Thanksgiving memories

The Canadian Thanksgiving holiday is soon upon us. With it only being one week from today, I am really looking forward to this holiday. I can already smell the turkey cooking in the oven, the smell of potatoes boiling and the spices of pumpkin pie giving off a lovely aroma.

Thanksgiving brings back so many wonderful memories. When I was a kid it was always spent with family, especially the family on my dad’s side. I’m pretty sure that most of it was spent at my great uncle’s house… and there were a lot of people! The kids were crammed around the kids table and the adults were crammed around the adult table. The food was spread amongst one table and we had a line that the army could be jealous of. I was always envious of the adults because the adults were always engaged in deep discussions that I always wanted to participate in. I made a vow to myself that in my home, there would be no children’s table. All kids would be allowed to sit with everybody. We would stay super late and as a kid it was pretty cool to be staying up way past my bed times!

Then as we got older and family members began to pass away, Thanksgiving dinners took a different turn. Since the late 90’s Thanksgiving was spent with my mom’s best friend and her family. This time… the kids sat with the adults and we allowed them to engage in our discussions. After all, Thanksgiving is about family. We were surrounded by great food, friends and family and great conversation.

Now Thanksgiving has taken another turn. Gone are the days when our large family gets together (us kids are now grown up and most of us living in other parts of the country/continent). We’ve decided that it would just be the four of us at our dining table, enjoying the feast that we have cooked and remembering the good old days of Thanksgiving past. We are surrounded and comforted by the memory of those who are no longer with us to celebrate this great holiday. I miss my grandfather coming over for dinner, stuffing himself silly, plopping himself on the couch, undoing his belt and snoozing away while the football game played on the television. It’s memories like that, that make me enjoy the many Thanksgiving dinners to come.

What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions? What are your favorite foods that you like to eat on Thanksgiving?


1 thought on “Thanksgiving memories”

  1. The children’s table. I have that memory too. Here is one of my favorite Thanksgiving stories… Just out of college and eager to travel the world, my friend Malcolm and I decided to move to France In the fall of 1976 and immerse ourselves in the French culture. The two of us took French language courses in a school in Tours, France – a language institute that catered mostly to young adults from countries throughout the world. Like us, most of the other students rented rooms in the homes of local host families who spoke little or no English. It was an unforgettable experience staying with these families. We got to know some of them very well. We learned about their traditions and they learned about ours. In late November, however, we couldn’t help but be reminded of home as we walked the streets and markets of France and saw no pumpkins, no harvest decor, no turkeys. One evening, we were invited over for dinner by one of the host families. When we arrived and they opened the door to their home, we were taken completely by surprise to see a full Thanksgiving celebration feast awaiting us. The parents and children were dressed up as Pilgrims and Indians. They served us roasted turkey, potatoes, cranberries, and pumpkin pie. It was a slice of home away from home, and one of the most unique and memorable Thanksgivings I’ve ever had.
    — Bob Cole, Camarillo, California

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