Thanksgiving dinner is my favorite meal of the year, even though I am a vegetarian who has not eaten turkey for over twenty years. I love stuffing. I was at Anne’s house yesterday and she uses soy “sausage” in the stuffing; I eat the extra that’s baked separately, out of the bird. Her alternative to the canned green beans/soup/French fried onion rings dish is steamed whole green beans tossed with slivered almonds and browned butter. Yum. I also love homemade cranberry sauce, Anne’s yeasty potato rolls, and pie. Lots of pie! Everyone contributes to the feast. Kevin’s brother-in-law makes the world’s best pasta salad and his sister inherited her mother’s talent for pie baking. This year I took a fluffy sweet potato casserole (made with applesauce and beaten egg whites) and a pecan pie.
Even more than the food, I love the family traditions that go with Thanksgiving. Anne’s table was covered by a cloth embroidered in Fall colors decades ago by Carl’s mother. The Haviland china belonged to my grandmother. Lovely crystal salt-and-pepper shakers were from Kevin’s mom, as was a favorite pie tin. The cranberries were served in a Steuben glass bowl that had been my mother’s. Delicious food fed our bodies while fellowship and good memories nourished our souls.
After Thanksgiving dinner, some of us played Bananagrams, my new favorite game. I’ve always like word games, but Brett is the champion. My problem with Bananagrams is that I don’t like to hurry, and this is a fast-paced game. In games, as in writing a book, I prefer to ponder over each word, to deliberate and rearrange and consider alternatives. I lose word games that way, but my books are better than if I rushed through the writing.