Holiday Mom: Carin (And Reese!)

Reese and CarinMy dear holiday child;

Welcome back! Come in and see the new place! We have so much to get caught up on. The girls are doing great, and our grandson is growing and getting big and strong. Goodness the time between visits is too long. *HUG*

The last couple of years we have had a chance to share some holiday traditions that we do for decorating and feasting together. Today as it is still early in the holiday season so we have some preparation things to share with you. Today we will be making Acadian meat pies. This version comes from the Evangeline region of PEI. I have found that there is a big difference in meat pies depending on where you are from so, I want to be specific especially since people can be very emotionally attached to their version of meat pie.

Growing up I didn’t have holiday traditions beyond opening presents on Christmas morning, so when Catrina and Tasha came along I decided to create some, from the yearly ornaments to the latest family member putting the angel on the tree. So, about 12 years ago when my best friends mother offered to show me how to make Acadian meat pies, as she was taught by her mother-in-law, I jumped at the chance. Now, we have adopted this tradition. Not only are they wonderful during the holidays but we save one for February when the shine of the season has worn off and we need a boost.

We have a busy day ahead of us! Grab a coffee darling, lets get started. This is a 2 day process so I started the meat process yesterday. I roasted a turkey and a pork roast, they are done and need to be de-boned and the meat shredded. All the juices need to go into the big pot on the stove. I will prepare the seasoning pouch of pickling spices and then I will dive in to help you shred the meat. All this goes back on the stove to simmer while we make crust.

The pie crust for this is actually simple bread dough. Yes, we will need a lot of dough. I remember how strong you are, we got this handled. Once the dough has had a chance to rise once, we will roll it out into pie plates, fill the centers with that wonderful meat that has now been stewing with the spices, adding in just a bit of juice to keep things moist, put a top on it, a small slice in the top for venting and let it rise a second time. Once this is done, we can start baking them off.

Last year I made 15 pies. I know it seems like a lot but we have dinner tonight, I am sending some home with the girls and you are taking home 3 as well. One for the holiday time of your choice, one for February to shake out the blues and one for whenever you want.

(Dad Reese)

I just thought I’d stick my head in the kitchen and see how you’re getting along. Your mom is dominating all of your time with these meat pies, and I’m hardly getting to see you! Give your old man a hug.

You’re not going to believe this, but while we were packing I found the two Nerf darts that went missing last year. You know what that means. It means I am fully equipped for a Nerf war after dinner!

We have company coming over tonight, two married couples, Tessa and Kate and Alex and Mark. I can hardly wait to introduce you. Maybe we can introduce them to Nerf gun fights, what do you say?

I guess I’d better leave you two to your meat pies. I see the dog is begging for some meat. Don’t give her any, she’s already farting up a storm and we need to be able to breathe!

(Mom Carin)

Thank you for your help today, my darling child. I notice when you are not around, and I miss your bright spark. You bring light to everything you do and I treasure our time together. Know that I think of you often and I love being able to share these times together. Remember you are family and are welcome to adopt any or all of our traditions or make wonderful new ones of your own and share them with those you love. Hang on to the love you feel and leave yourself little reminders (like a meat pie in February) of the times when you are surrounded by those who love you.

You are our bright spark

Love, Mom Carin and Dad Reese


  1. Ivan says:

    Wow I am in tears this is so sweet I wish I could really spend the holiday with people like you. I’m transgender and my parents would hurt me if they find out, I wish I could be someone’s son

    • Dad Reese says:

      Hi Ivan,

      It is so sad that the people who are supposed to protect you would hurt you if they found out. I wish you could be here “for reals” too, or better yet, I wish your home could be more like ours. Hang tight, the day is coming when you won’t have to pretend to be someone you’re not.

