The stuffing is constructed (a secret and complicated mix of three types of dried bread, sliced and sautéed fruits and vegetables, butter, olive oil, seasonings and turkey broth), the pumpkin pie filling and shell made (to be combined and baked tomorrow), the green beans cleaned, the turkey’s in its brine and the roasted cranberry and orange relish brandied and ready.
There’s just one problem: there’s no company this year. No one is coming for dinner. Just two of us, unless you count the cats, and they don’t each much. Some family members have to work early Friday, and the trek here is an eight-hour round trip; too much for the sake of hustling over, stuffing themselves and leaving. And of course, Mom is gone. A year ago, she made her last visit here for Thanksgiving. Her last time seeing her grandchildren. Her last time seeing a beautiful table setting with things she knew well.
I’m not exactly sure why I made the effort this year. I’m not happy about the arrival of the holidays. I’m not happy about other people being happy about the holidays, which is not only stupid, it’s selfish. A lot has happened this year that represents the saddest aspects of life. I’m not the only one I know who lost a loved one, a job, a home. I know of many people in emotional and physical pain, and many who have experienced disappointment and failure.
But before I sink too far into doom and gloom, I can say that tomorrow morning, I will join 1,500 of my neighbors in a four-mile run/Turkey Trot to benefit a local church’s community programs, including a food pantry that feeds people in my town. I’m looking forward to running off a few calories pre-dinner and putting the day’s emphasis where it belongs: getting thankful for what’s still here, the people I still have and the things I can still accomplish.
The family will drive over and visit in December. Mom will always be missed. And I hope all of you have a well-stuffed day tomorrow.
- Basting, Brining, and Beauty! 5 Tips for Making the Best Turkey Your Table Has Ever Seen! (jetsettimes.com)
- The Cook-off fest has started….. (camsgranny.wordpress.com)
- 7 tips for roasting the perfect turkey (backtoherroots.com)
- Turkey Day Recipe Rendezvous (hummusapien.com)
- Hey Ralph, what’s stuffing? Happy Thanksgiving (quinnscommentary.com)
- What’s Your Favorite Turkey Trot Memory? (saltyrunning.com)
- 9 Thanksgiving Foods That Are Safe to Share with Your Dog (dogster.com)
- Thanksgiving: The Shed-jule, Part III (rodalena.wordpress.com)
- A Great Thanksgiving Day Leftover Recipe (wzlx.cbslocal.com)