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I ask this question as a way to have a conversation about the pain we share in having what may be a rather lonely Thanksgiving. I know I am not the only person here who will be having the first Thanksgiving of my life with no guests at all.


My husband and I will be making most of the meal we have always made, but we will not be sharing it with anyone but ourselves. We considered going to my sons' place for Thanksgiving, being very, very careful, but with the recent uptick in Covid-19 cases, we agreed with them that we should stay at home and look forward to next year together.


We will talk with them with a Zoom/Facetime conversation that will include some other members of our extended family, some of whom will be completely alone. It is kind of sad, but talking in this way will be better than nothing. We are using both Zoom and FaceTime because not everyone has either one and those of us who can do both want to include as many as possible. So we will have the iPad and the PC on the coffee table while we talk to others.


After 8 months of staying home, I find that my house is very clean, I have made good progress in my gardens, and I have done my best at being positive. Nevertheless, I am near tears as I write this, simply worn down with the stress of it all. I will put on a happy face for the big meal I am preparing for me and my husband, the family call. I really and truly am grateful for all my blessings. Still, though, I do feel a bit sad and lonely. I feel in need of a touch, a hug, I talk to my Mom, my sisters, my sons on the phone, see them electronically, but live in relative isolation.


I know that I am lucky. My husband and I have each other, we live in a house we love, with some views of the town where we live and the mountains beyond. We are not at risk of running out of food, we have enough, and will be able to continue having groceries and other needs delivered to our home. We are grateful and thankful. We wish everyone else were this lucky.


Yet we are lonely and sad, trying to make the best of things. To all the others here who are struggling with these same problems, and more, I wish you well, I feel your pain. You are not alone in your loneliness. You are not alone in your need for touch and contact. But you will survive this and we may meet again in the future, have that hug, and cry all we want without guilt or shame. Have the best Thanksgiving you can have and remember that next year will be better. Love to you all.

I did what I do every year. I cooked my turkey off two days ago & broke it down yesterday making today much easier. It was just my sig-other, myself and my mother who fills her plate until it over flows as if she will never get another meal again. We'll be eating turkey for a few days and I'll freeze the rest.

I guess, I feel the same as most people about 2020! I'll be glad when it's over!🤬

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
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Hugs to you and everyone celebrating alone. I am in BC Canada and we can only interact with our immediate household, or for people like me who are single 2-3 other single people. No socializing in the home or at restaurants etc.

My group of people includes my son whom I see once a month and my mother. As a Granny, I am still allowed to care for my infant grandson, and I am thankful for that.

Christmas will be quiet. My son and my Mum. No big fondue party on Christmas Eve, no brunch for 20 on Christmas Day.

It is lonely and it has been a long time in this new reality. I am sewing more masks this weekend, as I need a fresh one for each outing, not that those are very frequent either.

One thing I do that is fun. A girlfriend and I watch movies together 1-2 nights a week. We alternate choosing the show, it has to be on Netflix or Prime, as we both have those services. We each have created a watch list. We talk on the phone as we prepare to watch the show, snacks, drinks, etc, then we queue up the show and hit play. After it is over we talk again. It is not the same as watching a movie together in person, but it is something.
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Daughter, you are officially excused from helping to clean up; you can't please a perfectionist & who can blame you for giving up?? I wouldn't help either if nothing I did was good enough!

Worried.......I'm in Colo. Whole Foods does not sell wine here either. They do sell beer & hard seltzer though, which is odd, isn't it? In fact, it was only recently the grocery stores started carrying full strength BEER. Up till recently, they could only sell 3.2% beer! And, when I was a young girl here, there were 3.2 bars you could go to if you were 18 but under 21! Brings back memories; IDK if they exist anymore b/c my bar hopping days are long gone now. My neighbor has a Traeger grill; I didn't realize it cooks faster than a regular grill.

Bridger, I'm glad your DH is home! I never heard of a roasting hen..........just roaster chickens or turkey!

GingerMay: start a gratitude journal; I read an article about that today. People who are getting depressed about the pandemic & the restrictions need to focus on the good in their lives, and writing daily, or even weekly, in a gratitude journal puts things into better perspective. I know for me, 2020 has been THE most stressful year of my life filled with many worries and surgeries and bad news in spades. I am looking forward to better days ahead.

