Houston Legal Assistant Mary Bilton grew up with some rich Thanksgiving family traditions in her hometown of Grand Coteau, Louisiana. She fondly remembers going to a special 9 a.m. Thanksgiving mass at St. Peter Claver Catholic Church where parishioners brought a prepared dish that was blessed by the priest and eaten later that day.

Back at home, the family – Mary’s mother, brother, sister, and grandparents — each spoke of something they were thankful for before enjoying the Thanksgiving feast. Her mother and grandmother did all the cooking, and the meal included turkey (carved by her grandfather) and cornbread dressing, yeast rolls, macaroni and cheese, potato salad, and green beans with new potatoes – and a special dish made by boiling and stuffing a mirliton squash with seafood and seasonings, sprinkled with breadcrumbs and baked in the oven. The meal was capped with a homemade sweet potato pone. Mary, thank you for sharing this special memory!