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Old November 25 2014, 07:30 PM   #1
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Location: United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland
Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Since we are so close to this American national holiday and since I am from ye olde land of Great Britain I have never had the experience of a Thanksgiving and the only time I get to see it is in those sitcoms of yours. So with all of this in mind I was wondering what's a typical Thanksgiving Holiday like for you?

If Fidelity to freedom and democracy is the code of our civic religion then surely the code of our humanity is faithful service to that unwritten commandment that says we shall give our children better than we ourselves received
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Old November 25 2014, 08:22 PM   #2
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

"If I hadn't tried, the cost would have been my soul." - Admiral James T. Kirk, Star Trek III: The Search for Spock
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Old November 25 2014, 08:41 PM   #3
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Usually, I go to my mother's house, so it's nice I get to see my Mom and maybe my nephew. However, my oldest sister is also there and whichever creepy boyfriend she has in tow that year. I hate my sister; she sucks the life out of every room. So, I get to see my Mom, which is great, but I have to put up with my sister, who is unbelievably difficult.

I think it's the same thing for most people: food, fun and family. But there's always that one relative that makes you want to Google what qualifies for "justifiable homicide" in your state.
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Old November 25 2014, 09:54 PM   #4
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Mine is pretty low key. We take the kids and the dog, and go to my in-law's house and hang out a bit in the morning, and then we go to my Mom's house for the afternoon and have dinner there.
My mom makes most of the meal, but we bring the wine, a couple of pies, and a side dish; this year we're doing garlic mashed potatoes.
We eat too much, watch a little football, play games with the kids, and if the weather is decent, we'll take a walk around the lake.
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Old November 25 2014, 10:11 PM   #5
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

This year? Work.

Fortunately, I get off work at 2:30 so my parents will have a second Thanksgiving dinner for my benefit.

Better than last year's, though. Thanksgiving dinner 2013 was basically hospital food.
It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.

Last edited by Mr. Laser Beam; November 25 2014 at 10:32 PM.
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Old November 25 2014, 10:27 PM   #6
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

It used to be a nice get together. I opted to work this year.

...All night long...
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Old November 26 2014, 12:58 AM   #7
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

My Thanksgiving routine has changed over the years. There were several routines that lasted…maybe four or five years each when I was growing up. There wasn't really a routine in my 20's.

I've been married for over three years now, almost two years here in the western exurbs of Boston. The only routine we have is Thanksgiving Ham. Apparently, the missus' family dislikes turkey. I figure our thanksgivings in the next few years would have to be low key and at home with my folks visiting.

I suspect we would mostly have Thanksgiving either at home or up in New Hampshire at my folks' and Christmases at the in-laws (it's far easier for my folks to see us than the in-laws) in the next couple decades.
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Old November 26 2014, 02:05 AM   #8
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

A blur.
La la
La la la la
La la
La la la
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Old November 26 2014, 03:12 AM   #9
Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Thanksgiving at my house, growing up, was wonderful. My mother would employ all us kids and we'd help out with the cooking and cleaning. Turkey and stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, homemade cranberry sauce, green beans with slivered almonds, rolls, crudités, and fine wine.

Classical music would ring through the house while a pot on the woodburning stove would boil water with raw cinnamon sticks inside, the fragrance permeating our house. Dinner was always promptly at 6, complete with pecan and pumpkin pie for dessert and afterward we'd take a long walk through the neighborhood with the dog and the brisk chill in the air would be quite the apéritif.

I've tried to recreate that kind of experience with my friends and family since leaving home, but it's just never quite the same.
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Old November 26 2014, 11:03 AM   #10
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Every year, we go to the Indian Reservation Casinos north of our City, and ask around to see if any Native Americans want to play reenacators for a day. Some who have joined us before are excited, and jump at the chance. We pay them in wampum, of course, and they pack up their native homes ("Tee-Pees") and daily wear costumes, and after the bargain is struck, we bring them back to our house. For the Special Day, We, naturally, are dressed as Pilgrims, and the ladies especially love the long dresses and the challenge that is to come; that of preparing the Feast.

We send the Natives out into the Forest Preserves near our house. We have lots, with trees and everything, just like they are used to. They use their Indian cunning to catch all manner of beasts for our Feast. Turkey, pidgeon, grouse, mice, etc. Some even are pretty darned good at fish catching.

So the Hunters bring back the catch to be cleaned and dressed and cooked by the ladies. Lots of chattering and laughter ensues, as the ladies are in their natural element, and are very happy. We men folk sit and smoke our authentic colonial pipes and palaver about a whole lot of nothing. Our good Native American friends reassemble their Natural Homes, and then loiter around the perimeter, waiting for the cue for their big scene. Soon the air is full of indescribable smells, and the pealing, happy voices of the excited children who have been off at the Mall.

The Women set up the Feast behind the Sears Shed in back, and the Native Americans each grab a plate for the Grand Procession, just like in the Oldene Dayse, when the first ever Indians brought a feast to the poor starving colonists, so they would not die that one cold winter, and could live to one day screw the Indians inside-out over the land they used to inhabit, but not any more.

