My grandmother set her Thanksgiving table with an Irish lace cloth. I’m not sure that I even own one. (If I do, it’s packed away.) In her eighties, Nana once threw a crystal cranberry dish across the table at my mother because Mom neglected to remove it from the china closet and serve the cranberry sauce in it. A stickler for tradition, that one…
When my children were growing up, we didn’t always live close to family. Today, my daughter lives in Illinois and my son, in Texas, so we are learning to navigate a shifting holiday tradition.
I’ve become a guest, now, rather than a host. It’s delightful to watch them prepare recipes that are meaningful to our family. But I’m also pleased to see their unique additions to the day. Candidly, my daughter-in-law does a better job with appetizers than I ever could.
Screen time with family is wonderful, but nothing replaces being together, the affectionate hugs and the opportunities for reconnecting with one another over a holiday meal.
I hope they will carry forward a few of the cherished holiday traditions of their childhood for the next generation. Unlike my grandmother, I let go of any expectations and – along with the food – I savor the moments, the chance to be together.
Renee Garrison is the award-winning author of The Anchor Clankers.