Thursday, November 26, 2020

Things I'm Thankful For Thursday // 11.26.20

A special "Things I Love" this week to highlight the things I am feeling most grateful for.

These Turkeys

I could not be more grateful for the extra time with my people over these challenging times. I am even more thankful that we all still like one another. Admittedly, I was worried about how things would play out with the hubby (who used to travel a couple times a month) working from home 24/7. Turns out, now that a (very) little travel has picked up again, I very much dislike his absence. The girls have transitioned to the online academic platform without really missing a beat. I try to spend time (daily) in a headspace of thankfulness for these gifts. I am fully aware that difficult times may lay ahead so I want to enjoy and celebrate the way we are making today as enjoyable as possible.

Trader Joe's Holiday Items

Surely, I am not the only one who geeks out at finding "treasures" at the grocery store. I don't remember when the transition officially happened, I just know that at some point in my early adulthood, going to the grocery store became an enjoyable outing, rather than a chore. It was probably right around the time that I began to appreciate the music --or maybe it was during the chaos of "two under two" when I could escape the house for someplace quieter and orderly. In any event, I still enjoy grocery shopping --especially at Trader Joe's. They always do a great job with the seasonal specialty items --and the PLANTS. Bonus. From frozen toaster pumpkin waffles to "holiday greens" in the floral department, TJ's is delightful. Here are a few of my favorite finds this year: Christmasy stems, boozy truffles, chocolate bars from around the world, beauty advent calendar.

Coffee & Kringle

Speaking of TJ's favorites, the Danish Kringle tops the list of our holiday go-to purchases. We begin all of our Thanksgiving and Christmas mornings with a warmed slice of this magical breakfast treat. The neighborhood gourmet grocery sells Kringles for $22. Trader Joe's offers them for $8. They freeze well --which is a bonus because they also tend to sell out. 

The Library's Online Catalog

I will never tire of shouting my love and gratitude for the public library. It was only within the past few years that I took the time to understand and take advantage of the e-book offerings. My (11 year old) Kindle e-Reader is always full of best-sellers, notable books, award-winners, and trashy goodness --and I read them all for free. I have access to a huge catalog of literature, fiction, biographies, series, audio books, and everything in-between. I never even have to leave the house to enjoy any of it. These days, it's easy to apply for a library card, access the electronic book selections, and download titles to your e-reader. If you haven't done this yet, I don't know what you're waiting for. 

{photo via Vermontville Township Library}

Youth Sports

I'm thankful for youth sports. Always, I'm grateful for the lessons in teamwork, goal-setting, comradarie, and winning/losing gracefully. I know that problem-solving, physical health, and mental well-being are all improved through the participation in athletics. Especially now, during Covid and 100% remote learning, I'm especially grateful for the social opportunity my girls are able to enjoy by being a part of a team with their peers. 

Foodie Night Texts

If you've been reading along, you already know how much I love and appreciate my "Foodie Night" gals. When quarantine began back in the spring, my friend Sarah put together a text group of neighbors who all enjoy cooking. As neighbors, we had all met one another already and we each had different degrees of contact/friendship. From the days of isolation, boredom, fatigue, and recipe burnout emerged a sharing of ideas, inspiration, tips, discoveries, humor, and so much love. Not a day goes by without one of us tapping into our group to share a recipe, ask for an ingredient, send a funny meme, offer support, or celebrate a personal moment (big or small). While we are basically all on the same block --for obvious reasons, we don't really see a lot of one another. Our Foodie Night text chain has brought our friendships closer even while we are physically apart.


I am so thankful for plants. Perhaps it's a sign of middle-age that I even notice indoor greenery let alone, appreciate it so much. Plants make people (me) happy. I used to believe that I couldn't keep houseplants alive. What I've learned is that to a certain degree, that's still true. Some plants are divas and need a lot of special attention. Other plants get upset when you give them too much attention. What I've learned is that a lot of plant-parent success comes from finding the right lighting in your home, buying the right plants for the amount of light you do have, and figuring out a simple watering schedule. You may lose some (many?) along the way, but the joy of seeing a new leaf emerge feels bigger than you might think!

Once you find a corner with great light, shove everything in it!

Thanksgiving Takeout

In case you missed my post last week, while I love the Thanksgiving Holiday for (usually) bringing family and friends together to take note of the good things we have to be grateful for, turkey is perhaps my least favorite dinner protein. The fact that it takes so much fuc&ing work has pushed me over the edge. I'm OUT. Thankfully, we have discovered smoked turkey to-go from our favorite BBQ establishment. This year, we picked up all the sides too! Happy eating (without having to do any of the cooking)!

Midwood Smokehouse for the WIN

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  1. Same about turkey! My least favorite protein also!!

    Your girls are getting too grown up. They are so beautiful, perfect combo of you and Greg. <3

    1. :) So grown up. And one of them is taller than me already!

  2. Agree with the bonus of Thanksgiving this year being 6 instead of 12 for dinner! No turkey, just the breast -- shoved in the oven and 2 hours later -- voila! Best and juicy darn protein eva! And no work. Time spent on more important things like my mom's famous chestnut stuffing and molten lava cakes -- 1 1/2 hours of cooking total is fun and doable!

  3. I love this! Yes: scratch the whole Turkey bonanza. Not worth it. Your mom’s stuffing sounds incredible. Have you tried oyster stuffing??