Friday, December 6, 2019


Happy Friday, friends!  We've had a wild week around here trying to get back in the swing of school, trying to keep an eye on all the great sales for my Deals Group, pumping out everyone's Etsy orders, attending Matthew's very first band concert and helping him with a pretty huge (and SUPER ANNOYING) project at school.  Gah, I HATE school projects, y'all.  I still have no idea how to do a "Works Cited" page in 2019.  Is that really necessary?  Why can't you just put the web page and be done?  Or maybe just "".  #amIright?

But I I tend to do.

Let's get back to something that was way more fun.  Like our Thanksgiving!

Every year we host Thanksgiving at our house.  I think we've been doing it for 10 or 11 years now.  Both sets of grandparents come plus my brother, sometimes my grandfather and our sweet niece, Scarlet.  Craig's parents bring her with them when they come so she can spend time with the boys.  She's 10 and Matthew and Mason are 11 and 9 so it's perfect.  They LOVE when Scarlet comes!  This year, Scar's whole family came so the boys got one extra girl to hang with too.  Sassy Saylor!

Flashback to 2011 when they were so little!!  This was my favorite age of all of them!  If I could live forever with a 3 and 1 year old, I'd do it.  Baby Mason and Baby Matt Matt were precious and throwing a girl in the mix once or twice a year was so sweet!

Image may contain: 3 people, child and outdoor

So every year, my mom and mother-in-law each bring a side dish and a dessert and I take care of the rest of the food.  For a girl who does NOT like to cook, I straight up kill it at Thanksgiving.  #ifIdosaysomyself  Just because I don't like to cook, doesn't mean I can't. ;) I mean technically, I'm just in charge of side dishes and the ham.  I leave the turkey to Craig because he loves to mix a ton of random ingredients and create new rubs or marinades or whatever. 

 It makes him feel like quite the chef.  And my mom or mother-in-law deals with the dressing. (Stuffing? I'm honestly 50/50 on which one it is.)  I'll be super nervous if that responsibility ever falls on me.  So that leaves me with mac-n-cheese, corn casserole, loaded mashed potatoes...things like that.  Not super hard but very important.  I don't eat ham or turkey.  I'm all sides.  Sides are my Thanksgiving.

This year, Craig's parents and Craig's brother's family came in on Wednesday and my parents and brother arrived on Thursday morning. It was a full house!  And Craig's parents brought their dog, Sadie.  How sweet is she?!

 I prepped as much food as I could the day before.  Every single year it gets easier and easier as I pick up new prepping as much as I can the day before.  It's a lot of work and a lot of organizing but it's so worth it!  

Sidenote: My first Thanksgiving that we hosted here was terrifying.  I felt like I had so much to prove as a real hostess in our forever home and I wanted it all to be perfect.  Craig was finally out of the NFL and we were living within driving distance from our family for the first time ever.  I was so stressed out and feeling so much pressure (that I was totally putting on myself).  I scoured Pinterest for all the best recipes and I was so proud of that first Thanksgiving dinner...until 5 seconds after we started to dig in and my father-in-law asked where the cranberry sauce was.  

Face.  Meet palm. #dang

I don't eat that stuff so it totally slipped my mind.  I swear I was almost in tears.  Thankfully, my neighbor had an extra can and saved my butt.  And now, every year, my mother-in-law and mom both bring extra cans.  hahaha.  Never again will we be without cranberry sauce.  And we always have a can or two that sit in our pantry all year long as well. 😂 #justincase

This year was completely uneventful and we were all eating by 1:00.  Yay!  Before we eat, we always gather around, hold hands and Craig says the blessing.  And it's my favorite part of our Thanksgiving.  I hate getting sappy but I do feel all emo when we're all standing there holding hands and asking for blessings on our families and safety for our troops.

Then we dig in!

Mason jumped on the mac-n-cheese immediately and I don't blame him.  I used a new recipe this year and it was delicious! 

Mimi and the kids set the Thanksgiving table for us each year so we get a few hours of Thanksgiving and Christmas in the dining room. ;)

My mouth is watering just looking at all of this again!

Craig's mom makes these delicious mini pecan pies every year and they are amazing.  I love pecan pie but I've only been a fan for the past couple of years.  Up until then, I had never even tried it.  Why?  I have no idea.  Fun Fact?  I've still never tried pumpkin pie and have absolutely no desire to do so. 😂

Mason scooped out half the pan of mac-n-cheese basically before the prayer was even over.  I helped him out by giving him a smaller portion and telling him he could always come back for more.  His eyes are always bigger than his stomach.

