Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving!  Mine was a perfect combination of all of my favorite things.

It started out with a 4:30am alarm clock (not one of my favorites) in preparation for the Atlanta Half-Marathon.  I've done this race for a few years now, but it's always been just me running while the rest of the family enjoyed a lazy Thanksgiving morning at the house.  I've put the guilt trip on them multiple times that I'm the only person there by myself while everyone else's whole family participates in the festivities.  This year my persuasion finally worked and I convinced Dad, Mom, Royce (brother), and Erin (brother's girlfriend) to run the 5k while I did the 13.1.  It was a perfectly crisp and cool morning and I think fun was had by all.  Dad and Royce ran the entire 5k (a FIRST for both of them) and achieved very respectable times.  Mom and Erin walked/jogged the course and enjoyed it.  I finished the half with a time of 1:41.  It was 5 minutes off my PR at that distance, but overall, pretty close to what I was expecting running a conservative race given a nagging hamstring injury that has limited my running to once per week for a couple months.

After the race we brought ourselves home and enjoyed a HOT shower.  Nothing better after a race!  Then it was a mad dash to the food to fill our growling stomachs.  Mom made a delicious pot of soup that featured quinoa, beet greens, and assorted vegetables.  Served alongside were Great Harvest rolls and honeycrisp apple slices.  It was perfect post-race fuel and was enjoyed while watching the Macy's Parade that had recorded earlier that morning.

The afternoon featured lots of laziness, including reading, scouring the newspaper ads, and naps.  Dad also worked to diligently prepare and monitor the turkey on the big green egg.  It's a science and art-form that he takes very seriously!

Post-long run hunger crept in as well and was cured with some tasty snacks.
Snack Plate - Salmon Cheese ball with Triscuits, Seaweed snacks, Prunes, and Apricots

Dinner this year was unique - A Vegan Thanksgiving Feast (plus a not-so vegetarian turkey).  Mom carefully planned the menu to appease the hard-core traditionalists of the family (Royce and Dad) while also improving on the nutritional profile of the meal.  I believe it was a success on all accounts and got the seal of approval from everyone.
Mom hard at work in the kitchen preparing gravy

Thanksgiving Dinner 2011

Slow-Cooked Turkey

The Carving Master
Any chance you saved a piece for the well-trained dog?  Dark meat, please!
Featuring Great Harvest Stuffing Bread (seriously delicious!)
Veggie-Friendly Gravy

Sweet Potato Casserole

Roasted Root Vegetables

Green Bean Casserole

Cranberry-Orange Sauce

Jellied Cranberry Sauce 
Straight from the can - just for Royce!
What a meal!  Everything was spot-on delicious.  The turkey was by far the most moist and flavorful bird we've ever had.  Dad, you raise the expectations every year.  All of the sides were equally fantastic!  I love the fact that Mom was able to create a holiday meal that was nutritious, yet left us feeling as stuffed and satisfied as any prior Thanksgiving meal.  One thing that I can always count on when I come home to visit is amazingly delicious meals!

The entire meal perfectly arrange on a fall-themed table.  Let's eat!
My plate featured some of everything, plus a small second serving of roasted vegetables and dressing.
30 minutes later - I'd say I enjoyed the meal!
The evening concluded with the whole family spending some time lying flat on our backs to help digest the meal.  A little while later we managed to make a little more room in our stomachs for pumpkin pie.  And with that, Turkey Day came to a close.  

Bailey called it quits long before Pumpkin Pie.

From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!  I have many things to be thankful for this time of year, but these people are most certainly on the top of my list!

1 comment:

  1. Oh my GOSH I am starving just looking at this!! I cooked for the residents at Baylor today since Jake can't head home for the holidays this year -- mine was not near healthy as yours -- but I'll post soon :-)

    OH and to make you feel better Jake and his dad are the ones who ran pre-LBT -- and then Jake and I have -- no Turkey Trot this year sadly. Maybe next year Jake will have off. He is considering running the Dallas Christmas half in December. I hope he does actually.

    Oh and Jake's mom did give us a lot of crud from running last year -- and not hurrying up to NC to see fam. I laugh now, but it's hard to convince anyone else who isn't that involved! GREAT JOB on the persuasion this year!! I can't believe it was a YEAR ago we ran into you! It really seems a lot longer than that.

    Hope you got some good leftovers this weekend -- maybe some to take back for call nights!! (Thus what I have while Jake is on call tonight!)

    Happy Thanksgiving!!!!