On to the Next Holiday!

Happy belated Thanksgiving to all! Before we officially move on to the next holiday, which is only three weekends away (yes, really), I wanted to share a recap of my Thanksgiving – partly because it was such a fun/crazy time with family and friends and also because I can’t stop thinking about that meal. I wish we had ANY remaining leftovers. (We don’t.)

WEDNESDAY afternoon, Andrew and I packed up and hit the road for Nipomo, a small town in the middle of California’s central coast. Wine country at its finest.

120114 wednesday coastal drive

When you’re not driving along the beautiful coastline, you’re weaving between farms and vineyards. We passed ranches growing broccoli, kale and strawberries.

120114 wednesday nipomo

Nipomo is about an hour north of Santa Barbara and an hour south of San Luis Obispo. Andrew and I were the first to arrive so we settled in and waited for the rest of the bunch. It felt like the calm before the storm. I had a feeling things might get a little… chaotic.

120114 nipomo sunset

Chaotic was an understatement. It felt like in a span of 5 minutes, we went from 2 people sipping wine to 7 people bustling about, prepping food, making cocktails, playing shouting out Catch Phrase answers and tossing around a frisbee. And that was just Wednesday night.

120114 thurs crazy

THURSDAY morning, after making a cup of bulletproof coffee (and giving 3 others full tutorials), Andrew and I laced up our sneakers and went for a power walk. We knew we’d regret not getting some exercise while we had the chance. I actually continued on with a run after our walk. The nicely paved, smooth walkways in Nipomo were a treat compared to the death-trap sidewalks I’m used to in LA.

After eating a quick fried egg and a shower, I joined the day-drinking and food prep that was taking place basically in every spare crevice of the house.

120114 thursday action


120114 thursday barts

I started on a pumpkin pie, and while that was baking I washed and chopped 2 lbs of brussels sprouts for my side dish.

120114 thurs pie prep

120114 thurs brussel prep

Once the turkey was given a spice rub and bacon tie, it was ready for the BBQ, where it slowly cooked for about 3 hours.

120114 thursday turkey

Around 8pm, we all sat down for an epic feast.

120114 thursday meal

On the menu:

Bacon-wrapped Bananas
BBQ Turkey
Pomegranate Stuffing
Garlic + Rosemary Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Brussels Sprouts w/ Bacon
Roasted Sweet Potatoes + Squash
Lemon Pasta
Kale Salad
Mixed Greens Salad
Cranberry Sauce
Gravy, Gravy, and more Gravy

Apple Cobbler
Pumpkin Pie

120114 meal

In my mind, it was a perfect Thanksgiving meal. All of my favorite traditional dishes were present, as well as some welcome additions. Everyone really stepped up and brought their culinary A-game.

The FRIDAY after Thanksgiving is arguably better than the actual holiday; you get to eat a second Thanksgiving dinner (leftovers), but all the work is already done. We spent the day hanging around, going for walks, swimming, playing tennis and frisbee, and eventually driving up the coast to Oso Flaco Lake, where we hiked to the beach and played more frisbee.

120114 friday oso flaco lake


120114 friday frisbee

We returned home at dusk and promptly devoured all of the leftovers. Literally, all of the leftovers. Pies and all.

120114 friday leftovers

SATURDAY morning we gave the house a deep clean, said our goodbyes, and hit the road. Traffic heading back to LA was not bad at all, which is not usually the case after a long weekend. We were moving so fast, in fact, that we almost missed Santa Claus Lane!

120114 santa claus lane

What a perfect way to transition into the next holiday… Christmas! Today is the first day of December, so let the countdown begin. 🙂


Question(s): What was the best dish at your Thanksgiving feast? What are you looking forward to most about Christmas?

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