Thanksgiving went very well. Dinner turned out even better than I’d hoped, and we didn’t run out of forks. Or wine. But we almost ran out of wine, even though there was quite a bit of it.
Up until this year, Every Family Thanksgiving Since The Beginning Of Time has been at my parents’ house. This year, because my parents are now in Florida and my siblings live in Brooklyn, NY, we decided we should offer to host since we are conveniently located between the two locations.
How we imagined our invitation sounded:
“Hear ye, Hear ye. Thanksgiving is a time for Family Togetherness. And also lots of wine. We would be thrilled to host a big family gathering this year! Please do come! We look forward to welcoming you with open arms. And also lots of wine.”
Here’s how the invitation really sounded:
“Bah! We don’t feel like traveling anywhere. If you want Togetherness, you can come here. Don’t forget to bring wine.”
I was excited to host dinner and started planning the menu back in August. I know. You could accuse me of being Type A, but I prefer to think of myself as an eager epicurean.
Since I don’t eat meat, I told my mom that I was willing to buy a turkey if she wanted to take charge of cooking it. She was in agreement. A few minutes later, I called her back.Me:
Mom, I just realized that I don’t have a roasting pan. Can you bring yours?Mom:
A few minutes later, I had to call back again.Me:
I don’t have a baster, either, so you might want to bring yours.Mom:
Hey, it’s me again. I don’t have a carving knife, so can you please bring dad’s electric one?Mom:
Hating myself as I dial:Mom:
What do you want now?Me:
You don’t have one?Me:
I AM TOTALLY MEAT IMPAIRED. HAVE NOTHING.Mom:
You’d better have wine when we come.
Sunday before Thanksgiving. Mom and Dad arrive with their dog Benny in tow. Talk, eat, sleep, go to work. Repeat on Monday and Tuesday. Bah.
Finally: Wednesday! No work! HAPPY.
Wednesday. Mom and I spend all day making the pies, complete with homemade crust. Two apple, two pumpkin, one sweet potato, and one pecan. Worry that there will not be enough pie. Worry that there is too much pie.
Brother arrives with his girlfriend and his dog, BB. Sister arrives with a beautiful bouquet of sunflowers. That night my parents order Chinese for everyone, and nothing goes better with spring rolls than a nice margarita, right?
Thursday. Wake up. Go running with sister. Coffee coffee coffee. Stink. Must take shower.
Dogs are getting along as long as Alex stays out of BB’s face. He doesn’t. BB does not like Alex. Alex is dismayed. All dogs decide that they cannot live without Alex’s drool-crispy dog toy. Battle ensues. BB wins. Proceeds to rip stuffing out of toy. Alex is dismayed.
Cooking, cleaning, cooking, cleaning.
More people arrive. Best friend brings awesome vegetarian appetizers and wine. Wine is opened immediately. Cousin brings a boatload of shimp and more wine. Dogs bark every time the doorbell rings.This Thanksgiving brought to you by Old Bay!
Mother-in-law and her boyfriend arrive with Caesar salad. And more wine. Everyone cheers. Bark bark bark.
Cooking. Cooking like mad. I ask brother’s girlfriend to mince an entire bulb of garlic. She complies because she is afraid of the Sweaty Apron-Wearing Lunatic.
Table is set. Best friend lights candles and fills water glasses. Everyone helps carry dishes to the table. Everyone finds their places easily because the eager epicurean has made fall-themed place cards. Martha Stewart is jealous.
We sit. Everyone oohs and ahs over the table. We relax. We laugh. M makes a toast and everyone clicks glasses.
Cousin brings out his special super-long Thanksgiving Dinner fork and everyone laughs.
We tell stories that everyone has heard a hundred times and everyone laughs.
We drink more wine and everyone laughs.
I love my family and everyone laughs.
It is a Happy Thanksgiving.