Thanksgiving Survey (WIAW), Black Friday Shopping List, and Elf for Health Day 2

Let’s be real here. If I had posted a recipe today, there is a 0.0001% chance that you would have made it over the holiday weekend. So, to save both you and I the trouble I forewent a recipe for this WIAW and instead filled out a fun Thanksgiving survey that I saw on Liv Lives Life’s blog! Along with answering the questions, I also included some pictures and links to some allergy-friendly Thanksgiving recipes to keep up with the theme of WIAW, hosted by Jenn at Peas and Crayons.

1. Do you have any Thanksgiving traditions?

Every year since I was born (except for one year when my dad had to have surgery) we have visited my dad’s side of the family who live about 3 1/2 hours away. Although this year will be quite small compared to normal, I know that we won’t be going for too many more years now so I will treasure each moment.

2. List at least three dishes that are on your family’s table every year.

Turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing.

wiaw-thanksgiving-turkeymashedstuffing

Gluten-Free Cider-Glazed Brine Turkey // Mashed Cauliflower // Paleo Cranberry Flax Stuffing

3. Do you prefer pumpkin pie or pecan pie?

Pumpkin pie.

wiaw-thanksgiving-pumpkinpie

Snickerdoodle Pumpkin Pie

4. Will you watch football on Thanksgiving Day?

Not if I have any choice in the matter 😉

5. Do you plan to exercise Thursday?

Most likely not, except for perhaps a lot of walking.

Holiday_Hustle

Or maybe my short Holiday Hustle Thanksgiving Workout that I made last year!

6. Do you prefer ham or turkey?

Well, because of my pork allergy I would have to go with turkey! Actually I would go with turkey anyways.

7. Will you shop on Black Friday?

Yes. Well, now it’s actually almost like a Black Thursday…. But yes 🙂 (Check out my wish list below!).

8. Do you take a nap on Thanksgiving?

Perhaps on the long car ride home, but usually not!

9. What’s one dish that probably won’t be on anyone else’s Thanksgiving table?

Lemon Meringue Pie. There are a lot of pies that one associates with Thanksgiving like pumpkin, pecan, apple, etc. Lemon meringue is probably not among that list though.

wiaw-thanksgiving-lemonmeringuepie

Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Lemon Custard

10. Do you share the things you are thankful for at the dinner table?

We don’t actually eat at a dinner table for Thanksgiving and instead gather in the many different rooms of  my grandma’s house. And we don’t share what we are thankful for either, just a bunch of old stories!

11. Do you cook the whole dinner, just the bird or bring a side dish? 

We bring bottled water. Does that count? 😉 Because we have to drive so far nothing we make would last the trip. Plus, whenever we insist on bringing something everyone else insists harder that we don’t. Ha.

————————————————————————————————————

As I mentioned above, I am going Black Friday shopping again this year as per tradition! If you’d like, you can check out my wish list from last year and what I actually bought on Black Friday.

wiaw-thanksgiving-black-friday

I haven’t had much of a chance until the past few days to check out the Black Friday ads, but I’ve already spotted multiple things that I am considering:

We are in desperate need of a new waffle maker as our current one is literally being held together by two #2 yellow pencils. A new George Foreman would also be great since the nonstick part is wearing off on our other ones. And we have been looking to buy a new blender/food processor forever since neither of ours can crush ice or frozen fruit very well for smoothies, so a Ninja might be a good pick.

wiaw-thanksgiving-appliances

I was surprised to find some great deals on sheets! I refuse to use anything except for flannel because I get cold so easily, and these two that I found were less than 20 dollars each.

wiaw-thanksgiving-sheets-collage

More practical items on my list! My boots from last year are basically ruined from so much use and every time I do attempt to wear them my socks end up getting soaked because the soles aren’t sealed anymore. So basically I need a new pair of boots. Preferably none in the hundreds of dollar range. I’m thinking $20 is more my speed. Along with boots I also need a new pair of cheap gloves as the tips of my other ones have worn out and you can see some of my nails. Classy.

wiaw-thanksgiving-bootsgloves

DVDs are on my list every year and they are my only guarantee for Black Friday shopping. Simply put, they are WHY I go Black Friday shopping. I love rewatching my favorite TV shows and movies so if I can get them cheap all the better!

wiaw-thanksgiving-dvds

While it’s almost a guarantee that I’ll be getting DVDs during Black Friday, on the opposite side it is very unlikely that I will be purchasing a new camera. This is kind of my “Dream List.” While all of the cameras shown here are around $100 (about $70-140), my cellphone is still working alright for pictures. It’s just become a real hastle lately since it won’t let me upload pictures via a usb cord anymore and I have to email myself pictures for every post I want to make. And sometimes it takes hours for the emails to go through. Plus my camera memory card is full. So ya.

wiaw-thanksgiving-camera-collage

————————————————————————————————————————-

Yesterday was also Day 2 of Elf For Health, and the challenge was to unsubscribe to e-mails and work on clearing out our inboxes. The goal was to clear away at least 3 subscriptions and I managed to do over 10 I think. I still have three other e-mail accounts to work on which will be super easy now with the new service I discovered called  unroll.me. Basically it’s brilliant and you should check it out if you have an insanely cluttered inbox like me.

mimm-alot-elf4health

——————————————————————————————————————

Questions for you:

Answer some of the Thanksgiving survey questions above!

