Thanksgiving Party II

Last year, Carl and I started a really fun tradition.  Because he was going to be gone for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Valentine’s Day, I decided we would celebrate a “Friendsgiving” feast a little early.  We picked a day in late October that I was off and he was around, and we had so much fun that we decided to repeat it.  Carl’s mom was in town, so we had an excuse to party!


DSC01258This year, our friends really came through with the food.  We provided the turkey, mashed potatoes, and green bean casserole and they brought the rest.  There was a huge spread–barbecue meatballs, garlic cauliflower, cranberry stuffing, and ALL. THE. PIE.


We’d been expecting a huge typhoon, so a lot of people cancelled last minute.  People asked if we were going to cancel, but we’d already defrosted the turkey–the show must go on.  As other people frantically shopped for typhoon prep groceries, we hunkered down and prepared a feast.  I figured whoever could make it would be there, and if nobody came, we’d still have the basics covered.


I love that in Okinawa, every party quickly becomes a baby party.  Teagan is currently super into touching everyone and everything, and luckily the other babies were on board.  When her babyfriend Sojourner showed up, the two sweet girls instantly grabbed each other’s faces–adorable!  They rolled around on the floor and inspected various price tags and pillows.


DSC01268When it was finally dinnertime, Carl made a sweet speech about being grateful for family.  We loved hanging out with our Okinawa family and having Laurelee here to party!

This year, I’m grateful for a sweet family and a warm home.happy reading



An Early Thanksgiving

I’ve talked a lot on this blog about Carl’s upcoming trip, and in a lot of ways I am so excited for him! He is going to be able to do so many things and travel to new places–it will be a great opportunity for him.

One thing that I’m NOT as excited about is the face that he is going to miss several holidays.  He’ll be gone for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and Valentine’s Day– all the big ones.  To make up for at least one of the holidays, we had the idea to host an early Thanksgiving dinner with our dearest friends here in Okinawa.  Even though it was almost a month early, everyone got into it.

We haven’t really had anyone over to our new house yet, and of course I was a little nervous.  When the count kept growing, I was scared there wouldn’t be enough food.  In the end, about twenty people showed up, and there was more than enough food for everyone!

The nurses I work with love to eat and share food together, so I can’t claim credit for all of this feast.  It was more fun than I’d expected to have so many friends over and so many kids!

Once the sun went down, we headed up to the roof and watched the ocean and the stars.  The kiddos loved the occasional airplanes flying past, and the adults loved the cool breeze.

All in all, it was a great day and I was so glad that we got to have a family Thanksgiving dinner.  It’s easy to be thankful with so much to be grateful for.


Currently reading: You Can’t Touch My Hair by Phoebe Robinson




Those loyal readers who are used to my usual philosophic, awe-inspiring posts can go ahead and take a break today–this post is about a sandwich.

I’ve been spending more time on the reader lately, and was SO excited to find “Ode to Bánh mì”, basically the author’s experience loving the delicious Vietnamese sandwiches and her family.  It was adorable, heart-touching, but more than anything, I was totally craving a sandwich.  Her ode also had me rethinking my life choices; if you can blog about sandwiches now, what was the point of anything else?

I guess I was feeling a little bit philosophical after all.

For those who know me, like really know me, you know that sandwiches are my jam.  I have been known to order a Jimmy Johns sandwich a time or too too many, to the point that the delivery man started to anticipate my call.  I have hand-crafted some towering alfalfa sprout, cucumber and hummus sandwiches, always one big bite away from toppling.   I once gave my mom a loaf of bread for mother’s day.

I began to search on the internet and found that more and more people had written about how much they love sandwiches too!  One amazing blog, Baguettes and Drumsticks, is entirely dedicated to “foodism”.  There’s a sandwich checklist with the criteria to make it an excellent sandwich, and one of them is “made by my mom” (somewhat optional).  How could I not have thought of this sooner?

These days, I’m cooking what I like to call casually vegan.  I use a lot of vegan recipes because it helps me to get enough veggies.  But every once in a while, you need a fried egg with your vegan breakfast quinoa and it’s oh-so-good.

To get recipes, I follow several vegan cooks on Instagram, and I really enjoy seeing what they’ve cooked up.  I once heard someone say that they didn’t want to see pictures of what someone had eaten on the internet, and I was baffled! This is truly one of the most relaxing things to me.

I love looking at the food, thinking about how it was assembled, and wondering how I could create it at home.  Now that our garden is doing better than ever, I spend each day proudly watching our little sprouts turn into future salad–now sandwiches!

This week, I was amazed and gratified to find yet another way to connect with food lovers and widen my circle of internet friends.

Sandwich lovers, unite!