This is another reprint of a post from several years ago, with some revisions.
Thanksgiving at Grandma’s house did not include turkey, or if it did, the turkey was quite small and looked just like a chicken.
My family and I have wonderful memories from Grandma’s kitchen, where her chrome and Formica table with four vinyl-covered chairs sat smack in the middle of the room. We would retrieve wooden chairs with braided seats from the back bedroom so most of the adults could sit together.
Happy times! The family showed up with all the aunts “totin'” a dish or two, as Grandma would say. We’d set the table and leave a stack of plates on the Hoosier cabinet for the kids to fill and take to the “front room”.
There was no kid’s table at Grandma’s. All of us kids perched wherever we could find a spot, on couches, chairs, or on the floor. That house only had four rooms and two of those were bedrooms. No plumbing at all, and the heat was provided by a woodstove in the front room.
The star of Grandma’s dinner table was a chicken. Grandma raised chickens, so one was always handy.
Okay, I have a confession to make here: I never ate chicken at Grandma’s. Maybe I was a picky eater—I don’t remember—but that hunk of flesh in the center of the table had been out in the yard a few hours ago, scratching around. I couldn’t eat it.
I loved all the vegetables, though. Mashed potatoes and gravy, lima beans, crowder peas, skillet corn and cornbread dressing. But not the chicken, and certainly not the giblet gravy. I’d seen what went into the gravy. NO way! This girl didn’t eat innards.
Today, there will be a turkey on my Thanksgiving table. And there will be giblet gravy because my husband loves it. These days, I usually eat the turkey. I didn’t see it walking around and never made eye contact. I hope it had a good upbringing.
Happy Thanksgiving to you, whether you dine on chicken, turkey, tofurkey, etc.
For each new morning with its light, For rest and shelter of the night, For health and food, For love and friends, For everything Thy goodness sends, Father in heaven, We thank thee. —Ralph Waldo Emerson [Prayer of Thanks]