My First Adult Thanksgiving

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So, I know it’s been forever since we’ve posted anything. We’re still here and still love our blog! We really have no good excuse other than the every day hustle and bustle of life, and a week long vacation we took to Cambodia (more to come on that in a different blog post!).  But we are more excited than ever to start writing again and more!

I have a confession to make. We have a goal of making this blog a platform for discussion and issues while encouraging everyone, especially women, to share their voice. Sometimes though, that goal feels heavy in a way that I must always share something impactful, insightful, or thought provoking. I always feel like whatever I write has to be more large scale. I constantly have ideas on things I want to write about but then think it’s too small, or a “just me” scenario.

And then, I was laying in bed this week, unable to sleep (thank you pregnancy restless leg!) and thinking about how I love this blog, what it stands for, and doing something with my sister that means so much to both of us. I was also thinking about how I sometimes struggle with writing to you all when I realized something. The big things are important; the political views and parenting philosophies, they matter, and they connect us. But, we also always know there’s someone else out there who supports and/or thinks the way we do. The thing that really deepens our connections with others are the small, seemingly insignificant parts in our lives. It’s the “ah me too!” or the “I thought that was just me!” moments that make us feel like someone else really gets us. I believe that is where my strengths lie; in the small moments. My promise to you is to no longer be afraid to write because something seems “too small”. While we will continue to write on the big issues that connect us, we will also write on the “smaller” parts of life to deepen that connection. And we hope that you will continue to share both the big and small parts of your lives with us.

So, without further ado, let’s talk about my first adult Thanksgiving. Is it weird it took me 29 years of life to feel like I had an adult Thanksgiving? And by adult, I mean that my husband and I hosted and cooked.

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Before this year, I don’t think I’ve ever even helped make a SIDE dish or even brought something as simple as rolls to thanksgiving! Ya see, my dad is one of 14 kids and thanksgiving was the big holiday every year that all my aunts and uncles with their families would get together at my grandparents. As you can imagine, that made for a big group.

I have such good memories of those years. Playing “school” on the basement stairs, the ping pong room, watching the live version of Peter Pan countless times, and of course sitting at the kid’s table. In fairness, I’m pretty sure if we all got together for Thanksgiving now I’d still be sitting at the kid’s table. But there were always more than enough cooks in the kitchen, and the help of little ones or even teenagers was not only not needed but more of a nuisance than anything.

As I got older, we switched to doing Thanksgivings with my grandparents on my mom’s side. These gatherings were MUCH smaller so I may have helped some. Which means, maybe I cut up some bread or fruit?? Mostly mom and Gram did the cooking while we watched T.V. Finally, since being in my early twenties I’ve been on a vacation over the holiday. Jamaica, Vegas (getting married!), Cambodia, and Singapore are where I’ve spent my last 4.

I have another confession to make, one that may make you think I’m nuts (like my husband does for this). Or perhaps it’ll make you say “ah I thought I was the only one!”. I am not a super fan of Thanksgiving. Truth be told, I’m not crazy about the food and I’d rather just order a pizza. So being away for the last several years hasn’t mattered to me in the slightest.

This was the first year we were actually going to be home for Thanksgiving, but away from extended family and I felt it was time to finally give my husband the food he loves so much. I’m also super lucky to have a hubs who enjoys cooking, so it wasn’t all on my shoulders. We invited over two guys my husband works with whose families were back stateside for the holiday. It was just the four of us and our 14 month old.

So what did I learn from doing my first adult Thanksgiving?? It doesn’t have to be a burden! While I have great thanksgiving childhood memories, I also remember chaos, exhausted adults from cooking, tons of clean-up, and last minute scrambling. Obviously a lot of that plays into the fact that there was so many more people.

But believe it or not, I actually had fun making the food. My husband and I spent about 4 hours the night before prepping anything we could. It wasn’t chaotic or crazy though. We listened to music and talked. I mean, who can think of a better way to spend four hours with your husband? The next day cooking was easy and smooth (though I’ll admit we ate about 30-45 minutes later than we planned on).

My other stunning revelation?? I LIKE THANKSGIVING FOOD. Here’s the secret… try new kinds of foods! Like I said, I never did the cooking and every year it was the same foods. Don’t get me wrong, I’m forever grateful for all the years of hard work my parents and grandparents did but green bean casserole has always been my nemesis.

We had some traditional foods like stuffing, mashed potatoes, homemade cranberry sauce and turkey of course. But we also mixed it up with a butternut squash soup, mac and cheese, maple glazed carrots, and a sweet potato dish (I’m beyond bummed I forgot to take a picture of the spread). Even the traditional stuff tasted better because turns out that when you do the cooking, you get to make it more to your liking!

All and all, I’d say my first adult Thanksgiving was a success! Don’t worry, it wasn’t too adult though. There was still plenty of alcohol, inappropriate jokes, and fights over card games to make me feel like a kid again.

And now, I GET TO START BLASTING CHRISTMAS MUSIC AND MY HUSBAND CAN’T COMPLAIN! Cheers to the holiday season!

• K

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