thanksgiving 2014

IMG_0421 thanksgiving. sigh. i just love it. it has the best feel to it, doesn't it? you know what i mean? the day has a feeling all its own. and this year, since we hosted the grand occasion, it was extra amazing because that thanksgiving feeling in the air was met with the aroma of turkey filling every nook and cranny of our home. that's the best.

ben and i woke up early so that he could prep the turkey and she could get the stuffing all ready for the bird. p.s. we had way too much stuffing. a good problem to have. hello, leftovers! after the turkey was in and working its magic, we took some time to get some exercise in. you gotta work up an appetite for the carbfest to come. ben was festive and did a "planksgiving" yoga which i thought was pretty great. and i got in some cardio resistance and mat work. you know, muscular structure meets interval training. i figured muscles would burn more stuffing than running alone... we'll see.

and then, it was time for the holiday staples: the parade and dog show. we don't have a television around these parts but when we decided to host the big day, we knew we needed to have something. you gotta see santa come to town! and the boys need a little football. we figured that we wouldn't be the hostesses with the mostestess if we didn't have a tv. and so, we hooked ourselves up with a smart tv plus digital antenna. perfect. easy to pull out for special occasions such as this. and who knows? maybe we will get to host an oscar's party this year... just think of the fun!

so, with our new toy hooked up in the corner, we gathered around and cozied up in our comfy clothes and slippers (and elinor stayed in her pjs) and watched the parade. there is something about the parade that gets me every time. and this year was a bajillion times better because elinor really got it. she pointed and yelled at the balloons and clapped at the cheesy broadway performances and danced along. too much fun.

after all that excitement, we put elinor down for a morning nap to try to squeeze in a bit of rest for her before the family arrived and festivities began. people started arriving around 12:30 and we all chatted and chilled while the final foods were finished. by 2:00, everyone was here and we did all the last minute things required to get a dozen dishes on the table. those last ten minutes before the meal are all hustle and bustle. and so much fun.

twelve seats were filled and we stopped for a moment to consider thanks. to consider gratitude. to consider the meaning of the day. the food was blessed and we passed all the yumminess. turkey and gravy and mashed potatoes and two types of stuffing and cranberries and green beans and brussels sprouts and sweet potato bake and pomegranate slaw. with festive punch to wash it down. family and conversation and so much food. and in a blink, the meal was over. we all sighed and leaned back and moved the belt buckle a notch... you gotta make room for pie. my mom made her amazing pies - apple and pumpkin and pecan - and after cleaning up the dishes and getting some coffee started, we once again gathered at the table for some slices paired with fresh whipped cream and/or ice cream. thanksgiving is really something. and it is made extra fantastic by a family filled with creative and talented cooks and bakers. we love to prepare food and eat food and share food. so this is a good day for us.

i hope that you had a fantastic day with friends and family. i am so grateful to God for this life that He has given me. i am overwhelmed by His goodness. and thanksgiving is such a tremendous reminder of all He has done. His provision and mercy and grace and abundance.

and now, for some pictures from the day.

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and, for a walk down memory lane...

thanksgiving 2013 and thanksgiving 2012