Busy? Thanksgiving to-do list getting you down? Thinking with longing of the grocery store’s “Let Us Make Thanksgiving Dinner” deal you didn’t order?

Stop. Just stop for a second and think with me:

Find your November issue of House Perfectly-Expensively-Over-the-Top-ly Beautiful. Place it on the floor. Take a deep breath. Now, stomp all over it. Give a little rebel yell.

There now — feel better? If you own any reading material by Martha Stewart, repeat times ten.

This is Real-Life Thanksgiving, the kind where the three year-old wakes up from his nap exactly 22 minutes after you put him down, the kind where you managed to get the only never-thaw turkey on the planet, the kind where somehow between the local market and your house you contrive to lose a bag containing expensive-ish deli meat and cheese and a can of pears for the cake you were in the middle of making when you realized you had no pears. Or, probably I’m the only one who did that this year.

This is Real-Life Thanksgiving, the kind where the food is all cream and brown because that’s the food your family loves.

Traditional bread stuffing has got to be the most un-photogenic food ever. Unless we’re talking about my mom’s cornbread dressing, which is even uglier. Delicious food is sometimes ugly. You have to choose. We always choose flavor.

This is Real-Life Thanksgiving, the kind where appliances that were chugging along perfectly happily quit in the middle of the most intense cooking of the year.

A couple of the guys working on the dishwasher while the meal is being cooked around them — real life, indeed.

This is Real-Life Thanksgiving, the kind where you find yourself without a standing order at the local florist and you rarely get further with Pinterest projects than that initial heady pin.

Let the shorter people decorate. DONE!

So you didn’t make the cream of turnip soup with cinnamon croutons served in mini-pumpkins. So you didn’t get around to brining the turkey. So you don’t have a roasting pan with a fancy rack because where would you store it the other 364 days of the year.

Can you manage a protein, a starch, a token healthy vegetable, and a sweet? Can someone swing by the market and get cranberry something? You have accepted all offers of help, haven’t you?

Then everything is fine. Just go with it. Because what’s important about Thanksgiving is to give thanks.

Just going with what we’ve got — off to the grandparents’ house!

And I want you to be able to give thanks, today, the day before Tday, too.

Give thanks if you have loved ones.

I never want to take her for granted.

Give thanks if you have shelter and food.

Please, God, let me keep remembering, “These are the good old days.”

Give thanks. In everything, give thanks.

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  1. Posted November 21, 2012 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    I was supposed to be over the morning sickness by now (which is actually 24 hour nausea… if ONLY it were restricted to mornings…) but I’m not. So all of my grand plans for this Thanksgiving are being re-evaluated. Which mostly means, I won’t be washing up the fine china this year and that house may or may not get a dusting before company arrives. But I think our real-life Thanksgiving will still be wonderful, and we definitely have good reason to be thankful.

    Enjoyable post!

    • Posted November 21, 2012 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      See, you’ve hit it exactly, Church Mouse. We have had china years (not mine, though — we don’t own any), everyday dishes years, and even a paper plate year or two. It’s all fine if we remember what’s important, and a growing in-womb baby is certainly one of the important things!
      Lori recently posted..Past Blast: Applesauce Canning DayMy Profile

  2. Samantha
    Posted November 21, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    I was doing well until I realized that I’m missing one important ingredient from each dish I’m suppose to make. So this morning I made a run to Aldi and found EVERYTHING I needed for the foods for tomorrow. Stephen was shocked that I was home in less than an hour. The food is cooking today and will be reheated when I arrive at my grandma’s tomorrow morning. Things are balanced and running smoothly because I’m just taking it one step at a time. It also helps that it isn’t at my house. Added to it that I just don’t have the energy or desire to do it.

    • Posted November 21, 2012 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

      I usually manage to do something similar with my groceries for at least one dish, but I try to think of it as a fun trip to the store to soak up the holiday atmosphere. Positive thinking, right? Happy Tgiving, Samantha.
      Lori recently posted..App SwapMy Profile

  3. Amy
    Posted November 21, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Mixing the dressing (or bread stuffing, as you say) in the baby’s bathtub. I could blame being in Guatemala…. but, well, I’d do it anywhere. Shhh…
    I’m enjoying your blogging!

  4. Amber
    Posted November 21, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    This made me cry. I am overwhelmed at the thought of cooking my very first Thanksgiving meal away from all of my family, in a brand new place. But I am oh so thankful for these six smiling faces in my home and for the health and safety God has given us. Thanks for reminding me what the holiday is really about.

    • Posted November 21, 2012 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

      Oh, Amber, I hope it was a good cry. Think of the gift you have been given of establishing traditions that will become treasured memories for your children. They will catch your attitude and joy as easily as you catch their colds! Happy Tday! 🙂
      Lori recently posted..Past Blast: Happy at HomeMy Profile

  5. Posted November 21, 2012 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Love it! Made me smile and laugh! Hoping your day is filled with the laughter and joy you bring to us through your blog!

    • Posted November 21, 2012 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

      Brenda, Aw, you, too! Thank you for the kind words!
      Lori recently posted..App SwapMy Profile

  6. melaine
    Posted November 21, 2012 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    This made me laugh and cry as well. The holidays are always the hardest time here. It’s the time I miss all you guys so much, I miss the smell of all the wonderful food, and the general homey smell of the Legg household. I miss the company, the business, the kids all around, the wonderful conversations, the time together. These are also the very things that I am thankful for as well. I love you all so much and hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving!!! Eat something yummy for me 🙂

  • Your comment is the best part of this blog! Share what’s on your mind here.

  • In My Kitchen, In My Life is a place where women (and the odd male) can be encouraged, nudged, and occasionally kicked in the pants toward living their lives on a higher plane. Oh, and readers get plenty of chances to laugh at the author's foibles, which is always worth a click.

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