Thanksgiving’s Culinary Sweepstakes

Cooking is not one of my better skills.

I mean, I can follow a recipe, sure, just like I can put gas in my car. But I always said, before I had children, that the only reason this house had a kitchen was because it was required by code.

So it is with some dread that I stare into the cranberry stained face of the mega-cooking holiday throw down of Thanksgiving.

Let’s face it. This is not a holiday that brings out the best in the cooking challenged. Take a look at my cooking repertoire these days as a harried mom on the go.

  • My specialty these days is mac and cheese. Boil pasta. Add cheese. Done.
  • We’ve been celebrating the return of the Hot Dog, previously a banned food, which has regained popularity with the princess of picky eating.
  • Broccoli, steamed. It’s the only green the thing the aforementioned princess will eat. So it’s become a staple.
  • And I do make a mean pancake. With cinnamon. Available on Sundays ONLY.

Unfortunately my comfort level with this repertoire was challenged when some check out person snuck in a rather large, coupon/cooking magazine into my grocery bag. It had a festive cover and I foolishly started to page through it.

It all looks so good. And easy! It all says it’s EASY in big red letters so you know it’s true. Then it’ll have an ingredient list that goes for two pages. But the pictures look so warm and inviting, I immediately imagine the memories possible with these incredible meals.

Then, coming to my senses by the dinging of the microwave, I recall how wonderful mashed potatoes taste from the box if you add some garlic salt. And Voila! Garlic Potatoes A La Prosapio!

Fortunately I have finally gotten wise enough to know that our Thanksgiving memories will be less about dozens of creative side dishes and more about how many times Daddy had to run to the store for something we SHOULD have right here in the cabinet somewhere.

And how many times the smoke alarm went off.

And how the green beans got buried in overabundance of cream of mushroom soup and look more like anemic earthworms, which is not really helpful when you are trying to make a perfect Thanksgiving memory here.

But it will all make you laugh so hard you almost spew your stuffing.

Instead we’ll be thankful that every year, we manage to get stuffed – with great memories, no matter what’s on the table.