I am sure that you have noticed how prominent and important food is in our various celebrations. Easter is about chocolate and the Easter Bunny and roasted pig (ham or pork). Thanksgiving features the poor turkey who is enslaved, mistreated, killed and roasted and a la Kinged to the tune of 19 million in the US and 5 million here in Canada. And then there is Xmas. More turkeys are sacrificed along with all the other usual suspects – Cornish Hens, Roasted Cow and Pig, to name a few. Apart from our dead nonhuman animal centerpieces, we also use massive (and I mean massive) quantities of butter, eggs, cheese and cream in our desserts, mashed potatoes and sweet potato pies, as well as aquatic animals and seafood in our appetizers.
If we were to sit down and do the numbers, we might think twice about the cost to nonhuman beings. There is a reason why 75 billion (that is right, I said billion) nonhuman beings are enslaved (raised) worldwide each year to satisfy our need to satisfy our long held meat eating traditions.
Heart disease, diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, cancer, mass extinction of species, and destruction of the planet aside, it must be noted the the greatest impact of all is to the nonhuman beings who are enslaved, cruelly treated and then murdered. For they are deprived of their inherent right to live according to their own purposes, to be with and to love their families, to be treated without cruelty and to die when they are old.
Even before I became vegan, I felt that all of our celebrations were too heavily slanted toward what we are going to eat, rather than what we are going to do. I would suggest that we go for a walk to look at Xmas lights in the winter when the snow is lightly falling and the sound of our boots hitting the snow makes that crunchy, squeaky sound. Or how about playing in the park in the spring at Easter time when the grass is not quite green and the buds are just coming out on the trees?
Having said that, I found myself, once again involved in looking at recipes and wringing my hands over what I am going to serve to my guests at our upcoming Xmas party and what we, as a family are going to eat on Xmas Eve and Xmas Day. In the middle of my tizzy, I decided that I would order some food and support plant based establishments in and around Montreal. The moment I did that I felt a whole heck of a lot better. Because, nagging at me in the back of my mind, is my desire to go to Ontario to attend my granddaughter’s Xmas concert.
Now this concert, which means so much to my granddaughter, takes place two days before our Xmas party, at which we will attempt to cram 44 revelers into our not so big house. Granted, six of the guests are children, so they take up less space, but they do run around a lot more than the adults and this can make things a little hectic.
But I digress. If I am going to live according to my views about less concentration on the food and more on the people in my life, then I need to consider making the trip. This will involve an overnite stay at my daughter’s (always a pleasure). I will then rush (no speeding, though) back home on Friday to set up, to take frozen food out to thaw, to make the Appletinis ( a favorite beverage of mine), prepare any last minute food items and reorganize the furniture in the living and dining room.
Who am I kidding? I have already made my decision. Unless something goes terribly wrong in the execution of my party plans, I will be on the road Thursday morning with a happy heart and with the sound system belting out holiday tunes. My mother always used to say that she didn’t want to miss anything and I feel pretty much the same way. Besides, who can resist a little redheaded girl saying with hope,
Are you coming to my Xmas Concert, Grammie? I am going to play the piano.
It is interesting to note that my granddaughter does not play the piano. I hope the teacher knows this. LOL!
People say that I am a good cook and I do take pride in this. I also realize that I have allowed myself to be overly identified with this skill. It is not who I am, it is something that I do. And people also say that I give a good party. And I guess this must be true, because almost everyone has replied Yes!!! I am sure that we will have a wonderful time. I keep telling myself that if I don’t finish everything on my list, then maybe my list is too long and grandiose.
There is a saying circulating on many of the vegan websites and social media that I follow. It goes like so.
Keep meat off the menu.
I would like to second that and add a caveat.
Keep food off the emotional menu.
Annie’s Vegan View
Break out the Parcheesi Board and Pictionary. Play charades if that is your bag and sing off key to your favorite carols.
Think of those who suffer needlessly because of our learned and indoctrinated appetites.
Eat plant based this holiday season.
What a wonderful way to celebrate and embody “Peace on Earth”.
May all beings be happy and free.