It’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving and Harriet is completely exhausted from all the festivities. This means she will get up for meals and either fall asleep in the Lazy Boy or return to bed. Our three children and seven grandchildren were here Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Joshua, and his five kids, live close enough that they went home at night, while everyone else stayed over. Just the Thanksgiving dinner would have been enough to make Harriet exhausted, but we also had complications before the weekend, a tea party, for the girls, on Friday, and a football party on Saturday.
The complications had to do with the fact that I had completely gutted our pantry and everything in the pantry and all the things from the camper were on, around, and under the table. My plan was to tear out the pantry shelves, redesign and build all new shelves. Everything was torn out and the plans were made. I was on my way into the garage to paint the new shelves, I tripped, twisted my ankle so badly that I was certain it was broken. The doctor ordered me to stay off my feet for at least a week and Thanksgiving was only two weeks away. The closer we got to Thanksgiving the more I expected Harriet to become very stressed about the huge mess. She seemed to be completely unconcerned about the entire problem. I’d never seen her this way before.
The Monday before Thanksgiving I was able to get back to work on the pantry. I would work for about 40 minutes and then put my leg up on pillows with an ice pack. Tuesday, panic was setting in, because we hadn’t bought groceries. We were off to Walmart Tuesday Evening, and because my right ankle was burning Harriet was driving. The trip to the store was uneventful, but the shopping was quite difficult because the list was too large and seemed to confuse Harriet. By the time we left the store the sun had gone down so I asked Harriet if she wanted me to drive. Most of her problems driving had occurred after dark and she said that she was tired and foggy headed. Tuesday evening, she said that she was clear headed and not tired a bit. We were going up Division Street and came to a four way stop. There was a car ahead of us and one to our left. The car ahead of us pulled through the intersection. Then the car on the left started to go but Harriet just followed the first car right through cutting him off. When I realized that she wasn’t going to stop I tried to get her attention by yelling Harriet! Harr-I-ETT! HARRRIET!!!. The driver of the car she cut off pulled up beside her and flipped her off. Even though she had almost caused an accident she was completely unconcerned. Her indifference seems quite strange and is completely out of character. Once we got home, she said, “You don’t have to share what happened on the road back there with the kids.”
By Wednesday morning I finished the shelves and started moving everything back into the pantry. Michelle and Mike arrived that afternoon and jumped in to help us get the house ready for Thanksgiving dinner. Harriet had been working since Monday to get everything ready. I hadn’t seen her work so hard for quite some time. By evening almost everything was in place we were so relieved to know that our house was not going to look like a warehouse. Even though she didn’t want me to share the driving event on Division Street, she started teasing me and said to our Daughter Michelle, “Your dad has a new way of getting my attention. He says, “Harriet, Harr-I-ET, HARRIET!!”
Thanksgiving Day morning I finished cleaning the house and Harriet started working on the dinner preparations. Zachary and Gina showed up and they started helping with dinner. Harriet has always been a master in the kitchen but on that day, she forgot to put the cheesecloth in the turkey, (to hold the stuffing) forgot to put the turkey in the oven bag or cover it with aluminum foil. The potatoes were finished cooking about two hours before the turkey. Harriet said that all the work she had done, earlier in the week, caused her to be fuzzy headed during dinner preparation. She was also confused about the internal temperature of the turkey. She had the meat thermometer in the breast and when Gina said it should be in the thigh Harriet said, “I don’t know what the thigh is.” Other than those few things the dinner was delicious, and everyone had a great time.
The kids and I were concerned that after a busy day Harriet would be too exhausted to enjoy Friday’s tea party or the Football party on Saturday. We made it through a busy week for Thanksgiving, but we still had a busy time ahead of us.