• Stephanie Gillett

How the Whole Family is Together for Thanksgiving…Even Though We Aren’t

I wanted to set up the dining room so I could take a few pictures and show off our hard work. With the correct installation of our new light fixture, the room is basically complete, and I’ve been anxious to blog about it.

But then Mitch asked me, “Do you mind if we just take the photos at Thanksgiving? I’ll get out my Grandma’s china, and it’ll look really pretty.”

We rarely use Grandma’s china for any holiday, because it all needs to be washed by hand and is difficult to manage when you’re hosting a house full of people. This year, we had to beg off all of that. Our hearts said yes, but COVID said, “Oh, no. Not if you still want to be together next year. Stay at home and encourage your family to do the same.”

His Grandma’s china came out. I made our favorite cranberry sauce, and I put it in a cut-glass bowl that my own Grandma had given me when she and Grandpa moved to Florida. Little by little, we started to assemble the table. A butter dish that my Mom bought us when we were married, the salt and pepper shakers I purchased at my sister’s Pampered Chef party.

And the recipes also represent: my Mom’s favorite cauliflower recipe, the mayonnaise my sister would drink if I let her. Grandma’s tried and true cooking method for the turkey itself, with a clean-up plan she would have envied. A whiskey sour, consumed as I survey the whole process, that my Grandpa would have been completely thrilled with. He loved making those.

In a year that’s been full of turmoil, stress, and even fear, the reason we’ve been able to prevail is because our missing loved ones have been ever present the whole time. They’re still here tonight, and for that I’m forever thankful.

So…how about this dining room? Beautiful, isn’t it?

Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours.

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