How Do You Celebrate Thanksgiving?

This year on November 25 we celebrate Thanksgiving here in the U.S. It’s a food-centered holiday and I have many fond memories of it growing up with our dining room table groaning under the weight of of all the food. The platter of turkey (of course), the mashed potatoes and gravy, the sweet potato casserole with marshmallow topping, bowls of wet and dry stuffing, the classic green bean casserole, the cranberry sauce, the rolls and relish dish. All of it prepared by the loving hands of my mother, aunt and grandmother.

But when I moved to California as a young adult I had to figure out how I wanted to celebrate it. And each year seemed to be different. One year my parents came from the East Coast for a visit. My husband and I were living in a studio apartment in San Francisco at the time and preparing a feast in our minute kitchen was out of the question. We took them to a Thanksgiving buffet in a posh hotel. It was lovely but expensive.

Isn’t this a wholesome looking buffet??

Later when we bought a house and started a family, I wanted to fix a big traditional Thanksgiving meal each year. It was a lot of work, but brought back good memories and everyone was appreciative. Trouble was we were eating leftovers forever! We were not big turkey eaters and only one daughter and myself like the homemade cranberry sauce with mandarin oranges. Eventually I realized it was time to switch things up.

Fast forward several decades and our Thanksgiving meal continues to evolve. This year my youngest daughter had an idea and I jumped on board with it. I recently discovered a new food company (East Bay Pie) that makes delicious little pies, both sweet and savory. We had tried a few and had been impressed with the taste and quality. She suggested we get a selection of savory pies for our main course including several vegetarian options and I thought it was brilliant. (They are being delivered this Saturday.)

Here are two on our menu–Cheesy Green Chili and Beef and Stout.

Along with each of us having our own tiny pie (or pies) I’ll be making mashed potatoes (which we all love) and instead of a green been casserole with cream of mushroom soup (which I haven’t made in years), I’ve asked my husband to make his outstanding three-bean salad which is one of our absolute favorites! I might make stuffing or some other vegetable. Maybe. None of us are big eaters. I don’t need to spend hours in the kitchen whipping up food that will then haunt us for days in the fridge. I’d rather spend the time hanging out with my family watching the Macy’s parade.

One of characters Mighty Mouse in the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade mugs for the crowd as he hogs the spotlight in Times Square. Year unknown. (Photo by Nick Petersen/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)

Before we eat we go around the table and share at least one thing we are thankful for (and no one can say “family” because that’s a given!). Once we get started it isn’t hard to think of all the blessings in our lives that we often take for granted. I’m guessing it’s the same for you!

The afternoon will be rounded out with dessert, football (at least for my husband) and perhaps a jigsaw puzzle, old movie and a walk. All in all, it will be a low-key pleasant day. I will enjoy it very much.

Blessings as you celebrate this season of thankfulness,

Karen

10 comments

  1. Last year, as we were not going anywhere ie joining family for Thanksgiving because of the pandemic, we cooked a rib roast. It was so good that we cooked one again for Christmas.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I grew up in the SF bay area, and one year my parents and I went to the Claremont. I think my mother was tired of always doing the cooking, by then my grandmothers had both died. It was nice, but I liked the crowded house when my older brothers and their families came. No football, afterwards we played poker! This year my daughter is coming, but no turkey, we’ll have some sort of chicken she likes and pies! Never did do the yams or green beans so many have.
    Have a very happy Thanksgiving!

    Like

  3. We are quite traditional. Turkey, cornbread dressing, etc. I like to have the feast at supper time. I think it makes for a more relaxed day.
    I would love to have your honey’s recipe for the bean salad. Do you think he would share?
    Thanks for a wonderful and thoughtful blog!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Shari. I’ll have to try cornbread dressing sometime. I’ll see if I can get that bean salad recipe for you. I know he takes a basic recipe and doctors it up a bit! Hope your Thanksgiving is blessed. Karen

      Like

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