Thanksgiving Thoughts

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends! And to all of my international friends, please go make yourself some stuffing and potatoes and join in on the celebration 🙂

So far this morning, I have been running around like a mad woman trying to get everything prepped and ready for the gang to get here. The turkey is roasting away, the potatoes are peeled, the appetizers are set, the desserts are made, and I finally put some presentable clothes on. Now, it is time to count my blessings.

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Thanksgiving is the time to give thanks. So many times throughout the year, I [and many other people] forget how fortunate they really are. Here are some things I am thankful for…

1. My family: They are truly amazing. They are the most supportive, nonjudgmental, funny, crazy, silly, and loving humans I know. Maybe I am biased…but they are great! Love you guys!

2. Living in Southern California: Seriously though, this place is paradise. Today it is 90 degrees. In the middle of November. While I have never been able to experience a white Christmas, or the changing of the leaves in the Fall, I truly do love the sunshine. The environmentalist in me is kind of worried about this kind of weather though. Global climate change!!!!!

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3.Completing my bachelors degree in May: I have one more semester until I am finished with my bachelors degree. Now I have to find a job…Lets pray for that to happen very soon!

4. Health: Health is SO important. We take for granted the everyday things we are able to get done. This past week, my mom has been hit with a serious case of vertigo for the first time ever. It has been awful and really taken a toll on her. It made me realize how important taking care of ourselves really is!

5. Internet shopping: I am NOT happy about all of the stores opening on Thanksgiving day. I think its sad actually and do not want to participate. Although, I am a crazy Black Friday shopper. I usually don’t even buy anything, but I love to be out with the masses! Its so exciting! This year though, I really wanted to buy a DSLR camera, and Best Buy had a crazy sale on one. It turned out that they offered the same sale online, so I woke up early in the middle of the night and got it ordered. Mission accomplished!

6. You! Anyone who reads my blog means so much to me! I am a new blogger and just getting a start, so anyone who cares to listen makes my hearts smile! Thanks so much. It means more than you could imagine.

There are so many other things that I am thankful for, that I could be typing for days on end.

Happy Thanksgiving or Thursday everyone. Remember to reflect on everything you are thankful for.

Be sure to check out the other thoughts!

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WIAW- My Thanksgiving menu

I cannot believe Thanksgiving is tomorrow. It seems as if just yesterday was Halloween.

Thanksgiving is a very stressful holiday for me.
1. It’s food centered.
2. It’s meat centered
3. It involves a lot of people.

Last year, I didn’t plan anything in advance and then figured out when it was time to eat that my options were pie, mashed potatoes, salad, and rolls. Ummmmm yeah. It wasn’t the best situation. My family tends to enjoy their meat on this holiday and want to put meat in EVERYTHING.

Bacon in the green beans. Turkey broth in the stuffing. Turkey drippings in the gravy…

So this year, I am more than ready. Instead of focusing on the anxiety it might cause me, I have learned to plan ahead.

What will be on my Thanksgiving plate:

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Banana Streusel Muffins

Cauliflower steak with Mushroom Gravy from Vegan Richa

Simple vegan stuffing from Minimalist Baker

Thanksgiving Loaf from Fat Free vegan

Mashed cauliflower from Detoxinista

We will be having a lot of family over for Thanksgiving day, so it will be a full day of cooking and eating.

Happy [early] Thanksgiving!

Check out the other eats today!

Is it half empty or half full?

What is it about moms and their ability to teach you lessons and give you advice without even meaning to? Is this just some super power that you automatically get when you become a mom? Or is there some pill you have to take or something? Somebody please let me know, because if/when I ever become a mom, I will be seriously lacking in the Super Woman category…..

 

Anyways, lets have story time first.

The other night, I was sitting on the couch with papers and notes scattered everywhere while I was frantically trying to study for economics and trying to keep my head from spinning in circles while I was waiting for dinner to cook. My mom was sitting on the couch flipping through a Tiffany and Co. magazine while watching TV. Why we were sent a Tiffany magazine is beyond me, but we will roll with it.

After a few minutes of flipping through, she started dying laughing. Like the uncontrollable I cannot even talk and I am going to pee in my pants laughter. Over a Tiffany magazine. I was so confused…and pretty irritated as well because I was getting distracted. After she finally contained herself and could get some words out, she let me know that they were selling and ice bucket for $5000. I still didn’t get it. Ya, so??

She found it hysterical that someone would purchase an ice bucket for $5000, when we find it crazy to buy a $200 bracelet. My ice bucket is from Target in case you were wondering, and it was probably less than $10. We’re super fancy down here.

Her laughter and humor taught me a lesson though. Life is all about perspective. I don’t even bother looking at magazines like that, because I end up getting mad at myself. I question why I am not successful or rich enough to be able to purchase things like that? I feel inadequate and inferior to other people and I am constantly comparing myself to others. Her, she just laughs it off.

After my frustration of her disturbing me, I too started laughing. If I was super rich, I sure wouldn’t spend it on little things like an ice bucket. Well maybe I would. Im not uber wealthy so I can’t really speak. Maybe one day….. 🙂

And then, because one lesson is never enough, she taught me something else the next night.

After coming home from dinner, I asked my mom how it was and what she ordered. She explained to me that she basically ate all vegetables for dinner, while also smirking and trying not to laugh. My mom would never eat all vegetables when going out to dinner. While she isn’t unhealthy in any way, she does love her sweets, and potato chips.

