We passed on a rib roast on Saturday. It was a significant event, mainly because it involved a bit of a drive from Colorado Springs to Castle Rock. The highway in between the two locations (not-so-affectionately called The Gap) is under construction and has been for over a year. There are parts of the drive that as narrow, a bit curvy, and without a shoulder on the road. That means when someone gets in an accident (and there’s always an accident) traffic stops. The roughly forty minute drive can stretch to ninety minutes or two hours or…you get the idea.
Cruising through The Gap involves a bit of prayer-not only to arrive at the other end accident-free- but also to get where one wants to go near the designated time frame.
Last Saturday, though, Tom and I had no traffic problems. We listened to Christmas music, planned meals for the week, and talked about the passing of the rib roast to Arthur.
Arthur is our son. He and his fiancée Shelby have just bought their first house in Denver. They both love to cook and host dinners. Aware of that, I tentatively asked if they would like to host our family Christmas this year. Arthur and Shelby are heading to Florida to spend Christmas with Shelby’s family, so the four of us, along with my daughter and son-in-law, will be getting together the Saturday before. Anyway, when I asked if they’d like to host, Arthur and Shelby immediately accepted the challenge! The only problem was that Tom and I had already purchased the usual main attraction of the Christmas Eve dinner table-a fairly large standing rib roast.
All that was why we ended up passing on a frozen roast in the middle of a parking lot half way between their house and ours. After the frozen meat was moved from our trunk to theirs, the four of us stood for a few minutes and caught up. Then, right before we went on our way, Shelby said she’d touch base soon about the menu and what she’d like us to bring. That’s when it hit me-Tom and I weren’t just passing part of the meal to them. We were passing one of my favorite traditions into new hands.
This year, for the first time in decades, it won’t be up to me to plan the meal, do the majority of the grocery shopping, figure out a schedule to cook everything, or set the table. I won’t worry about flower arrangements, trivia games, or storing everything in the refrigerator. It’s now in my son’s and future daughter-in-law’s capable hands. I always imagined when this day came I’d be a little blue but instead it’s just the opposite. I’m proud that they want to continue on some of our same traditions…and put their own spin on things. Instead of being the hostess, I was going to be a guest.
When we turned around and headed back toward home, there was a bit of traffic. Soon, the slowdown turned into a standstill, accompanied by the tell-tale sign of flashing red and blue lights. “Looks like we’re going to be here a little while,” Tom said.
I responded by turning back on the Christmas music and settling in. After all, we were just going home. The only thing I had planned for the rest of the day was to take the dogs for a walk and relax.
My Christmas to-do list had just gotten a little bit shorter. See, someone else is going to be in charge of the big dinner this year.