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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Christmas Cooking/Baking (not recipes) (10/16/08)

TITLE: The Best Laid Plans
By Alice Zvacek


‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all the plans were laid
The menu was set -- turkey, ham, side dishes and pies,
The seven layer salad was already made
Off to bed, so that I could do that early rise

The alarm set for six, I drifted to sleep
When I awoke to the sun, I was worried and forlorn
The clock said nine. Oh no! I had not heard its beep
I looked and saw that it was set for six but at night not in the morn.

I ran through the house, yelling in fear
Get up! Get up! We’ve overslept!
But my family was fast asleep and didn’t hear
I reached the kitchen and sat down and wept

I thought of all those counting on me
I sniffed and stood with a quiet resolve
Needing the inspiration, I turned on the lights on the tree
And looked at the new time puzzle I had to solve.

Scrap the corn in the crockpot and put the green beans on to cook
Move quickly to get the ham in to bake
Get dressed after the quick shower I took
Get out the ingredients for all the dishes we will make

I ran through the house again, frustrated by their lack of care
Yelling “Get up, come on let’s get a move on”
Wishing that on Christmas I wasn’t such a grumpy bear
Telling my honey that I had a job that would require his brawn

My teenage daughter finally stumbled from her room
Mumbling “What do you want me to do?”
“Sweep the kitchen”, and she grabbed the broom
My husband finally unearthed himself from bed, too.

I asked my daughter to do the potato peeling
My husband’s first task was getting the son up
The peeling got out of hand, the peel projectile’s even hitting the ceiling
My son emerged from his room and went to walk the pup.

My husband’s job became clear, he was the turkey man.
I’m glad that it was a smoked turkey which aided with the heating
Because even though it had been thawing for a four-day span
It was still frozen, and thoughts of it being quick cooking were fleeting

My husband cut the partially frozen bird
Into smaller pieces to thaw in the microwave
The picture he made was quite absurd
As was this whole Christmas meal that we were trying to save

My son finally came from dealing with the pup
And announced he would take care of the table
He reached for the plates, silverwear, glasses and cups.
I told him he could do the ready made stuff when he is able

I started the noodles and potatoes on the stove
My inlaws called to say they were leaving
Oh it would only be 30 minutes while they drove
The corn went on, and I almost was believing

I should have known it was too good to be true
There was barely enough room on my stovetop
I looked in horror as the volume of food continually grew
The stuffing, yams and broccoli all waited on the countertop

My daughter had to leave to get her beau to be
My son was working on olives, pickles and cranberry sauce
Musn’t forget to cut the celery for Grandma and Aunt Marie
I was cleaning after the turkey cutting, figuring out which scraps we could toss.

The doorbell rings - the company has begun to arrive
Perfection is definitely not what they will find
I guess the best I can hope for now is that we all survive
The plans have not worked out, and I hope that noone will mind

The turkey finally thawed. We cut it and heated it for half an hour
My mother-in-law did the potatoes and finished the corn
Steve’s sister Julie did the yams, and my husband went to shower
Little Amy asked me if I knew this was the day Christ was born

It put it all in prespective, who cared if our meal was the best?
We all worked together to put on the finishing touches
The celebration should focus on the Season with which we were blessed
When God sent his son Jesus to save us from Satan’s clutches.
The plans didn’t happen quite as intended
I started too late and things weren’t very neat
But in the end we all pitched in, and it turned out splendid
And with Jesus the Holiday and the meal were complete!

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Member Comments
Member Date
Joshua Janoski10/26/08
Wow you had me on the edge of my seat wondering if the meal would be ready in time. Thank you for sharing. God bless. :)