Whether your traditions are old or new, there is always room for people. Growing up in a military family we never spent the holidays in the same place. No matter who hosted us, however, my fondest memory is trying to fit everyone around the holiday table.
As an adult living la vie Boehme in New York City, most people eat their holiday meals in studio apartments on couches or even the floor. This was an appalling adjustment for me. It didn’t seem fair.
So, being resourceful (as an NYC transplant must be), I made the best decision of my life: I bought a dining table and insisted on hosting Thanksgiving dinner each year.
My table is magical.
The first time someone comes into my home for a holiday they see the table, the china, the candles, the servingware, and they usually gasp with delight and say, “Wow, you have a TABLE? It’s just like going home!” Somehow, a carefully set table with a dozen or more places, a clever centerpiece, and a 23-pound turkey make us all feel comforted and happy.
My old tradition of jostling family members for the best seats at the family table has transitioned into my new tradition: making the community of family-less Bohemians of New York City feel warm, welcome, and at home for the holidays.
I’m sure I’ll continue tweaking my traditions to fit into my chaotic life, but one thing will always remain constant: Thanksgiving is about connecting with people, and my beautiful table helps us NYC Bohemians celebrate the holidays as we were meant to do: with family.
What is your Thanksgiving tradition? Have you been to the same seat at the same table for the last 30 years? Or are you a nomad like me? Do you spend your Thanksgivings watching football, or do you rest in preparation for Black Friday shopping?