This is a bit of a sour article but meant to be funny and rings a few bells from my distant past - a certain aunt, certain inlaws. Plus, the comments are interesting -
Author is Delia Epfron, to give you a heads up.
I miss all that a lot. The certain aunt (quite the character, lived high on a hill with fabulous view of San Francisco) and the in-laws, who lived in a village of coaches where children weren't welcome, especially a black one, and neither were pets - were all good people, even the mother in law who served lime jello with mustard. Plus they put up with me.
My girl cousins (the ones of my close generation) and I shared hosting Thanksgiving, whoever's turn, and all that was basically wonderful. Great food, sane talking even with disagreement. Christmas was a trial, driving quite far to one of the cousins' places (it was their mother's birthday on C. Eve, really her event, the transportation easier for her), going home late, and leaving early the next morning to drive another zillion miles to in-laws. We always had a following weekend open house at our house, jeans will be fine, both of us cooking and people bringing stuff, going for beach walk if it worked out (someone would stay in case friends showed up). Years of all that, a treasure.
J and I were not religious through any of it, the rest were. (Oh, wait, I can't say that about all the friends at the open house.)