We hosted a 'Friendsgiving' this week: because two coma-inducing meals are better than one.
Bending over my heart-shaped, wooden cutting board, I felt a judgmental presence hovering behind me as I began to chop some rather large sweet potatoes.
"You're not going to peel them first?" My roommate, Danielle, asked with the wavering concern of a mother, but without the undying love and support that's typically attached.
"Nope," I said, not giving her the satisfaction of turning around. "This is how my mom told me to do it. Now go away, you're going to hate the way I quarter these."
A loud slam erupted as I sliced a particularly tough sweet potato with a lot more force than necessary. Danielle squealed and ran back to her room. She might be annoyed for a few hours, but hey, what's a holiday without a little kitchen tension?
It was our annual (and by annual, I mean we did it once last year) Friendsgiving dinner, and I was in charge of making sweet potato casserole. Danielle has by far the most kitchen experience, so she handled the make-it-or-break-it items like the turkey and the stuffing. Thaine brought chips and salsa because I guess it's the only thing he knows how to make. E.J. brought a pie which he later took home before anyone could eat it. Erika brought a caprese salad. My brother, Brian, brought KFC.
We had ourselves a real feast.
Always a chaotic mess, the line for filling up our plates was immediately messed up when E.J. decided to go counterclockwise against the rest of us. He and I met face-to-face at the KFC bucket.
"I'm getting the first drumstick," he impolitely informed me as reached his hand in and grabbed what was easily the largest piece. Though obviously frustrated, I decided in the spirit of Friendsgiving to just let it go.
Once we all sat down at our picturesque table (courtesy of Danielle), I played mom and forced everyone to go around the room and say what they were thankful for.
"The one thing I'm grateful for this year," My boyfriend, Austin, said as he stood up out of his chair, and kissed me my head. "Is my girlfriend Emily."
"Awws" and "Ewws" rang around the table. I'm thankful my boyfriend is such a suck-up.
Some were sweet, like when Terrele said he was thankful for his big brother, E.J., and called us all family. Some were silly, like when Brian reenacted a scene from "Tallageda Nights," or when Alex said he was thankful we were all still his friends despite his sassy attitude. And all were reminders that "friends" and "family" will forever be interchangeable words.