Category Archives: shopping

I think I’m clear!

A few days ago, I picked up some things from the store, new to me: 

groceries

^ cherry-pomegranate Fruit & Grain bagels, sunflower seed butter, & multi-grain hot cereal

groceries

^ Bolthouse Farms Green Goodness juice (2-for-$2.79!), vanilla Chai tea (after seeing it frequently appearing on Miss Gliding Calm’s blog), some stir-fry veggies… & Orange Pop? Plus, a couple of bars!

So, I thought I was all good, buying sunflower seed butter, even before the recall! 

SSB < crunchy with full sunflower seeds!

Then yesterday I busted out one of my new PB Cookie Luna bars at school the other day, & tossed the wrapper, without a thought. Later, when I started feeling icky, I thought about it. Yesterday, I went to the store in which I bought it to check if the same box might be there with the date on it. Well, if it’s from the same box, it’s “Best By” September ’09, which makes it safe. 

Thank you for all your concerns!

The bagel, by the way, is great!!! The ingredient list is short, & though they’re smaller than a lot of bagels out there, the flavor is excellent!

bagel < great with  VeggieGirl’s flavored nut-butters!

Some other eats lately:

scramble

^ veggie egg-scramble (check out that bubble!)

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^ sweet potato fries with Agave, ginger & cinnamon, plus a mini-squash thrown in there!

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^ seasoned tempeh, my fries + broccoli. I’m not a huge ketchup gal, but I tried it with my fries & really liked it that way! I pretty much ate this with my hands… like “tempeh-nuggets?”

It’s weird, I’m feeling head-heavy & stuffed-up, with a sore throat today. I’ve got no school today, just work later, so I’m planning to relax, drink some tea (weird I don’t even want coffee today!) & maybe take a trip to Target. Maybe.

Everyone stay warm & happy! Have a super-duper weekend! Have any fun plans on the agenda?! I hope so!

P.S. There’s a dog whimpering on the Today show & my pups are going crazy!

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Filed under errands, groceries, grub, optimism, shopping, work

It’s a Wonderful Life!

Yesterday might have been one of the best days of the year! (is that fair?) Well, here’s what I did, in order, with a few pictures:

  • Woke up at about 8am & brewed some coffee
  • Went to hot yoga from 9:30-11am
  • drank lots of water on my way to TJMaxx. There, I bought a new yoga mat & a laptop case. I have been using my mom’s mat, but I bought my own orange mat! This is my second laptop sleeve/case, but the 1st one was much too small, so I got this one:

laptop back laptop front

 purple-y, huh?

 

< showing it’s backside (oh!)

 


 

& it’s front, spilling it’s brains (cords) >

 

 

 

 

  • Then, I went home, made me some grub (huge-ontic salad with greens, carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, edamame, garbanzos, peppers; an apple; & carrots with hummus) & ate it outside
  • puttered around on my computer, especially on Craig’s List because I’m searching for a bike. I e-mailed a guy about one & there’s a strong possibility of me getting it. He e-mailed me back quickly, so I may go take a look-see this week! I also e-mailed my friend down the street who restores bikes for fun (!) & works at a bike store in town to see if it’s a good deal… he says go for it!
  • I decided to finally test out my new shoes from Christmas (why did I wait this long?!), thus I found myself on a 35-minute run… I felt like I was flying… or going fast, for me! But, I also decided the shoes were half a size too smallouch!
  • I got back home and prepared a letter to my sister, including random, funny newspaper clippings & pictures, because she thinks those kinds of things are weird and funny, like I do, too. Many of these were about cats & Prez Bush-isms
  • I whipped up a smoothie, using this: alive a-c packet It has a LOT of really great, whole-foods ingredients (greens, spirulina, etc.) with 16 g. protein + apple-cinnamon flavor, yum! I added an apple, ice, water, & a couple of spoonfuls of sogurt… & cinnamon. It looked like this, in the blender: alive in blender GREEN!!! I was like, what’s going on here??? …but that’s how it’s supposed to be because of the ingredients, soo, I popped it in the freezer, while I…
  • Took a shower & got dressed
  • Then, I drank this: alive smoothie with more cinnamon on top. At 1st, I didn’t like it. I wanted to like it, but I didn’t. I kept drinking it, and finally decided I did like it! The added apple & sogurt made  it thicker & I liked the way I felt after it, with all those wholesome ingredients! I probably won’t buy this particular flavor again, but I like the product. I did this on my way…
  • to the Post Office to mail something for my dad & my sister’s letter
  • & to exchange my shoes for the correct size. It’s quite a trek over to do that, so I’m glad I had some fuel! I got a little nervous driving ol’ Desi (my 1997 Toyota Tercel) over there, especially when I thought it was over-heating, YIKES! So, I drove about 60 mph or slower the entire time, despite those angry, fast drivers. I also returned a sweatshirt & got store-credit for it.
  • While I was over that direction, I stopped by Whole Foods. I wasn’t that impressed, so I left almost directly and headed to my natural-foods store/work for dinner.
  • I got there about 20 minutes before they closed the Colossal Salad Bar, so I had to hurry, which is not like me in my eating habits! I piled on a HUUUUUGE salad (x2) & tried split-pea soup for the first time- YUM! I added cayenne pepper for a kick. I also had a large bowl of fruit. Nothing like making your own salad with every ingredient imaginable (2 kinds of tofu (teriyaki & blackened), chickpeas, edamame, shredded carrot & beet, mushrooms, marinated mushrooms, tomatoes, steamed veggies, raw veggies, crunchy & “hair-like” sprouts, about 7 different dressings, nuts, raisins, different cheeses, cooked eggs, different grain-salads & mixtures…. tons!) + rice & beans, soups…. DEE-VINE! No photo– sorry, maybe another time.
  • I left stuffed, so I went home, got some goodies together & left for my uncle’s to have some dark chocolate-covered ginger & go to sleep