And then there's my big Matthew who won't eat a stinkin' thing and it's a whole story that I won't share on the blog. He's 11 now and I respect his privacy.  The rest of this he's fine with.  But I'm not going to go into all his weird food quirks. ;)

If you're wondering if I was staying all Keto on Thanksgiving, just look at my plate.  hahaha.  I haven't done Keto in the past couple of months but its because I met my goal weight and have been able to easily maintain it.  So yes...there were carbs galore on my plate. ;)

(PS:  I did go full Keto the Monday after Thanksgiving to drop a few of those carby pounds I gained.  All gone though 4 days later!  A new Keto post is coming SOON!)

(Seriously, my plate is embarrassing.  hahaha)

And now, random pictures from the day. :)

The cousins warmed up by the fire.

The fathers-in-law hung out in the living room.

Family pics!

Brother, Mom, Me and Pops.  I feel completely unworthy of such a loving family.  (Brother is single, by the way.  No ex-wives, no kids, 35 in January, dog lover... Wouldn't mind a sweet sister-in-law.  Just sayin'. Haha.)

Yes, I wore my slippers all day long but I cut them out of the pictures because they ruined my look. #realtalk

The next day, we had more family come see us!  Craig's Uncle Rusty and Aunt Kathie stopped by to visit along with their daughters, Cassie and Emily, Emily's cute kiddos and Uncle Rusty's funny little dog, Arnie.  I love these people so much and from Day 1 I felt so welcomed by them. They are definite favorites!

How cute are all these cousins?!  (It's VERY hard to get a good picture with everyone looking...)

They decided to try the stairs.  A little better!

And oh my gosh.  Is it like pulling teeth to get all the men in your family off their tushes and standing for a picture that takes 3 seconds too?  Craig, Uncle Rusty, Craig's Dad and his brother, Wade.  See.  That wasn't so hard, was it boys?

All the girls snagged a picture too. 

And that was pretty much it.  We had a great Thanksgiving with home-cooked food, canned gravy (that's how we roll), crazy kids, and lots of laughter.  I call that a win. :)

Last year, we celebrated Thanksgiving with a big family trip to Disney World!  I am one of those who really feels the magic of Disney so it was probably my favorite Thanksgiving ever.  Others in my family will disagree and tell me that Six Flags is way better than Disney...and yet I choose to forgive them. ;)  But last year will be so hard to top in my book!  We've got Universal Studios on our Bucket List now but for me, it will be so hard to live up to my Disney experience!

Outfit details can be found HERE.

Happy Weekend, girls!!  If you have any questions, just let me know!

Linking up with ErikaNarci and Andrea for Friday Favorites and Della Devoted for High 5 for Friday!


  1. Sounds like a lovely family time. Since we tend to host everything every year, I like that we have been traveling out of town the past couple Thanksgiving with some of the family. By the end of the year I get a little burned out!

    1. I'm hoping for a Universal Studios Thanksgiving next year! ;)

  2. Use the References tab on Word to make life easier creating a Works Cited page. Just choose "Insert Citation" when your insertion point is where you want it to be cited in the paper, then add new source. That will open up a new window and you can choose where he got his source from (journal, web page, newspaper, etc.). Fill out the information. Then when you are all done inputting the the citations, go to the end of the text, click on Bibliography and you can choose to have it be a bibliography, works cited, or references. Then Word will create it for you. Much easier than trying to type it out yourself in the correct format. :)

  3. Sounds like a great Thanksgiving!! The food looks amazing. About your brother, if he’s looking for someone to date maybe you could sign him up for Singles Day on Kelly Stamps blog (Kelly’s Korner). She is always looking for available guys (there are usually way more ladies than guys). Have you ever heard of that? She’s been doing it for many years and has had about 16 couples get married! I think she is planning to do the next one in a few months!

    1. How funny!! I'll have to dig into that a little more. ;) Thanks!!

  4. That sounds like a wonderful thanksgiving! I began hosting the very first year we had our first home and hosted for just about every year for nearly 15 years until deciding I needed a break. I took two or three years off and this was only our second year hosting again. I like to do all the dishes and work myself too but these past two years I have asked people to bring sides and dessert just to take a bit off of my plate. I don't eat cranberry sauce or gravy and have been known to forget both! My husband (who loves them both) is in charge of making sure I don't forget them ever again.

    1. Talisa9:44 AM

      Amanda, are you still satisfied with your hanging jewelry organizer?

    2. I really love hosting (for now anyway...haha)! It's our only option if we want to celebrate with both of our families at the same time since they both live in other cities/states. And yes, delegating other dishes to people is key! I'd be lost if I had to do the stuffing/dressing myself and I've never made a pecan pie in my life. Pretty sure I'd mess that up. ;)

  5. Talisa, I'm not sure which one you are referring to? I've got a handful of hanging jewelry organizers in all different styles. 😂


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