Today I scanned Mama's dressing recipe and emailed it to my sisters. That recipe has been in our family a long time. I don't know where it came from and never thought to ask Mama about it. It's just always been a part of my family's life. She only made it twice a year -- Thanksgiving and Christmas. She never missed making it except maybe her last Thanksgiving. One of my sisters might have made it that year.
In 1971 Mama sent me the recipe when I lived in Spain. I couldn't eat Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas dinner in Rota without Mama's dressing! That's when I made her dressing for the first time myself. It was good, but somehow, it didn't taste the same. I knew that later that day Mama, Daddy, and my younger sisters and brother would be eating the real deal.
In 1972 Jim and I had been invited to have Christmas dinner at some friends' home near us in Rota. I offered to bring dressing. I was pregnant at that time with my first baby, Jeffrey, who was espected to come any day. A day or two before Christmas I made the cornbread that is the base for the dressing and I would finish making the dressing Christmas morning and bake it. Well, my labor started Christmas Eve day and Jeffrey was born at 1:06 am Christmas morning. Needless to say I wasn't going to be taking dressing to my friends' home. That day Jim jumped into action, He followed Mama's recipe and finished the dressing. I heard he did a good job!
Later, when we lived in Orlando and Winter Park, Christmas dinner was alternated each year between us and Jim's brother, Mike and his family. Then I made Mama's dressing every other year, but I still got to eat it at Thanksgiving.
No matter what it's called . . . Mama's Dressing, Grandma's Dressing or Great Grandma's Dressing . . . it's part of my huge family's Christmas and Thanksgiving traditions.