Today, I have to finish registering for classes & turn my change into ca$h… not much else… maybe go visit that bike and/or see a movie, go book-browsing… I never know!

Have a great week, friends!!!

*OH! By the way, the makers of Clif products have a red wine out, that is organic, with no sulfites. I hear it’s excellent & totally worth raving about!

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The Ghost of Christmas past has come

Jassy Santa < Jasper

 Tucker \/ Tuckie Santa

“Ho! Ho! Ho!”

We had Christmas Eve dinner at my aunt’s house (mom’s sis) after church, which was great. My aunt really gets into the holiday decorating and had this display up and kept adding to it, since September! It looked great & festive!

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 Isn’t it just awesome?! Can you see the Grinch on the mountain (pic #1) & my aunt in the mirror (pic #2)?! She has a train going through, which is in motion in pic #4 and she made that cute little peppermint path! She’s worked hard on it- it’s great!

 

tree < The mini Christmas tree in my room, with little ornaments, T & J, and there’s also 2 school pictures of the kids I babysit on there somewhere. I got the BELIEVE ornament this year… it’s sorta my word!

 

On Christmas day, we woke up to stockings & gifts at our house, then we went to my grandparents’ (Dad’s side of the family) to do the same & eat breakie. Breakfast was homemade quiche, mixed fruit salad, pastries, *ahem*sausage*ahem*, tomatoes, OJ & coffee. mmMmm… Only one of my sisters could come home for the holidays, so I reveal to you THEE. BEST. DECORATION. OF. OP’s. CHRISTMAS, who stood in for my other sis, who couldn’t be with us. Check “her” out, drinking some wine:

sisters

She’s made fun of that thing, since the day I brought IT home in 6th grade, 9 years ago… it’s not Christmas without it! We literally took pictures with (hmm) SISTER CRACKER as if it was really her. My dad ALWAYS reads ‘Twas the night before Christmas in bed on Christmas Eve, so we called her up, had her on speaker phone, and tucked the lil’ cracker in bed with us!!! (aawww) I think she got in more photos this Christmas than if she had actually been here… oh man- GOOD TIMES!

 pattern dress pink Nike shoes

s+p stocking SB's & tangerine

Some gifts: a great wild-pattern dress shipped from my sista’; an organic cotton long-sleeved tee (I also got the same brand gray bag that can hold the world in it!); some Nike shoes (& a gray half-zip Nike hoodie); salt + pepper shakers to add to my collection (a holiday one & the Wizard of Oz one- isn’t that one soo cool?!); my stocking from home; the obligatory tangerine & in that cute little cloth envelope… a Starbuck’s  gift card!

since I’ve mentioned food in all my other posts, I’ll add one to this: it was a gift from the neighbors, and I’m not quiiiite sure what it is, but I’ll describe what I think it is. It was like toffee/brittle covered in a thin layer of chocolate with almonds in it! sooo rich & buttery & dee-lishtoffee

I got spoiled for sure! I got so much more than I could need or want, aww, blessings!

So, yesterday I went grocery shopping at the health-food store/work, to re-stock my uncle’s pantry & fridge with some more yum-si-ness. (Bella is laying on my arm, so I keep misspelling things and pressing odd keys!)

