Friday, November 20, 2009

Be Thankful this Year, Please...

If you follow my personal twitter account (I also have a PFMama account if you're interested), you saw this tweet I posted earlier today. It's a letter that a hostess wrote to her guests that had offered to bring food to Thanksgiving. Read it here.

I'm not sure if it's REALLY real, but if it is I feel sorry for her 'guests' and I feel sorry for her - mainly because she's SO uptight about the holidays that she's willing to alienate her family. Yikes.

But it got me thinking that she needs to give a little (and by give I mean relax a little - who gives a crap what kind of spoon they bring to serve a dish?). Which then led me to ask myself what I'm most uptight about at family gatherings.

You guessed it: Peanuts and Cross Contamination.

I don't think I'm alone here (given my company: YOU).

I probably don't sound much different than this woman sometimes. I'm sure I lecture and look at labels and generally get in everyone's business about the food we're having and how safe it is. If someone even mentioned nuts to me a few years ago, I went a little crazy. I felt it was a personal affront if they even had peanut butter in their house (didn't matter if it was on a shelf in a cabinet B couldn't reach).

I mean, the NERVE, right?!?

I actually laugh now thinking back on that. And there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with making sure the food we were having was peanut free, especially when it's a communal meal like Thanksgiving where folks tend to share more (and drink more, thus making cross contamination more likely - I mean who remembers what tongs they used when they've had Uncle Ned's special egg nog?).

BUT this year I am going to try to remember that not everyone lives and dies by the peanut like us. That they mean well and try their best. But if it isn't their affliction (for lack of a better word) it isn't in the forefront of their minds. Heck, if B didn't have a PA I would be the first to bring a pecan pie to a shingdig - I mean if you have a peanut allergy or nut allergy, you just don't eat it right?

So I'm going to give people a break this year. And not sound like that maniacal lady. I'm going to be thankful for all my friends, near and far (and in bloggy land) who support us as much as they are able. We're so lucky, really.

Can you imagine writing that letter, I mean really??? If this was an FA host, the letter would ask folks not to bring anything! Am I right or am I right :)

Good Lord. I hope HJB (the first victim - I mean errr guest) brought A LOT of wine - they surely needed it.


Anonymous said...

you're right--this is exactly how we sound to people. people, that is, who have no empathy or understanding for another's struggle in life. I mean, we all have a struggle--we just don't always see it.

Anne said...

Oh good heavens! We hosted (Canadian)Thanksgiving for most of my husband's family this year - 35 people! Our daughter is the only one in the family with food allergies and luckily, the rest have been very understanding of our vigilance since her diagnosis. This year, when they asked what they could bring, we sent out an email saying that it was actually much less stressful for us to prepare ALL the food so that we knew it would be safe, so please bring lots of wine & beer! It worked out great and we were able to have a few drinks and enjoy the entire event!

Christmas will be another story. It will take place at my in-laws and although it will be peanut/nut free, I'm sure there will be mayonnaise and egg nog (another allergy) so one of us will stay completely sober and follow our daughter around the entire evening.

I cannot imagine writing a letter like that - you're right that whole family would have needed a LOT of wine!!

Happy American Thanksgiving!