Every family has their own style of Thanksgiving, as well as their own timetable. My family drives in from different parts of California, and to allow for a comfortable sequence of events, we eat our Thanksgiving meal in the evening.
Usually, the plan for holidays at my house is
- 1. Eat a big breakfast.
- 2. Graze on holiday appetizers all afternoon for lunch.
- 3. Eat dinner around six.
In my particular case, the plan is:
- 1. Cook all day
- 2. Go crazy because of children, relatives, or health problems
- 3. Eat dinner
- 4. Lay face-down on floor in exhaustion and say to family, “Why are you still here?”
Just kidding! After dinner is the best time, for me, anyway. My daylong task is done and now I get to sit on the couch while my aunt and uncle wash the dishes and I enjoy a post-meal stupor while my digestion struggles to keep up with my schedule and make room for pie. Later my uncle gets his guitar out and my aunt sings, and then we all sing, and Isobel passes out instruments for everyone and the Grinch immediately turns to ash because we are just that happy.
Our Thanksgiving has often had bumps in the road because the snack table was woefully inadequate to get my husband and myself over the lunch hump and into dinner. Now that I’m charge of the meal I wanted to make sure we had snack table groaning with choices because I cannot cook on an empty stomach, nor can I abide a cranky husband or children while I’m trying to create savory fall alchemy in the kitchen. My family, however, is very health conscious, and various medical problems mean the offerings have to be low-carb, low-fat, and very healthy.
Here’s what I put together for last year’s feast. Isobel helped and we had a lot of fun and everyone ate a lot of snacks. My cousin and her boyfriend came and it was the first time we met. I wanted everyone to have as much as they wanted.
- Salsa and Mexican chips
- Raw crudites including carrot sticks, celery sticks, cucumber, mushrooms, cauliflower, green onions, and olives
- Two dips for the veggies: hummus (from our local place–it’s perfect, I can’t make it better) and a dilled Greek yogurt dip
- Kale and butternut squash chips that Isobel helped make and was very proud of
- Chex mix (my family always has it, not healthy, but would be sacrilegious not to include it
- Two kinds of whole wheat crackers (I bought one and Mom brought over the others)
I haven’t decided what we will do for this year, but I have so many ideas. If you have healthy suggestions, let me know! I’d love to hear it.