Here are some boring staples: garbanzo beans, my favorite Annie’s salad dressing, & plain soy yogurt

groceries 3

Produce: I filled a bag full of salad greens from the salad bar (way cheaper & organic: a bag full, for about $1.50!), an avocado, Roma tomatoes, Sweet Clover sprouts, red bananas (I have some tangerines & apples still!)

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…and some goodies I hardly ever get, or have never had, but was excited about: Nutiva hemp protein powder packet, 2 different trailmixes, 3 Betty Lou’s energy balls (tee-hee, I said “BALLS!”), a raw organic food bar, & some dark chocolate ginger

groceries 2

new groceries

^ MORE goodies:  Ruth’s Chia Goodness cereal (Chia-pet for breakfast!), Food for Life  Genesis English muffins, crackers, & roasted garlic beets from the deli!

I brought my own bags like a good lil’ girl. My store donates 5 cents for every bag someone brings in, to a charity, which is different every month! I helped yesterday with 10 cents! I spent about $35 on that schtuff!

Later, I went to good ol’ Publix & picked up a bag of baby carrots, organic blue corn chips & a Luna sunrise bar: Strawberry flava’.

Yesterday, I went with my parents, sis, & grandparents (who loooove dogs) to see Marley and Me. Loved it! Adorable! I didn’t read the book, but it was sweet, none-the-less! 

Afterward, I met a friend to catch-up at Border’s. We used to meet up there in high school and take allllll the magazines we could carry to the kid’s area, look at them, talk, & put them back. Sorry, Border’s workers- guilty! We didn’t take mags this time because we had a lot to talk about in a little bit of time (because she met her mom afterward)…

You know WHY we had so much to talk about?! Well… 

…well, before that, here was a light dinner with some new goods:

dinner

^ a toasted Genesis English muffin with some Baba Ganouj hummus, sprouts, greens, & tomato. Also, a salad with carrots, sprouts, Newman’s Own honey mustard dressing. After I took it, I added some sunflower seeds to it. My tummy was acting weird, so something light was just what I needed. I had some of my favorite tea, too: Celestial Seasoning’s Honey Peach Ginger to soothe the tum-tum.

Okay- now, the good stuff:

Me, lil’ Miss Orange Poppity-Pop had a date! *GASP* I don’t have much dating experience because in high school, I was always so busy with sports & activities, that I just didn’t care much about that. But, I met him at work– he shops there all the time & eats in the deli whenever he can. Needless to say, he’s super-healthy & a total foodie! He’s also smart, cute, sweet…

We went to a raw/veg/vegan restaurant and got a few different things, tried each others’ food, shared dessert, talked the whole time, he showed me where he is workin‘, he drove me back with plans for something else in the works! We went out once before- met at a pub, actually (he’s not a “pub-guy” but met some old buddies there), and I thought it’d be awkward, but it totally wasn’t! His friends included me & I even recognized/knew some people that were there, too!

YIPPEE! He, like me, am not a night-owl, and he had a busy day today, so we’re not getting together tonight for the last time this year in 2008, but next year for sure! I’m going to dinner with my parents tonight and just layin’ low.

When I was little, my family would turn the clocks back a few hours so we wouldn’t be up so late… we’d bang pots-and-pans and light sparklers on roller blades at like 9 or 10 PM every year! HA! This year, it’s all about the true midnight!

*FUN FACT: this year is one second longer because the earth’s rotation is slowing… so enjoy your extra-second-longer year & have fun (& be safe) welcoming a new, fabulous year in 2009! (PEACE in 2009, as we always say!)

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Tree-huggin’ Christmas gift

Last night, I went home to find a package from my friend Bama filled with goodies like Clif and Kashi bars, Sport beans, a funny Christmas card and Chris Carmichael’s book Food for Fitness to “Eat Right to Train Right” because I’d love to run more and even compete again, but want to make sure I have my bases covered, as far as good sport nutrition! THANKS BAMA- you’re GRRRR-REAT!

Last night I felt like baking. With all these awesome bloggers making cookies and other yummy treats this time of year, even though I’m getting sweets, I still want to contribute. i thought about something original. Then, I thought something homemade and totally OrangePop-ish would be the best! Soooo, I came out with 2 varieties of…

GRANOLA!

While The Santa Claus was on TV, I just sort of looked up recipes, and then played around and made my own anyway. My 1st attempt I tried a variation of “Almond Joy” except later I realized I should have added cocoa powder for the chocolate part…oh, well!

granola 1

granola 2

The 2nd one, I added more dried fruit and nuts and… wow, even more of a winner!

granola 3

I put them in granola tubs tubs.

