Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Two Days Before Thanksgiving

If counting my blessings counts as being in the Thanksgiving swing of things, I'm all set, but the thought of decorating a table and baking pies from scratch isn't delighting me this year the way it usually does.  We bought pies--BOUGHT! pies, and Maple-leaf-shaped cookies, to boot--but we have my homemade fudge and my mother-in-law's homemade sugar cookies too.  I'll get home from work around 8:00 Thanksgiving morning and will have to sleep at least a few hours while Mike begins the food.  Maybe by afternoon when I get up and smell the turkey and whatever-else-he's-started, I'll feel more jazzed-up for pretty-table-setting and cute-dessert-making, but in the meantime, it seems good enough--more than good, really, and more than enough--simply to be grateful for the meal and the time with Mike.  I spent Thanksgiving at work and then alone last year, after all.  

This past weekend, Mike rented a car to make the trip to see his family back home, where they had eighteen inches of snow, and returned yesterday before the storm hit us.  My own family, baby Bianca now included,  will gather for their dinner Thursday afternoon but all live within about twenty minutes of each other, so I don't have to worry about any of them driving or flying a long distance in the snow this week.  Ideally, Mike and I could be here, there, and everywhere for Thanksgiving, but work schedules and weather issues equal a table for two this year.  Opposite work schedules and a frugal and car-less life mean we've only ever spent one holiday with each other's family--Easter 2008 with mine--so our holidays are not quite what I wish they could be, obviously, but I have really learned to appreciate the time I do have with Mike and with my loved ones, and regardless of how or when or with whom I spend the holidays, I always know I'm blessed.  Still, my dream dining room for years has been one large enough that I can keep it set up restaurant dining room-style year-round, with a round dinner table with comfy chairs and high chairs for any babies, a long Waltons-style wooden dinner table with benches at either side, a square table with more painted chairs seats, a couple overstuffed wing chairs at a table for two, maybe a high-backed restaurant booth in a window, and a Pottery Barn Kids catalog-style kids table with sweetness and color in abundance.  I've had this vision for my future dining room for years, and someday, someday, I hope to make it happen and enjoy the sight of both our families gathered in this crazy room catching up with each other in all its mismatched chairs and over all the mismatched vintage tablecloths.  I can picture it so clearly, it's like it's already happened and is an actual memory.  It makes my heart ache, I want it so. 

We are supposed to have nine inches of snow by Thursday morning.  I walked around the neighborhood taking pictures last week before the last of this year's vibrant leaves were snowed-over and took a few more pictures this morning while Mike and I walked to the store for our Thanksgiving groceries.  I love this time of year.  One of the news shows played a recent segment from "Saturday Night Live" in wich one of the cast members ran around Manhattan screaming, "Take down the Christmas decorations!  THANKSGIVING'S FIRST!  It's not time for all that yet!  THANKSGIVING COMES FIRST!"  Mike and I laughed like loons over that and have yelled it at each other a few times since seeing it.  While walking home from work one morning last week, I noticed the city had put up its giant Christmas candle lamppost decorations along the streets overnight, and I thought of Mike and the skit and laughed again.  "THANKSGIVING COMES FIRST!"  What a beautiful time of year. 


Marie said...

Happy Thanksgiving Val! I hope you enjoy your little family feast with just you and your husband. Those can be pretty wonderful as well. I do admit however I miss my family most of all at holiday time. Love the photographs, especially the one with the sagging pumpkin. He seems to be saying enough already! xxoo

Amy said...

I love your photos! We never seem to get much of an Autumn down here and I miss it so. ...makes me rather sad sometimes.
I bought my pies, too! After a taste test a few years ago, I thought 'ok...mine and the store bought one taste pretty much the same, so why am I stressing about making a pie when I have so much other stuff to make..' so we just started buying them.

Jenny Woolf said...

What wonderful leaves! And what a beautiful generous dream of the dining table. I'm sure that if you keep it in your mind and work towards it, you will one day make it come true!

Val said...

Thank you, Marie, Amy, and Jenny. :)

Our holiday was sweet, although of course I missed my family. My brother sent a couple pictures of his baby in Thanksgiving outfits, though, which was fun. The pies were fine. And thank you, Jenny--I believe that too. ♥

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Dori, you were together and the food was wonderful. that's all that matters.

Blondie's Journal said...

Val...I am so, so sorry. You did fall off my blogroll and I had to re-follow your blog. I don't know why this is happening to me. On more than one occasion, I asked that anyone reading my blog to please let me know if I hadn't been by for a visit. I have so missed your posts and your wonderful writing.

I feel your need for a dining room table, I just have the kitchen model...lol! Oh, to set it days before a big dinner! And I can never have big gatherings, I refuse to have people eating all over the place with their plates on their laps!

I hope you are off to a good start to a wonderful, peaceful and blessed Christmas season. And I look forward to keeping up with you! :)


Val said...

Thank you, Sandra and Jane. :)

Val said...

Jane ~ P.S. ~ While at my parents' house, we sometimes do the eating-all-over-the-place-with-plates-on-our-laps thing, and it makes it no less special. :) I'm sure your family loves gathering however they're seated. ♥