Thanksgiving Day is one of my favorite holidays.
As we get closer to the fourth Thursday in November - and plan for holiday celebrations - our family remembers our special tradition.
We have just relocated to the beautiful state of New Mexico and enjoying our few first weeks here. Even better, our daughter will be visiting from New York for the holiday.
Any holiday that brings family together is an opportunity for family history, even if it is only talking about previous holidays.
One story that is always part of our get-together is the story of our first turkey day celebrations when we lived in Iran long ago.
I had ordered a fresh turkey from a Teheran supermarket and specified that it had to be at my house on Wednesday morning - cleaned and ready.
Wednesday came and went, while I was busy making pies, preparing stuffing, and doing other myriad tasks. The store said it would be delivered in the afternoon.
The afternoon came and went.
He then said it would be there in the evening.
The evening came and went.
Early Thursday morning, there was a knock at the door, and Mr. Turkey arrived. Finally!
I took the large brown-paper wrapped parcel into the kitchen, and felt it was suspiciously warm. I gingerly opened the package and found an entire turkey. I mean an entire turkey.
It was compete with all its feathers, neck, head, eyes - everything but the gobble - and it was sitting right there on my kitchen counter.
At that point, I didn't know whether to cry or to laugh. Our friends were coming for Thanksgiving Day dinner in only a few hours and I'd never seen a bird like that, even less how to go about getting ready for the oven.
My husband called my mother-in-law - and as they laughed hysterically - she agreed to send over her housekeeper-cook to help out the poor foreign daughter-in-law who couldn't clean a turkey!
The woman arrived and efficiently de-feathered, de-necked, cleaned out everything that needed to be cleaned out - giggling the entire time.
Hey, I'm from New York, where Thanksgiving Day turkeys come cleaned in plastic bags, whether they are fresh or frozen. I had seen live turkeys, in person and on television, and turkeys ready for cooking, but never one in the intermediate stage.
In any case, I was then able to prepare Mr. Turkey properly, stuff it with a favorite cornbread and chestnut mix, roast and baste it to golden brown. Everyone said how delicious it was, despite the tragi-comedy of the situation.
We also mention how we American wives would search at a few special stores to hopefully find cranberry sauce, pumpkin puree for pies, and MiracleWhip for leftover sandwiches. These were not common items in Iran in those days, so one either paid astronomical prices for each can or jar or hand-carried it back on trips home.
We began telling the story of Mr. Turkey that year and tell it again each year. It is still funny.
It is our Thanksgiving tradition, no matter who is at our table.
We will tell the story again on Thursday in New Mexico.
Enjoy the holiday, if it is your tradition, and enjoy having your family around the table.
Tell the stories of holidays past, of family traditions. Keep the memories alive, and don't forget to take photos and video of your celebration to add to the family archive.
Post those photos and videos at your MyHeritage.com family site, so all family members - no matter where they live - can participate.
What is your most memorable Thanksgiving tradition or story? Share it with MyHeritage.com via comments to this post.