3rd Annual Baste Friends Forever Girls Thanksgiving

Sunday afternoon my bffs and I had our 3rd annual girls Thanksgiving. We look forward to this get-together every year- everyone brings their favorite dish (or 2),  and we play games, drink, chat, and eat. A lot.  Last year we had tshirts made, and this year, we took it to the next level with sweatpants- drawstring and loose for all that food, natch. ;)
Sporting our sweatpants proudly

 playing the name game

BFF=Baste Friends Forever

Buffalo the turkey

Ready to eat!

Blogging last year: My Thanksgiving 2009


Back to reality

It's back to reality today... I cannot believe the Arizona vacation and Thanksgiving have both come and gone! I hope you all had a wonderful week. 

My family trip was amazing.  There are soo many pictures to sort through-- 6 people + 6 cameras=hundreds of pics.  I am still waiting to get some photos from my family to post, but for now, here are some of my favorites from last week.  
plane to AZ

major cactus
Grand Canyon

Page, Arizona with mom

Colorado River rafting trip

Antelope Canyon

Thanksgiving dinner -- outside in Scottsdale

How was your Thanksgiving?  See more photos here.


Black Friday

Happy Black Friday!  Whether you're hitting the early bird sales at 5 am, perusing the online deals & steals, or not shopping at all, here's some inspiration to kick off your morning :)

images: 1, 2, 3

Blogging last year: Happy Turkey Day 2009


Happy Thanksgiving!

What better way to celebrate than family, food, and FRIENDS :)

Happy Turkey Day!

Blogging last year: Skillet cornbread recipe


Guest blogger: Jackie from Purple Monkey

Hi everyone!
First of all, a huge thanks to Jaime for letting me guest post today!
My name is Jackie and I write the blog Purple Monkey.

Sometimes I think Thanksgiving gets the shorter end of the stick. 
I mean, it's the precursor to the holiday season and everyone is so focused on the holiday spirit that sometimes Thanksgiving gets overwhelmed by food and black Friday shopping.

I, however, love Thanksgiving and have acquired quite a few amazing memories that I would like to share with all of you!

 My earliest memory of Thanksgiving was when I was 5 or 6.  My Grandma and Grandpa would have my mom, dad, sister, and all my aunts, uncles, and cousins over to their apartment.  The adults would spend the entire day cooking, while my cousins, sister, and I all "pretended" to cook in the living room.  We'd all sit down and eat dinner together.  After dinner, my Grandma would drag out her huge fake Christmas tree and we'd turn on some music and spend hours decorating it with her thousands of ornaments.  Seriously, this tree ended up slanted by the end because we'd always pile them up on one side.

 By the time I was 10, we started having Thanksgiving at our house, because it was bigger and meant that my grandparents didn't have to cook as much.  I remember from that age on, every Thanksgiving morning my dad and I would wake up early and go for a run outside together.  This is one of my favorite memories, because then entire world was silent and the crisp fall air was amazing.  It was great quality time with my dad.  Then, we'd go back home, and I'd turn on the parade and spend the entire morning crafting!  I'd paint garland and make place settings.  I'd create center pieces and color fake leaves to be scattered everywhere.  It was such a festive tradition.

Fast forward to the teenage years.  By the time I was 13, my grandparents bought a house in Florida and moved down there for the winter months, which meant they weren't here in New Jersey for Thanksgiving.  My uncle lived there with them, but school and hectic schedules prevented us from going there, but we would still celebrate with my Aunt, Uncle, and two cousins.  My dad stopped running thanks to a bad knee, so I would always run on the treadmill while watching the parade.  I would always stop as soon as Santa Clause came on, and quickly called my grandmother on the phone.  We'd watch the last remaining minutes of the parade together.  When my family came over later that night, we began start going around the table and saying what we were thankful for.  We would put the phone on speaker, with my grandparents and uncle on the other end, and all take turns speaking.  It made it seem like they were really there.

When I was 14, my aunt, uncle and cousins went away for Thanksgiving.  We had planned to spend it just the four of us, but my mom met a new girl in school's mom and the gym, and invited them over.  I was so mad at her at the time.  I mean, inviting a girl I barely new to spend such a family oriented holiday with us was completely unheard of.  But it was that Thanksgiving that I truly realized the meaning of the holiday.   

