When most families are busy planning what day they'll show up for Thanksgiving or whose house they'll stay at for Christmas, mine is busy sharing recipes.
Our holidays, it turns out, center around food.
Requests for favorite recipes fly back and forth. Husbands clip recipes from magazines for wives to try. Moms and daughters check to see if others have random ingredients needed for one dish.
Some people order their lives by days or hours or events.
We order ours by . . . uhhh . . . food.
People say that farmers just eat meat and potatoes, and while we do serve up plenty of beef and bacon, we also believe homemade food, a big table and chatty families are some of the best ingredients for a good meal.
My parents made sure that we ate supper together every night. We had to try everything our mom served, even if it was just a bite or two. We cleaned our plates. We asked to be excused.
And we were always mentally prepared not to give a wholly honest answer when our dad asked, "Have I ever made you taste something you didn't like?"
(Hello, split pea soup!)
This Thanksgiving is no different. While we won't all get to be together, we're still swapping recipes, still pulling out our grandma's handwritten recipe cards, still getting out our fat pants so that we can feast on all the deliciousness the cooks have prepared.
And we're still planning our time together around the fellowship that happens at the table: the jokes, the political debates, the theological discussions.
And the food.
But mostly the food.
Sugar Cookie Recipe
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 3/4 c. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
Heat oven to 400. Cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add powder and salt, one cup at a time, until the dough is stiff. Divide into 2 and roll out one half of the dough at a time on a floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Do not refrigerate the second half. Cut out cookies and place on an ungreased cookie sheet for 6-7 minutes. Cool slightly and remove.