The house is filled with the delicious smells of Thanksgiving: turkey, pumpkin pie, and stuffing. The bustle and preparations bring back many memories from the past. As I sit for a minute to relax, I realize how much I miss my soaps. We always tuned in while cooking and getting the house ready for the holidays.
As an adult, preparing my own holiday meals, I continued the tradition of tuning in to watch As the World Turns and Guiding Light. Nancy Hughes would be elbow deep into preparations in her kitchen. She rarely left the kitchen as I recall. Endless cups of coffee and serious discussions took place in Nancy’s domain.
Who could forget Nancy and Chris, Grandpa Lowell, Bob and Lisa, and all the others gathered around the table. Feuding or not, the Hughes opened their home to all the misfits, and more often than not, there was usually some surprise guest who would show up, leaving a great cliffhanger to get us through the weekend.
On Guiding Light (my favorite soap), the Bauer family reigned supreme. Bert Bauer was the kind, but firm matriarch, who would be bustling about the hospital in her “pink lady” uniform, cheering up the sick, and bossing around her son, Dr. Ed. Within the hour Bert would be in the kitchen getting her turkey basted while admonishing son Mike to make peace with his wife.
Later the Bauers shared the stage with the rich and haughty Spauldings, and then the Shane and Lewis clans. Soon Reva and Josh, Billy and Vanessa would bring H.B.. Henry, and Hawk together. I loved watching the older contemporaries trade quips and barbs. The teasing and the love seemed genuine and true. I wanted to be sitting there with them, sharing turkey and stories with the whole crew.
Thanksgiving and Christmas will always make me miss my other family: the Hughes, the Lewis’, the Bauers, and the Spauldings. It doesn’t seem like a holiday without them.