The first always takes place the Saturday before Thanksgiving. My maternal extended family gather at my mom’s cousin’s house out in the middle of nowhere. There’s about 40 of us altogether most years, and we have this big giant potluck. On cold years, we try to squish into the house, all mashed together in every room while we eat, ha! On warm years, like this one, we set up half indoors and half on the porch. The kids (all the second-cousins now) run around in the fields playing football or frisbee or tag or kick-the-can or soccer. They range in age this year from six to eighteen, and we had ten of them out there. It was a lovely afternoon for it, about 70 degrees and partly cloudy, and the only problem we had was all the wasps and bees flying around. (Sadly, a bee got the six-year-old. She screamed bloody murder, poor baby.) I didn’t get a lot of photos this time around, and what I got was mostly country scenery from around the house. That giant live oak is my favorite.
On Thanksgiving properly, we started at home with the Macy’s Day Parade of course, all the way until
Henry Kissinger Santa showed up**. Then we got together with the extended family from my dad’s side. This took place at an aunt and uncle’s house in San Antonio, where we had another potluck, played lots of pool, and watched football. Sadly, I failed to get any photos from this gathering – I was having too good a time doing all the rest!
It was a good holiday, and now my family is preparing for Christmas, one of my very favorite times of year!
**Somewhere on the blog I’ve explained this, but I can’t find it. Back in the early 2000s, at a church Christmas party, someone announced that a special guest had arrived, and Jason popped out with, “Henry Kissinger?” in this faux excited voice right before Santa entered. The nickname stuck, and became even more hilarious when Morrigan was around six years old and got sobbing screaming upset at the end of the Macy’s parade because he “missed Henry Kissinger” at the end and only saw Santa.