My amazing DIL brought over 2 huge BOXES of Thanksgiving dinner she and my DH's son prepared for us! There's turkey AND pot roast in there, along with a ton of side dishes and rolls, etc. The nurse said DH has to eat A LOT of high fat foods for the next 2-3 weeks b/c he's lost too much weight and is STILL losing weight in SPITE of all the calories he's eating. Me? I'll be GAINING weight while he's losing! God give me strength. We will be doing a 6 pm ZOOM call with all the 7 children we have between us and their spouses/SOs.

Anyway, she brought over the best Christmas gift I've ever gotten. Ready? It's a Christmas ornament; a snowflake, gold on one side, silver on the other. In the middle is a circle that says 2020, and surrounding it is the word FU*K without the asterisk in script letters! Yep, FU*K 2020 is the message of the snowflake! I couldn't agree more.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
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This past year I have been thinking a lot about my Husband and what I would have done if he were still alive. And I guess in this respect I am glad he is not. (makes me very sad to write that)
I am having dinner at Daughter, SIL and Grandkids house. (4 doors up the street) I am bringing desserts (yes plural) and roasted Brussels Sprouts with bacon, cranberries and pecans as well as our favorite Amish Dinner Rolls (thank you King Arthur Flour for an awesome recipe).
Desserts are (the deserve their own paragraph!)
Pumpkin Cake with cream Cheese Frosting
French Silk Pie
Pumpkin layered "torte" graham cracker base, cheese cake type layer, pumpkin mousse topped with whipped cream.
I think I will skip dinner and just do desserts! Isn't that an option when you get old(er)?
Happy Thanksgiving, have a SAFE holiday.
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Wish that 2021 will be better but I do not think it will. I think it might be several years before there is consistent improvement to our restricted living. Too much is already lost and people have normalized it. I hate to be Bah-Humbug, but I just think this is the reality. I am not hanging my hope on "next year" that will never come. Regardless, yes indeed appreciate the love you have in your life and all that is good regardless of external conditions. Happy Thanksgiving to all.
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Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Stay safe!
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I’m in the midst of downsizing and moving my mom to AL on a deadline - I recommend doing this during a pandemic surge absolutely never, but due to medical reasons it has to happen. Cue having to make many many many decisions about sentimental family stuff and mom care very quickly, plus mom drama, etc...

My brain is cooked. There is no way I can provide holidays. So - Chinese takeout!!! To heck with it! I live in a city and particularly a neighborhood with great local Chinese restuarants, and I’m happy to support these struggling restaurants. Will likely be dining with my bf and roommate ( covid pod since March ) and ‘pairing’ the meal with tea and Scottish whisky. Doing things in style....

I’m very grateful for this forum, and wish you all a lovely holiday in whatever form it takes
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Happy Turkey Day to all of my American friends.....I know that a lot of you are struggling this year, I think that holidays are often a lonely time for full time caregivers even without the extra challenges this year.
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We're staying home and I am cooking. Basically, like every other day.

I am so over 2020 and a covid vaccine can't get here soon enough for me. I miss my son and I'm struggling to be thankful.

