Thanksgiving is our favorite holiday (me, Darling Husband, and all of his family). We all go down to his aunt’s cabin on the Chesapeake Bay. The cabin’s up on a cliff, but has an amazing view of the bay from the deck. Aunt Nan puts out a continental breakfast spread…5 or 6 different types of breads and cheeses, half a dozen varieties of jam she brings back from Belgium (where she lives and works most of the year), and tons of fresh fruit and coffee.
If our nephews are there (DH’s brothers trade off Thanksgiving and Christmas with my SsIL’s families–which happen to be the same family since they’re cousins), most of us walk down to the beach and look for shark teeth. SsIL and I usually get shooed out of the kitchen, but end up sitting on the deck with a bottle of wine. At some point, we’re sent out to gather flowers,leaves, branches and berries to make a “table runner”.
Food-wise it’s pretty traditional-turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing. Creamed pearl onions, green beans casserole, cranberry sauce (homemade, not from a can), and rolls. She makes some creamed squash dish that she won’t give me the recipe to yet, but which tastes like heaven. She also makes an oyster stuffing, which is mainly fresh oysters, heavy cream, cheese and cubed bread. I don’t personally care for it (because of the oysters), but everyone else loves it.
For the most part, we’re a pretty agnostic/atheist family, but before dinner everyone joins hands and recites a Moravian Blessing: “Come Lord Jesus our guest to be and bless these gifts bestowed by they. Bless our dear ones everywhere and keep them in their thy loving care.” During dinner everyone shares what they’re most thankful for that year.
After dinner, everyone takes a walk through the cliffs or down the beach. Me and Darling Husband or me and SsIL usually stay behind and take care of cleaning up. Later, Nan brings out a huge box of Belgian chocolate she’s brought back, and there’s pumpkin pie, apple pie and coffee.
That night, SsIL and I drink more, and the other adults in the family play bridge.
The day after, we make some turkey sandwiches and go into D.C. to hit up a museum or monument or two, and have a picnic on the mall.