A Traditional Turkey Day

Not my table, but the Publix pilgrims are one of my traditions.

Not my table, but the Publix pilgrims are one of my traditions. Source:Gifted Gourmet hide caption

itoggle caption Source:Gifted Gourmet

In my family, I'm the member who's known to be absolutely fanatical about tradition. Some might say that just means I'm bad at change, but they're kind, so they see it the other way (mostly). This year, Christmas will be very different from our usual gathering... smaller. Usually my aunt and grandmother fly cross-country to be with us, but this year that's not possible, so it'll be just us Handels. I'm having a hard time adjusting to the new normal, and it's not even that drastic (I'm lucky to have my grandmother and my aunt, even if they won't be physically present). So thank goodness for Thanksgiving, a 30-year tradition that, so far, continues to grow and gain members. Every year, my family of four visits our favorite family of four outside Roanoke, VA (lucky for us, we drive, not fly!). It was a stable gathering for about 25 years, and now one of their four has added a wonderful wife and daughter... and then we added my sister's boyfriend... and this year, mine. Together, we'll participate in all our turkey traditions, from singing along with "Alice's Restaurant," to visiting the Roanoke outdoor market (but, hopefully, not showing each other our mouthfuls of mashed potatoes at the dinner table... fun as it was 20 years ago, that's probably one to let go). How will your holidays be different this year, and what traditions see you through?

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