When we were Thankful

By Heather Toner

Thanksgiving this year was actually pretty chill.  The boy and I migrated to the valley to spend the day with my parents, brothers, aunts, uncle, cousins and a few furry friends too!  The food was delicious, the house looked beautiful and the company was second to none!

I’m so thankful to have so much family around me and to be able to spend an afternoon relaxing, eating, and laughing with them!  

It’s that time of year…

I think all weekends should be 4 days long.  Think about how much happier and well rested we’d be if that were just the norm?  I know it’s a long shot, but sometimes I really wonder why things are the way they are and if they could ever change.  Like why did it become that weekends were going to be 2 days?  Why not 3?  Why are work weeks 5 days?  Why not 4? 
We spent Thanksgiving Day at my Aunt Christy’s house where there was food, drinks and football a plenty.  Then we stayed with my parents for a couple days in the valley.  My younger brother was home and we all hunkered down for a marathon of leftovers and movies.  
Then the boy and I headed back home where I proceeded to unpack all our Christmas decorations.  We put up the tree, which is now lit and tinseled.  All that’s left to do is trim the tree with our assortment of funky ornaments from Christmases past.  I’ve been working on a few different crafts and projects which I hope to share in the weeks to come, but I also tried to spend a bit of time this weekend vegging out and watching silly Christmas movies.  Here’s a few snaps of our apartment decorations…

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on what you’re thankful for and to be honest, I probably could have done a bit more of that.  I am so incredibly fortunate and am so lucky to be living the life I lead and in the weeks to come I really am going to try to keep that at the front of my mind.  
Oh yeah, and one more little tidbit from the weekend – My cousin Kaitlyn cut my hair!  I now have full on fringe!  
I’m still getting used to it and the boy is not the biggest fan, but I think she did a really amazing job, don’t you?  

Happy Thanksgiving

From the boy and I to you, hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend!  I am so thankful to have this little online space and interact with you all.  I am taking a long weekend off, but I’ll be back next week with all kinds of Christmas goodies!  Until then, Happy Turkey Day! 

Thankful

I spotted this Blog Hop Link Up over on Rouge & Whimsy and I knew I simply had to take part!  So much of my time is spent thinking about what I don’t have, what I haven’t achieved and it’s nice to take some time to concentrate on just how fortunate I am in my life.  Here’s just a brief list of the things I’m grateful for…
Rouge & Whimsy
1.  The Boy – He is just the best creature ever to grace this planet; plain and simple.  And I really, really love him!  He does so much for me – He works so hard, he makes me laugh and he is so kind and considerate!  He’s my best friend and my reason for getting up in the morning.  I know I am extremely lucky to have met him and feel so fortunate for every day we get to spend together.
2.  My Family – They are the people who have always been there for me.  They love me unconditionally and are just so important to me.  I love them and they bring so much richness to my life.  We help each other through thick and thin and we always have fun together!
3.  My Health – I’ll be honest, I’m a little bit of a hypochondriac, so I often think that there might be something wrong with me when really there’s nothing to worry about.  But when it really comes down to it, I am so thankful that I am able to move and dance and play.  I’m incredibly grateful for my health! 
4.  Music – It may seem like a strange choice, but music is so important to me.  It helps me every single day and inspires me over and over.  It’s an easy thing to take for granted, but it’s the source of so much joy in my life, I really am so thankful for music! 
5.  Gel Toe Pads – There is no way on earth I would still be able to dance on pointe if gel pads hadn’t been invented.  They take away so much of the pain of pointe work and while I’m glad I had to go through the barbaric traditions of dancing on pointe with no padding (definitely made me stronger) now-a-days I am thrilled that I ca dance on pointe minus the blisters! 

Thanksgiving Lanterns DIY

I know the temptation is to go full on Christmas already…I mean decor is up all over town, stores are already playing Christmas music, yeah I know.  But in the spirit of Thanksgiving, here’s one more autumnal themed craft for you – My third and final variation of the mason jar lantern concept, this time with leaves!

This craft is so simple.  Literally all you need are some fake leaves (you can buy packages of these at most craft stores)  mason jars, candles and some Modpodge.

Modpodge the back of your leaves and adhere them to the jar, working your way around and layering them to your liking.  Add a coat of modpodge over the top to help keep the leaves attached.  Add your candle to the jar and your done!

 I tried one with the leaves totally flat against the jar, and another where I let the tips of the leaves pull away from the jar, giving it a more natural feel.  Not sure which I prefer, but they both would make a festive centerpiece for your thanksgiving dinner table!

I am so thrilled that we have a short holiday week.  I just love having extra time to spend at home with my family! 

Pumpkin Poptarts

Truth be told I’m not much of a baker, or a cook of any kind really.  I have a few tasty meals in my arsenal of recipes, but ultimately I am just not all that interested in cooking.  Some people like it, it’s the thing they enjoy doing after a hard days work.  For me it’s just the opposite, I loath the prep, the inevitable mess and the clean up.  
But I decided to forget my hatred of the kitchen when I saw this delightful post over on A Beautiful Mess.  Written by the talented co-owner of Red Velvet, Emma Flannigan, this easy homemade pop-tart how-to looked too good to pass up.  So I have given it a go.

I love the taste of pumpkin and being a perfectly festive flavor, I tried my luck at making some pumpkin pop-tarts.  
All you need is puff pastry dough, pumpkin pie filling, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Simply mix 1/2 cup of pumpkin with 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg in a bowl.  Cut out heart shapes from defrosted Puff Pastry with a cookie cutter.  Place pumpkin mixture on half of the hearts, cover with the other half and crimp edges with a fork.

Bake the tarts on an ungreased cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry has puffed and the edges are brown.  After cooling, paint the tops of the tarts with melted butter and sprinkle with nutmeg and powdered sugar for an extra kick of sweetness. And that’s it!

I have to say, this was a fast, easy, inexpensive and delicious sweet treat to make and I am totally planning on making a whole bunch of these and bringing them to Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday….I know my family is going to really be thankful for my contribution!