Editor's note: Tight end **Owen Daniels* will be providing periodic diary entries for HoustonTexans.com to give fans insight into the life of a rookie draft pick.*
It's Thanksgiving weekend and it doesn't feel like Thanksgiving at all for me. Usually, I'd be traveling home from school on Wednesday and my family would host Thanksgiving for all the family in the Chicago-land area at home. But I'm here and I have to work.
I will be at Kevin Walter's house today, which is great, but I'm sure everyone understands it's different than being with your family. I'm definitely going to miss my Thanksgiving meal at my house. My dad cooks a turkey really well and my mom makes some awesome sweet potatoes, they're so sweet they're like candy. I'm going to miss breaking up the bread for my mom's homemade stuffing. Prepping up for dinner the day before brings back one of my favorite Thanksgiving memories.
One time my sister and I were in charge of breaking up the bread while mom went on an errand. We ripped up the pieces of bread, and when mom came home we found out they were too small. Long story short my mom was not too happy about it and there was bread all across the room. We never messed that one up again.
I will definitely miss the post-Thanksgiving activities that have become a tradition in my family. On Friday or Saturday, if the weather is good enough and everyone's around, we all go together and cut down our Christmas tree from a tree farm that's semi-close to our house. We've been doing that for as long as I can remember. There was only one time in the past 10 years that we couldn't go cut the tree, and we had to go buy it at like a church or something like that.
But I'm on my own now, so I guess I have to start my own traditions. This year I think I'm going to buy a fake tree. I haven't had one in a while, so I don't remember how much different it is from a real tree. I'm sure it doesn't smell the same and it might be a little less maintenance since you won't have to feed it or clean up the pine needles. I have some lights and some garland, but I don't really have any ornaments. Most of the ornaments that we put on our tree at home are a collection of stuff that's been given to us or made over the years, and then some generic ones. I guess I'll have to start my own collection.
Enough of that, let's talk football. This past weekend was not good. I talked to Lee Evans after the game because we played ball together at Wisconsin. He had the most amazing first quarter I have ever seen. Two touchdowns over 80 yards in one quarter, it's unbelievable. I told him he didn't have to do that against us, he should have just waited until next week. Regardless, we still should have won the game. That's the worst when you have the game pretty much in the hand, pretty much locked up and they just steal it away from you at the last second. That's the worst. If you're getting your tail whipped, that's one thing, but that was rough. I haven't lost a game like that…I don't know if ever. We should have won that game, that's all I have to say.
I also talked to my old roommate, Jimmy Leonhard, after the game. He's getting married this summer and asked me to be one of his groomsmen. That was cool.
We get to go back to New York to play the Jets this weekend and hopefully this time we can come back with a win. More family will be at the game since my sister is driving down from Providence. Two of my uncles, Dennis and Phil, are going to be at the game. I'm not sure if Aunt Kara is going or not. I think I'll see all of them on Saturday. I mentioned it the last time we were in New York that I got to see my aunt and uncle and my cousins, which is great this time of the year since I'm missing out on family. [
Normally, my Aunt Kathy and Uncle Danny host Christmas Eve at their house, so we hang out and listen to "Mele Kalikimaka" by Jimmy Buffet. New Year's Eve has been kind of a spur of the moment thing for the last five years because we've been at bowl games. But this year my whole family is coming down for the last game against Cleveland and I'm hosting a big bash at my house. Aside from seeing my family, a bunch of my friends from school are coming down. It's going to be a fun time, as long as we win. That'll make it way more fun.