      Love & hugs,
      Dad Reese

  2. Sandy Lumsden-Gallant says:

    I am latterly in tears right now (and work). When my very good friend told me about this site, I had to look. My Mom, my best friend, pass away several years ago LOVED Christmas and my love for Christmas died along with her. The love and tenderness I have read in these posts have rekindled the love of Christmas and has reminded me what a Mother’s love is like. Thank you Cairn, from the bottom of my heart.

  3. Angel says:

    Dear Holiday Mom and Dad,

    Meat pies huh? Sound interesting, and I do like interesting things. I feel really welcome in your home. I feel welcome in any of my Holiday Families homes. I’ve been having a lot of trouble a lot this season, due to the fact I’m still being put under Suicide Watch for past attempts, my parents and brothers shutting me out because I lack sexual attraction and I don’t fit in with anyone, them not approving of my boyfriend just because he isn’t Hispanic, and a whole bunch of other things. But these everyday letters, make me feel like a have a purpose. I take screen shots of the replies I get and I save them, so I always have something to look at when I’m upset.

    Anyway, thanks for being amazing Holiday Parents. You both get hugs. *hugs*

    – Your Holiday Child, Angel.

    • Dad Reese says:

      Dear Angel,

      My dear holiday child. It gets better. Some day you will not be under anyone’s roof but your own. Those will be better days but you must endure, you must stay with us on this green and blue orb hung on nothing in order to get to those better days.

      Waiting is the hardest thing to do. Do you know the phrase, “It’s worth the wait?” The harder the wait is, the better the thing you wait for. Whenever you get the urge to stop waiting, you must wait more, because you must experience the freedom of being grown up, to be able to love the people you want to love, to be able to experience life fully with no one to tell you that you can’t.

      Precious holiday child. Kids all over the world are “waiting for Santa.” You are waiting for something much greater than Santa. Wait not with dread at the time it is taking–wait with anticipation of the freedom to come. Don’t take yourself out of the line. Don’t miss out the joyful, full life that awaits you.

      Dad Reese

  4. Daniel says:

    Strangely enough, I feel the most welcome in your home than any other home I’ve been in so far this holiday season. Thank you Mom and Dad. Of course I’d help you make the pies Mom, and I’ll try a turkey one, I’m used to pies being sweet of course. I’m a really big fan of sugar.
    And of course I’ll play a Nerf war with you Dad! Those were my favorite as a kid and I would never get enough. I’m sure we’ll have time to talk in between.
    Things have been rough this year, as I’ve fluctuated from identifying as gender fluid to transgender all in the same year, it’s been a bumpy ride. I have just about everything I need to make sure I feel ok as male, but people still call me a girl in public when I obviously am a man. It really brings me down. There are those rare moments at work when I’m not wearing my binder that customers call me ‘he’ or ‘sir’ and then I can’t stop smiling. I think one of my coworkers has noticed that I don’t ID as a female and she calls me ‘bro’ or ‘man’ a lot in the casual sense and it makes me feel amazing. I haven’t been able to get her alone to thank her, but I’m also scared to tell anyone at work. So I guess I’ll just take that and be happy whenever she works with me.

    Thank you for listening, sometimes I ramble too much. Have a Merry Christmas,

    Your Little Daniel

    • Dad Reese says:

      Self-discovery is always bumpy, isn’t it, Daniel? And it never really stops. I’m happy to hear about your co-worker. It is always nice to be understood and supported.

      I love sugar too, but it doesn’t agree with my tummy as well as it agrees with my taste buds anymore. Still, we’ve got these great chocolate chip cookies we made and they keep disappearing….

      Have a great holiday, son.

      Dad Reese

  5. Christina says:

    oh my gosh, im in class and i almost cries reading this!!! that couldve been bad!!
    thank you SO MUCH, mom and dad, for welcoming me into your home!! i love being able to say that i have a place to stay where im comfortable in my own skin and those around me are comfortable with it as well, even if i can only say this for the brief holiday season! im a closeted lesbian, and im 15 so things get hard, because i really dont have much of an alternative other than grinning and bearing it (“it” being a hyper-religious immediate/extended family with no regard for the rights of minorities, especially queer ones) until im older. im not gonna sugarcoat here: it sucks!!! but thats not the point. the POINT is that finally, thanks to these letters, i feel acceoted and self-assured. i owe that to you guys and your 15 pies and nerf fights!! im so excited to spend christmas with you and your traditions!!
    much love!!