But I will say this, I am very thankful for this forum. This forum and the wonderful people here keep me from feeling alone and feel like a life line at times. So thank you to everyone, and I hope you all have a nice holiday.
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Happy Thanksgiving to all. Little Orchid thanks for starting this thread. The pandemic sure is leaving plenty of room for memories of previous holidays. I miss the big gatherings of years past, but not the drama but now even a little bit of drama seems not so bad. ha.
So, spending the day at my Mom's and she is cooking chicken and pastry. And I will bring sides. We aren't having a turkey and that's ok.
I see Christmas pretty much the same way. I am struggling with depression quite a bit this year but I'm plowing through anyway.
I will keep you all in my prayers and sending out some good ol' cyber hugs and good vibes too.
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Just immediate household this year. However, truth be told, that's how it's been for several years. Bad communication, geographic separation, little in common other than being "related", misunderstandings, poor planning, mental illness, deaths of "key" relatives who were holding things together, overwork (by some), laziness (by others), substance abuse, family secrets, and general disagreements to name a few reasons why. A significant disagreement has been over eldercare and some decisions I had to make over the past decade truly shattered what remained of the family. I felt I'd run out of choices, but others felt that I had endless options but purposefully picked the worst one because it suited me and my selfish needs. It's hard to change the minds of onlookers who do not truly know all that happened with the caregiving and all the options I exhausted. The size of the job kept growing and LO needed placement in a NH. I remember the loud but cheerful holidays of the past and I know that will never, ever be the case again. Too much baggage and hurt. Time to make new memories, but it's hard to re-program the mind when it's all such a shame and so sad. I plan to reach out to a shut-in tomorrow and see if there is anything I can bring her (masks on and I would not be staying). She will say there's nothing she needs, but we can talk on the phone and I will tell her how thankful I am that she's in my life. LO who I put in NH may or may not reach out to us by phone - we'll see. Our immediate household will have green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, apple crisp, pumpkin pie, salad, stuffing, cranberry sauce, rolls, and one of the smallest turkeys I've probably ever seen because it's all we need. We do like to watch the Thanksgiving episodes of various TV shows, so I think that will bring a smile to my face at least for a little while! I do want to express gratitude to the forum. It's been an incredible experience being able to communicate with people who understand these types of elder issues and how it looks from inside the caregiving situation.
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Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.
My brother and cousin will be joining the four of us tomorrow for Thanksgiving. Bought a 22lb turkey, made only two pies, pumpkin and apple pie. We already prepped tonight. Only thing I need to do is stuff the turkey tomorrow early am and roast it for 6 hours and cook everything.
One year my brothers fiancé came for Christmas with her two dogs. I had a 24 lb turkey, looked so forward to leftovers for turkey soup and turkey pie. I told her she can make a plate for the dogs. Left the kitchen and came back to cut the rest of the turkey to make soup and turkey pie and there was nothing left but bone. She had fed the dogs the rest of the $70 turkey from a turkey farm. I could not believe it and I was so aggravated to say the least. Next year she came and I watched her and she watched me as I was cutting the turkey I jumped up took the knife and did a chop chop motion and said she is not going to give the rest of the turkey to her dogs this year. My niece was off to the side and was hysterically laughing. Needless to say she never did that again.
I love the holidays, wonderful to see family but this year seems sad for me, one brother died four years ago, my dad died about twenty years ago, another brother lives overseas. It is not the same, but I am thankful I have my 98 year old mother, two brothers, niece and cousin all celebrating Thanksgiving together this year.
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Don’t we all have at least one lazy relative that shows up for the meal and then leaves? My ex-SIL never ever offered to help clean up and never offered to bring anything. And usually showed up late!

the worst was thanksgiving 2014. My BIL and now exSIL were split up for the 2nd time. At the end of October on their anniversary my BIL announced he was in love with some girl from the Bay Area! Long long crazy story but they were both all over Facebook acting like they had been together for a long time and we’re in love and there was lots of drama. Anyway a week before thanksgiving my BIL made a big deal about bringing her to our family thanksgiving (that I was hosting). My exSIL was already invited as she was still part of the family so we had drama over that. No one wanted him to bring her, we all felt thanksgiving was not the appropriate time to introduce he to the family. eventually my husband relented and agree to it as long as BIL promised there would be no drama. So girl my BIL was dating was a real winner. Not. She was straight up trash. Thanksgiving dinner was served at 2pm. They didn’t show up, we never heard from them. My BIL was supposed to bring the desserts. Everyone left around 5pm. I cleaned up the kitchen and packed up all the leftovers and left them on the counter. 5:30 my BIL and this girl show up! No desserts, no explanation. And this girl helps herself to the leftovers, fixes a plate a mile high and then barely eats it and wraps it up to go and fixes herself another plate to take home! Didn’t lift a damn finger other than to pile food on her plate! Then they both sit at the table looking at the black Friday ads while she’s trying to talk his broke butt into buying a bunch of expensive electronics he cannot afford! He had no money, he was broke!
Right after Christmas my BIL broke up with her and got back with exSIL and then a few days later, left ExSIL because he “couldn’t forget the promise” he made to his girlfriend! So he got back with with the crazy girlfriend for a few weeks. This girl....had no job and 3 kids. The oldest kid I think the grandparents were raising, she had a different dad than the 2 younger kids where 6 &8. This girl ABANDONED her kids and moved in with my BIL! My BIL didn’t even invite her to move in. He was picking her up every Friday night so she could stay with him all weekend and then he’d drive her back up to the Bay Area on Sunday night. Anyway he picked her up one weekend and she just never left! She refused to leave! She didn’t even want to leave when he broke up with her for good about 6 weeks after Christmas! She was so crazy she befriended a long-time female friend of his on FB, someone who was friends with him & his first wife. This friend introduced her to the first wife who told her he was a cheater and a whole much of other dirty laundry LOL! And they all got together and ganged up on my BIL!! The friend invited the crazy girl to move in with her but only if she would be her girlfriend! It was just crazy crazy stuff.....wow.....thanksgiving always brings back memories of that crazy period in our lives LOL!
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Well we had a cheap bottle of ALDIS moscato,, we all liked it! Have to buy it in WV as MD Aldes can't sell wine here. I Stock up there. We did start with a bottle from the winery across from our house but it was horrible!
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Cali,