I wasn’t catching on quickly, so she further explained what she meant.

She ate an order of onion strings (fried onions) followed by a wedge salad (topped with bacon and blue cheese dressing) finished with a baked potato (stuffed with cheese and butter) and a few bites of steak. All vegetables?

While this probably wasn’t the healthiest meal, there was something to be learned. I am constantly worried about what I am eating and trying to eat well at all times. I have to get my 5 servings of fruits/vegetables in a day, I try not to eat too much sugar, etc. My diet is far from perfect, let me say, and I LOVE sugar, but I constantly worry about it. My mom, on the other hand, lets things go most times. She enjoys her life and doesn’t stress about the little things. She eats well most of the time, but allows herself to let loose occasionally. That is definitely something I could work on. Life is about perspective. View things with optimism and your life will be that much better.

We followed up that conversation with a debate about potatoes. Are they considered a starch or a vegetable?

Moms. What would we do without them? 🙂

Are you an optimist or pessimist?

 

Being Appreciative and Putting Things In Perspective

I have dreamed of living in another country for quite some time now. For a very long while, I was fascinated with Switzerland. I don’t know why. I have never been there, or known anyone special from there, but it sounded fancy…and fun. The beautiful mountains and greenery, the language. Ughh. Everything.

And then I moved on. I moved on to longing to move to Spain. then Italy. England. France. Thailand. Anywhere! I just wanted to travel someplace and experience all of the different cultures the world has to offer. Traveling has always been a dream of mine, although I haven’t really been able to pursue that passion…YET! Someday soon hopefully.

Anyways, after I started reading all of the blogs from authors in different countries, I realized how lucky I really am to be living in the USA. And more importantly Southern California.

There are so many things readily available (read:peanut butter options) that many people here don’t even realize is a luxury.

Aside from the material things, so many people, myself included, take life for granted. Health, happiness, school, a house, a car, are all things that many people DO NOT have.

This past weekend I went to see the movie, The Good Lie, starring Reese Witherspoon. It is a film about the Sudanese refugees that spend their childhood running away from war and in a refugee camp, before coming to America.

This film was eye-opening and shocking all at once. Having food, water, my family, clothing, etc. are all things I don’t even recognize on a daily basis to be thankful for. There are tons of people in the world who live life in terror, or fear.

Besides informing me of the tragedies that occurred in Sudan, this film made me count my blessings. Every single one of them.

If you haven’t seem the film, I highly recommend it.

Happy Monday. Be thankful for your family. Your friends. Your life in general.

Thinking Out Loud- 10/16/14

I was supposed to have this post up by yesterday morning, but that didn’t go as planned. Oops.

So, we have Thinking Out Loud Thursday Friday instead. On to the thoughts….

1. My school had the Homecoming football game, and my dad begged me to go with him. If there is football, he wants to be there. We went to the game, but the only reason I agreed, was because the halftime show was complete with an awesome fireworks show. I am like a five year old kid when it comes to fireworks. LOVE THEM!

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2. I have a ridiculous addiction to frozen yogurt that stemmed from a buy one get one free card I have had for the past few years. This year, they didn’t put out a new one, so my addiction has been left hanging for the past few months, since my broke college student budget cannot afford the crazy prices. BUT…I finally found a new BOGO card. My week got a whole lot better!

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3. I went to Dave and Busters for my mom’s birthday this past weekend, and my dad ordered the biggest salad I have ever seen. It was easily 2 feet long and 6 inches wide. He ate the entire thing! He was channeling his inner Adam Richman from Man vs. Food I guess. I was amazed.

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4. Starbucks iced green tea was the only thing that got me through 11 hours of school yesterday. Lots and lots of tea.

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5. Today is Friday! TGIF! Have a great weekend.

Check out what everyone else is thinking today.

Life Is Precious

Life is precious. There is no better way to put it.

After the passing of Joan Rivers (RIP Joan) last week, it really got me thinking. Life is not to be taken for granted. Although you may not think about it everyday, but you are never guaranteed a tomorrow.

I am a person who is always thinking in the future.

 

What will make me happy tomorrow? I will start eating better then… I will be happy when… I will be successful when this happens.

No. I need to change my mindset. What will make me happy right now. This second? Even though it isn’t pleasant to think about it, there may not be a tomorrow.

In other words, how will your loved ones remember you if this was the last time you saw them. I had a dream last night where I was in a fight with my mom. I woke up horrified and upset. If this were the last time I saw my mom, this is not how I would want our time to end.

Last year, my neighbor was killed bike riding by a young girl texting and driving. I always think about his family and how they were left without him. Did they say a proper goodbye before he went on his leisure ride? Did they tell him they loved him?

Life is not a privilege. It is a gift. It can be taken at any moment.

Practice living in the moment and not focusing entirely on the future. Do things that would make you feel good right now. Take time to tell loved ones and friends how much they mean to you. Call grandparents, parents, siblings, etc. that you don’t see as often to have a quick conversation. Never underestimate the power of words.

I was just watching Joan Rivers a few weeks ago on her VMA and Emmy Fashion Police show, and a few days later she was gone. Nobody could have predicted that.

Take time out of your day to spend time with people important to you. It can’t hurt in any way, it only helps.

Happy Sunday. Go spend the rest of it making memories with people important to you.