Ree Drummond Spent Thanksgiving At Her Late Father-In-Law's House

It might feel like Thanksgiving is mostly about making enough mashed potatoes to feed an army and fretting over whether the turkey will come out juicy. But at the end of the day, the thing that really makes the holiday special is that it's a time to gather with relatives and other loved ones. And while getting together can bring a lot of joy, it can also be bittersweet when someone we care deeply about has recently passed away. The Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond and her family have recently experienced such a loss. This year, Ree and her family had their first Thanksgiving since the death of Chuck Drummond, her husband Ladd's father (via People).

Chuck, a cattle rancher and one of the largest landowners in the country, died on November 4. In a blog post, Ree shared that her father-in-law was "feeling pretty miserable for the past two or three months." He passed away "peacefully in his sleep," she said. Ree finished the post by expressing how grateful she was to know him: "We love you so much, Pa-Pa. Thank you for living such a full life, and for letting us all be a part of it." But even though Chuck Drummond passed away before Thanksgiving, the Drummonds knew how they would honor him — they decided to spend the holiday at his house.

The Drummond family celebrated 'a quiet, bittersweet day'

According to his obituary (via, two of the things Chuck Drummond was most passionate about were ranching and his family. He was also a big fan of the Thanksgiving feast. In a recent blog post, Ree Drummond called it "his favorite meal of all time." So she and other family members had that meal at Chuck's house because "he would have wanted that." Joining her and her husband Ladd were several of their children and other relatives, though her son Bryce, her daughter Alex, and Alex's husband Mauricio weren't able to attend.

A 2013 Parade article presented a Drummond Thanksgiving as a time of relaxing, trash-talking about football, and showing gratitude for sources of joy, even if that meant giving thanks for Iron Man. This year, The Pioneer Woman described Thanksgiving as "a little bit of a quiet, bittersweet day." She enjoyed cooking in Chuck's kitchen and "could honestly feel his presence." She also shared that, "almost as if Chuck was there encouraging [her]," she whipped up a delicious giblet gravy that ranked in her top three.

Ree got a kick out of watching Ladd carve the turkey, which he apparently learned how to do after watching Bobby Flay joke about how not to do it. Overall, even though the day followed a sad loss, Ree Drummond and her loved ones enjoyed spending that time together.