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Oranges

O/T- Thanksgiving Fails

27 posts in this topic

I was looking online at the various websites that have funny and not so funny Thanksgiving fails and was wondering if my MILA fam have any stories.  Some involved food, some involved misbehaved guests.

My only one is the  year we still call the macaroni caper. Great Aunt always visited every year for Thanksgiving without fail and stayed with my Aunt. Let's just say Aunt is very frugal. She saved up some macaroni, you know, the kind that comes in the blue boxes, to use in the traditional baked macaroni and cheese. Normally that's cheddar or Colby jack or whatever cheese you prefer.  Anyway, that's what she decided to use as the macaroni. Who does that? Great Aunt was not having it....nope. They bickered all day and when Aunt went out for an errand, she actually hid the already cooked, naked macaroni in her basement. Really...it's that serious? So later when the so-called macaroni and cheese was placed on the table, you could smell the burn.  Why? Because the supposed to be instant macaroni can not stand up to oven temps! Great Aunt was so mad steam was pouring out her ears...LOL.  Mind you she was about 80 at the time and funny 80 year old can be hilarious when they're truly mad and right.

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In our family, most of the funny moments begin and end with our mom. Mom was polite, smart, and very sarcastic. She was always the last defense to keep my brother in check - after dad failed. We often reference her funny sarcasm.

When my brother was in his late 30s he brought a gal 2000 miles to family Thanksgiving. She obviously thought modest clothing was optional at family meals with lots of young teens. Mom nodded to dad, he shook his head - her signal to take care of any issue regarding my brother, by herself. She said how delighted we all were to meet her, have her join us, what a pretty Sparkly gal she was. That she gathered DB hadn't told her how chilly our climate was - but she had new thermal underwear and turtleneck gifts for Sparkly and all of us sisters. Mom took her to my parents room to select some nice cozy unders. The rest of the weekend Sparkly was appropriately covered and warm. My brother never brought her round again, but until he married (in his 50s) we got the giggles calling all his women Sparkly (among ourselves). Mom and the Sparkly turtleneck debacle still causes hysterical laughter, after 20 years. Somebody always shows off their new thermals - during Thanksgiving-weekend.

Women's Silk Underwear, Turtleneck
My brother usually buys each of us a new LLBean turtleneck every year, he good to always poke at himself.
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@JanelleK  Love the finesse of your mom...I don't seem to have that gift :)

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LOL, this is half sad and half funny! MIL passed away several years ago, in September. So we start planning for Thanksgiving. My SIL cannot cook, she's learning, but she's not there yet. My MIL was a fiend in the kitchen and she could cook like nobody's business, except for the last few years when things started going downhill. BUT you simply did not cross her when it came to her kitchen. We weren't allowed in her kitchen. Period. To help. To make our plates. NADA! It took me 5 years to convince her that a LADLE was not an appropriate serving spoon for toddlers. And finally had to make a jerk out of myself to start making my children's plates, otherwise, she would sit a plate down in front of the my toddler that looked just like my 300+ pound FILs - and the man likes to eat.

So when MIL passed away, my FIL said morosely, "I guess we won't be having any family dinners anymore for the holidays." We asked him why and he said "Because your mom isn't here to cook for us!" (imagine a voice implying we are stupid.) My SIL cracked up laughing and said "Dad, BEG can cook!" He looked at me, astonished. Understand that his exposure to food at our house had been limited to cookouts because MIL refused to have meals anywhere that she didn't cook them.

Apparently, he didn't trust us, that year he INSISTED we order the entire meal. Honey Baked ham is fine, but I'm a fairly good cook and in particular my Thanksgiving foods are pretty amazing thanks to years of helping my mom and grandmother lol. I'll be honest, the man made faces, grimaced and complained his way through the entire meal from Honey Baked. It wasn't homemade, it wasn't good, it wasn't MIL's. Regrettably, I'll admit, the food wasn't great. 

HERE'S THE FAIL LOL: 

He literally looked at me and said "Well, yours can't be any worse than this..we'll give it a try for Christmas!"

I THINK I'm supposed to be flattered. LOL. I'm not sure how he thought I would take that.  I know SIL almost choked on her food, and both of my DDs had to leave the room they were laughing so hard. DH said "Wow Dad, that's a great way to get her to cook for us....seriously?"

