Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

This busy Thanksgiving weekend knocked me flat. But it was wonderful.

Thanksgiving looked a lot like last year, except with the addition of my beach ball belly, swollen feet, and 80 degree temperatures, and I was generally a little more tired this time around. I didn't take as many pictures as I would have liked - I mostly sat chatting with our guests, a cold drink in hand, and my feet elevated. But as this holiday weekend winds down, I am thinking about all the things I am grateful for right now. A husband who brings me multiple servings of mashed potatoes, rubs my feet, and sings to my belly. Parents I don't just love, but actually really like - my parents are our friends. A mother-in-law who injects stories and music into every gathering (and planned me the most amazing shower -- more on that soon). Silly Thanksgiving games, including turkey trivia and Thanskgiving Scattergories. The softest Australian Shepherd who snuggles up next to you, gives you kisses, and loves you unconditionally. A beautiful celebration of our baby and tons of wise parenting advice at my shower on Saturday. A visit from our hilarious Norwegian friend David. A bounty of leftover cheese and crackers. And pie. I don't have photos of all of these things, but they exist.
{after dinner chatting}

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

The turkey is in the oven, our house smells divine, we're eating yogurt parfaits, snuggled up in soft jammies, watching this hilarious movie. 

I can't believe we'll have a little one this time next year.

So much to be grateful for and I'm thankful there's a holiday to celebrate it. Hope your weekend is filled with all the things and people you love.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Noted on a Friday

{rainy day pho}
It was a whirlwind birthday week and truth be told, I could use a drink right about now. It's been a great few days, nothing bad has happened, but I feel like I've been going, going for the last two weeks and would love a smooth and relaxing cocktail on this chilly Friday evening. A warm bath and fall-scented candles will have to do. What are you up to this weekend? We have our second hypnobirthing class tomorrow (I love it) and then I'm planning to nest -- re-arrange, clean out, and make space in our home. Then we'll be meeting up with old friends and doing some major grocery shopping on Sunday. With out-of-town visitors, Thanksgiving, and my baby shower (!) all in the next 10 days, I can't wait to spend this weekend chilling out and reenergizing. I hope you enjoy. xo

Some photos from the last couple weeks...

Tooling around on my parents' golf cart.

Sweet surprise from Flav.. an assortment of heavenly cupcakes.

Birthday morning.

Guiri sleeping on my shirt.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Thanksgiving - 2014 Blueprint

{2013 planning}
We are one week from Thanksgiving, friends, and I am getting excited to host again. We'll have a relatively small party this year, with just 6 people, but I'm excited to use this weekend to start the shopping and prep. Re-visiting last year's Blueprint helped, so I'm doing it again this year. This may be of no interest to anyone else, and after hosting for many years I could probably pull together a decent Thanksgiving in 6 hours, but I love the holiday scheming and dreaming, so here goes.

This year's Menu / Who's bringing what

Cider-Brined-And-Glazed Turkey (the most mouthwatering, fall-off-the-bone recipe there is)
Apple, Sausage, and Parsnip Stuffing (make half unless you're feeding an army)
Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes
Clinton Beans aka Green Bean Casserole with Gruyere and Criminis
Double-Dutch Mac and Cheese with Chard
Yams - Decided not to do this year because I am the only one that eats them
Cranberry Sauce - buy pre-made at Trader Joe's
Silvia's Famous Enchiladas -Flavio's mom is bringing
A really good salad -- Flavio's mom is bringing
Dinner rolls - my mom is bringing
Pumpkin Pie with Spiced Whipped Cream (making 2 this year as one went so quickly)
Apple pie - my mom is bringing
Wine - red, white, sparkling - various guests are bringing
Sparkling water and limes for me
Flavio will be mixing this year's signature cocktail: Poinsettias !

So far I have:
Done nothing except write this post and delegate food for guests to bring.

Tomorrow I will:
Make my grocery lists.

Sunday I will:
Do the first round of grocery shopping
Make and freeze my pie crusts
Cube and dry bread for stuffing
Make sure Flav picks out festive beer

On Monday I will:
Work all day :(
Spend the evening making our annual Thanksgiving trivia game
And maybe come up with one other table game -- I thought these mad libs looked fun

On Tuesday I will:
Make one last grocery stop
Do all the prep -- chop, measure, store
Brine the turkey Tuesday evening

On Wednesday I will:
Make the pies
Clean the house
Set the table
Buy fresh flowers, gourds, and other decor
Make the mac n cheese
Make the stuffing Wednesday night

On Thursday I will:
Wake up early, put on music, stuff and get the bird in the oven
Peel and make mashed potatoes
Make the Clinton Beans
Bake remaining stuffing
Make spiced whipped cream for pies
Reheat the mac n cheese
Take Guiri to the park and exhaust her so she is not a psycho when everyone comes over
Watch movies throughout the day, revel

Most importantly, I plan to be conscious of the meaning of the holiday. It's so easy to get caught up in the rush without stopping to slow down, feel grateful, savor, and enjoy family.

Some related links:
Photos and re-cap of last year's Thanksgiving
The ultimate guide to Modern Thanksgiving Etiquette
Last year's signature cocktail, Cranberry Margaritas
One of my favorite quotes on gratitude
An essay: It's decorative gourd season, motherfuckers

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A Birthday Bump Update: 26 weeks

Today is my cake day and it has been a regular Tuesday, but my birthday always makes me feel different in the best possible way. After a busy weekend and Monday/Tuesday, I'm excited for Flav to get home so we can go out for a fun dinner and to see the very classy Dumb & Dumber To. I'm 34 which means I've officially reached my mid-thirties. Woot! I know people say your twenties are the best time of your life, but I definitely prefer my thirties, and this pregnant birthday feels incredibly special.

I haven't done a bumpdate recently because despite my rapidly expanding belly, there isn't much new to share from my last report at 22 weeks. I'm still feeling really good. The baby is still measuring big (I'm terrified this is going to be a 10-pounder!), and his/her kicks have me wondering if this little one is a soccer player already. I know I've already said it, but I've never felt better or more exhilarated in my life. Now on to dinner and a big slab of cake. :)

Friday, November 7, 2014

Noted on a Friday

Greetings from Vegas! We got here yesterday and we're looking forward to a long weekend of relaxation with my parents. It's likely our last trip here before the baby comes, so we fully intend to soak up the comfort and be the carefree "kids" for maybe the last time. We spent yesterday evening chatting with my mom about all things pregnancy, labor, and baby, and I can't believe I'm going to be a mama-bear myself very soon. Is this really happening? I feel simultaneously ready and terrified. Happy weekend. xo

Eggy, sweet pan de muerto, via Tijuana and my mother-in-law.

Somebody doesn't mind daylight savings. Or my pregnancy pillow.

Mario, Luigi, and the Princess on candy duty this Halloween.

Flores para los muertos.

Requisite Dairy Queen stop on the way to Vegas.