giving thanks

In ALL, FAMILY MATTERS, HOLIDAYS by Stephanie Klein30 Comments

We’re in New York with family, and it’s safe to say even though it’s not home, it still feels like it.  The tots adore all the new adoration and activities, the voices and coos singing through the house, the unfamiliar toys, and that dog that licks and wags its tail, the green bird that dances in its cage.  They love crawling on their grandpa.  It smells of raw onion, of Thanksgiving preparation, this morning.  Yesterday we went shopping for winter coats and hats.  Booties.  Century 21 really can be bliss for one and for all.  We hit the Seacrest Diner, an establishment within walking distance from my high school, where everything seemed like it should be, like home feels.  Medium rare.  Then we all crowded around a dinner table at home for some damn good Italian food, the kind indigenous to New York and somehow nonexistent in Texas.  Oversized platters of shrimp, chicken, and veal parmigiana, bowls of filette di pomodoro, wet and juicy, linguine a la vongole.  Italian American.  Nothing fancy, just fattening.  I loved the beans there in their high chairs, surrounded by the six of us: my father and Carol, my step-sister Amanda and her fiance James, and of course, Phil and me. Tomorrow there will be cousins and more step-sisters, more food, some football, and for me (hopefully) a movie outing.  It’s tradition when I’m not the one cooking.  I hope yours is as lovely and warm and dysfunctional. 


  1. Stephanie, enjoy your holiday & NYC. It sounds great so far. That's good for the beans to visit family, I'm sure they are all thrilled to see them.

  2. I can picture it. :) Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family! Sounds wonderful and cozy. I can only imagine how happy the beans are. Isnt't their birthday coming up?

  3. I know the Seacrest Diner. Eaten there many times. Back in the 80's wasn't there a major robbery while people were dining?

    Happy Thanksgiving and welcome back East!

    FROM STEPHANIE: Yes, my parents were there that night. That is, they were there earlier in the night, before the robbery, when patrons had to strip naked (or close to it) as I recall. Back with the 'crest had tinted windows. So scary.

  4. Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your time with your extended family. I'll be out on LI at my sister's place having our own happy dysfunctional feast. = )

  5. Welcome home! Funny – I was at Century 21 two days ago and the Seacrest Diner last week. (Are you too young to remember the reason they installed windows there?) I hope you and the entire family have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Your dad must be eating up those kids of yours. How great for all of you!

  6. mmm…everything sounds so delicious…especially the new york-home-for-the-holidays picture you just painted. i remember big family thanksgivings like that…

    happy turkey day to you and your family!

  7. Cozy! It must be crazy visiting a place you probably went to while in high school, stirring up different emotions. Are you more sensitive to the cold now you have been in Texas?

    I hope you take some photos. Glad your family made it there safely and weren't delayed in the airport!

  8. oh! how i miss my own family now :). my trip to go back home got cancelled and now reading your post makes me ache!! enjoy your time :)

  9. Welcome home! You'll always be a New Yorker and the beans have dual citizenship.

  10. Happy Thanksgiving to you, Phil, and the rest of the crowd! I'll be missing the grand feast we had last year, but it's great to be with family!
    p.s. I second you on the non-existent Italian food in Texas. Along with the pizza.

  11. I'll be in Roslyn tomorrow and expect to hit the trifecta of lovely, warm and dysfuctional. Enjoy, enjoy.

    (Hitting the Americana Friday for a stop at Shoe Box. I seem to do well with boots over Thanksgiving weekend, and for that I'm thankful.)

  12. I know what you mean by being home. I remember the cozy, safe feeling I had. I long to visit NY again. It made me homesick and I don't even live there. I will be with one of my sons and his family, but will be missing the other.
    Happy Thanksgiving.

  13. Love this. Love that it's yours and yours alone. Tomorrow we'll be bucking all tradition and having Thai ordered in and movies. And although it raises eyebrows, it's ours. And that's what matters. Happiest of Thanksgivings to you, S.

  14. i posted a comment, then it was gone.
    I remember the warm, safe feeling of going back home, no matter how dysfunctional we ended up.
    Enjoy you time of being at home.

  15. Happy Thanksgiving!! I grew up a few mins from the Seacrest Diner as well!! Jericho HS grad….Now reside in CT-less hustle and bustle here! My parents from Long Island will be coming here for the holiday-so I am the one preparing the "feast" this year.


  16. I love the thought of gently waking everyone in the house with the smell of butter, onion and celery on Thanksgiving morning.

    So glad to hear that you, Phil and the Tots are well and surrounded by love and laughs!

  17. So jealous, I'm a NY'er who is spending Thanksgiving in Tokyo (we moved here for my boyfriend's job). Thank god his mother came over to visit, otherwise we'd be having a sushi delivery for dinner. She's a great cook, so I'm grateful for that!

  18. Did your father have more daughters with Carol??? 'Cos they'd only be step-sisters if you were related through having the same dad. Like if your mom remarried and had more children, those would be step-siblings cos you'd have a mother in common.

  19. It really sounds nice spending time with your family like that. Hope you enjoy the movie too.

  20. Happy Thanksgiving to you and to your family! The description of your dinner is for me full of "magic". In Italy, we just have an idea of the Thanksgiving day through the "american" films. I will came to New York on 28th December and I am so happy and excited to visit your city.

  21. I am thankful for amazing women like you and your wonderful readers!

    Happy Thanksgiving to all!

  22. Enjoy the time with the family and the beans! I am sure you will have a great Thanksgiving!

  23. Hope you got a chance to either catch "Enchanted" or "August Rush" – both movies are fantastic!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  24. Oh the "rape diner", as we used to call it. So scary. Now they have cameras. And they also have the best french toast.

  25. Whoops Carol….methinks you got it backwards there….step-siblings do not have a common parent ..but half-siblings do…. and it's probably safe to assume that Stephanie know by now who is whom!! hee hee!!

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