Needless to say, I cooked. I helped SIL do some cooking, and I made a ham, several casseroles, a triple decker red velvet cheese cake with cream cheese icing and white chocolate shavings, mashed potatoes ,and helped niece make homemade gravy from the turkey breast she and SIL made, several dips for veggies and fruits, homemade bread, etc.  I full on DID Christmas lol. 

He arrived just in time for dinner (read: He has NO idea what it actually takes to create the meal.) He ate FOUR plates of food and came back for dessert twice. He never said a word about the food. I think not complaining was his way of saying it was good. 

 

Edited by BlueEyedGirl
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2 hours ago, BlueEyedGirl said:

He arrived just in time for dinner (read: He has NO idea what it actually takes to create the meal.) He ate FOUR plates of food and came back for dessert twice. He never said a word about the food. I think not complaining was his way of saying it was good. 

Ah, the dreaded 'backhanded compliment'....been there. My SIL (the Chinese guy)'s family doesn't do traditional American style holiday meals...but the boy likes to eat...so when he's invited to a meal he eats what's served and he didn't like stuffing/dressing. My turkey stuffing is an original recipe...had four helpings while not being able to figure out why he liked it because "I don't like stuffing!" Then had the brain-fart to ask DD why she didn't make this...Ahem...she uses my recipe, he just wouldn't eat it without tasting it...

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3 hours ago, BlueEyedGirl said:

Apparently, he didn't trust us, that year he INSISTED we order the entire meal. Honey Baked ham is fine, but I'm a fairly good cook and in particular my Thanksgiving foods are pretty amazing thanks to years of helping my mom and grandmother

My brother, much adored by all of us, but a big pain sometimes, insists on Honeybakes at all FOO gatherings. Nobody knows why. My sisters and I haven't ever seen him even eat ham when beef, lamb, turkey or salmon are available. Beings he's the one who wants them plus has piles of money for the ridiculous expense, he's tasked with buying, bringing hams and drinks. Fine by him. But it's an hour from his office to the Honeybake store, so he started paying our nephew do his procurements. Fine by nephew, my brother is very generous employer. But, what is it with Honeybakes at almost all gatherings? We all wonder if he secretly owns the Honeybake store? One of his many nicknames is Sir HB.  He's good with being laughed at, he knows he's always been a PITA of huge magnitude.

ETA: Mame is correct (below) Honeybakes make sandwiches, breakfast dishes, and great bean soup    :)

Edited by JanelleK
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HoneyBakes do make wonderful sandwiches...or with your breakfast eggs...just sayin'

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Now I want a grilled ham & cheese....

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3 minutes ago, Mame925 said:

Now I want a grilled ham & cheese....

LOL! Me too.

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It isn't really a fail but funny to me none the less...

When I was first married we all worked long hours and so we would have a "friends" Thanksgiving on Saturday since most of us did not have enough time off to make it home for the holiday.  DH's best friend are twins, and the first year one wife did dinner the second year the next wife, their dinners had been amazing with some dishes I doubt I could dare to attempt....the third year it was my turn and I was in a royal panic...  I have never cooked for so many people or that big of a turkey... I worked for three days brining and cooking the turkey, and the day of dinner I was up at 5am making casseroles, not to mention the pie(s) the day before.  Like my mom I made a ton of food - everything homemade except for the cranberry sauce cause I love the canned stuff... Dinner was excellent, everyone loved it, I was exhausted but elated.... even more so when they asked to take left overs - which I had plenty so I loaded them all up.  

The next week my DH came home chuckling and smiling, the guys all work together and had a long conversation about how much they enjoyed dinner and hoped I would host next year.  DH was concerned about that and  said he would have to talk to me as it had been alot of prep and work, not to mention how nervy I was that something would turn out bad... It took the twins a moment to decipher that.... long story short, both of their wives had purchased the dinners they made in the previous years and had sworn them to silence... none of them had ever cooked from scratch - whereas for me it was the only thing I ever knew - as that was how my Mom did it... no wonder we had zero leftovers... 

The next year we group cooking with lessons on how to brine a turkey and make stuffing that was not stove top... 

 

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@tobias Those cheaters!! LOL

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I come from a large family. I have cousins 20 years older and 10 years younger.  One Thanksgiving we did the "What are you thankful for?" thing with everybody. It took forever. My one female cousin had quite the busy two years. She left her husband for her boss. She married her boss. Then, she decided she wanted to be married to the original husband and he took her back. Drama? Yes. My business? No. So, this older female cousin said: "I am so thankful for my husband of 15 years."  A little cousin piped up: "14". Older cousin said: "No, 15. We got married in xxxx year." Little cousin said. "You can't count the year you were married to your boss."

