November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving rituals

Ever since I was a little girl, I have watched the Macy's Thanksgiving parade on television. The Radio City Music Hall Rockettes are my favorite part. I wanted to be a Rockette, but the minimum height is 5'7", and I never got taller than 5'5". Watching them do precision high kicks every year may be the reason I love dance.

It took me a few years to convince Rik that this was a ritual worth continuing. Even if he ignores me, I follow the Cohen family custom of shouting for company when the Broadway shows come on, the Rockettes, a particularly good marching band, or a favorite balloon (I loved Underdog as a kid).

These days the Broadway shows and the Rockettes are on at the beginning of the parade, so I can watch for an hour and then start the cooking.

Ah, cooking. It's just not the same when we go to Thanksgiving dinner at someone else's house, even if I bring something yummy. Every so often there is a year we do not host, so I have developed a new ritual: I cook some turkey parts at home so that the house smells like roast turkey and we have leftovers for the next day.

Yesterday I baked chef Kevin Davis' Theo chocolate pecan pie. I made it last year from a recipe printed in the newspaper and learned that the cooking times had been printed incorrectly. After the holiday, I called the paper, they called the chef, and he solved the mystery. It's a most unusual pie, baked in a springform pan with tall sides and uses a full pound of butter in the crust. But you only have one piece....

Today, after watching the Rockettes, I will bake an apple pie, roast the turkey drumsticks, and my Thanksgiving rituals will be complete. Then it's off to the most important part -- being with friends who are like family.

Maybe someday I will achieve a lifelong dream of being in the crowd in New York City on Thanksgiving Day and seeing the Rockettes in person.


  1. Happy Thanksgiving, and Happy Belated Birthday!!! Wishing you personal success in your journey with cancer. I have met some of the greatest heroes in my life through their battles with various forms of cancer... I was, at one time, an oncology nurse. I admire your strength and courage, and the determination to KEEP ON LIVING... YOUR life, despite your illness :)

  2. We had Thanksgiving with the kids in Cleveland so I also roasted some turkey legs/thighs so we'd have "leftover" turkey in the house! Now I need to get some cranberry sauce & cook some sweet potatoes.

    I just read in the paper that a (supervised) weight lifting regimen helps women with lymphedema. Not sure of the details (bandaging also?) but it apparently was very successful in preventing flareups. :)