Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving and Taking

Thanksgiving has come and gone like a bolt of gravy-flavored lightening. The build-up complete, preparations made, and pounds of food have been gobbled up, so to speak.

Preparations at our house, since the festivities are usually at my sister-in-law’s home, include the traditional construction of the 15-pound trough of dressing. My wife knows no other way to make this stuff besides the “cook for a hungry horde” method. I am not sure how much goes into it, I kinda don’t want to know really how much it costs, but the finished product is about 17 pounds to carry to the van for transport to the festival site.

The green beans are cooked, again in the “chuck wagon” quantity. Secret recipe, I wish I could share, suffice to say, the quality is high as well as the quantity. The sweet potatoes, though in a large amount, went through a short crisis of inadequacy this morning. The chef believed, erroneously, that half dozen cans of Sugary Sam sweet taters might not be sufficient. I was nearly dispatched to whichever grocer who was open to procure four more cans. We finally rested on the prepared amount being an ample supply for the crew being fed. We still brought some home.

Since the liftoff was scheduled for 1:00 sharp, that is the time we left the house to attend the fete. Finally, all participants arrived, and the final toasting of marshmallows-on-the-sweet-potatoes commenced, along with the rolls and appetizers arranged for their final presentation.

The spread was spectacular again this year. So much food posing the ever-present quandary involving where to start. The spinach salad, the home-made macaroni and cheese, ham, turkey, half-ton of dressing, green beans, cauliflower salad, corn, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, rolls, fruit salad, cherry dump cake, a spectacular chocolate cake, and the famed lemon bars. There was talk of a re-match from last year, but I wasn’t up for it. I am not sure Peepaw was, either. But we both perked up at the mention of them.

Some brave souls loaded their plates and headed outside to the table. It was a batch of teenagers, and as soon as the full weight of the near-eighty degree weather descended upon them, they “chickened-in” to the air-conditioned house.

The second set of brave souls included my youngest daughter, and me and we sat at the card table in lawn chairs. When I sat down, I realized that the position I was forced into compressed my stomach region. I thought that perhaps it would impair my ability to eat a massive amount of food.

I was right. The plate with the turkey and ham and everything else stared me down, and I blinked.

This is a milestone. A record, a landmark. Never have I been NOT able to finish a plate of food. Especially on the great glutton celebration. I did, however, partake in a trio of lemon bars, against my better judgment. They were good, surprisingly, in moderation. I am not used to that.

Hours of zoned-out watching of television and pitching washers later, we packed the remaining 12 pounds of dressing and our other allotment of the cache and we were on our way home.

The holiday that celebrates the bounty enjoyed by the early settlers of this country has come and gone again in the flurry of good food and family visits.

Maybe I’m growing up, maybe I should swear off sitting in lawn chairs to eat. There’s always tomorrow. Really, going to my parents’ house on Friday. I’ll let you know.

1 comment:

DammitWomann said...

Sounds like "food fit for a King". Glad your holiday was a success. Loved the part about cooking in large quantities.