Holidays Meals are Chaos

9:52 AM

We finally nailed down our plans for Thanksgiving.  We are going to my mom's.  You're shocked, I know.  We wanted to spend the day with Chris's family, but it's a 4 hour drive to their house in NC and four hours back and Chris has to be at work at 4:30am on Friday.  So, we're driving an hour to my mom's house.  Keep your fingers crossed that we will be eating at a decent hour.

I love going to my mom's for the holidays because that is where most of my memories stem from.  Everything is perfectly placed.  There are even themed napkins to use (but only for the appetizers).  We have lots of food, enough food for 20 people - appetizers, palate cleansers, soup, bread, the main course, and four kinds of dessert.  And yes, you must try everything, even the damn brussel sprouts.  But, my brother and I draw the line at beets.  Every single year for as long as I can remember my mom serves beets and every single year for as long as I can remember my brother and I hand the plate back to her saying, "NO!"  Those red slimy things are DISGUSTING.  Last year she served pickled beets thinking that we might enjoy them a little more. I don't even eat pickles.  Why the hell would I want a pickled beet?  But, seriously, the food is fantastic, we eat too much and we all dread the clean up. 

It's total chaos. 

My mom wants to cook everything her way, there will be no new traditions born in my mom's house.  Meanwhile, my brother (who is the next budding Iron Chef) wants to cook things his way.  Mainly because his way much more time efficient.  My mom, bless her heart, is a fantastic cook but god is she slow.  When my mom cooks, my brother and I end up in the kitchen helping her, bumping into each other, trying to get things on the table.  The TV will be on in the kitchen because my mom has to watch the parade and my mom will say "Next year, we should just go to New York and watch the parade."  The bread will get burnt the first time it goes in the oven, my brother and I will snicker (because seriously, it wouldn't be normal if my mom didn't burn the bread) and my mom will start crying because we snickered at her and now the meal isn't perfect.  The potatoes will get cold because the turkey isn't done.  We'll make the gravy and forget to put it on the table.  My mom will make pumpkin soup, which no one will eat. 

While we are cooking, Chris and my Uncle will sit on the couch shaking their head, eating too many appetizers and talking about what time it is.  Chris will tell me to hurry things along because he has to get home.  I'll say, "I know, I'm doing the best that I can.  I'll drive home, you can rest, it's okay."  He'll say, "No, I'll drive, just hurry up."  Cameryn will terrorize the dogs. 

By the time that we sit down, everyone is exhausted and annoyed.  My mom will have a terrible headache, take two bites of her food, start thinking about the past, get teary eyed and excuse herself from the table.  My Uncle will get irritated.  My brother will make snarky comments.  My husband will just laugh and roll his eyes.  Cameryn won't eat a thing.

Good Lord. 

This year we decided that we will all cook something to take some of the pressure off.  My brother is going to make the bird (well, birds) and the stuffing.  He wants to make a Turduckin - a turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken.  My mom will make the appetizers and the sides.  I am making dessert (I totally lucked out!) 

But, the banter has already started... My mom doesn't want a Turduckin, she wants a free range bird from Trader Joe's.  And she doesn't want my brother to make the dressing, she wants to make the stuffing (yes, there is a difference!)   She doesn't know if we will like cornbread dressing (which is a little more "wet" than traditional stuffing and it is more difficult to "stuff" inside of the bird.)  She told me that I had to make pumpkin pie because she has to have pumpkin pie.  My brother asked for Red Velvet Cake or a cheesecake (but can it be no-bake?)  My mom said that she will make the Red Velvet Cake because she will use my grandmother's recipe and I can make the cheesecake (preferably NOT no-bake.) 

Oh, and this year we've added two new elements since my brother got married and had a kid. 

I repeat - Good Lord.

We are *supposed* to eat by 2pm. 

Keep your fingers crossed.

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