Aside from family and food, my favorite part of Thanksgiving is hosting—not something that most people typically enjoy. What I like about hosting is setting a fancy table, since we are not fancy people. In fact, it is probably the only “white tablecloth” meal we enjoy all year, which makes it even more special. My kids also pick up on the mood, which I love. They immediately recognize the day is different from the rest. Since I only have to set a “table for eight,” it is much easier to pull this off. Obviously the larger the group, the more expensive this gets. In this downer of a year, Thanksgiving has been one of the highlights. In reality, it’s always one of the highlights. Yet another reason I love it so much. And this year’s Thanksgiving’s table has thus far been my favorite even though it didn’t go exactly as planned. But has anything in 2020 gone as planned?
Initially, I intended to load up the table up with pumpkins in all colors and sizes. So I bought seven pumpkins in beautiful neutral colors and set them on my porch. One day, I noticed one of them contained a bite mark. Odd, I thought. The next day, I noticed a second bite mark this time in a different pumpkin. The following day, there was a third bite mark in yet another pumpkin. Of course the bite marks were on the small white pumpkins that I wanted to set on the plates on the table. Since you can’t use pumpkins with bite marks for decoration, I discarded these ones and then naturally, I bought more.
To no one’s surprise, the same thing occurred. The final blow was when I returned from an outing and found a raccoon (or opossum) tried to drag one of my new pumpkins down the steps of our house. I kept holding off on keeping this pumpkins for my Thanksgiving table until I came home from work one day. and found all the pumpkins gone. But this time, it wasn’t the raccoons and opossums. It was my husband! He tossed them. He said they attracted rodents and animals. To be fair, he had good reason. It was just hard to accept, but I moved on (eventually).
When Thanksgiving finally rolled around, most of the pumpkins were sold out in local stores. I also didn’t want to fork out much more money so I picked up two remaining orange pumpkins from Belair and they became the ones you see below.
Some have called my table “festive.” I think it’s more “rich.” Rich in color and rich in memories of those who gathered around it. What would you call it?