Can I think about something in the future for a minute? Take Thanksgiving, for example. This morning found me searching for recipes on the web. It gives me pleasure to do this. I like to see new trends in holiday menus and read about some new recipes. Deciding for a minute...to change things up a bit and then going back to the old ways. Now, I have prepared Thanksgiving dinner for family over and over again...and almost always use the same recipes. If I have changed things in any way....I would notice facial expressions, when I brought out a new green bean dish. They were expecting the old tried and true green bean casserole. No pumpkin pie??? More facial expressions. "Oh, what's in these mashed potatoes?" someone might say. I know that the sour cream I added was not my regular old mashed potatoes. So, I will try to do Thanksgiving the same way as always, but there might be a new twist this year.
I think that holidays are special times for families. Most people don't want things changed too much. I think that they are comfortable with the old ways. Families want to hang on the the past. Thanksgiving is a time for comfort foods...bringing back memories of the holidays in the past. Stories told about people who are no longer with us....like Tim and the pumpkin cake or his carving lesson from Joe. Other stories come to mind, tales about my brother, Jim, leaning on the kitchen counter in pain because he ate too much....or stories about LuAnn and her Tofurkey (a vegetarian turkey) or John smiling over his first sweet potato dish, Brandon will have hot gravy. (he wanted hot gravy when he was just a little guy...just like his grandpa Joe.)
At holiday time I sometimes wish I had a big kitchen. Everyone congregates in my kitchen...near the food and maybe me. My little kitchen is so full of people bumping into each other...it used to bother me, but now, I just enjoy having my family around. My kitchen will be just fine...it makes for a cozy family get together.
This year I will make things ahead and freeze them. The same old recipes will be made...actually this menu is a pretty good one and one that I will enjoy too. People will be in my way, there will be laughing and joking, the food will be hot...and good, the dishwasher will be filled when the dinner's over, leftovers will be packaged for take outs, the candles will be snuffed, the good byes at the door, and Joe and I will collapse in our chairs. That's the way we do Thanksgiving.