Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah
image The traditional Thanksgiving feast not only satisfies hunger — it expands waistlines.

November 23, 2016
Thanks to Thanksgiving, my pants will be the right size again

I stepped on the scale the other day and was met with some bittersweet news.

On one hand, I was happy I’ve lost 35 pounds in the past six months.

On the other, I was dismayed because of the knowledge that all the hard work and disciplined eating is going to be all for naught after Thursday.

Thanks, Thanksgiving.

This year is going to be a little different for the Vaughan family. We had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner the past two years since I moved back to Utah from California, with my grandparents coming over to my parents’ house for the big meal. My great aunt came up from Texas one year, and my uncle and his then-girlfriend had also joined us.

Unfortunately, my grandmother passed away this past summer, putting a damper on the holiday season. My grandfather, having lost his wife of 62 years, and the rest of the family aren’t exactly in the celebratory mood when it comes to the holidays this year.

But we weren’t about to spend Thanksgiving alone. Instead, we’re changing things up. We’re still going to be together — my parents, my grandfather and I — but instead of the traditional home-cooked meal, we’re letting someone else do the work.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the all-you-can-eat Thanksgiving buffet at the resort where my mother works along the Colorado River outside of Moab.

Since this is a resort, this isn’t going to be Thanksgiving meets Golden Corral or Chuck-A-Rama. This is likely to be on par with the more upscale Las Vegas resorts.

And all-you-can-eat? Do you want to know what all I can eat entails? I don’t think I necessarily want to find that out myself, but I have a gut feeling I’m about to.

As if the traditional roast turkey, smoked turkey breast and smoked green chile macaroni and cheese that have become holiday staples in my parents’ home over the years weren’t enough to tempt me to the point of overindulgence, now we’re going to a buffet that has turkey, ham and prime rib.

Why did they have to give me options? Now I feel almost obligated to have a little bit of all three — and possibly go back for seconds for the one or two options I like best.

You want side dishes? They’ve got ‘em. After years of avoiding mashed potatoes as a result of eating them every day in the cafeteria at SUU, I’m willing to give them a second, third and fourth chance. Dinner rolls? Cranberry sauce? That green-bean casserole with the French-fried onions on top? I’ll take a double helping of all of the above. It’s a veritable cornucopia of culinary delight.

And don’t get me started on the dessert selection. Pies and fruit salads galore. Again, the options thing comes back to haunt me. How can I limit myself to just one dessert when there are at least three different kinds of cookies? I’d be doing myself a disservice if I didn’t go for the “sampler platter.”

However, once I make the trek north after this weekend of family, friends and food, I fear I will have done myself an additional disservice.

My trusty bathroom scale will confirm the bad news. My doctor will express her concern, much as she did six months ago.

And my pants will suddenly be the right size again.

I guess I can be thankful for that.

Darren Vaughan is the community news editor for the Transcript Bulletin. Email him at

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