It's true, you know. No good deed goes unpunished.
Once upon a time, my clan would gather for Thanksgiving dinner at a local restaurant. Only people who've never done it think it's a terrible thing. Just imagine: Thanksgiving day, you lounge around in your robe and slippers, sipping coffee and watching the parades on TV. Maybe take a mid-morning nap. At some pre-determined time, you put on some mildly dressy clothes and meet everybody at the designated site.
Nothing to cook, nothing to haul over to some-one's house. No dishes to wash. Just all you can eat in public without embarassing yourself. Go home, take a nap. Wonderful Thanksgiving.
The only drawback is no left over turkey, dressing and cranberry sandwiches, but that can be remedied with a little nerve and a purse full of plastic baggies.
But this year, the clan is scattered (the farthest being my son who is floating around the Persian Gulf somewhere on a government owned ship). No deal on the restaurant thing. So, I offer to have a small dinner here for myself, Jason and my mom.
Then my mom suggests that maybe my brother who is recently separated might need a place to go. Okay four.
Then my recently separated brother tells me that his soon-to-be-ex-wife's new place isn't in the shape the landlord said it was and well......
Sure, I say, bring the girls. Six. Gulp.
Well, he wants everyone to come. They are on good terms, it would be mean to take the girls and leave their mom alone since her family lives in another state.
Here's the problem. I have exactly one 36 inch round dining room table with two chairs. It can accomodate four if we use the director's chair from the back room and the computer desk chair. And we all like each other. A lot.
I have one section of counter that is about four feet in length. I have one frying pan, two big pots, one medium pot and one small pot. I have two big bowls and two small bowls. And since I broke two dinner plates a few months ago, I'm going to have to count them to see if I even have seven of them.
I don't entertain much.
Luckily my family is far removed from the hoity-toity downtown elite as we can be. We don't need a perfectly decorated table set for twelve with perfect, matching china and crystal goblets. We wouldn't know which fork to use, well my mom probably would, she's a Southern Belle trained in the old school.
Mix matched dinner plates, three different styles of drinking glasses, plastic serving bowls, sitting on the floor around the coffee table, swatting curious kittens out of our plates, that we can handle.
That's who we are. A little rough around the edges maybe, but there for each other no matter what. And that is something to be thankful for.