    • Dad Reese says:

      Hi Christina! I’m glad our little home appeals to you!

      May I suggest that, when insensitive, intolerant things are said this holiday season, that you picture a bright orange Nerf dart bouncing off the forehead of the person saying them. Then you’ll have something better to grin about, courtesy of your Holiday Dad!

      Love and hugs,
      Dad Reese

  6. Cassidy says:

    Mom and Dad –
    Fifteen pies?? I’m in. I hope you don’t mind me stealing a few samples when you’re not looking…
    Thanks so much for welcoming me into your home this year! It’s a wonderful feeling. (((hugs)))

    • Mom Carin says:

      Good morning Cassidy!

      Why bake if we can’t sneak a taste while we create wonderful treats!! Food, like love is for sharing.

      Mom Carin

  7. Mom Carin says:

    Good morning Kate!

    I completely understand not feeling accepted or feeling judged for who you are. Trust me on this one, it gets better. It gets better when we start forming our own traditions, and surrounding ourselves with people who love us for who we are.I have also found that as I have gotten older if people can not accept me for who I am, it is their problem not mine.

    You are a beautiful person, you are loved and you are in our hearts and home this holiday and all the ones to come.

    Love you!
    Mom Carin

    • Mom Carin says:

      Good morning darling Calil!

      We believe that keeping a healthy sense of play keeps us young and slightly foolish 😉

      The nerf guns stay loaded on the book shelf, you never know when they are needed.

      Love and *HUGS*
      Mom Carin

  8. Kate says:

    Thank you so much, Mom and Dad. Everything you say here sounds like a great time that I would love to be a part of, from the meat pies to the nerf war. I have never even had a meat pie before, but I’m sure I would like it.

    I’m missing out on some of the usual traditions this year, because I’m not as accepted in my family like I used to be. Ever since I told my family that I’m transgender MtF, life with them is difficult. Thankfully, I live on my own now, so it is a little easier. But to get to that point meant sacrificing some family time which I loved but now feel deprived of. This is the first holiday season really on my own. Even when I’m with them, it feels lonely.

    So, I thank you yet again, for welcoming into your house, family, and traditions of meat pies and a nerf war. 🙂


    • Dad Reese says:

      Hi Kate!

      Sometimes you have to make your own traditions! Carin didn’t get meat pies from her own family, and we came up with Nerf wars together.

      As for belonging, don’t worry about that! I need you on my side of the couch I plan to hide behind for the Nerf war. My preferred weaponry for this is a Nerf Zombie Strike Hammershot. You don’t want to be on the other side of that bad boy so you’d better be back here with me!

      I hope your family eventually adjusts to the reality that you have discovered about yourself.

      Some people experience outright rejection from their families and there’s not much to do about that but move on.

      Other times it just takes some time for them to adjust; you’ve known about it a lot longer than they have. They may sort of see you as rejecting your gender (when you’re actually accepting the gender that is inside of you) and they don’t know what else you might reject about them. So they have fear they don’t know how to articulate and often that comes out as judgment and standoffishness.

      This season is about peace and love and reconciliation. So have patience, peace, love, and forgiveness inside you, and eventually the people who value those things will respond by treating you the same way.

      Many hugs. Now, pass me some of those Nerf darts.

      Dad Reese

      • Kate says:

        Thank you so much for your reply and for the words of encouragement. I’ll try to remember those things.

        And I’ll definitely remember to stay out of the way of the Zombie gun.

        *runs behind the couch* Here’s some darts. 🙂


        Love, Kate

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