Happy Thanksgiving! In America, the fourth Thursday of November is the day we celebrate the fact that the Native Americans didn’t kill the pilgrims and instead made what would turn out to be a deal with the devil with them. There is no actual date of Thanksgiving, but it is curiously a day that we feast between the harvest and the struggle, around the beginning of the month of Sagittarius. This year, Thanksgiving is on November 22, the first day of Sagittarius.
Everyone has their favorite part of Thanksgiving. For some, it’s getting together with family. That’s my boyfriend’s favorite part. For others, it’s eating. Depending on the year, I’m in that camp. Many look forward to watching football. That’s my boyfriend’s second-favorite part. Some very much look forward to hosting. My brother-in-law and his wife live for that. Others still actually enjoy cooking Thanksgiving the most. That’s my favorite part, but I have only once gotten to put on a full Thanksgiving spread, which I did for my ex-husband and his sister, who are both picky eaters, so the food was wasted. But I still love to cook the foods, and I have curated all my favorite recipes for a New England/Mid-Atlantic Thanksgiving dinner.
I grew up in the Fingerlakes region of New York State, which is technically in the Mid-Atlantic, but so far North that it also has regional characteristics of New England. I had no idea that Thanksgiving could be different in different places, but now that I think about it, it makes sense. For example, I now live in Chicago, and while I wouldn’t necessarily consider Chicago to be “Midwest” because it’s more multi-regional, if not more multi-cultural, than many other cities in America, regionally, it is still in the Midwest. I didn’t know that people actually ate greenbean casserole for Thanksgiving and never squash.
Squash has thus been missing from my Thanksgiving plate for four or five years now, but I’m always politely eating greenbean casserole. In the Northeast, we eat squash at Thanksgiving. I grew up eating acorn and delicata the Thanksgiving table, but in the Midwest, they eat greenbean casserole, which I don’t like or understand. To me, squash is quintessentially Thanksgiving. It is a fall harvest food, works well with all the other flavors at Thanksgiving, and roasts in the same oven with the turkey. On the other hand, green bean casserole looks like someone vomited on a dish of green beans. Squash has been with us since before the Europeans came to America. It provided sustenance and the vitamins and minerals needed to see us through harsh winters. Green bean casserole has been haunting us since 1955 when Campbell’s Soup invented it as a way for those who can’t cook to use up two of the canned food items they always have in their cupboard. In the Northeast, we understand what cranberry sauce is for (it’s for eating on the dark meat), and that apples are an important part of the meal.
But this could because even though I hate my hometown, I love the region I grew up in because it is beautiful. There are no suburbs, and there is farm land, vineyards, gorges, forests, rivers, lakes, and waterfalls. I am a New Yorker, and no matter where I live, I will always see food through the lens of the place I grew up. I will always think apples, maple syrup, milk, and grapes are too expensive everywhere else I live, and I will never understand how people simply don’t learn to use their cooking skills to help heat their homes through the winter. I will always find winter to be enchanting, and to just think of snow as magical, and not see the problem with four feet of it on the ground. I actually love fall and winter very much, and I was born in the first decan of Sagittarius, so it speaks to me. I am also biologically well-suited to live in colder climates. Not everyone in my family is like this, but I am simply built for colder places.
And unfortunately, I’m more overweight now than I have ever been. A combination of school, work, and inactivity as well as eating carb-laden, heavy foods has contributed to what could end up being more than just a weight problem. I did once, in the past, discover that low-carb and paleo dieting helped me lose weight and keep it off. I discovered the exercises that work for me. I also discovered that the key to these things was in my astrological chart.
I haven’t figured out a quick and easy formula for determining what everyone should eat based on their astrological chart. However, I have figured out a few ways to determine 1) what kind of food a person likes, 2) what kind of food they should eat, 3) what kind of food they should avoid, 4) the likelihood of gaining weight, and 5) how to use food as medicine for that individual, that I will be putting in future blog posts.