 

Edited by dilpenshername
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5 minutes ago, dilpenshername said:

I come from a large family. I have cousins 20 years older and 10 years younger.  One Thanksgiving we did the "What are yosu thankful for?" thing with everybody. It took forever. My one female cousin had quite the busy two years. She left her husband for her boss. She married her boss. Then, she decided she wanted to be married to the original husband and he took her back. Drama? Yes. My business? No. So, this older female cousin said: "I am so thankful for my husband of 15 years."  A little cousin piped up: "14". Older cousin said: "No, 15. We got married in xxxx year." Little cousin said. "You can't count the year you were married to your boss."

 

LOL, I loathe family drama, but to be honest, it's stuff like that this that makes me pee myself laughing. I'm generally such a peacemaker in real life and to see someone get their comeuppance is good for the soul sometimes!  

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Welcome  dilpenshername.  Kids can be so honest sometimes...and then they say the "darndest things"

 

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5 hours ago, dilpenshername said:

I come from a large family. I have cousins 20 years older and 10 years younger.  One Thanksgiving we did the "What are you thankful for?" thing with everybody. It took forever. My one female cousin had quite the busy two years. She left her husband for her boss. She married her boss. Then, she decided she wanted to be married to the original husband and he took her back. Drama? Yes. My business? No. So, this older female cousin said: "I am so thankful for my husband of 15 years."  A little cousin piped up: "14". Older cousin said: "No, 15. We got married in xxxx year." Little cousin said. "You can't count the year you were married to your boss."

 

LOL! Out of the mouths of babes!

Delighted that you came in to talk w/ us - and to share this charming story! Welcome! :)

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In my case, that would be the year Moogie asked my xDH who was a better cook, herself or me. He said I was, and xFIL agreed with him!

Moogie of course, chose to ask this right after we'd all sat down for Thanksgiving dinner that she had mostly cooked herself.(I had only been allowed to make gravy and mashed potatoes. FIL joked it was the first time in 20 years he'd had gravy with no lumps that hadn't come out of a jar.)

I wanted to crawl into a hole and pull it over my head. Made her my enemy for life.

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On ‎11‎/‎12‎/‎2017 at 6:58 AM, Hirilain said:

In my case, that would be the year Moogie asked my xDH who was a better cook, herself or me. He said I was, and xFIL agreed with him!

Moogie of course, chose to ask this right after we'd all sat down for Thanksgiving dinner that she had mostly cooked herself.(I had only been allowed to make gravy and mashed potatoes. FIL joked it was the first time in 20 years he'd had gravy with no lumps that hadn't come out of a jar.)

I wanted to crawl into a hole and pull it over my head. Made her my enemy for life.

She fired the shot, it's not your fault it backfired.

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3 hours ago, Oranges said:

She fired the shot, it's not your fault it backfired.

THIS!!! I suspect strongly that this is why my MIL wouldn't let anyone else cook or help in the kitchen. AND why my own mother and grandmother generally relegate me to dessert duty! I've gotten the glare on my side of the family when someone compliments something I've made. So I've just backed completely off. If they want to do all of that work because they want the kudos, they are welcome to them. It is HARD WORK making all of that food and if you don't want anyone else helping you just because you don't want to share the spotlight, more power to you!

One year my nephew (from DH's side) was at my side of the family's Thanksgiving (DH's entire family was invited). He gets ready to make his plate and asked me where my ham was. When DH told him that I didn't bring any ham, that I had brought dessert, he kind of made a face and said "Oh! Well which dessert did you bring?" My mother was glaring at me the entire conversation. I almost choked on my tea. I'm told they don't ask me because I have so much work making dinner for in-laws side. But my brothers wives do the same and they bring whatever they want. I'm specifically told to bring only a dessert. I thought for a long time it was because there was something wrong with my food. Then I realized what was really happening. ;)

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4 minutes ago, BlueEyedGirl said:

But my brothers wives do the same and they bring whatever they want. I'm specifically told to bring only a dessert.

At lease you bring a good dessert! 

I do pot luck lunches with a group of high school friends frequently...the hostess does the main course, the guests fill in the sides/desserts/appetizers...If I'm not hosting I always have to bring desserts...I'm a way above average cook, but apparently the concept of "good desserts don't have to come from a bakery" is lost on them. If there is anything left one woman takes the leftover dessert home to her DH, who always sends a thank you note!

