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Changes for Thanksgiving 2013

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Based on this year's Thanksgiving Day or Black Friday do you have any changes you definitely intend to institute for next year's weekend? It could be anything from a menu item to a relationship to the way you shop.

For me, I came to the realization that even though I did all the prep work in the days before the holiday (and thus was, on Thanksgiving morning, wondering what to do with myself) that I really don't like turkey and trimmings. I suspect that has to do with the prep work, that I kind of "taste" the menu in the days before I actually eat it. And that once it is before me on the table I am tired of it. Plus, the cost isn't exactly inexpensive any more.

So I am thinking that while I liked, really liked, the quiet and peacefulness I had this year that I will no longer do a turkey & trimmings dinner. I'm going to make something simple, something I adore like vegetarian tacos or my favorite pasta dish, or maybe if I can get them fresh that morning, splurge on steamed littleneck clams. I am simply not going to go to a lot of trouble to make something I apparently don't care all that much for.

Plus, I am more unwilling to become part of a family celebration that is so insistent on doing everything the way it has always been done that the day has a fair amount of tension that ramps up very high during the last half hour before dinner when far too many people are in the kitchen making things, crowding things, stressing out while trying to get every dish to the table at the same time. It just doesn't make it much fun for me. My holiday gift to myself will be to avoid it.

What do you want to change?

Inviting my very cranky uncle* who complains about all of eating too much on the holiday and the days after.  But that'll never happen because we can't really have him without having my aunt.  I love my aunt, but as my uncle gets older, he's a lot more cranky.  I'm thinking duct tape to the mouth isn't EHell approved.   >:D

*Said uncle isn't always cranky and he had a stroke a while ago.  It's just that, as he gets older, the stroke shows more and more through him.  I can just hope that he's not as bad at Christmas.

No cranberry sauce in a can.  No one touched it!  We had real cranberries that were homemade into a lovely concoction.  Yum!

Also, let the little kids run outside and play before eating.  Take the family photos first, then let the little ones have fun while the kitchen is busy.  More quiet and focused for eating!

Online Black Friday shopping was great; I was able to see if items were available at my local store, pay for them online, and stroll in around 2 PM to pick them up at the counter. None of the running through a crowd, asking employees if there's a display that I missed somewhere. No standing in the freezing cold. No wishing I had brought a basket as there aren't enough in the store to go around. No being pushed or shoved and wishing I could at least get a "sorry" out of the shovers.

Last night (Black Friday night) my town set off fireworks. Very loud fireworks at 9 PM. Not Thanksgiving, the night after. I may take the kids and chihuahuas and spend the night at my parents' house (an hour away). Such. A. Rukus.

Next year I will try to:

Get a bigger turkey -- we're almost done with our leftovers already!  There are four of us with a 13 lb. turkey, but I send a bunch with my mother and MIL when they leave.

Have a fire in the wood stove.  We skipped it this year because DH and I warmed up running around doing things.  But I missed it, and will just wear something lighter next year.  And maybe work less!   :)

Get more sleep the night before.  It's been crazy busy this weekend and I haven't caught up yet.


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