My Other Family

Thanksgiving is a great holiday. Because its wedged in between Halloween and ChristmaHanukaKwanzakah, they just haven’t figured out how to sell it. There are relatively no Turkey Day displays blocking the aisles at Target. We are not overrun with The Turkey Day channel on satellite radio. Commercialism of the bird had been quite small.  Thank God.

And because it’s so short, I’ve stopped trying to travel this weekend. A 48 hour trip to a cold northern city is a Rockstar adventure when youre young and single, but about as relaxing as an mamogram with a family of four. So lately we’ve been staying in town for Turkey Day, which begs the question: how do you decide where to celebrate?

My friends up north will never face this question, and probably don’t even understand this blog post. They have-never/will-never live more than 2 hours away from a close relative. I moved to Florida 17 years ago, and my part-time-Florida living Mom is a 4 hour drive, well, if she was in town this year (read: she’s in Italy, I’m super jealous so happy for her.) The T-Day dinner this year with my Other Family.

On the refrigerator door of my host’s house, were pictures of both of my kids at birth. I smiled because we hadn’t been to this house for at least 2 years, and Matilda and Lane were now both in the living room playing on iPads.

The guys who had season tickets to the Miami Hurricane games for 5 years with us were there. One participated with me in the grandest act of stupidity of crashing the Superbowl in Miami, and the other I celebrated with him on both his 40th and 50th birthdays.

There was the the woman who was my realtor when I bought my first condo, and her husband – with whom I had one of the few recorded snowball fights in Miami Hash history (it was behind an ice rink). Our friend, the boat captain, was in town this year regaling us with his adventures from around the world.

And the kids – not just mine. The girls who I gave flute lessons when they were in middle school are now both in college. My hostess’s youngest daughter I’ve known since 5th grade, she’s a senior in high school. And all they kept talking about is how old MY kids had gotten.

As the wine flowed – lots of wine – I realized that holidays with friends are different than those spent with your blood relatives. But I consider myself blessed to spend yet another year with this group of misfits and orphans – my Other Family.


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