Laughter is the best brain injury medicine … Thanksgiving dinner the vegetarian style

31 Oct

Over the years I have learned to compensated with precision.  To have a holiday dinner


I set aside one task a day for an entire week or longer.  At the beginning of November my grocery list is in my calendar and my task list is broken down into daily tasks for the month.  One day set the table, one day prepare potatoes, one day prepare stuffing mixture, one day shopping, and so on. Sometimes even that gets to be too much.  Isn’t it amazing that someone might need some help instead of being condemned for the things that go wrong?


One year I was having family over for the Thanksgiving holiday.  Everything was prepared and placed on the table.  As it was time to get the turkey out of the oven they reached in to pull it out and … the oven wasn’t even hot.  I forgot to turn on the oven.  Obviously I didn’t cook the turkey!  It takes heat to cook…and that never happened!


English: Photo showing some of the aspects of ...

English: Photo showing some of the aspects of a traditional US Thanksgiving day dinner. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


It was Thanksgiving dinner without the protein.  Everyone became a vegetarian for this Thanksgiving dinner!  I’ll never forget it, but I was surprised that others were that dependent that there wasn’t help available.


I thought about it awhile.  Yes, it was embarrassing but why didn’t anyone notice that the smell of roasted turkey was not filling the home.  I don’t have a sense of smell. Was it all my mistake?  I take full responsibility since I was the cook, but it was laughter at my expense.  This was the second year of mishaps so I needed to change my strategy.


In recent years I have decided I needed to cook the turkey in advance.  I cook and cut it up the day before the holiday.  At least I know it’s cooked and I simply heat and serve it.   Now, it’s easy enough to buy the heat and serve dinners…and in the future I might be resorting to this, but I would prefer to volunteer a couple hours in community services if I can.


If you go in to a home and aroma of your meal is missing, see if the cook turned on the oven!  It will be obvious something is missing.  If you don’t take responsibility to help in some small way, you all become a bunch of turkeys! Expect you’ll be  eating a vegetarian meal if the host has prepared anything at all!  







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13 responses to “Laughter is the best brain injury medicine … Thanksgiving dinner the vegetarian style

  1. heidirmoore

    October 31, 2012 at 12:31 am

    Edie–maybe your subconscious is telling you to give the turkey a break and have a real vegetarian holiday. You’ll never miss that gamey-tasting bird. Everybody knows that the mashed potatoes (and the sweet potatoes)…well and the stuffing too…are the best parts! Let’s not leave out the pumpkin pie, and all the other kinds of pie your families make. My mom makes me vegan, gluten-free cheesecake that ROCKS. Last year that WAS my thanksgiving. Anyway, why not give thanks that nobody got hurt to make your delicious dinner.
    (stepping down, gently, from soap box),

    • brain injury self rehabilitation (BISR)

      November 1, 2012 at 10:03 pm

      Heidi, I’m laughing just reading your response. I’m always good with just vegetarian, and I’m also not trying to please others any longer! Yum, sweet potatoes and stuffing are my favorite and I have sweet potatoes on a regular basis. How about you? Gee, your mom’s cheesecake sounds delicious! My first reply to this I wrote “sweetiecake” instead of cheesecake, isn’t that the same:) when mom makes it! No one ever got hurt or broke their back helping with Thanksgiving dinner, but I did it because I wanted to. It is my favorite holiday. I am thankful no one got hurt! I’m keeping you in thought and prayers as you travel a difficult journey with your serious health issues. Take care and stay safe, Edie

  2. buckwheatsrisk

    October 31, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    i love that we would all be a bunch of turkeys!! xo

  3. KonciouSLea

    October 31, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    😀 I could only imagine that everyone just gave thanks for what WAS cooked. That’s a good point though; why didn’t anyone noticed that they didn’t smell Turkey? Although, with the fact that you prepared everything early I can sense that a lot was missing in the air. 😀 there’s a a freshness of all the food cooked that day along with the stress on the chefs face from preparing it all. Definitely worth it. Good write. Happy Halloween.

    • brain injury self rehabilitation (BISR)

      November 1, 2012 at 10:20 pm

      I’m sure everyone enjoyed what was cooked. I don’t recall any complaints! It was simply a personal feeling.

      • KonciouSLea

        November 4, 2012 at 3:13 pm

        I’m pretty sure I’ll be working on Thanksgiving, but looking forward to it. I work in the field of MHMR & I’ll get to bring my client home with me.

      • brain injury self rehabilitation (BISR)

        November 5, 2012 at 12:56 pm

        You have a rewarding position. It’s wonderful that you can share a beautiful day with a special client. Thanks so much for sharing your life with those in need. Take care and stay safe.

  4. Three Well Beings

    November 2, 2012 at 2:19 am

    I can only imagine this would be a disappointment to you, too. After all, you’d purchased and prepared the turkey in the first place. I do agree that someone should have thought to check…the smell of a roasting turkey is expected when you first walk in! I love the idea of breaking down the steps as much as you do…that’s really a good idea for all of us who have the responsibility of cooking such a big meal! I know you’ll do fine this time–and if you have any anxiety, I suggest everyone else pitch in…although that can be even more stressful! Oh dear! 🙂

    • brain injury self rehabilitation (BISR)

      November 2, 2012 at 8:15 pm

      My immediate family helps me out now. We entertain only close friends who also appreciate the simple things in life, mainly due to their own health problems. It’s always a day of fun and laughter. Humor goes a long way. I always count my blessings. Take care and stay safe.

  5. Kathy

    November 5, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Last year we sure did cook a lot of turkeys between us. I almost think we had an unplanned competition of who cooked more turkeys that day! I think we helped each other stay on track even though we took a week for preparatins. Maybe others just need to “buddy cook” at the holidays to take off the stress of “the” day. It certainly is more fun. And don’t depend on others to “help”. I remember the year my daughter brought a dish. She brought all the ingredients and put it together at my house. When I say to bring a dish make sure everything is already cooked before walking through the door!

    • brain injury self rehabilitation (BISR)

      November 20, 2012 at 10:57 pm

      This year I’m cooking 4 turkey breasts. It’s easier! I make it a point to cook plenty for others less fortunate. I even bough smaller freezer bags because I think it’s easier for others to take out small portions and keep the other bags of food/turkey frozen. My table is set, and nearly everything is in order. I’m taking the short cut on everything these days. Stove-top stuffing will do!


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