Tales from Angela's Kitchen: Thanksgiving Dinner by a Procrastinating Over-AchieverSaturday, November 24, 2012
10:30 PM, Thursday: "Time for dessert Mom?" Yes Jaden, it is time for dessert. The moment of truth was upon us. The thing about pies is that it's pretty hard to know if they came out alright until it's time to serve them, and as a cook I'm not sure there's anything more terrifying than a dish you can't taste test. I make the first slice into the creamy center and as my knife slides through the tender, flaky crust, I damn near weep with tears of pride. I scoop a big dollop of cold, creamy whipped coconut cream onto that perfect slice of pie, grind a little nutmeg over the top (okay, I am just showing off at this point) and stand back to revel in the pièce de résistance. We take bites at the same time. I am propelled into memories of visiting my late grandmother in Newport News, freshly baked sweet potato pies waiting for me on her kitchen table. Jaden is doing his happy dance again. When he finishes, he clears the table and comes over to give me a kiss on the cheek. "Thanks Mom. Dinner was great." No, this is not part of my vivid imagination in which we are starring in a classic family movie. I actually have one of those kids who puts away his plate, hugs me and thanks me for dinner. Jaden remarks how tired he is, and voluntarily saunters off to bed with his protruding, happy belly.
11:30 PM, Thursday: I manage to upload a few pics to Facebook and Twitter, shoot off a few late text messages, and put all the food and (most of) the dishes away. I finally get a hot shower. I take a look at my unopened bottle of Kraken rum, a gift to myself for all of my hard work today, and sigh, knowing I am too damn tired to muster up the energy for a cocktail. I'm not sure at what point I actually sit back and put my feet up, but I do remember feeling like only the jaws of life would be able to remove me from this couch. As I close my laptop for the night, the day replays in my head. For once, I have no harsh criticism for myself, no self-defeating thoughts or obsessing about little things I would have done differently. I am not disappointed that we ate six hours later than the rest of the country. I'm not even upset that I probably won't be able to afford groceries for another month. And I surely don't care that I forgot to get dressed and put on lipstick to take an obligatory holiday picture. Thanksgiving happened, my son is happy, and I am pleased.
By the way...we didn't miss the sage.