We could all use some booze right now! 😂

We have booze at Walmart too.

Oh yes, my daughter had to drive through those hick towns in Texas to get to Colorado.
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Cali,

They don’t sell it. Crazy, huh?
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Needhelp Whole Foods in CO doesn’t sell wine?? What??? Where is lealonnie, I think she said she is Colorado? That is crazy!! In California most places that sell alcohol sell everything-beer, wine, hard liquor! 7-11 doesn’t sell hard liquor but they have cheap wine and beer!

I was a fish out of water the first time I visited Texas with my husband, 20 years ago. Texas has dry counties which I had never heard of! It was the craziest thing to me because if we went to a restaurant, I could drink alcohol as long as my hubby ordered it for me! But we could not go to the store to buy alcohol and there were no liquor stores either! The reason for this trip was my FIL was getting remarried. They wanted beer at the wedding (total hick wedding, outside in the backyard and the bridal party was on horseback!) anyway, we had to drive 2 hours away to the nearest non-dry county just to buy the alcohol for the wedding! That is one luxury I never realized we have in california. And wal-mart even sells alcohol here and I still find that very very weird LOL!

I could not find bourbon at the grocery store today! I know they sell it but I felt so stupid standing there not knowing what I was looking for! The turkey I am making is a maple-bourbon bribes turkey. I used gentleman jack last year (my hubby would be pissed if I knew I used it LOL. It just sits in the cabinet year after year and no one drinks it). Another year we had some left over crown royal that my FIL drank when he visited so I used that. I have never bought bourbon before but I thought it would be near the jack daniels but I didn’t see any. My hubby said he would go to liquor store after work tonight & get a bottle for me!
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I’m not doing much. Husband and son still not fully recovered. My dad can’t come back home until everyone is well. Oldest son is having dinner with his in-laws. So it will be a quiet day day for us. I bought a roasting hen instead of turkey.
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Oh gosh, my New Orleans born daughter is a fish out of water in Colorado! LOL

She called me just now, saying that she couldn’t find wine at the Whole Foods near her apartment. She saw beer but no wine.

She has to go to a liquor store to buy wine for her Thanksgiving dinner with friends.

We are accustomed to being able to buy any kind of booze anywhere in New Orleans!

Please, our city has drive through daiquiri shops and bars that never close! We can take out drinks and walk in the street with a drink. We order a ‘go’ cup.

Not since Covid. Now there are restrictions on alcohol.
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Pam,

🤣 hahaha, the joys of entertaining!

She sounds lovely! LOL
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Cali,

Your smoker sounds wonderful!

Oh, I do a different one, no canned soup. Yeah, I hear you. That stuff smells funky. Don’t blame you for not wanting to make it. 😊

Your family will enjoy it though.
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Daughter, you made me laugh !! I have a SIL who is the "best guest ever".. NOT She would show up for every holiday meal ( I cooked) with her kids and thier dates, and right after the meal "get a headache" or some crap, and have to lie down,, and then start nagging her hubs to take her home! With leftovers.. At least you go watch TV with the men and don;t lay about whining! Once she got snippy about my getting up after the meal to wash my china.. so the next meals I used paper plates!
This year we had the meal today, as I work tomorrow. Just the four of us, but the meal was great and we all were able to relax as we scaled down the meal to a managable size. Tomorrow we are having a socially distanced pot luck at work,, this should be interesting as the ICU is not full of space to eat on a good day!
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We are getting TG boxes from the Episcopal church. That's where we went in person last year.
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I bought a 20lb turkey. We have a Traeger so it only takes a few hours to smoke. Maybe 5 or 6 hours? When it’s the done the meat is practically falling off the bones! It will cook in an aluminum roasting pan which will be full of juices when it’s done & the juices make a great gravy!

