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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Roanoke Thanksgiving Traditions

I love Thanksgiving. It's like Christmas without the stress of presents. It's the kick-off. It's when I find it acceptable to start listening to Christmas carols. It's when Christmas shows can be watched. It's when "March of the Wooden Soldiers" is supposed to air, like it did every Thanksgiving on WPIX in NYC. Here in Roanoke, VA, it never does. It doesn't matter anymore. My family got tired of hearing me complain about it, so now I own two dvd's of it, both colorized. I like the black and white version better.

March of the Wooden Soldiers Pictures, Images and Photos

Of course, I'll watch the parade in the background as I'm preparing the foodstuffs. I'll think back to the days I saw those balloons in person on my way to work at ABC News. It won't make me sad. I have Virginia traditions now. The transformation of the house will commence. In the sun room, my husband will watch the Cowboys. Instead of a beer in his hand, a string of broken Christmas lights to clothe a naked deer, will be. I'll time the dinner to begin before the game does. I will fail miserably, and the best my husband can hope for is halftime.

Friends will drift in and out. I'll cajole someone to stay for dinner. If we have enough folks, Pokeno will be played afterwards. Then dessert. Still haven't decided on that yet, but have been busy getting everything else in order. Two loaves of bread have been cut and placed in a huge glass bowl, waiting to get hard from the fresh air. I'll toss them every couple of hours. The peppers have been roasted and are awaiting to be peeled. The hard boiled eggs are to be deviled in the morning. The gravy stock vegetables will be cut up. The stuffing vegetables will be peeled and chopped. The rest will happen tomorrow.

I love Thanksgiving. It's the anticipation of Christmas.

Enjoy your traditions!


  1. I thought I was the only one alive who could watch "Match of the wooden soldiers" year after year and never tire of it. It's nice to keep some part of the old traditions & mix in the new!
    Happy Holidays!

  2. Same to you Anon! My kids laugh at me whenever I put it on. I love it, especially the end. The classic tale of good overcoming evil with a great soundtrack...I still get choked up ;)