Originally published for the Helium Network
By Jeanette Cheezum
We all wore our little black and white costumes to school to do our Thanksgiving pageant. The teacher could hardly keep us quiet
We were all so excited about our holiday break. While the classes were led in single file, stories were whispered throughout the auditorium. Whose mother was the best cook and how many people would attend the pageant? The bell rang and we ran out the doors like race horses.
Thanksgiving morning, we drooled when wonderful smells permeated the house. My sister and I argued over who’d get the wishbone and the drumsticks. My parents seemed to be oblivious to our antics. After all, we were a product of them.
Grandma and Grandpa were on the way. Mom asked us to hurry and help with the last minute clean-ups while dad hid the extra booze so Uncle John didn’t drink every thing he could find. My brother had to clean up poop out of the yard so if Uncle John fell off the porch he didn’t fall in anything smelly. Oh how we hated that job.
Aunt Katie, as wide as she was tall, arrived first with her usual large bowl of green bean casserole. Usually, when we finished dinner, she could rinse out the dish and fill it with enough leftovers to last her a couple of days.
Jasper, our Great Dane, lurked behind my little cousin Billy hoping to vacuum up the droppings and Dandelion the cat was no where to be found.
We said the grace, filled our plates with all kinds of food to compliment the turkey and listened to the same old jokes and embarrassing stories we’ve heard year after year. Mom and her sister argued about who was Grandma’s favorite and Uncle Jack, as predicted, searched every cabinet to see if Dad forgot to bring out the good stuff.
Aunt Katie sprang to the kitchen to fill her bowl before anyone put anything in containers to store away. “Oh, I hope you don’t mind. I won’t have time to get to the store for a couple of days.”
Before time to clean up, everyone started to make excuses and slip out the door.
Mom swore under her breath this would be the last time she’d have this dinner at our house. “Our family is a bunch of ungrateful leeches,” she said.
Then I heard Grandma ask, “What time are you doing it next year?”
“Same time, same place,” my cowardly mother replied. “I hope you all enjoyed it.”
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL