Thanksgiving 2011

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

Hi, friends! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Mine was great””lots of quality family and friend time, tons of delicious food and drink, and plenty of rest and relaxation. It was a successful holiday!

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On Wednesday afternoon, Mal, Murphy, and I hit the road to drive to my in-law’s house for the holiday. We managed to miss all of the Thanksgiving traffic (hooray!), so we arrived just before dinnertime. I never had a chance to eat lunch, so I was starving when I walked through the door. Thankfully, my in-laws had lots of snacks on deck! I munched on some chocolate-covered strawberries.

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And then some raw veggies with dip and a couple of glasses of white wine. I ended up snacking right up until dinner.

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All of Mal’s siblings were home for the holiday, so everyone pitched in to cook family dinner.

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Easiest way to cut parsley? Scissors! Great tip from my mother-in-law!

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On the menu: Spaghetti alla puttanesca (which we learned means “whore’s style spaghetti” in Italian), salad, bread, and more wine.

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After dinner, we spent the rest of the evening playing Pitch, which is probably my favorite card game ever.

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I also had some fun with these guys:

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And ate 3 million of these:

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Thanksgiving morning was pretty low-key. I ate breakfast (scrambled eggs + toast + coffee), went for a run (6 miles), and then puttered around my in-law’s house for a couple of hours. Meanwhile, Mal (and Murphy) put together his new snowboard rack for his card. (Murphy’s life is so hard. Look at that pathetic pug face!)

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Mal and I decided to split up for Thanksgiving dinner this year. He stayed home with his family, and I drove to my grandparents’ house. Thankfully, our families live in the same town, so we usually hit up both for holidays. Although, Christmas is always an adventure for us!

Dinner at my grandparents’ house was quite the family get-together– we had 24 people this year! You should have seen the dining room. It was totally packed! The set up sort of looked like this, but with four people sitting in the center. It was crazy and hectic, but fun and upbeat at the same time. I really love having a big family.

Dinner started with a Thanksgiving prayer and and a piece of blessed bread. (My grandmother got the bread blessed at church earlier in the day.)

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Our Thanksgiving feast included all of the fixings: turkey (regular and smoked), stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes, turnip, cranberry sauce, peas, carrots, and apple cider.

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My favorite dish was a sweet potato casserole that my aunt Linda cooked. I loved it so much, I ended up eating three servings of it. Sadly, I forgot to ask her for the recipe, but I’m on it. It was so delicious; I need to make it at home!

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Dessert was out-of-control. Check out the spread!

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We even had birthday cake!

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Naturally, I ended up dominating the desserts. I ate a piece of cranberry pie, a scoop of apple crisp, and three pumpkin spice cookies with frosting. Mmm!

After Thanksgiving dinner, I headed back to my in-law’s house for a gathering of friends. My drink of choice for the evening was CBC’s “The Great Pumpkin Ale.” I liked it a lot””hoppy, good body””but its flavor wasn’t spicy or pumpkin-y. Even still, I drank and enjoyed it.

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The evening included lots of laughs and ridiculousness””I wouldn’t expect anything less from our friends!

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And an intense 14-person game of Taboo! Team 1 (my team!) won! YAY!

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Murphy had such an exciting day, he zonked out on the couch during all of the Taboo commotion. I can’t believe he slept through all of the noise. We were so loud!

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Murphy was so exhausted!

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Not sure what’s on the agenda for today. Maybe some Christmas shopping? Although, I’m not sure if I want to face the Black Friday madness or get pepper sprayed (WTF!?!).

Question of the Day

What do you think of Black Friday? Do you participate? Is it worth the effort?

P.S. OpenSky is offering FREE SHIPPING from now until Sunday at midnight! Get your stainless steel straws, Vermont Peanut Butter, BIC Bands, Chia Charger nut butter, protein powder, Garlic Gold, and more!



  1. Happy Thanksgiving! I’m in Europe this year for Thanksgiving (my 2nd away from home) so I am missing out on all the Black Friday shopping. My mom and I used to go with coffee and fight the crowds… I loved it! I think it’s all part of the great kick-off to Christmas.

  2. Wow, that spread looks delicious! I’d be all over those chocolate covered strawberries. As for Black Friday, I’m more of an online deals sort of girl (where applicable in Canada), but for the first time I will be heading out electronics shopping (DSLR – finally!!!) I’ve scoped out my deals online so I just have to head to one store now! 🙂

  3. I always said I would never go Black Friday shopping, but last year my MIL convinced me, and it was QUITE the experience! I don’t feel like I need to go every year, but it was a fun experience. I’ll probably go every few years or if I find a really good deal, but I am not going this year. 🙂

  4. That spaghetti alla puttanesca sounds much nicer when it’s not translated. haha

    I’m not a fan of shopping on Black Friday. I prefer a very organized, calm shopping experience (which is why I can’t do stores like Marshalls) and will gladly pay more money to not have to deal with all of that craziness. Just isn’t worth it to me.

  5. What a perfect day for you and your family. I love the ‘blessed bread’…that is something I was more used to seeing on when I lived back south. A neat way to start a meal that we should be so thankful for!

  6. I’ve been staring at the first picture of the Thanksgiving spread to try to figure out what the gray mush-y stuff is in that little bowl in the bottom of the picture – enlighten me, please? Doesn’t look super appetizing… 🙂

  7. Sounds like a great Thanksgiving! For five years, I worked on Black Friday because I worked in retail. This is the first year I haven’t had to work, but I couldn’t bring myself to deal with all of the crowds. But there’s always next year!

  8. Happy Thanksgiving! Well actually, happy day after thanksgiving where the food doesn’t look as good as it did yesterday…actually it might look better!

  9. Wow! You certainly had a feast to be reckoned with!
    I never go out on Black Friday… I hit up Craftland (here in PVD), I like to give as many one of a kind gifts as I can.

  10. I SO do not do Black Friday! Crowds in stores drive me nuts and I also hate being hot in a store with my coat on. So…I love internet shopping! I’ll be doing Cyber Monday instead 😉

  11. Dessert table = amazing.

    I think Black Friday is unnecessarily stressful so I usually avoid it, but if I had more lil’ kids or electronic-loving friends and family to buy gifts for, I might brave the crowds. Most of my shopping is pretty low maintenance and for that, I’m thankful 🙂

  12. I’m going to keep the parsley tip on the back burning.
    That little girl and the birthday cake used to be me on Thanksgiving!
    Sleeping in on Black Friday and waking up to eat leftovers was so much more joyous than shopping with the loonies!!

  13. Hi there! Love the spaghetti story, that is what it means in Italian and it makes me laugh every time!

    I have been doing the Black Friday thing for 6 years now, and this year was the first time I didn’t have any “doorbusters” to get, so I didn’t even get out of bed til 7am. I was back and unpacked by 11, and that was including breakfast with mom! There are some great deals to be had, but I really go for the social aspect of it!

  14. Happy Thanksgiving. I did go shopping today after lunch and got great fleece jackets & hats to donate to a clothing drive my daughter is running at school.

  15. Looks like a great celebration with your family…love the pics and all the great eats.

    I wanted to do some online shopping for Black Friday but some sites were sold out of the goodies I wanted at the rock bottom prices. And I would NOT set foot in the stores…so sat this one out.

  16. No black friday sales for me. I took advantage of the great weather and rode my bike 35 miles through the south shore down to Humarock. So pretty!

  17. Thanks for the parsley tip. I usually roll it up into a ball and then start slicing them really thin. But I’ll try the scissors tip and see if it’s easier.

    I have a big family too and love all the commotion and celebration during the holidays.

  18. looks like a great holiday. that casserole looks amazing! and no, i dont participate in black friday madness. i went to gap the day before thanksgiving and nearly everything was 60% off! i ended up getting a ton. who needs black friday?! 😀

  19. by the end of thanksgiving i was so stuffed and tired that i couldn’t even think about going shopping! i guess if there’s something specific i want then maybe braving the crowds would be worth it….but i couldn’t just go to go.

  20. Taboo! Love that game–my suitemates and I play it all the time, sometimes even randomly at 1:30 in the morning when none of us feel like going to sleep. Question: what’s up with the iphones all lined up next to each other on the table??

  21. Looks like you had a fantastic Thanksgiving! 🙂 I set out this morning to do the whole black Friday thing and half way to my destination I was like, “what am I doing?!” I turned around and went back home. I did however, go back out later around 11 and it wasn’t at all bad. I managed to get a few gifts at great prices! And it was with my mom the second go round…which was way better than being by myself…;)

  22. Looks like an amazing Thanksgiving! I hope you get that sweet potato casserole recipe from your aunt because it looks delicious! Aunts always seem to have the best recipes. Mine makes a spaghetti squash casserole that I look forward to every Thanksgiving!

  23. I’m definitely against Black Friday. Tommorow is actually support small business Saturday, which I am definitely partaking in.

  24. What a fun Thanksgiving!!! I always think I am strong enough to endure black friday. I am not. Once I got up at 5 am, walked into Target, got scared and left. This year I was downtown Seattle picking up my packet for the half marathon on Sunday (yea!!!) and thought I would do some light shopping while waiting for my bus. I walked into the Gap, got scared, and opted for waiting for the bus in the dark and cold instead.

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