Holidays haven’t been the same for me since last year. When my mother walked that stairway to heaven, I didn’t feel that there was much to celebrate. Those days that were supposed to be joyous occasions had turned into normal days which I didn’t have to go to work on…and here comes Thanksgiving again.

I guess I have a lot to be thankful for. I have my health, a job, the rest of my family, and friends. However, until you can honestly feel what I feel you’ll never know the emptiness inside but I guess life goes on.

Anyhow, I’m from a southern family and for Thanksgiving that means “we cooks and we eats”. Without Big Mama leading the preparations, we are left to fend for ourselves. What’s funny is that when you are not usually the one who makes the dishes and people have certain items on their wish lists, you’re in a tough situation.

In regards to food, I don’t know how you were raised but cooking wise, my mom was no joke. Her dishes were unique even when she attempted to copy someone else’s recipe. I guess that what it means when they say people “put a little love” in their foods.

Mom was the best but she took her recipes to the grave with her. Whatever my family can remember is what we have left and trust me; it is no easy task to fill mom’s shoes. I think each of us recall our favorite dishes and with that we know how to get as close as possible. So, that’s how we plan it. Whatever we can make her way is what we expect from each other. Then it’s a taste test before it is served to the rest of the family. There are a few close replicas. It is rare but family outside of the immediate have made maybe one dish that tasted like one of hers; never anything better though. Sorry!

So, for this Thanksgiving and any in the future, mom will always be at the top of the table blessing the food. We put her love in each dish; like food to the soul.

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