Everyone is smiling (almost everyone) and after the plates are put down on the authentic hardwood tables, borrowed from the Forest Preserve, the Natives cross their arms across their chests, and then give the universal "Peace" sign and say "How" (much)?

Everyone (almost everyone) claps with delight, and we give the Indians some extra money for McDonalds, for their trip back to their authentic homes on the Reservation. Turns out they really prefer the taste of "Faster Foods" than the home-cooked healthy ones. Who knew? Good News for us, because there is no time to waste, and we are really hungry.

After the Feast, as the woman are clearing the tables and washing the dishes, we men retire with some special port and cigars, and give thanks for all we have, and for our Authentic Friends. We feel real good helping them remember their traditions, and also giving them a couple of bucks, as the Casino business is a little dry, lately.
"If man is to survive, he will delight in the essential differences between men and between cultures. He will learn that differences in ideas and attitudes are a part of life's exciting variety, not something to fear" Gene Roddenberry
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Old November 26 2014, 11:14 AM   #11
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

For me, it's exhausting. The night before, I have to get most of the food prepped so that it can be ready. First thing the next morning, I have to get the house cleaned up and ready for my brother and sister-in-law, and the babies, and I have to do everything else I normally do in the meantime. In short, I will get about 3 hours of sleep today.
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Old November 26 2014, 11:27 AM   #12
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Thanksgiving is by far my favorite time of the year, and for me it is a 3-day event.

On Wednesday I drive back home to my parents' house. Nothing major happens, but at night I typically go out to the local bars and run into people from high school. It's a lot of fun for me because it's literally the only day out of the entire year where I get to see these people. I never know who I'm going to run into, though. I just go out by myself and bump into people along the way. Two years ago this resulted in me ending up at a house party until 5am with about 30 other people from high school. It was such a good time.

Thursday is pretty traditional, I think. My family is small (8 people total), so holidays are always really low key. We usually do it at my parents' house, but I think this year we might be driving to my grandma's (it's only about 45 minutes away, so it's not a hassle). Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole...all the traditional stuff. We eat, we lay around, sometimes we go to the movies after we've finished with all the family stuff.

Friday is my FAVORITE DAY OF THE YEAR. Three of my high school friends and I have started a tradition of going out to brunch the morning after Thanksgiving. This will be our 7th year doing it. It's just a nice reunion with people that I never get to see because we all live so far away now, but every year we set aside a few hours on the morning of Black Friday to hang out and talk about our lives. It's the best time, and it is the single event I look forward to most every year.
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Old November 26 2014, 01:44 PM   #13
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Location: Winnipeg
Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

Warmer. Because it was last month.
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Old November 26 2014, 05:57 PM   #14
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Location: California
Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

It was never exactly the same each year. Some years we would go to my grandparent's house nearby, but we saw them nearly every weekend and they always cooked big meals, so it really didn't feel much different than any other day except that we got two days off at school.

Sometimes we would go to see the other grandparents a little further away, and this was a little more awkward because I had to interact with extended family that I rarely saw. The food was okay but not quite what I was used to.

Thanksgivings at home with just my immediate family of 6, or with a visitor or two, were the best. I would wake up whenever I felt like it, have a light breakfast, and maybe watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade for a little while. In mid-morning my mom would start cooking the turkey and preparing the rest of the meal. The smell of slowly roasting turkey is great! I would skip lunch, as would most of my family, because we wanted to keep our stomachs wide open for dinner. It wasn't really dinner though - usually we ate the big meal around 3 pm. Before and after dinner would be all about playing video games with my sisters, playing outside with the neighborhood kids, reading, watching movies, basically lounging around all day long. And staying in pajamas all day was an absolute must - we didn't dress up fancy or anything like some families do. We ate our meal in our warm, comfy PJs.

Now, my mom hates cooking, so the meal wasn't super fancy either. It was Stove Top stuffing, simple mashed potatoes, a can of Campbell's condensed cream of chicken as gravy (and sometimes "grown up" brown gravy as well), a can of corn, a can of peas, and a can of cranberry sauce. Hardly anything was ever "homemade," unless a guest brought something. But that was perfectly fine with me. These were the tastes of Thanksgiving that I grew to love.

And then you buy some sandwich rolls and pile the leftovers onto them all weekend long.
Time present and time past
are both perhaps present in time future.
And time future contained in time past.
—T.S. Eliot
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Old Yesterday, 09:58 AM   #15
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Re: Whats your Thanksgiving Like?

We had our dinner last night, since my brother works on Thanksgiving day. I fixed turkey (it was quite succulent; I kick ass at turkey), potato salad, stuffing, and banana pudding, with my mom helping as much as she could. They brought over sweet potato souffle, and their own stuffing, and it was good, too. Then we watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, which is how we start off the holiday season.

The babies (my 4 and 8 year old nephew and niece, respectively) ate until they were full, and sleepy, which is adorable, and we the adults all sat around and talked for a while before my brother and his family had to leave. So it was a pleasant evening for all.
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