Humor Non-Fiction posted October 26, 2020


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Ruined Thanksgiving Dinner

A botched Thanksgiving Dinner

by Patty Palmer


I'm the girl who never learned to cook growing up. The Home Ec teacher admitted that she only gave me a passing grade was because I volunteered for everything! It took me the entire class time just to thread a sewing machine that I didn't know how to run even if I did get it threaded. So, it was no surprise to anyone that when I got married I had no idea how to cook a meal, let alone an entire holiday meal for not only my family but my inlaws as well!

I was really excited since we had bought our first house, my mom suggested that we host this Thanksgiving dinner. I planned out the meal as to what we would be eating. The usual Thanksgiving fare, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy, vegetables, and deserts.

Two days before, I set out to the grocery store to buy what I needed for our dinner. I couldn't decide what size of a turkey we would need so I just bought the biggest one they had in the store. Stuffing ingredients were next including chestnuts that I'd always heard about in Christmas songs, but had never tasted. Of course, the stuff to make pies for dessert.

Tomorrow was Thanksgiving so I decided to bake pumpkin pies and apple crisp so I didn't have to make them in the morning. It took me until 2:00 in the morning to finally have baked four soupy pumpkin pies and two apple crisps with semi-crunchy apples. They would have to do. The stores were all closed so I didn't have the choice of running out to the bakery for good ones.

Morning came and I was up early to start the turkey. No one told me that I was supposed to take it out of the freezer to thaw it out the day before. No problem! I put it in the electric roaster and turned it up to five hundred degrees. There was no way to stuff a frozen turkey so I mixed all the ingredients together figuring I'd stuff it after it was thawed out.

The dining room table was set with Thanksgiving tablecloths and napkins. My mom had sent me a beautiful Thanksgiving centerpiece and it added to this holiday decor'.

While I was peeling the potatoes, I smelled the turkey burning! I opened the roaster to black turkey legs, crispy skin, and a still uncooked turkey! I threw the stuffing into the turkey and turned it back on.

I put together a broccoli and rice casserole. It looked yummy and I was proud of myself that things were going so well.

Everyone began arriving and the festivities started. My mom and my mother-in-law started helping me get the food on the table. The turkey wasn't cooked all the way so we started slicing pieces and finished cooking them in the microwave. The stuffing was goopy so my mother-in-law doctored it up by adding some more bread cubes. We found a surprise in the turkey (the giblets/gizzards)! Now, who would think to look for them in the throat of the bird?? I didn't even know they were there in the first place!

Thanks to mom and mother-in-law, we salvaged Thanksgiving dinner! The turkey was fine, but I wouldn't suggest anyone add chestnuts to your stuffing unless you know what you're doing. The broccoli and rice casserole smelled delicious, but no one told me to use instant rice. It was a tad crunchy. The dinner was actually a success plus we got a lot of mileage out of that story every Thanksgiving thereafter for at least thirty years!



first botched holiday dinners writing prompt entry
Writing Prompt
What went wrong the first time you cooked the holiday dinner for your family? Looking for non-fiction. I'm sure we all have some real humdingers. Just have fun with it.


I kid you not this story is true! After several years I finally learned how to thaw a turkey before stuffing and cooking it. Thank God, I eventually got it right!
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