This is one of the few times in decades that Thanksgiving dinner has not been at our home. Now that Sr. Advisor R has died the celebration has passed to the younger generation (in their 40’s). And they upheld the tradition beautifully this year.
I vividly remember the old days, working at the high school until noon the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, then scrambling to launch into preparations for the big dinner Thursday. The women–my mother, m-i-l and I– worked late at night in our bathrobes in the kitchen–enjoying special time together as we readied everything but the turkey for the next day.
Now the younger generation–(both husband and wife work as did my husband and I)–loves to cook. They prepare Thanksgiving dinner together–with a little day-time help from a mother and aunt. They have children (1 1/2 and 3 1/2). Relinquishing the Thanksgiving responsibility was welcomed by me, probably a bit dreaded by them; but the result was a most successful transition.
Being with family, having no pressure, and having little kids who are entertaining and fun– not crying or having melt-downs–is a pleasure.
Things change. Our dining room table, decorated in past years with boughs, fruit, candles and autumn leaves–the latter with the names of those present and dearly departed–now displays yet-to-be-put-away memorabilia and small items from my mil’s (Sr. Advisor R’s) home.
Our houseguests leave tomorrow. For old time’s sake I will gently take the saved, dried autumn leaves from their plastic bag in the drawer and view the names of those who have passed on. They were family or friends who were like family and–as they came together for Thanksgiving at our home–created a special warmth that enriched our lives.
A new tradition begins.
Every twist of the kaleidoscope moves us all in turn.–Elton John
I’m a little late with this, but couldn’t let this season pass without saying How much I appreciated this touching reflection on celebrating with family and friends. My entertaining is much less ambitious than it used to be (and I’m grateful for that!), but I am often wistful about the love and laughter of the past.
Thanks–and yes, Diane– at a certain age don’t we learn that being less ambitious allows us to continue life as it was–but with some well-thought-out tweaks?!
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. Yes, passing the torch is very bitter sweet. I miss the days when everyone gathered at my table but I don’t miss the days when everyone went home and I still had to clean up the mess!
Appreciate your thoughtful comment and the reality of cleaning up! Also am enjoying following your blog.
Very touching. My children should be reading your blogs…..not i. But do enjoy them. This was the second year I Didnt have thanksgiving… And I loved it. Carolyn
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