What is/would be on your Black Friday shopping list? 

Have you cleaned out your email inbox lately?

***How would you all be interested in a giveaway for the new Happy Herbivore cookbook that I talked about a little while ago? Just a refresher, it is called Happy Herbivore Light and Lean. Since I was part of the pre-release tour I have been offered the chance to host a giveaway for a free copy. I don’t want my blog to be all about giveaways though so I thought it would be best to ask you first. It will be just for U.S. and Canadian readers (sorry to everyone else!). What are your thoughts?***

Holy Buckets of Rain Water Batman (WIR)

As you can tell from the title of my post, it rained quite a bit today! Thankfully I was in my car for most of the heavy downpour but when I had to make a quick stop into Whole Foods after work I got absolutely soaked.

friday-rain-car-collage

At Whole Foods I bought some large bags of non-GMO frozen peas, organic bananas, unscented dish soap (all for me) and some packs of Applegate’s organic sausages (for my family).

For 2.00 off any Applegate product you can go to Facebook and “Stage a Weinervention.” Ha. 😉

friday-rain-weinervention

Skipping back to the weekend before last, I took a trip to Big Lots and did a little hunting for my mom. She is the director of my church’s two week summer reading program and this year their theme is Book a Trip for a Reading Adventure. Usually I get to be in charge of snacks…

friday-rain-snacks

But since I’m away from home this summer I’m having to help from afar! At Big Lots I hit the aisles looking for any snacks that the kids might like that fit the theme- I took pictures of the whole aisle of international foods and photobombed my mom’s phone 🙂

friday-rain-big-lots-snacks

Not to worry though because I totally made up for it by buying both my mom and brother some birthday presents there as well!

friday-rain-presents

As I mentioned on Wednesday we weren’t able to have my brother’s birthday party last weekend because he got strep throat, but this weekend hopefully we are able to have it. I have been put in charge of making the cake. Here is my overambitious goal:

friday-rain-cookie-cake

I didn’t do much cooking when home except for soup for myself and these pancakes for my dad:

friday-rain-pancakes-swirl

I still need to work on the recipe more before posting. I tried making a peanut butter and chocolate swirl but once flipped the drizzles became more crispy than delicious…. Not exactly what I had in mind 😦

Now for an update on some of the movies and books that I’ve been watching/reading!

This past weekend I watched two new-to-me movies: The Pelican Brief and 21 and Over.

friday-rain-movies

The Pelican Brief was really good and I loved Julia Roberts with Denzel Washington.

friday-rain-brief

21 and Over was… interesting? Overall it was pretty funny, like The Hangover for a younger age group. The images were a little too graphic and vulgar for my taste as well as the rest of my family. The main cast of characters did an excellent job though. It had some of my favorite up and coming actors- Skylar Austin who played Jesse in Pitch Perfect, and Miles Teller who played Willard in the newest rendition of Footloose.

friday-21-3

As far as books go, I finished The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen last week. Before that I also read a few others that are a little kiddish I admit, but still good- Megan Meade’s Guide to the McGowan Boys by Kate Brian and Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter.

friday-rain-books

I finished the audiobook version of Bossypants by Tina Fey last week as well (I listen to that on my rides to/from home as well as on my commutes to work). This week I checked out Heat Wave by Richard Castle and have been loving it so far! It took a few minutes to get used to the author’s voice reading the thoughts of Nikki Heat, but it’s really addicting.

friday-rain-audiobooks

Almost as addicting as the show itself of which I am now on episode six of the second season. In case anyone else loves Castle you should know that a lot of the episodes are on YouTube!

Speaking of Castle (how random is this post?) I want to squeeze another episode in before I go to bed so it’s time to go. I hope you all have a wonderful Friday!!

*This post will be shared next week with Meghan from Clean Eats Fast Feet’s Week in Review.

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Has it been raining where you live?

What good deals have you found at Big Lots?

Have you ever watched The Pelican Brief or 21 and Over?

What books have you been reading lately?

Do you ever listen to audiobooks on long car rides?

What I Ate and What I Bought

Wow. What a long and wonderful weekend!

I hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving break (if you had one) and had fun Black Friday shopping! I haven’t talked to most of you since last week’s What I Ate The Day Before Thanksgiving WIAW. It’s been too long.

