Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Thanksgiving Memories

When I was growing up, sometimes we would go to my dad's mom's house and have a huge meal.  My dad grew up in a tiny farm house in central NY state and it always sort of gave you the feeling that you were in the movie "Oliver" except my grandma had a ton of food.  We had as many as 35 people in a 1,500 square foot house, so we made friends with our cousins, or really struggled.  I remember one Friday after Thanksgiving I fell asleep at 6PM Friday and woke up at 10 AM Saturday - still my record for continuous sleep absent surgery.

Once or twice we'd go to my mom's mom's house and my aunt would bring dinner.  She was a caterer and so she made food for 100 people when we only had 15 there.  It was great food and she was a great cook, so I would have 4-5-6 servings and people would still be begging me to eat more "or it will go to waste."  I really believe that had it been a thing in 1980-88 that I could have been a competitive eater.  I am sure that there were days I had 20,000 calories plus.

But the best Thanksgivings were when we stayed home.  My mom would get up about 4AM and put in her turkey and start making stuff.  She always bitched (which wasn't a Thanksgiving-only event) but you could tell she really loved to make a great meal.  My mom - also a very good cook, though for some reason she enjoyed making a terrible vegetable stew once every 10 days.  That was a really bleak day.

The VERY best thing about my mom's cooking was that she would make dinner rolls from scratch.  She would make 64+ rolls because she knew I could eat at least 12 (I will concede that some days it may have been 24).  She'd make dinner rolls that were 3 inches high and light as a feather.  Then she'd take a stick of butter and rub the stick across the browned top.  Then we'd eat them with more butter inside.

I always loved Thanksgiving.

When I tell people today that I eat roughly 40% of what I would like to eat and roughly 15% of what I used to eat as a kid, no one believes me.  But man could I ever eat and man did I love Thanksgiving.  Now, I had a stent put in to open a 95% clogged artery at age 45, so you probably should not do as I did.  But it was fun while it lasted.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.  It can be a tough time for those who do not have family near, and sometimes a far tougher time for those who do!  But try to make it a great day and either remember the great times growing up, or if you had few or none, try to make some great memories tomorrow.


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