Even though Thanksgiving was over a week ago, I’m just now feeling like I’ve digested it all. You too? I thought I’d share a few snaps from our first Thanksgiving as hosts, SoCal-style! Among the many, many things I’m thankful for? The table and chairs that our dear friends “The Ewings” let us borrow to host our party of eight.
This holiday was spent with my hubby’s side of the family visiting from San Francisco and Georgia, along with a few friends, a doctor and a doctor in training ( handy in case of T-day emergencies!). We kicked off cocktail hour in the parlor (a.k.a our living room) with a few Lemon Maple Smashes, recipe courtesy of Sweet Paul Magazine (and yes, that is a dalmatian mask wearing a Holly Golightly sleep mask presiding over chit chat – why, is that strange?).
After getting our guests sauced and starving them (my trick for making anyone thankful for my cooking!), we moved to the dining room for our feast. Since I had asked my Mom every question under the sun before Thanksgiving about how to cook everything, and because I was surrounded by really good cooks, I wasn’t nervous about Thanksgiving dinner – just excited. And while nothing is hard to do per se, it is a lot of preparation and coordination — and standing on your feet. Not only do I have a greater respect for elite athletes, but for my Mom and Mami-in-law, who always seem to host these holiday dinners with such ease.
I was also incredibly thankful to my darling hubby who cleaned the turkey (there are some things in life this bird just can’t handle), to my brillz brother-in-law for the Brussels sprouts and my M-I-L for making the all-important gravy (truly, what is Thanksgiving dinner without the gravy?). It was a real team effort. Not to mention our friends who brought sweet potato souffle (and now I’m wondering what I actually contributed? Hmmm…Vision?).
By the time dinner was served, I was le pooped (someone’s not used to standing for hours, I won’t point any fingers SELF, yes, you who sits and types all day), but the group gave a resounding 14 thumbs up. Even though I forgot to serve the cranberry sauce I’d so cleverly made the day before. Oops. Thanks guys (and thanks to my dear hubs for snapping these photos)!
Even though I don’t like pumpkin pie one lick, I found myself compelled to bake a few of them, along with some mini pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting (which it seems I do like). Did I mention our oven doesn’t really work? Baking side by side, one pie was burning and one was severely underdone. I’m extremely grateful for my Mom’s idea to get a roaster, so that the turkey didn’t do the same (you throw it in and voila, five hours later, it comes out all juicy and yummy — I highly recommend it! — afterward we browned it in the oven for those who like crispy skin and your turkey to look like a Martha Stewart magazine cover). Fortunately, we had more than pie, as my M-I-L makes a killer chocolate mousse.
After Thanksgiving, we had a really lovely weekend, from dream car-spotting at the LA Auto Show and along Rodeo Drive to listening to Wagner at Walt Disney Concert Hall to meeting up with great friends and having potato pancakes at The Red Lion Tavern (a nod to my hubby’s German family). We also took a trip to The Getty, where the architecture and views are as amazing, if not more so, than the art.
If you haven’t yet been, I highly recommend it. It’s free and you get to ride a fun tram to the top…
While taking in amazing city views!
Speaking of great views, we also took a little road trip up to Santa Barbara, where we popped in for lunch with my pal Oprah in Montecito. She makes the best Moscow Mules!
Thank you to our family and friends for spending Thanksgiving with us, to my side of the family who I’ll get to recreate this with on Christmas Day and to you, dear readers, for letting me share it with you. And, of course, to you Oprah for always being there for me!
p.s. If you enjoy my photo sharing and want to see more, please join me on Twitter, where I share pics often throughout the day!
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[Photos by kellygolightly]
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