When I was 15, I became a vegetarian.  That first Thanksgiving was hilarious in more ways then one, but one memory sticks out at me.  My mom bought me to-furkey in a can, and I was so excited to try it.  Let me just say, when a can shaped blob of tofu rolls of the baking sheet onto the floor after coming out of the oven, it is not too appetizing.  {I have since found some other alternatives}

This year, my 17th Thanksgiving, it is just the four of us again. It's my last Thanksgiving in high school, and I intend to make the most of it.  These past two years I have acquired the baking gene from my mom.  We always make way too many pies, and end up donating half of them to the local food bank.  It's something really special we do together.

This year, I'll wake up like every other Thanksgiving, and go for a run.  I'll bake pies, make my vegetarian feast, and sit down with my family.  We'll put my Florida family on speaker phone, and say what we're grateful for.  We'll take the time to remember my grandpa, who died last year.  And we'll pray for those a lot less fortunate.  

The Thanksgiving memories I have acquired are some of my fondest.  I hope you enjoyed a glimpse into my past Thanksgivings and I wish you all a joyful one of your own! xo

Thanks, Jackie!


Guest blogger: I am thankful for...

Today's guest post is from the owner/founder of The Clothing Menu and fellow Bostonian, Kristen

I’m thankful for...(fashion edition)

-       Stylish celebrities who inspire my wardrobe, like Rachel Bilson.

-       My Chinese Laundry suede over the knee black boots.  They are my favorite to wear in the fall and winter!
-       Living in New England where I have the excuse to go shopping at least 4 times a year (once for each season).
-       Opening an online store last month and working with really great independent designers.
-       My InStyle magazine subscription. I like that it’s mostly pictures, not many articles.  Very fun to flip through and get ideas from.

-       Vintage jewelry.  I absolutely love hearing stories behind vintage jewelry, especially when it’s been passed down in a family.
-       Shopping online. The variety and no lines make me happy.
-       All of the talented fashion designers out there who take a chance, follow their passion, and bring to us amazing clothes!
-       Fashion TV shows on TLC.  I know, random, but I love What Not to Wear and Say Yes to the Dress marathons.
-       Having the money and means to buy clothes frequently enough, which not everyone has the luxury to do.

Thanks, Kristen! I am thankful for JCrew.com, my Laura Mercier concealer, Ugg slippers, and fashion blogs for inspiration!  What fashion items are you thankful for?


Guest blogger: Thanksgiving desserts

Thank you Rachel at The Redhead Fashionista for today's guest post!

When it comes to any holiday, everyone has his or her own traditions. So, what's my Thanksgiving tradition? Every year I find a new dessert recipe to try out for my family's dinner. Even though my family always has a pumpkin pie and either an apple pie or a pecan pie, I figure one more dessert couldn't hurt, right? :)

Pumpkin Cake Roll or a Pumpkin Torte would certainly be a good way to incorporate pumpkin into a dessert without making the usual pie.

Or is it a cheesecake that you're craving? If so, the Pumpkin Cheesecake Bar and the Snappy Pumpkin Cheesecake will satisfy your appetite!

If you have children, let them join the fun! Pilgrim Hat Cookies oHandprint Turkey Cookies would be great for kids to make.

But if you're looking for something more traditional, you simply cannot go wrong with a pumpkin pie or a pecan pie.

What's your favorite dessert to eat on Thanksgiving?

My fave has to be apple pie ala mode!


Friday Faves

Are you ready for a royal wedding @ English Muse
A round up of links for all things about the "wedding of the century".

Townhouse in Essex, UK @ 79 ideas

Purple Canadian Rockies wedding @ Wedding Chicks
Bride's shoes, groom's shoes, and a matching cake- so fun!!

Simply color: Hannah Berman @ Design*Sponge
Loving this color palette.

Paris Fashion Week...Elisa @ Vanessa Jackman
Quirky, fun brights- it works!

Thanksgiving table toppers @ Domestic Ease
Fun ideas for next Thursday...click link for more.

Have a great weekend everyone!  I am off to AZ tomorrow morning, but I have a few guest bloggers lined up for you, and I scheduled my own posts as well.  :)

Blogging last year: Can you be-leave it?


Arizona bound

Saturday morning, I leave for a family trip to Arizona! My mom planned the entire week that includes exploring the Grand Canyon, Scottsdale, & Sedona; visiting Taliesin West; river rafting down the Colorado River; and of course, having Thanksgiving dinner. 

My mom is the best and put together this itinerary, and since I think this will be one of our best vacas yet, I thought I'd share!  Click the pics for more detail/to zoom in.

Notice the "happy van".... lol.... Can't wait!

P.S. Thanks to AZ blogger Jenna @ Mi Vida Bonita for some tips!

Blogging last year: What I'm Wearing Wednesday