Friday, February 6, 2015

Invasion of the Moos

Now, I realize Thanksgiving seems like it was ages ago, but November 27, 2014 was kind of monumental for us, so I want to reach back into the vault for a few minutes and relive those moments for all of blog eternity.

Because Alex was scheduled to leave town for work on the 28th (Black Friday, if you will), months earlier we decided to go out on a whim and invite our extended family to do Thanksgiving with us this year.  Two years earlier (the year we were married), it was a similar situation, so while we were able to enjoy Thanksgiving with my family, he had to leave that afternoon, driving 3.5 hours to Monroe in order to be there when the team left the next day.  Needless to say, we really didn't want to do that again.

Anyway, we thought it would be a tough sell to get my immediate and extended family all the way to our house for the holiday...but it wasn't!  Several of them had not yet visited our house, and most people in Cajunland are off for the whole week anyway, so people kind of jumped on the idea.  We were pleasantly surprised to find that my parents, brother, grandma, great aunt, aunt/uncle and two of their kids were all committed to spending Thanksgiving with us.

An empty drink/dessert table.
Once that was settled, we agreed to extend the invitation to Alex's coworkers who were from other states and too far away to travel home for the holiday.  There were so many times over the years (Boise, Raleigh, etc.) that people welcomed me into their homes on Thanksgiving; I really wanted to pay it forward by hosting other transplants in our home.  With that, we planned to host people from Chicago, Miami, Memphis, and Michigan.  Cajuns meet Yanks - sure to be a great time!

A few days before Thanksgiving, my great uncle gave us a scare - he texted us on Monday and said they would be arriving later that night.  Wait, what?  No!  We had plenty of house cleaning and garage organizing left to do - we were certainly not prepared to welcome guests!  False alarm - they were just kidding with us.  Whew!

Balloons make everything more festive, right?!
Thankfully, my grandmother is THE BEST COOK, and her assistant, my great aunt, totally took over with every bit of the cooking.  We even offered to order a turkey from a local restaurant - but they had it covered.  Some of those out-of-staters were worried there wouldn't be enough food...obviously they have never been to a Cajun gathering.  As to be expected, the food was delicious, and there was plenty to go around!

Over the course of the week, we had 13 guests and five people (plus the two of us) staying over at our 3-bedroom house. It was quite the whirlwind.  All in all, though, the event was a great morale booster for us.  The last visitors we had were my parents in August, and a friend in October, but it really does get lonely around here without any local friends or family.

I don't know that we'll be able to convince everyone to do it again in 2015, but it was a nice experience overall.  We continue to dream of the day where we'll be close enough to friends and family to host gatherings on a more regular basis.  Until then, we'll just have to make do.


P.S. Yes, I know the photos are very lackluster, but with the exorbitant amount of text in this post, I had to include some images and pray they made things at least a tad more interesting.

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