Thanksgiving is an occasion to be enjoyed with others. Instead of just one of us talking about Thanksgiving memories, traditions and even plans for this year, Gus, Lindsay and I sat down to share our different takes on turkey day.
Here’s how the discussion played out:
What’s a Thanksgiving tradition in your home?
David: Coming from an Italian family, we didn’t just have turkey on Thanksgiving. We had to have pasta too. Sometimes ziti. Sometimes stuffed shells. But red “gravy” was always involved.
Gus: With Puerto Rican and Italian roots in my family, our roasted pork, “arroz con gandules” and lasagna dishes were just as important as the turkey! Food aside, for some reason we always end up watching “The Honeymooners” DVDs until the wee hours of the morning.
Lindsay: Helping my husband get ready for his annual Turkey Day Classic football game with his family (image to the right). His grandfather started the tradition over forty years ago and the tradition continues to live on. The morning of Thanksgiving my husband is up bright and early fired up to play and I get such a kick out of seeing him so excited.
What’s a favorite Thanksgiving memory from your home growing up?
Gus: The Thanksgiving of 2009 is a special memory to me. I had moved out of my parents’ house a few months earlier and hadn’t been around much besides the occasional quick visit. I made a point of going back “home” first thing that morning and remember how great it felt to be back. We all ate breakfast together, watched the parade, I played entirely too much Playstation with my little brother and just had an all around perfect day with my family. It felt good to be “home”.
Lindsay: I have two. The first was my first Thanksgiving home from college. I have a really special relationship with my parents and it was hard for me to move away from home. Spending that first holiday home with them after I moved out was something I will always remember. My mom and dad, as always, went overboard and made sure it was a day filled with amazing food, champagne toasts, and happiness. Of course, it made it hard to leave and go back to school. My second favorite memory was the first Thanksgiving I spent with my husband who at the time was my boyfriend. I had never spent a holiday away from my family. Spending our first holiday together was a big step toward spending our life together and I could tell by the way his family acted together that it was family I wanted to be a part of forever…and now I am.
David: I distinctly remember it’s the day when my parents broke out the Christmas music. The tree and other decorations might not have been up, but the music was playing and brought to the car for the trip to Grandma’s house. That and watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade were standard operating procedure in my home.
Is there some piece of decor or an element in your home that signifies to you that it’s officially Thanksgiving?
David: My sister-in-law’s rooster apron. It’s a French country style apron with a big rooster on it. She’s worn it every Thanksgiving since my wife and me were dating. If she ever wears a different apron, I’m not sure I’d recognize her.
Gus: When I was younger my family had a huge old record player that had to be from the 60s or 70s. It wasn’t officially Thanksgiving until my grandfather would bust out old “records” from his favorite bands of his youth. I’d pull at his shirt asking to drop the needle on the records and then my grandmother would always force me to dance with her.
Lindsay: For me, it is little things that my mom does at her home. She puts out special table clothes, hand towels, and other holiday décor. Now that I am a homeowner she is starting to pass down some of these things so that I can begin the tradition at my own home. It is really special for me to decorate my own house with things I grew up cherishing.
Will you be spending Thanksgiving at home this year?
Lindsay: We are spending Thanksgiving this year at my in-law’s house which to me truly feels like a home. Each year my mother-in-law spends a full week preparing for the meal and she makes the day so special for the family. She just recently got all new kitchen appliances so I can’t wait to see her in action this year!
David: Yes & no. I won’t be in the home I pay the mortgage for, but will be at a place that feels like home with my wife’s family in South Carolina. There’ll be a total of 10 adults and 12 children (ranging from 7 months to 13 years old) having Thanksgiving dinner together. While dinner is always good, dessert is ridiculously great.
Gus: Seeing how I’m not entirely settled in my new home yet, I’m welcoming the thought of heading to my grandparents’ house for Thanksgiving dinner! I’m looking forward to some delicious food, great company and my grandfather’s rants about how bad the New York Mets are.
Besides your family, spouse or significant other, what are you most thankful for in your home?
Gus: Hmm, I’m most thankful to my girlfriend for allowing me to have the spare room all to myself! I’m building a music studio in the room and fear that she won’t see me much. Come to think of it maybe that’s why she let me have the room in the first place?!
Lindsay: I am thankful FOR my Home! This is my first Thanksgiving as a homeowner and although we won’t be spending it there I feel incredibly blessed and grateful to have my first home.
David: Is it shallow if I say my DVR? Probably, but it’s a wonderful thing. It keeps peace amongst my four boys while giving my wife and me a chance to unwind when the boys are in bed. Thank you Mr. Inventor of the DVR. Thank you.
Header image courtesy of Flickr user regan76