One Busy Thanksgiving

I have always loved Thanksgiving! A large family is the best way to share the holiday. As a growing boy there seemed always to be so much delicious food. Nearly everyone found the time to be at home. The windows in our house would steam up from such fervent cooking! My family had this ancient hand grinder which fastened vice-like to a  table or counter  top. Each year we ground fresh cranberries with bits of orange, and how could anyone possibly improve upon Mom's apple pie! I would put black olives on all my fingers and eat them off one by one!

We always seemed to finish early enough for some of the relations to visit and still find room for a second helping of cold turkey sandwiches and more pie. I would surreptitiously sip the remains from Dad's coffee, never has it tasted so fine! It's a wonder no one ever flat out popped from being stuffed like the  turkey itself! Having that mythical 'wish bone' around the house for several days waiting for it to dry was enough to send anyone into splendid flights of fancy.

This was all a big improvement over Dad's barbecue style (it left a lot to be desired). Mom was a turkey perfectionist and toiled late into the wee hours basting and chopping and mixing. Sometimes the turkey itself looked as big as my little brother. Of course I'm a  lot bigger now, and everything seems very much smaller... except my little brother!  But  there was nothing canned or frozen, that was too costly (except pumpkin pie filling). Squash was boiled and mashed fresh as were the potatoes. Biscuits made from scratch with giblet gravy. It's no wonder Mom approached the holidays' with such trepidation. It 


must have been terribly exhausting for her ... especially raising a brood of rambunctious boys unskilled in the ways of gratitude.

It has been 393 years since the first Thanksgiving Day in 1621. The Pilgrims and the native Americans sat down to dinner and apparently got off on the wrong foot! It was the first and last  time they ever got along. It must have been a day of  wary table mates indeed! Still each diner brought to the table something that the others could not.  Sharing what was offered  forged a unique if temporary alliance helping  all to make it through the ensuing winter. Sharing is good!

In 1941 the US Congress officially designated the 4th Thursday in November as a national day of thanks for the bounty America has provided.

    Wishing you a joy filled and bounteous Thanksgiving!



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