Thankful

I’m thankful for…

having a roof over my head and a bed to sleep in.

my Mom, Aunt and Uncle, who are really my only closest family members.

the 24 years I had with my Dad and the memories that he now lives in.

The Chef, who has been beyond helpful this past month in helping my mom get moved in and settled into her new condo. (But seriously I also feel like a stupid girl when I realize I don’t know how to do basic house things that men do (i.e. hanging curtains). It’s the feminist in me that just believes women should be able to do the same thing as men…we were just never taught!)

my health (although I need to get back on a consistent exercise routine ASAP).

The Chef’s family, who I honestly feel like is my family (though not officially). Five years ago they welcomed me with open arms and have been nothing but loving and supportive towards me.

creative projects. By abscene here is not only due to my mom’s big move, but also a show that my non-profit theater company is putting up and helping a close friend with a fundraiser for her own non-profit theater project.

friends. Near and far.

my job. Although stressful at times, I’m doing what I love and work with wonderful, supportive people.

having food on the table.

Growing up it was just me and my parents. I don’t have a large family at all. Plus, my mom’s a vegetarian so we would always go out to eat on Thanksgiving. It was great though. We’d get gussied up and go to this place called The Red Barn in Westport, CT. It’s beyond charming. It’s an actual old barn turned restaurant, complete with white linens and a cozy fireplace. The food is delicious too.

The second year that The Chef and I were dating I joined him at his home for Thanksgiving. This was my first “true” Thanksgiving experience. Not that I didn’t love the tradition my parents and I had, but this was unlike any celebration I had experienced. The craziness of multiple family members bustling in the kitchen, pulling multiple casseroles out of the oven. Drinking and laughing, joking and fighting. Then everyone sitting down at once, passing plates and finally enjoying a meal that was worked on all day and going around the table saying what you’re thankful for. I think that first year all I could do was sit there with wide eyes and a happy stomach.

This year was my third Thanksgiving with The Chef’s family, and this time my mom got to join and finally met all the members of the family. Always a bit nerve wracking, but it was a wonderful day. And knowing that now my mom is down here and this is the new tradition is bittersweet. I will miss the old Thanksgiving tradition, mostly because it will remind me that my dad is no longer with us. But on the other hand is so nice to know that we have an extended family now to gather around the table with and celebrate.

On the plate this year…

Corn souflee

Green bean casserole

Sweet potato casserole

Brussel sprouts with bacon

Grandma’s classic stuffing

Chestnut and sausage stuffing

Cranberry relish

Turkey with mushroom gravy

There was also a vegetarian stuffing that The Chef made special for my mom that I didn’t get to try, but heard it was also delicious. Also on the table were out of the jar cranberry relishs and potato rolls.

Honestly I could really go without the turkey and just stuff my face with sides…I think they make the meal!

I didn’t get a shot of the pies, which is a bummer considering how epic Jon’s sister-in-law’s apple pie is! It’s called a Mile-High Apple Pie and that it is! It’s BIG and looks like it’s straight out of a magazine. There was also a pecan pie, pumpkin pie and pumpkin chiffon pie. Pumpkin chiffon is my fav so I had a small sliver and then took pieces of the apple and pumpkin home with me.

Conversation Starters: How was your Thanksgiving? What’s your favorite side? Do you call it stuffing or dressing?

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