the broccoli casserole is just a basic broccoli casserole-frozen chopped broccoli (cooked first), shredded cheddar cheese, mayo, dried onion and cream of mushroom soup, with breadcrumbs and more cheese on top. The smell of all the ingredients once mixed together is just...yuck LOL! Don’t like it & won’t go near the casserole myself but it’s always a hit so I know it’s good!
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Lea,

I lucked out in the MIL department. She was wonderful. I was actually closer to her than my mom.

I guess I didn’t have much incentive to get to know my brother’s wives. He is on wife number 4! They all divorced him.

This last one is hanging around. He can’t cheat on her. He’s too old now, has health issues. She is younger than his son.

She won’t allow his sons children to call her ‘grandma!’ LOL

I swear certain members of my family could be used for a script for a freakin soap opera! Hahaha 🤣

Some on my husband’s side too. I started to eat my salad without dressing at her house because she never checked expiration dates! She served expired food! I was afraid of getting food poisoning. She was rich but was super cheap!!!
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Cali,

My neighbor smokes his turkey all night. Will you have time to smoke it tomorrow?

What size turkey are you doing? Just the breast or the entire bird?

What kind of broccoli casserole? With a cheese sauce and breadcrumbs? I love that dish.
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We will be having our usual family get-together but this year it will be at my sister-in-laws new house and we’re doing dinner instead of a late lunch. We have a family isolation bubble or whatever you call it. We have socialized for months and most work from home or are SAHMs so there’s really no risk. It’s not like anything has been open so we can’t really go anywhere & catch the virus. I will be bringing a smoked turkey (just made the brine and started the brining overnight process). Now I need to figure out what time to put it in the smoker tomorrow. My SIL also requested my moms broccoli casserole (eewwwww) so I need to make that but I am honestly not looking forward to it. I don’t like the smell or the ingredients. I think I will make it tomorrow.

I had to run in to Kohl’s today to pick up an order and then I went in to Target to look for a few gifts I couldn’t order online. Honestly judging by the long long lines I think most people are going to have their normal Christmas’s this year! The line to check out at Kohl’s went almost to the back of the store! So did the line at target but it moved fast because 15 minutes later, there was no line and I walked right up to the self checkout.
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Daughter,

Your MIL sounds like my mom! Perfectionist with a capital P!

I won’t trash talk you. I get it! I am not a perfectionist. I don’t like perfect people.

They are never satisfied with themselves or others, as you well know, right!?

They get downright knit picky!

In your case, you are justified! I get it. In other situations, it’s a different story!

Every family has their issues. The weird aunt or uncle, grandparent, cousin, whomever...

We had a couple of strange uncles on both side of my family. They were a little weird!
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Fessing up! I’m the daughter in law that doesn’t lift a finger to help in any way at my in laws. I’m many years into this marriage and tried so hard for so long until one day I decided I was over it. No matter what I did to help it was never right, if I wiped a table it was immediately wiped again, if I washed a dish it was rewashed again, if I put leftovers up it was decided I didn’t pick the correct Tupperware and redone, no matter how trivial the task I never did one thing right. So I quit and now watch football with the men while my MIL and her daughter fuss over things to a degree I’m grateful I wasn’t born with the gene to be able to do. I just can’t stir the beans that many times or the correct way, whatever that is! Sorry to hijack the thread. Now everybody trash talk me!
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NeedHelp: that reminds me of my ex MIL.........I'd cook and cook and cook and she'd sit her fat arse down at the table, look around at the plates & bowls, and start pointing.......I don't like THIS, I don't like THAT, I won't eat THOSE.........etc. etc. I'd say, eat what you'd like and don't eat anything else. She'd wind up eating everything that wasn't nailed and licking the plate! Then not lifting a finger to help, either.
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