Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving in our family means food, football and family.   Or if you ask Dougie, it’s football family, and food, in that order.

 We have celebrated some unconventional Thanksgivings.  One year our “turkey dinner” was in fact turkey hot dogs served at Texas Stadium while watching the Cowboys (see? football before food).  Another year, actually a few years in a row, we attended the traditional Oklahoma UniversityUniversity of Nebraska Friday-after-Thanksgiving game.   We had a good friend who played for Nebraska, and another dear friend who is a HUGE Oklahoma fan, so it was always good times.

 Another year, we enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner while blissfully floating in the Caribbean, no snow, no football, no worries, mon.   A few years back, we had the very exciting opportunity to stay in New York City for Thanksgiving, and enjoyed the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in person, fulfilling a childhood dream of mine; in fact I still get choked up recalling those memories.


Of course we’ve also done the traditional meal, with aunts & uncles, cousins, in-laws and more.  One year, very early in our marriage, we went to my aunt’s house, and I believe there were easily 25 or more people there.  That’s the football-watching side of my family, so I knew Dougie would fit right in.  It also happens to be the side of the family with a couple of mildly developmentally disabled cousins, but they’re cool, they’re family, and the fact they’re a little different just is, ya know?  However, remember this was early in our marriage, and Dougie didn’t really know much of the family yet.   Doug’s pretty social, and I wasn’t at all worried about him finding a group of my cousins to bond with, so I just kind of turned him loose and gravitated myself to the kitchen.   It also did not occur to me to point out anyone who was special or different.  Again, they’re just regular folks to me.   A few hours later, I found Doug, who had found the TV, some football, and a group to bond with – Wayne and Larry.   He was on the couch smack dab between the two, neither of whom shower regularly, and both of whom were so excited to be the first cousins to really get to know Doug well.  I think the stack of Coors Light cans on the table in front of them helped the Cowboys/Packers/whatever win that day!    It was a very endearing scene, and the memory of it makes me love Dougie even more.


So for 2008, we are excited to be at home and sharing the day with some very dear friends, who are practically family to us.  Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, pumpkin pie, and a few others will grace our table.  Including pecan-gingersnap-caramel-pumpkin cheesecake that is in my fridge right now, just begging me to have one. little. taste. Resistance is futile!

 When I get up early Thursday morning, I will think of my dad, who always made a turkey to take to Grandma’s.  I remember coming downstairs, rubbing sleep from my eyes, and seeing Dad at the kitchen table reading the paper, keeping an eye on the Turkey.

 I also remember the first Thanksgiving I ever hosted.   It was my mom and dad, and Doug’s folks, at our house in Cedar Rapids.  I was nervous at hell, but everything turned out and nobody got sick, so I guess it was fine.  After dinner, Dad and I went on a nice long walk in my neighborhood and he shared some great stories and told me he was very proud of me.  That was the last Thanksgiving before Dad’s stroke, and a memory I cherish. 


In football news, our household was honored to host the Varsity team last night for a pasta party.  Their final game of the season is tonight.  I lost count around 28 young men, but I think almost the entire time attended.   And man can those boys eat!   They were incredibly polite, cleaned up after themselves, and were in and out of the house by 6:30 pm.  Wait a sec, so some nights I can’t get dinner on the table for my own family before 8 o’clock, but I can feed ~30 hearty eaters as early as 5:30?   Whatever, I have issues ok?

 I am so proud of NKB for his football accomplishments this year.   Doesn’t he look great (#21)?


 Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not coincidence.  – Erma Bombeck


Happy Thanksgiving friends, kk

1 comment:

BIBI said...

And Happy Thanksgiving to you as well. I hope to see what you all do for Christmas soon.