So, let’s jump right in and I’ll give you a recap of what I ate over the weekend… and what I bought!

First up, What I Ate! The following are a collage of some of my better looking meals during my break, and some when I came back this week:

Breakfast

Banana Protein Bread with Cranberries.

Lunch

Roasted Kale, Carrots and Tuna Salad.

I just washed some pieces of kale and sliced a few baby carrots. I roasted everything under a medium broil for about 5-7 minutes until the kale was crispy and the carrots were softer but still had a crunch. (About 4 minutes in I also added some tuna on top to get warm).

Then I served it all one on big (Christmas) plate with a side of grapes!

Snack

A new squash to add to my collection! This is buttercup squash, which resembles acorn squash, and is “supposed” to taste like a sweet potato.

It was good, but tasted nothing like a sweet potato.

How to Cook Buttercup Squash in the Microwave

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe buttercup squash
  • 1 plate
  • 1 sharp knife (I actually used a butter knife and it worked!)
  • 1 spoon
  • 1 microwave

Directions:

1. Cut the squash in half.

2. Scoop out the seeds and place one half on a plate.

3. Microwave the squash for 8-12 minutes and check it with a fork. Microwave for a few more minutes until soft, tender and done.

Dinner

After my lunch containing chicken (today), I just wasn’t feeling too good and decided to refrain from meat for dinner. Instead I had two big plates of salad with shredded carrots, and a lot of rice!

This ended up being a good decision, because while I still didn’t feel very well after the rice, I’m positive my stomach would have been much worse if I had tried to chow down on grilled chicken like normal.

Snack

Recycled picture of grapes.

Now that all of that food is out of the way, onto the Black Friday deals and What I Bought!

Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of everything that I bought while I was still at home, so stock photos will just have to do! They’re probably better than what my silly old phone would have taken anyways…

On Thursday morning we left our house at 6:40 AM (was supposed to be 6:00 AM) and started our 3 1/2 hour drive to my grandma’s house. We arrived just as my uncle and aunt pulled in, and our two families all sat down together in the living room. Classic chatter and stories ensued, then it was time to pray and have lunch!

I ate a light meal before we got there of chicken, grapes and carrots (there was nothing for lunch that I could eat). I just sipped on a glass of water while everyone else gorged on holiday delicacies. Ha!

When it was time to leave, we said goodbye and headed out to find something to do until we went Black Friday shopping.

My parents decided to watch a movie.

Skyfall!

It was very good and intense. Not quite as good as Casino Royale, but not nearly as dragged out or as confusing as Quantum of Solace.

Then we headed to Wal-Mart just a few seconds away. We got there at 7:00 PM and after walking around for a few minutes we all dispersed to our respective lines. My mom went to wait for a fire pit, my brother went to wait for his PS3 games, and I got in line for the DVDs! And what about my dad? Oh… He just walked around and chatted with each of us numerous times to save us from boredom. So nice.

Last year there were no lines for items. It was just a big rush of people as soon as it reached midnight. This year though, there were lines plus a COP! No one around me got rowdy (or required handcuffs), but there were a few teenage boys that were just getting on everyone’s nerves. No matter how many times the woman in front of me told the boys that there was a line, they just kept on whispering back and forth that they would push us out of the way if they had to. In response everyone around me just smashed together so that there wasn’t any room for them to get through. In the end, they probably didn’t get anything because the line was so long. It started in the produce section and reached all the way back to the freezer section more than 15 aisles away!

When it was finally 8:00 PM the Wal-Mart employees let a few people at a time into the DVD area. It was all very civilized. No pushing, shoving or fighting!

We were limited to just 10 DVDs, so I picked out some and went through them later with my brother to decide which ones we really wanted.

I bought Fast Five, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: The Last Stand, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, and Water for Elephants. Each movie was only $1.96! (Except Fast Five which was $4.96… but totally worth it!).

My brother ended up buying two video games (not sure which ones) and two DVDs: Sherlock Holmes 2 and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.

My dad was also nice enough to pick me up a vacuum cleaner when I was waiting in line! At first he brought over a red one, then after a slight hesitation on my part I confessed that I “really” wanted… anything but red. I was totally not being picky; he asked which I preferred! I ended up with a purple one, which I love! I’ll let you know how it works when I give it a try.

Overall we were quite successful. Everyone got something that they wanted (my dad bought some new tires later on), and no one got hurt! All of the other shoppers were so nice. Year Three complete!

————————————————————————————————–

In my next post I am going to talk about some not-so-great things that happened on Thanksgiving concerning my digestion. Also, I’m going to be sharing my next plan in healing my stomach, so stayed tuned!

————————————————————————————————–

What did you eat/buy on Thanksgiving?

Any crazy family stories to tell? Any crazy Black Friday stories?

Do you have any digestive problems? Have you ever heard and/or tried the GAPS diet for healing?