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Will millennials disrupt Thanksgiving?

November 19, 2018

Due to my heavy travel schedule, another writer has "volunteered" to create this week's blog. All opinions are expressly those of the author...

Thanksgiving was a big deal in our house. Dad was in charge of “the bird,” one of the few times we ever saw him in the kitchen. But really, we all thought he was just roasting it so he could move on to the turkey soup, where he really shined. At least, he thought he did. After he put the used carcass in the largest pot we had and filled it to the top with water to simmer, Mom would sneak in and throw in six or seven bouillon cubes so it would actually taste like poultry.

But all four siblings learned how to make a Thanksgiving dinner: the bird, sausage stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, real cranberry relish, assorted pickles (including Mother’s homemade watermelon pickles), and sweet potato casserole topped with brown sugar and pecans. If company came, they’d bring the red Jell-O salad that we would eat but not care really about. But the one rule my mother had was: there had to be something on the menu that you didn’t like so you would be thankful you only had to eat it once a year. It took decades for me to realize that my hard-scrabble Yankee mother actually loved pearl onions in cream sauce, mashed parsnips and rutabagas.

I grew up, had my own home, and recreated the same meal every November in our house. And two daughters grew up enjoying the same foods (except for those strange Yankee foods) just like I did. Now, hovering around 40, they have never even thought about getting involved in this autumnal production. A son-in-law brought home a post-Thanksgiving sale turkey, so one has roasted one bird once with no company to entertain.

We will be spending this holiday at the other daughter’s house. Thank goodness her husband thought to ask her about the dinner! She, who has never even cooked a full weeknight dinner, entertained the idea of trying it herself.  When her sister heard that, she sent a photo she took of an ad from the Costco magazine for a full precooked meal. It is now in her freezer, waiting to be thawed.

How does the future of the holiday look for your family? Are there any members of any upcoming generations that will keep your family’s food traditions going? Let us hear from you below!