Giving Thanks.

You know what the good thing is about always being a week behind?  You guys thought you had ready every last Thanksgiving recap, but no – there is still one more!  But I can’t just skip it because these are some of my favorite posts to look back on month (and years!) later.  So here we go – our day of thanks!

Have I mentioned here before that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday?  I’m sure I have, but I’m telling you again.  I love Christmas through and through, but it doesn’t get better than Thanksgiving.  The cooking, the National Dog Show, the pumpkin pie, the second serving of pumpkin pie – THE best. 

I did all our shopping and planning early in the week, but I didn’t actually start any cooking or prepping until Thursday morning.  We slept in late and enjoyed a lazy morning in our pajamas. 

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The boys played in the playroom together while Casey and I got started with the cooking.

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Knock on wood, but I’m amazed at how independent Cullen is these days.  He will happily play in his playroom and do puzzles for several hours without much adult interaction. 

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Occasionally, the tickle monster stops by…

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Feeling grateful for ALL the members of our little family. 

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While the boys played, I got to cooking.

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We hosted and cooked Thanksgiving dinner the year that Cullen was born too, and it is one of my favorite holiday memories.  It’s been so long since I spent a whole day cooking, and it was so nice to just be home as a family with no real agenda or schedule.

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Casey is a really good cook, and I love the rare chances for us to spend time cooking together.  We made a KILLER pumpkin pie this year, and I had hoped to post the recipe in time for the holiday, but no dice.  Next year, I promise!

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I had turned the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on for Cullen to watch in his playroom, and at one point I heard him shouting and yelling for me to come in. 

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He had spotted some familiar friends rolling down one of the floats.  So cute. 

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I have such sweet memories of that first Thanksgiving with Cullen, and this year I couldn’t stop thinking about how thankful I am for Graham.  It is so amazing to be blessed with two sweet boys. 

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Someone didn’t want to be put down during naptime, but the cooking needed to continue!  Babywearing for the win. 

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Cullen went down for naptime of his own, and not long after our long-distance guests arrived!  Casey’s parents came to spend the holiday with us and finally meet Graham.  Such a treat!

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They got a chance to get to know Graham while big brother snoozed.

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And once he woke up, it was all smiles. 

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This guy cannot get enough of his grandparents.  Lucky kid. 

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Around 4pm our friends arrived, and Casey and I got to work putting the final touches on our Thanksgiving meal.  Around 5pm, it all hit the table.  Glazed ginger carrots…

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Angela’s Lentil Walnut Mushroom Balls

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Skin-on mashed potatoes…

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Orange-cranberry sauce…

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Sourdough stuffing with fennel and capers (my favorite!)

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And roasted Brussels sprouts – yum.  Sadly, Graham did not appreciate these.  :/

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Table set and ready to go!

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Sadly, Graham had the world’s biggest meltdown the minute the food hit the table, so I spent most of our dinner bouncing and shushing and trying to calm him down.  But I was just happy to have had fun cooking, and to share all our food with people we love. 

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Grandparents who flew a long way to join us, and a family I am so thankful for every day. 

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And Seattle friends who have become a second family to us out here. 

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Finished off our evening with delicious homemade pumpkin pie – gingersnap crust for the win. 

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I shared my slice with a hungry little turkey.

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I ended my day feeling very full of both food and love.  I love Thanksgiving because it is a fun day of cooking and family time, but also because it is a day where I am reminded of all that I have to be thankful for.  And this year, that feels like an awful lot. 

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Happy Thanksgiving to all of you, too!