Annnnd it’s also the only time of year you see those weird cousins with the mullets and eat so much your eyes cross. It isn’t always easy to navigate the deep waters of extended family and sweet potato casseroles.
Your snarky second cousin eyes that empty ring finger and starts quizzing you on your dating status.
Laugh knowingly, slap her on the knee and say “Ohhh, you! Now tell me where you got this great applique sweatshirt! I love that penguin pilgrim!”
Creepy Uncle Joe has a few too many glasses of Thanksgiving Bud Light and decides that you need a back massage.
Give him the dead eye and say, “You know what I’m thankful for this year? Personal boundaries.”
Your sister’s tiny darlings more closely resemble gremlins and spend the afternoon climbing all over you, screaming about grandma’s lack of Wii and torturing the family pet.
Devotedly wait for the tryptophan to kick in. Failing that, perform the 1-2 punch of playground time followed by a darkened movie theater. Works every time. At least, it works on me.
Aunt Judy brought her famous ‘Sunshine Salad’ which consists of orange jello, grated carrots, mayonnaise, and raisins. You’d rather chew off your arm.
Make sure she’s looking while you take one bite and enthuse “Mmmmm! That sure is something!” Hide the rest of it under your baked potato skins.
The host of the meal is acting the martyr, rushing about, sighing dramatically and refusing help from anyone.
Sidle into the kitchen and compliment your host on her excellent taste in aprons. Don’t ask, just join in the chopping while you regale your host with hilarious anecdotes of Thanksgivings past. Graciously thank her for including you in the festivities and tell her how much it means to you to spend time with these people you love.
You’ve stuffed yourself to near sickness and are now wallowing on the sofa like Al Bundy, torturing yourself with visions of the elliptical machine.
Have a cup of coffee and go for a walk. Better yet, change into the post-dinner outfit you brought of yoga pants and a concert t-shirt.
How do you deal with days of extended family and gastronomic excess?
P.S. A book that’s helpful year-round, but ESPECIALLY this time of year: Set Boundaries, Find Peace.