How The Riot Started at Thanksgiving Dinner

The holidays at the Bolden’s home are all about the food. After a traditional dinner the desserts begin. My daughter makes delicious cheesecakes. I make my mom’s sweet potato pie, a favorite of my husband’s. Although he says it is not as good as my mom’s. But since she is in heaven, he must either die to get hers or live with mine. He has chosen the latter.

Now according to my daughter, her Canadian family prefers pies over cakes and her husband, David doesn’t like cheesecake. Yes, we are planning a deliverance meeting for him. So instead of her traditional cheesecake, she decided to make lemon meringue pie this year.

We had a nice dinner, full of laughter and great conversation, until I announced there was no cheesecake this year. I kid you not, there was an uprising in our home. There was wailing and gnashing of teeth. Sackcloth was adorned. Threats were hurled. Our salvation was questioned. But in the midst of this hullabaloo, my son-in-law sat quietly enjoying his lemon meringue pie made lovingly by his wife.

Two lessons learned from our holiday misstep.
1. Now that my kids are adults and have moved away, I understand more than ever the importance of creating family traditions. These traditions remind them of happy times from their childhood. It bonds them as siblings because no one else on the planet have their shared memories.

I have also noticed that most of our traditions are organic. We did not set out to start a tradition, it just happened out of consistency, out of us just doing what we enjoy. My advice for #nostressholidays is don’t try to force a holiday tradition. Don’t make a list. Don’t try to create the same traditions as your neighbor, or sister, or some Hallmark movie. But instead, just be present with your family and allow your traditions to flow organically from what you enjoy.

2. Allow your traditions to evolve. As your children come home from foreign lands like Ohio, or college they may want to start new traditions. As they marry and your family expands, allow your traditions to do so as well by incorporating new actives and foods from your new family members. You may have to let go of some old traditions so that you can embrace new ones. (But please don’t omit the Cheesecake.)

So now the Bolden’s have a new holiday dessert tradition: Sweet Potato pie, Cheesecake AND Lemon Meringue pie. Everyone is happy.

What is your family’s favorite holiday dessert? Share with us.


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