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Our Oven Died. Again.

Updated: Aug 20, 2021


This wasn’t the first holiday turkey this oven had threatened to ruin–holding our holiday cheer in the balance. About fifteen years ago, the oven died on Christmas day. Time before last it died on Thanksgiving Day. Mid-turkey.

The last time it gave up the ghost, the oven had the decency to give us a little warning and died three weeks before Thanksgiving. Enough time to find out we could no longer find parts for a 33 year-old oven but not soon enough to get a new hole put in the cabinet to fit a replacement.

Our daughter stepped up to the plate and volunteered her oven. Bless you Ellen.

But at 5:15 on Thanksgiving morning she called. Her oven had died.

As it happened, Ellen’s oven failed late the night before in the middle of baking pies. She had to call so early to head off the turkey stuffing. You don’t want stuffing sitting around inside the bird for several hours waiting to find an oven! And you don’t want to call on folks for a substitute oven at 5:15 in the morning.

I’m really not here to recommend turkey recipes. I’ve little good advice on how to keep an oven working. But I’m all over how you can help create events that keep going long enough to wear out an oven.

I absolutely love Thanksgiving. It takes but the slightest whiff of roast turkey to call up a string of memories back to my childhood. Turkey at Grandma’s house was the best. Her cornmeal dressing was to drool for.

Do you have a Thanksgiving recipe that does the same for you? You might have a favorite cranberry recipe. You might start salivating when you smell pumpkin pie. Perhaps your family shares ham. Are yams your favorite?

Recall with me the flood of memories that come pouring out with your favorite smells. Parents’ laughter. Card games. Hikes in the woods. Going to a movie. Watching the game. Checking out the big parades. Children playing. Thanksgiving is one of those fun times. That’s key.

And that is really why I’m interested in events that keep going long enough to wear out an oven. Repetition becomes the sauce covering these memories collectively.

But I discovered something even more important after I got married, something that was not as important in my family growing up. My wife and her family expected Thanksgiving to be a time of gratitude.

Sounds simple doesn’t it. Let’s be grateful. Isn't that what the "thanks" part of Thanksgiving means? When you consider the bounty that we have just displayed, it is all simply amazing. Kids who can play