Canadian Thanksgiving Traditions
By Karen Ballum on October 08, 2009
BlogHer Original Post
Canadian Thanksgiving weekend is just days away and I have to confess something. I don't have any Thanksgiving traditions. I haven't had the same Thanksgiving experience more than two years in a row since um...high school? Possibly even before that.
I've spend Thanksgiving in the dorm. I've cooked (with the help of a former roommate) Thanksgiving dinner for ten fellow students. I've spent it travelling. I've had Thanksgiving dinner on trains and even at a Swiss Chalet. I've cooked with friends (and always provide the stuffing). I've spent at few at a cottage in Vermont. This year I really thought I was going to cook the big meal. But I'm not.
My mother is coming to visit next week. She arrives Sunday evening. It will be the first Thanksgiving we've spent together in at least ten years (probably closer to twelve). At first I considered cooking the big meal but then I realized that we'd spend her entire visit eating leftover turkey. That's not very fun. I like to treat my mother to meals that she can't quite get in my small hometown - Indian curry, Thai stirfries, shish taouk.
After rejecting the idea of the traditional turkey I thought about making lasagna. My mother always makes me make a lasagna whenever she's in town or when I visit her. It takes me almost as long to make as cooking a turkey. Then we realized that she'd have to meet my in-laws. Thanksgiving dinner seemed appropriate. I met Lee's entire family on Easter weekend. (We seem to have a thing for holiday dinners.) We figured we might as well do it at the same place that I met his parents, a place that has become the default family dinner location. Yep, we're going to the buffet at the racetrack and casino.
I know. It seems funny. It's actually pretty good. It provides a nice neutral group for meeting family members. It's busy but not too loud. On race nights you have a few minutes of excitement every 30 minutes or so. And when it's all over we each take a $20 bill and take our chances with the slots. It's fun. But not so traditional for Thanksgiving, which to be honest suits my not-quite-traditional family just fine.
Maybe someday I'll cook a traditional Thanksgiving dinner again. It would be pretty similar to an American one - turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, veggies. You wouldn't see green bean casserole or sweet potatoes with marshmallows. There would be, of course, pumpkin pie. Or maybe I won't. Maybe my Thanksgiving tradition is to not have one.
Vintage Love - A Canadian Thanksgiving Table.
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Gotta Little Space - How to Carve a Turkey
Get Out of Debt Girl - What's your Thanksgiving tradition?
Cutest Little Things - Judy is planning a surprise for her Canadian husband