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Mom Has Thanksgiving Reservations

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What do you do when you don't have the room or the skills to make a traditional Thanksgiving? You eat out!

family at thanksgiving dinner with waitress

Guest Blogger Annie: My sister, my uncle and I spend Thanksgiving together every year. My mother lives out of state, but we never really celebrated with her anyway. When my grandmother was alive, she joined us. When my uncle was in a 12-year relationship, his in-laws were there. When my sister was married, her in-laws attended. But things have changed. My sister and I both have children, my grandmother has died. My uncle and my sister are now single.

Last year, my sister had her then in-laws over and she rented tables and invited co-workers. The years before, my uncle had dinner catered, all the strays and orphans attended the buffet meal. But this year, we wanted it to be just us. When we were trying to determine who would make what, we decided - let's go out.

You see, none of us are good cooks. We can follow a recipe, but we don't love doing the deed. We cook when we have to, but we are comfortable with the fact that we are not Suzy Homemakers. We also don't own fine china, don't have dining room tables in our homes and we don't like to clean. So, we are figuring there's no harm in going to a restaurant this year. We searched and vetted all of the possible places to dine.

We finally settled on a local restaurant. It's not too extravagant and not too down home. They offer a prix fixed holiday dinner menu. We are in California so the seating is outside -- they have heat lamps so we won't freeze. There is also a fountain, so if the kids, (a three-year-old and one-year-old) get restless, we can take them for a walk and not feel silly if they scream and yell.

I'm sure the food will be better than any disgusting yams with marshmallows that we would have attempted to concoct, we don't have to spend hours preparing and most importantly our clean-up will take as long as it takes to say, "Thank you and have a nice holiday."

So far, I'm not feeling disappointed. I'm looking forward to it like I would any Thanksgiving dinner in any previous year. In fact, I'm excited that there will be no arguments, no tension and no sweat. I'll let you know after the fact if I feel the same way.


next: Child Labor on Thanksgiving
6 comments so far | Post a comment now
Barb November 24, 2009, 10:18 AM

We’re headed to a restaurant this year, too. Me, hubby, 6-year-old, 2-year-old and my hubby’s parents. I’m thrilled.

stephanie November 24, 2009, 2:45 PM

I remember working in a restaurant for several thanksgivings. I always felt bad for the families who couldn’t even figure out how to cook a meal. I couldn’t wait to get away from them to spend time with my family- real people who actually wanted to spend the day together instead of cramming in at some restaurant table. UGH!

Just Sayin' November 24, 2009, 4:53 PM

While I appreciate the idea, I would personally feel bad for the people that had to come into work that day to serve MY dinner and not be at home to enjoy theirs.

Barb November 24, 2009, 6:28 PM

Stephanie, I assure you we can “figure out how to cook a meal.” But we decided since we’re a small group this year (due to my father-in-law’s recent surgery, he’s not able to travel the 3 hours to the family we usually celebrate with), my father-in-law said he wanted to try eating out for one Thanksgiving, and so we are. I’m thrilled because there won’t be any juggling that day; we can have a quiet day to relax and eat a good meal with our family and friend (tonight we added one person—a neighbor whose husband died two months ago… she outright said she’d join us since we’re going out since she would feel like she’s intruding on family time if we were at home). Since you seem so concerned, I assure you we are all “real people” with loving families.

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