The Thanksgiving Gremlins


Halloween wreathIn her book Daring Greatly, self-help guru Brené Brown talks about gremlins as being the voices in our heads that tell us we must do this, we must behave so, we should have done that, etc. The gremlins are the critics–our parents, society, or our own (unrealistic) expectations for ourselves. The idea is to identify those gremlins and then basically tell them to shut up. There’s a little more to it than that, but that’ll do for the purpose of this post.

There’s nothing like Thanksgiving to bring out those gremlins, is there?

My house should be squeaky clean and neat. It should be decorated to the hilt with pumpkins and squashes and horns of plenty and all things autumny and it should smell like cookies and spice everywhere. My Thanksgiving table should have an elaborate, self-made centerpiece that also serves as the perfect “conversation piece”. The Thanksgiving decorations should spill out the front door and onto the porch in abundant, seemingly random enthusiasm.

T missed Halloween and he was out of town for a while after as well, so we kept the Halloween decorations up for a little family do-over this past weekend, and we haven’t put them all away yet. I’m having back trouble and I’m spending a lot of time flat on my back in bed right now and not getting much done–we still have ravens glaring at us from various perches. The bare porch reeks of cat pee from a horny neighborhood outdoor tom who thinks that his aroma will impress my female cat so much that she will spontaneously grow thumbs and open the door for him. Any day now. The Thanksgiving table is at this moment still strewn with T’s business sh things.

I should be fixing a turkey from scratch, having started yesterday, doing indecent things to it with a baster every so often, and I should be making cranberry sauce from scratch and I should have a green bean dish and I should be making Dutch apple pie because that’s my tradition and I should be making a second dessert and I should be and I should be and I should be…

T and B did the groceries yesterday. I chose recipes that are easy to make, in case I have to lie down. This afternoon T and the kids spent hours making a really easy no-bake pumpkin and whipped cream layered dessert–granted, the hand-held mixer decided not to work today, so that made everything more time-consuming. I will be sticking an already cooked turkey in the oven to heat up over two hours in a while, and I’ll make mashed normal and sweet potatoes and roasted root vegetables and one of the kids can make the corn pone. T got ready-made cranberry sauce from the grocery store.

I don’t know about the cranberry fluff that R made. I shouldn’t have chosen something for Thanksgiving that I’ve never tried before. I checked twice and the recipe really didn’t say anywhere that the berries needed to be cooked…

I should have made food and gone to Austin and handed it out to homeless people, along with hand warmers and blankets and such. I should still do that tomorrow and I probably won’t. I should be posting less about Trump on Facebook today. I should be writing a post about all the things I’m thankful for. Or about the Jamestown cannibals of 1609-1610.

But you know what, gremlins, I don’t care. It’s just the four of us this year, and our neighbors are coming over for dessert. We’ll play Trivial Pursuit and it’ll be fun. The house isn’t squeaky clean, but neither was Jamestown. Those guys probably stank at least as much as my porch and I bet there were plenty of ravens lurking around there, too.

2 responses to “The Thanksgiving Gremlins

  1. Happy everyday Barbara! I hope your back will start behaving soon! (Same as mine actually, was it the Baileys?)

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