(i started this post on saturday but didn't finish it until today)
hey friends. i'm sitting at a laptop at my parents' dining room table out in western pennsylvania. we've been here for thanksgiving, and while we will journey east today back to 'jack's house' as he calls it, i thought i would just check in and give you a glimpse of a 'milinovich family thanksgiving.'
we got here on wednesday evening. one of the first things we did was eat. we ate well. we also talked quite a bit, and played a little game we like to call 'music jeopardy' where we simply use the digital music channels and try to guess song, artist and album as quickly as possible. fun game.
thursday is a day of gluttony, at least for me. each year i tell myself that i am not going to eat too much, but each year the food keeps getting piled higher and higher on my plate until i need a shovel more than a fork and a cow's stomach more than my own. after over-consumption of delectable thanksgiving standards, i usually retire to the living room to settle into a football-filled digestive-inspired near-coma on the couch. but children have changed most of that. my time is not my time anymore. alas. but jack really enjoyed his thanksgiving dinner, which was fun, and even cade got to eat some turkey babyfood. now here's where things start to get interesting.
beginning sometime in the evening the whole tone and tenor of the milinovich home begins to change. what was a peaceful and lethargic afternoon evolves (devolves) into an evening of anticipation and anxiety with at least three things present: (1) the chastisement of at least one family member for providing the family with an incomplete or lame christmas list; (2) the dismissal of various family members one at a time so the rest of us can discuss the progress on their list, or, in case of aforementioned individual, how lame their list was; (3) the decision about what stores we will shop at in the morning, in which order, and at what time. this last one is the biggie.
after the chastisement has basically run its full course, we turn our attention to the following morning. it is a lengthy and spirited conversation that looks (in part) something like this:
greg: (clearing throat) i would like to call this meeting to order. i think that last year's minutes are evident in the gifts you got for Christmas. does anyone have any additions or deletions to the minutes? (silence) hearing none is their a motion to accept the minutes?
mom: i move to accept the minutes.
mary: i second.
greg: all in favor?
greg: opposed? (silence) the minutes are approved. there is no treasurer's report, so let us move right into our first order of business. what stores do people need to go to tomorrow?
now, this goes on like this for sometime, although the formality (which is only partially a joke) gets lost in the shuffle as it morphs into a free for all conversation about where to shop. is this a sick testament to consumerism? maybe. but it is really not all about the shopping. mostly it is about the way we enjoy one another as a family. even with two children under 3 we were out of the house at 6am. after a variety of adventures at target, we got to the mall. once inside macy's, we get into a huddle and yell something ridiculous like, "one, two, three, shop!" this attracts many stares and chuckles and even a little outright mockery, but it is what we do. its how we roll. its part of our tradition and it keeps us moving as a family. can i get a second for that motion?
anyway, we're back now, ready for Advent, but first, FIRST there's that issue of a little football game tonight. redbank billy, where are you? are you ready for some football? go steelers!