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@BlueEyedGirl Sadly, pettiness comes in all forms.  Why can't your mother be happy her daughter has awesome cooking skills? sigh...smh

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1 hour ago, Oranges said:

@BlueEyedGirl Sadly, pettiness comes in all forms.  Why can't your mother be happy her daughter has awesome cooking skills? sigh...smh

Without going into too much detail, my mother, though biologically an only child, never really got to be an only child. There were fosters and every person under the age of 25 at church, etc. My grandmother needed to be needed and was only able to have one child due to health problems, so she filled the 'void' with others. As a result, my mom never really got to be a kid and never had too much of her own that wasn't shared with all and sundry. My parents married young and it took them a long time to get pregnant with me. For the first time, my mom had something of her 'own'. Sadly, she never really learned it was ok to stand up to her mother or her MIL when it was called for (I'm not talking about just for the sake of argument, but when there was a true need). Because of this, my grandmother(s) tended to take over. Mom's mom often called her me 'hers' instead of mom's. I think the fact that she FINALLY got to take over as the matriarch of family dinners was something she looked forward too and was afraid she would lose too quickly since she had to wait an eternity to have it in the first place (My grandmother is in her 90s and literally just in the last few years stepped back and let mom start to host family dinner). 

 

TRUTH - I don't EVER want to host! She can keep that 'honor' as long as her heart desires. I love to cook, but I don't love to clean and prep for a house full of guests. I don't set pretty tables or decorate beyond the bare minimum. Our tree goes up, out of tradition, on the weekend after Thanksgiving and it comes down on December 26, period. I love Christmas but I cannot wait to get my house back. 

 

 

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While DH was alive I had no problem hosting...he loved to entertain and was full participant in prep & cleanup...My parties are much smaller now...SonIL does most of the "facilities" management for me now and is encouraging the older GK to help too. DS has always done more than his share. Everyone cooks. 

I host Christmas Eve every year...and haven't had a tree the past two years...actually no decorations other than a wreath on the front door....No one seems to mind. I'm going to make a better effort this year.

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Once my kids are grown and flown, I can't imagine not being delighted with not having to host. I'll happily show up, whenever, wherever for them.

Being able to relax on a holiday sounds blissful to me!

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This thread is starting to remind me of MIL, LOL! She would always prepare way more than she needed to and heap our plates full. Fine, but then she would turn around and criticize me for buying/cooking "too much food" when she came for a holiday meal at our house. I ignored it, but it for years I couldn't understand why she acted that way. Then I began to think she was competing w/ me (in her mind) over who served the most food or something like that. And that might have been part of it. But now it occurs to me she might have been worried that if I made enough, one of my dishes might be tastier than hers. ;)

In fact, speaking of "fails," the one that comes to mind for me is when I found out DH was fueling/trying to fuel this "competition." There were a few holidays (not T'giving though - either Christmas or Easter, I don't recall exactly) where he asked me to bake this/that kind of cookie. Each time,I obliged - and each time, MIL showed up w/ the same type of treat! The first time, I thought it was just coincidence. The second time, I wondered if DH had told her I was going to make this/that cookie, and, given her competitive nature, she just "had to" bake the same thing.

The third time, I made a comment about how odd it was that we seemed to keep coming up w/ the same cookies (PA, I know). In response, MIL blurted out, "Well (DH's name) asked me to make these!"

Astonished, I looked at DH, and, sheepishly, he admitted, "I figured we could have a sort of contest and see who makes them best!"

I was furious though I held it in during the celebration. Later, I let him know in no uncertain terms that I was not ok w/ this! It never happened again.

But now, I look back at this episode and laugh! DH was wrong, no doubt, and being a very immature DuH (and perhaps DuS, as well, LOL!,)at the time. But I know he thought it was funny (until he saw it wasn't!). And after some other issues we've faced (some tensions w/ our DDs in their teens, etc.), this one has just become an amusing anecdote. :)

Edited by RoseRed135
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16 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

Once my kids are grown and flown, I can't imagine not being delighted with not having to host. I'll happily show up, whenever, wherever for them.

Being able to relax on a holiday sounds blissful to me!

This was my thought too. My DD's and I were actually talking about this last week and apparently they are under the assumption that it will ALWAYS be me. Ugh, no. Then I brought up that they might have husbands one day that come with families and he may want to have holidays there too. This did not go over well and out of the mouth of teenagers, HE can go to his family, THEY are coming home. Yeah whatever. Wait until the reality of that thought sets in.

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