You Are Invited to Thanksgiving Dinner in Stock-Photo BizarroWorld—Please Take a Seat

One way to have a stock photo Thanksgiving: get really REALLY excited over a bowl of vegetables.
One way to have a stock photo Thanksgiving: get really REALLY excited over a bowl of vegetables. –

Stock photos offer images for every occasion, whether special or utterly ordinary. Which, of course, means that they have notions about what makes the picture-perfect Thanksgiving.

So sit down and join us for a dysfunctional Thanksgiving dinner in stock-photo land, where the rooms have no walls, the place settings have no head, and the desserts and soups are disturbingly Pinterest-perfect.

First of all, you don’t get an invite unless you have perfectly white teeth (and a great big even-toothed smile). Dinner isn’t ready yet, by the way. That’s a fake turkey we use for pre-dinner photo ops.


I’m glad to see you all got the memo: dress in neutrals so the food really pops. And that’s another fake turkey. Ours won’t be ready for hours.

We know you’re excited about the turkey (and that’s not an edible one either). But it’s required that you get REALLY excited about that bowl of good-for-you vegetables (which are very real and very delicious).

It took forever to iron the kids’ pilgrim outfits. Where is little Johnny? Oh, I see him. He’s out in the yard giving thanks to a log. Good boy. No, not there. Over there, near the shed, where the sky and ground drop away.

Where’s that darned cat? Amelia is allergic so I need to lock him in the spare room. Oh, there he is chilling out beside a handful of nuts, a few colorful gourds, and a basket of seasonal items. Typical cat!

Uncle Larry and cousin Cheryl are here! They wore their … seasonal outfits again and set up a table of their own in a rustic corner of our home. This year they’re holding hands while they eat. Sure, they’re eccentric. But we love ‘em.


Can someone please tell cousin Cassandra to stop the photo shoot on the neighbor’s lawn and come inside for dinner?

It took me so long to fashion those cute little ducks out of apples that dinner is going to be late. But I’m still smiling (laughing, even!). Please tell Cassandra to get in here. She’s embarrassing the family.

Auntie Carol, I made your favorite Thanksgiving cocktail. It’s on a special drink stand in the living room. Oh, and I painted the walls to match its earthy hue. Now we’re really in the spirit!

Oh, thank you for the nice compliment on my DIY sign. I was up until 2 a.m. crafting it. It’s on recycled cardstock and I ordered the clothespins from Etsy. They’re made out of turkey bones.

Will somebody please get the babies out of our pumpkin storage room and fasten them into their highchairs? It’s the first room down the hall on the left, the one with no walls and no floor. Thank you.

Carving the turkey sucks, doesn’t it honey? I know, I know, it’s your job. Oh, you always look so angry and frustrated when you do it! But before you carve that sucker, let’s place it on the dinner table so everyone can look at it for a while.

There’s the bird. I had to drive across town this morning to buy those red pears. Can you imagine if I served the turkey without them?


Listen up, everyone! The lettuce-headed place settings are for the adults. The headless ones are for the kids. Sit accordingly.

All right, the turkey is carved and dinner is finally on the table. But no one sits until each dish has a festive sprig! Honey, can you distribute the sprigs?

Be very careful of the candles, everyone. There are 42 of them on the table and they must remain lit at all times. So watch your hair when you reach for the salt.

Pumpkin soup is served! Why, Uncle Ralph, that’s a gourd-shaped dollop of sour cream. You have a dirty, dirty mind!

During all that red pear hunting this morning, I had no time to make the desserts. So these will have to do. I hope to do better next year. Enjoy!

I said it’s time for dessert! Where is little Johnny?!

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