Once upon a time the dishes were done, the table leaves removed, the turkey leftovers wrapped, and the pie crumbs vacuumed. And the house stood still once more. It was a bustling Thanksgiving week, filled with family and friends, dinners and games, and enough glorious desserts to keep us salivating until Christmas. Spicy pumpkin pie (an extra pinch of fresh ground cloves), sweet potato and lemon pies, cranberry orange bread, oatmeal butterscotch cookies…Oh I could go on, but my growling tummy says Enough Already. Each sweet treat brought another round of dining room table laughter and joy.

Oh, I didn’t mention the Oreo cookie game. It goes something like this. You unscrew the Oreo, lick it and stick it to your forehead. Then you scrunch your face around until the cookie begins to slide down your cheek. The winner catches it with his or her tongue before it falls onto your billiards table. Or carpet. Or new sweater. (Not my game of choice, but peer pressure forced my joining.)

So, the house is empty again. Clean, tidy, and anxiously awaiting the craziness that will descend upon it in a few short weeks.