I know there’s a niftier idea than plastic baggies to give them in (I still want to make more varieties, but I was getting sleepy!) **Any suggestions??** They’re very much welcomed!

Would you believe that they contain no oil? It’s true. I may post the recipe I used, if they’re hits, or if I get an influx of requests.

…until then, THERE’S ONLY A FEW MORE SHOPPING DAYS LEFT ‘TIL CHRISTMAS! EVERYONE BE HAPPY AND LOVING 😀 and especially, show it if you feel it!

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FREE, ME!!

I slept in, mondo… when I woke up, I put out the FLAME!!! Okay, I was watching the news on TV this morning when I woke up (okay, afternoon) when I saw it: smell like a burger! For $3.99 you can smell like a flame-broiled Burger King ham-boogie. Nice. They also referenced the SuperBowl commercial from McDonald’s where a man mistakenly puts a wrapper in the dryer and his wife’s clothes smells like beef and he is turned on… see it on YouTube here, with Miss OP:

Okay, onto the good stuff…

I finally finished my semester!!!!

YIPPEEE!!! YOW!!! HURRAY!!! ZIP-ZIP-ZIPPERRR!!! WEEE!!! So, I’ll happily be blogging more until I start mid-January (the 12th or so?). I’ll be working (*grumble*), relaxing, and doing other unforeseen things in my future. Unfortunately, either of my sisters will NOT be home for Christmas. It’s gonna be weird. And sad. Me lovez ‘da sistah’s!

So, yesterday. As soon as I woke up, I went for a brisk walk around to wake up and energize me! It was so nice out and great for my mind. When I got home, I put on a pot of coffee and made some oats for brain-food. oats

^ I had Target’s Pumpkin Spice coffee (I mix the grounds with generic/cheaper variety with the yummy stuff to make it last longer. I also add cinnamon to the filter!); the oats are: ~1/3 (+) c. Bob’s Red Mill 5-grain hot cereal, chopped apple, ~1 T. Skippy Natural Chunky PB, cinnamon, a splash of soymilk, and brown sugar. MmMmMmmmmm…

So, then Government Exam. Yow!

Then, the gym for some cardio… gotta get the heart pumpin’!

I have to tell you something. My uncle has been looking for a job for a while now. He’s a real estate appraiser, but work is hard to find right now with that… so he’s also been a black-jack dealer! Cool! Anyway, he wants to work at a big casino around here, but until he can be transfered here, he has to work at another location, a few hours away. He also has a cat (Milo!) and a dog (Bella, who is also Jasper’s sister!!!!), so I am staying at his house to watch his “brats” (or “kids”- they’re both! HA!).

It’s been pretty fun. Man, Bella is FULL OF ENERGY, ALL! THE! TIME! And Milo was barely seen, until a couple of weeks ago. Aww, he likes me! Because I feed him, probably. He’s a one-minded animal! Let me introduce you to them- Milo:

Milo

Bella: (actually sleeping?!)

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It’s a mini-Jasper

So, since I told you that, I’m staying at his house. I’ve moved in my stuff, OP’ed his kitchen, I get my own room and Bella snuggles with me at night. BUT, his shower-head is like a drizzle… so I went home after the gym to shower. And, my fab Paris-sister is still home (she can’t get a flight back, uh-oh!), so we went to Publix to get sammiches. I love their hoagie-bread! 

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^ Mine was a veggie with spicy mustard, Provolone cheese, S+P, and all the veggies, except black olives. EEK! (green pepper, banana peppers, tomatoes, onions & pickles… I think that’s all!)

Then, work. It wasn’t too bad. I got paid, but since I went to Paris the last weekend I’ve worked, it was a small paycheck. I’ve only been working Thursdays & Saturdays (and some Sundays) during school, so over break, I’ll probably pick up some more hour$!  It was slooowwww though!

Afterward, I decided I needed a fun lil’ zing to celebrate the end of my semester! I was by myself and tired, so I found this baby in my uncle’s fridge and saw a little recipe on the back, so I improvised. My version of cookies & milk, no?!

cookies & milk

hmmm, I’m not a big drinker, and this tasted in NO WAY like alcohol, which I loved… but I drank it so quickly, and limited it to just one cup. I heated some soymilk and mixed it that way. Great! While watching Jim Carey’s version of The Grinch, it was a little nice to have no agenda!

