Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving Traditions...

Today was my "friday" at work. I decided to take tomorrow off so that Thanksgiving wasn't so rushed and quick and the puppies and I could take our time as we drove to my parents' house tomorrow.

Weeks like this are nice but usually slightly frustrating because everyone's already slightly in 'holiday' mode and everything slows down. It's harder to get people to return phone calls, harder to get people to commit to meetings/interviews and harder to get people moving forward.

I can't blame them, I suppose. I mean, this is a short week for me and all day today, I had that sense of an internal 'countdown' that didn't stop ticking until the clock hit five p.m. and I was officially on vacation until Monday.

Of course, it's not going to be the most restful vacation but, really, is thanksgiving ever really restful? As the self-appointed soux chef to my mother in the kitchen, Wednesday is usually spent with me and my notebook, planning each stage of cooking Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dinner Impossible style. My mother and I plan how long things take to cook, what needs to go into the oven when and how we can keep things moving so that we don't run out of oven space. This is usually coupled with trying not to panic because people are arriving and coming to say hello by standing in the kitchen and being social. Since my parents' have a relatively small kitchen, this makes movement and smooth sailing quite impossible.

Also, there always tends to be the issue of the carving of the turkey. My dad, naturally, likes to do this. We generally let him because otherwise, he sulks a little. One time, we let my older brother do it but he ended up taking three times as long as my dad usually does because that's just the way he is. He's very meticulous and quite a perfectionist. It's the same when you ask my brother to put lights on the Christmas tree. It ends up taking him several hours to position each individual light correctly on the tree branches. It ends up looking fabulous but by the time he's done, you're just wanting him to hurry up and you've sort of stopped caring how it looks.

Anyway, when it comes to carving the turkey, we let my dad do it. He usually picks the most inconvenient time possible. He's either much later than he should be or he decides to come and claim it when my mother and I are doing a graceful dance around the kitchen, moving plates, dishes, etc. to get everything in order.

Still, in the end, it all comes together. The meal always turns out delicously. It gets eaten far quicker than it gets prepared but that's always the way, isn't it?

After thanksgiving, it's become a tradition for everyone to grab the newspaper ads and start talking about what they want for Christmas, particularly the children. This is quite handy since my sister and I are Black Friday shoppers and it gives us ideas for our shopping trip.

We're planning on being at WalMart at 4 a.m. I'm not a huge fan of Walmart in general but it's a tradition. It makes you feel like you're part of something to be there at 4 a.m. waiting for the announcement that it's time to start shopping. That you're not be something sane per se is irrelevant. It's a tradition and it's fun to see all of the other nutcases who are there for the early-morning deals. It's just best to stay away from the big screen TV's. Big Screen TV buyers are a little scary.

I don't know where else we'll end up but I know we're likely to make a day of it on Friday. Chances are by Friday night, we'll be exhausted but in the meantime, it will not only be fun to be shopping all day but also to spend time with my sister and act like a crazy person.

Of course, she'd probably say that I generally act like a crazy person year round which may or may not be true but on Black Friday, I'm not alone.

That's a Thanksgiving tradition I just love.
Happy Thanksgiving- I'll be back next week!

No comments: