It is the weekend before Thanksgiving. I have already ventured out to the grocery store to procure all of the necessities to prepare the vittles for the day. I made space in my freezer earlier in the week for my turkey because Thursday was the day I planned to go grocery shopping and I was not deviating from that plan. While 2020 has required we make major adjustments to many things in our lives, the holiday’s have fallen victim to those adjustments as well. I usually cook for a host of friends and family who parade in and out of my home throughout the day, and for the big group of cousins who will no doubt end up involved in an intense game night at the end of the day…that will not be happening this year. Do I feel a sense of loss; absolutely, but I saw something the other day that said, better Zoomsgiving than ICU Christmas. I can utter a great big AMEN to that. Like everything else this year, we adjust.
I miss my family something terrible. I would love to spend the day laughing and enjoying each other’s company, which we haven’t been able to do in a terribly long while now, but there is a level of responsibility that we all must take. Especially if we hope to be able to get together with one another anytime soon. I spoke with a friend of mine the other day about the holiday and their plans. We both had the same idea in mind, less is better. Both of our families normally have big plans for the holiday, her family is far bigger than mine; so their gathering may include 50+ people. We all realized that individual houses having individual dinners was the best option. Our biggest fear was having a family member that didn’t know they were sick, or being the asymptomatic individual and spreading the virus ourselves. While we are always extra cautious, and have been throughout the entire ordeal, one can not be too careful. Could you imagine bearing the responsibility of knowing you inadvertently infected a loved one, made them really ill, and possibly caused their death. That is why it is so important to stay within your main family unit this season.
What am I doing? Well, normally I would begin prepping around Sunday evening. Chopping all of my vegetables for my dressing and sides. My cornbread dressing and my homemade macaroni and cheese is always the most famous dishes at the table. I would say, the most requested. My husband always wants my sweet potato casserole and my daughter request my homemade yeast rolls. Anyone who has made bread, and has to get it just right – like I do, know that it is a labor of love. Your butter has to be the perfect temperature, your yeast has to be perfect, the room has to be the right temperature, and so on. It is a time consuming process. Since we will not be entertaining, and store bought yeast rolls can be just as tasty…Sister Schubert’s Dinner Yeast Rolls it is. Warm and buttery, straight out of the oven and you would think they were rolled and risen in your own kitchen. The family loves a cajun fried turkey – that I leave up to my husband. I do the injection for the turkey with my own special seasoning blend. My blend is so good, I had just about everyone in the family bring their turkeys last year for me to inject. My secret injection will go to the grave…I may leave it for my daughter in my will. We do two meats, usually a turkey and a ham, and this year I found the smallest spiral ham I could find. I will dress it with pineapples and cherries, glaze it, and it will be melt in your mouth moist. This year I wanted mustard greens, so we are going to have that as well as green beans as our vegetables. I have a 3 pot slow cooker I bring out this time of year to keep my stove from being so crowded, and it is so helpful. For dessert, it is a fight between sweet potato pie and pecan pie. I split the baby and will make one of each. It sounds like a lot of cooking, but not nearly as much as I normally would do, if we weren’t limited by this year’s pandemic. Whatever extras we have, we’re going to put in to-go containers, drive around, and hand out to people down on their luck.
While this year may not look like the normal Thanksgiving holiday. A house full of family, everyone gathered around the table, the men yelling at football – the women too, and the kids running around playing. You can still be thankful. You can be thankful that through all the madness that presented this year, you are still standing. With all the people affected by Covid, you are still here to be able to read this post. If you are blessed to have a meal next Thursday, be it take out, home cooked, or a microwaved dinner…be thankful because YOU ARE STILL HERE! If you can’t be with your family, you can still call them, facetime, zoom, skype, google duo, whatever it is you have to do to see them, but to remain safe. I am thankful for this year, the good, the bad, and the indifferent. Although I may not get to be with everyone I love, I am thankful that they are healthy and I can pick up a phone and call them or see them. There are over 250,000 people and counting who will not be able to do that, just in the US. Be thankful you are not one of them. Have a safe, blessed, grateful, and happy Thanksgiving!💋💋