Day 29: Sometimes Traditions Change

Yesterday, the girls and I ventured over to taste test my mom’s stuffing before she put it in the turkey, before she put it in the oven (also, before she added the egg because salmonella’s no joke and we sometimes try to avoid food poisoning). Add more sage, add a dash more salt.

The Princess asked to stay and hang out with my mother while Pumpkin and I went home before dinner. It was early and I hadn’t even showered after my treadmill workout.

In the midst of their food preparation, they found out my stepfather wouldn’t be coming home from the hospital as they’d anticipated — we expected him home by Monday.

So it’s not really a surprise our dinner was off kilter. Used to having her husband’s help in the kitchen, mom struggled to get the timing of the meal right. She had to call my brother-in-law to come back over to cut the turkey.

Last year, Thanksgiving was in the recent aftermath of my grandpa’s stroke – and though it was off kilter, my grandmother still came to share the day with us. Yesterday, though, she went to my aunt’s house. Our dinner was just me and mom and my girls — and before dinner, Pumpkin in tears said, “I thought the holidays is when you spent time with family.”

(And then we ate massive amounts of stuffing and all was right in the world.)

And today, we varied from our usual Black Friday tradition. Instead of heading out before the sun, we waited until after 8 — and we took the girls with us. I don’t usually take the girls Black Friday shopping – there’s too many people out, and I can’t really shop for the kids if they’re with me. But, you know, you do what you gotta when things cause plans to change.

I’m a big believer in tradition and I knew that this year would be a bit of a chaotic mess. It was yesterday for Thanksgiving and I’m sure Christmas will be as well. We’re all still reeling from the loss of my grandpa, and this year, having spent so much time together in the nursing home during grandpa’s last days, we are all just backing away from each other slowly, retreating to separate corners. It means my kids might never again have the big family Christmases I grew up with, the family Christmases they’ve had before. We’ll do our best, and the girls and I will hang on to the traditions that we can hang on to – but I’m afraid that my grandpa was the glue holding a lot of it together.

About sarah

Sarah is a book nerd, a music lover, an endorphin junkie, a coffee addict. Oh, and a goof ball. She writes, she tweets, and she sings off key.

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