was set the evening before with her best china, crystal glassware and silver ware. Every serving dish she owned was pulled out to be filled to the brim with potatoes, turnip, peas, squash, sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips, cranberry, gravy, stuffing and what we deemed as appetizers, celery stuffed with cream cheese.
Naturally, there was always extended family guests. My grandfather and his third wife, Clarice* always made the trip from New Bedford causing Keary and me to be removed from our double bed so that they had a place to sleep. One Thanksgiving when I was very young I asked my mother why we didn’t call Clarice “grandma”… my mother did not respond with a verbal answer rather the look she gave said, “Children should be seen and not heard.” I learned the story later in life and I won’t burden you with it now.
We ate in the late afternoon and had dessert in the early evening…there was no dishwasher unless you include the seven children and of course, cut out the three boys who were bonding with the Milkman (our father) and our grandfather watching football until Grandpa and Clarice declared it time to sing or play cards (for money). That’s right Grandpa and Clarice would instruct us to get our piggy banks and they taught us various poker games all while their high ball glasses never ran dry. If one of us started to win Clarice would complain to my mother that “the winner” was being rude or had committed some other act that required removal from the game. Apparently, I was rude at several Thanksgiving poker games…
C’est la vi, “rudeness” and knowing “when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em” provided a nice nest egg for my college fund.
I look back on those Thanksgivings with fondness, even though my brothers have smoother hands than the four girls…don’t worry you can make it up to me with a gift certificate to a nail salon.
On Thursday, Hubster and I will be joined by our sons and their guests…I will hold in my heart those dear Thanksgiving’s past.
Never underestimate the power of a little liquid persuasion.
Just kidding…even one and I would be laying on the floor putting stuffing in my shoes.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
* name changed to protect the poor sport.