Thanksgiving at my place is full of all sorts of traditions, some not as conventional as others; for example this one in which I spank the turkey before seasoning it.
Its hard to say how long this practice has been in effect or, how it got started in the first place, but it has become quit the Thanksgiving ritual and, I like to believe, it contributes to the overall tenderness of the meat.
Another Thanksgiving custom is the questionnaire. Every year my guests are handed a sheet of questions to fill out. The questions range from topics such as food, movies, to things like aliens, and yodeling. My favorite answer this year, was to question #6, What did the Aliens Tell you? to which one of the guests answered, I'm never clear who the aliens are... Perhaps they should be required to wear name tags.
One of the longest standing traditions is the Thanksgiving pinata. Every year Margeaux is in charge of its creation and every year, after stuffing ourselves with Turkey, we race outside to to take a swing at her sacrificial creation. From Turkeys, to kittens, Mermaids, and more Turkeys, everyone wants a swing. This year ever strangers on the street lined up to swat at the Alien ship that was sent here to spread Love and Light.
Then of course there is my very favorite Thanksgiving tradition, the dance. Every year I require my guests to do a little dance before they eat. ( click on this link to see last years, and the year before.) Every year, for days I work so hard; the dancing video was invented as a way to battle the Thanksgiving postpartum I feel when the whole night is over before I've had a chance to relax. The great thing about this year is that, between Ben's help in the kitchen, our wonderfully planned menu, and the smaller number of guests - eleven people - I was able to relax and hangout like all the rest. It was night and day between last years dinner of thirty people in which I only sat down long enough to swallow a few bites of food.
As it would appear to some, not may of these Traditions of Thanks fit into the conventional notions of tradition. They are traditions none the less, and each year that passes, and each set of Thanksgivingoers are housed under my ruff for one day helps to sustain them.
So the things I am thankful for this year: that it was my best Thanksgiving...ever, that that it was my first Thanksgiving with Ben and his parents, I'm thankful for my wonderful, WONDERFUL friends with whom I had the delight of spending the day and who still danced for me even though it was clear there was no postpartum on the horizon. I love all of you!