Saturday was our family Thanksgiving celebration. It got me thinking about Thanksgiving and what it means and has meant to me in the past.
It took a lot to try to remember what Thanksgiving was like for me as a child at home. After all it was a zillion years ago...and a lot of my childhood memories somehow seem to be blocked for me. I used to call my sister, Shirley, to find out how things were back then. But she died several years ago, so I lost my source. Sad to say the rest of my family doesn't seem willing to communicate with me. But I remember Mom got up long before us and must have prepared a lot of the food. The pies would be sitting on the buffet and the turkey roasting in the oven long before we (the children) woke up. Our morning was spent watching tv....yes we did have one...black and white...small oval screen.
When I grew up and married I remembered how frightened I was the first time I cooked a turkey. You see, I had never planned on being a housewife..I never took Home Ec in school because I was going to live in the big city and have a career....there was no way that I was staying in Ohio and being a farm wife! Well, I did go to the big city for a while...New York City....but a job led me to Toledo Oh where I met and married my first husband. So I had no idea how to fix a turkey. I did find a cookbook and did my best. I set the oven, rinsed the turkey, rubbed butter and salt on it, and put it in the oven. While it was roasting, I fixed the other things we ate. Later as I was carving the turkey, can you imagine how surprised I was to find that plastic bag with the neck and other body parts in it...still in the turkey! But did I stop to think what Thanksgiving meant to me? No, I was busy putting on Thanksgiving.
So now things have changed. I no longer get to cook the turkey. Instead, my daughter's fiance does a fine job. This year we had quite an assortment of food. I contributed deviled eggs and although I made plenty...they were gone in the flash of an eye! My son arrived late and I could hear him in the kitchen saying with disappointment.."but where are the deviled eggs that Mom brought?" (so making a note to myself...make extra eggs next time!) After eating we just sat around and visited. It was a great way to spend the afternoon.
Thursday (the real Thanksgiving Day) will be here soon. I have contemplated how I will spend the day. I won't be cooking a dinner, nor will I be sitting down with anyone to eat one. Today I thought about it at the grocery store and decided that it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without a turkey dinner...so I bought a Mary Callender's frozen dinner...stuffing, turkey and mashed potatoes...and I bought a pumpkin pie for dessert. If nothing comes up, I'll be eating that on my TV tray...maybe watching my first Christmas movie. My family will be getting ready to hit the stores for the pre-black Friday sales...then the real black Friday sales...that isn't for me.
I guess that Thanksgiving is a time for being thankful for the things we have, our experiences, our family and friends, and just to be alive. It is also a time for remembering...old times, places, dear ones who are departed, and for getting ready for the holiday season.
What does Thanksgiving mean to you? How do you celebrate it?