Tuesday, November 21, 2006

jive talking

For the third consecutive year I'm hosting Thanksgiving. It doesn't bother me much because my father does most of the cooking, I just have to clean the house, provide appetitzers (my family makes meals off of apps) and make a pie or two.

Our menu for this year will be different from years past: Cornish game hens, fresh crab, french-cut green beans, spring salad, dinner rolls, corn, garlic mashed potatoes, cranberries, stuffing and my pumpkin spice pie with fresh whipped cream.

This year I'm feeling a little of the proverbial holiday stress as my mother invited her brother, John, and her closest friend, Judy, to join us. She's known Judy since they were 12 years old, so it's pretty much like having family over.

Uncle John is a different story. He and my mother have never been close, and after his recent divorce he moved from Southern California up here, about 10 minutes away from my folks. In the 7 or so months he's lived up here, my mother has made repeated attempts to invite him places, but he never calls her back . Seriously. So when he called, conveniently, on Sunday after all these months of not returning phone calls, my mother asked me if I wouldn't mind setting an additonal place for Uncle John.

Despite my family's dysfunction, I still believe in "family first" and making people feel welcome, so I said of course he was invited. My mother called him back and asked what his Thanksgiving plans were, if he was headed down south to spend it with his sons. He said no, they already have plans, so he'd be sticking around here. So my mother said, "We're headed to B's for Thanksgiving, why don't you join us?" He did the "aw, shucks" routine and said he couldn't possibly invite himself.

Pshaw, says my mother to herself. Why the heck else would he call after 7 months, oddly coinciding with a holiday?!

Anwyay, I'm excited to have a few extra people over. I have a seemingly endless to-do list to prepare, but at least I got one major one out of the way yesterday: new dishes. I have a set that originally started with 8 place settings I've had for about 5 years and it's dwindling. I headed over to Crate & Barrel yesterday and picked out an inexpensive pattern and bought 10 settings. If had really planned ahead I would have gotten new flatware. Mine has definitey seen better days, and I'd love to have settings for 10 or 12. That'll be a purchase for another day, or maybe Santa will bring me it...

For those that celebrate it, have a Happy Thanksgiving!