So, then I slept in until, late. I woke up at 8:30, but have NOTHING TO DO, so I rolled over and kept sleeping. It was strange for me, since I’ve been a morning person these days, but I stayed up late (for me!) and had a lil’ drinky-drinky! 

Have a great start to your weekend, loves! Any plans?! Holiday shopping done? I’m allllllmost there. Just something else for my mom & Paris-sis. Hopefully I can navigate the crowds, but since I already have gift-ideas for them, it shouldn’t be too bad!

I work Sat. & Sun. then not again until next Sat! ENJOY!

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Thankful and Giving! (and getting)

What a wonderful day I had on Thanksgiving! TG

^ Here I am with Mr. & Mrs. OrangePop… those who birthed me! I love them a lot and am very fortunate to have such loving and supportive parents! I have 2 older sisters who, unfortunately, weren’t able to make it. My sister who is away working at a ski resort went to a church and had a free dinner with the old people who sponsored it!!! How cute! My other sister had her traditional meal the night before and she ate leftovers (which, I think, is one of the best parts of the food-part of the holiday!) that day and lounged, watched the parade (where she actually went to see it in NY last year!). She came home the next day and we’ve been hanging out, when I’m not at work

cake

^ My Vegan with a Vengeance cake! The Ginger-Macadamia Nut-Coconut-Carrot Cake was a total hit!

Quorn Quorn Turk’y Roast– I loved it! Even the biggest meat-eater tried it and agreed it tasted just like turkey and admitted to even liking it! Yay! It’s not vegan, but I’m not. I rubbed it with olive oil and Italian seasoning and then baked it wrapped in tin-foil! Delish!

 sweet taters Sweet Potato Casserole– my favorite side, which became more like the center. Plenty of walnuts, brown sugar and goodness in this baby!

My Black Friday started at 6am, when my mom and I went to Target (oh, love) and saw people LEAVING when we got there… whatttt?! Ludicrous! It’s not that I just needed anything or was looking for something in particular, but this gal loves a good deal, so I was on the hunt… I also loved that it marked the beginning of the holiday season so it was fun listening to the first bit of holiday music on the way there, while it was still dark. I got a sweater-ish top, a pair of black high-tops, Werther’s hard candies, and gum. Woo, big-spender. Then, we went to Michael’s where I got 2 types of yarn (I can crochet!) and some stationary. Then, Old Navy, where I bought two T-shirts. All on sale. Because I’m thrifty like that!

Today, we (my parents, oldest sis & I) went to get our Christmas tree! Beforehand, we stopped and got coffee and bagels, then skipped along to the tree-tent.  We’ve been debating whether or not to get a small tree and put it on a table, like we did last year when Jasper was a very curious pup; or to get a regular-sized tree and risk him eating the ornaments off the bottom, try to drink the tree’s water, or something else spontaneous and odd… in the end, we decided on a tall tree! The very 1st one we looked at was the one we got! It’s just beautiful and it fills the house with a comforting, lovely smell! Live trees are just the way to go! I’ll show you a picture once all the ornaments go up, but for now:

TuckerJasper

 

*Tucker & Jasper taking turns playing Santa!

As we decorated, we, of course, listened to holiday tunes. What’s your favorite song of the season?! I love (I think it’s Paul McCartney?) the song that goes, “Simply- having- a wonderful Christmastime!” It’s so happy and fun! Traditionally speaking, I love “Silent Night” (sad and lovely, because it reminds me of my Grandma) and “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire” especially by Bing Crosby!

 

I hope everyone had a fantastic, loving Thanksgiving, like I did! 

Oh, another school week begins, sooo make it a great one!

XOXO~Gossip Girl Miss OP

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November is almost over?

…it sure is!
I’ve celebrated 5 months of employment at my job! Ha, very monumentous… I am happy to still have a job with the way things seem to be now. Although, the price of gas yesterday, I saw as low as $1.79!!! I had school on Monday & Tuesday, but am off the rest of the time for a little break
I started seeing the Christmas tree tents being filled with trees the other day, too! It is always a tradition for us to get our tree the day after Thanksgiving… which is today. So, HAPPY THANKSGIVING, ya’ll!!! I am blogging to you straight from my couch, as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is starting. Oh, Miley C. and David A. are headliners. What youth this country has!
Last night we had 2 of my aunts and an uncle over for dinner. And some little boy hung out with us… who?! Let me show you:

Jassy

Jassi’per!

Afterward we went out by the pool and had a fire in our fire pit and made s’mores! Let me tell you: it was cooooollldddd! My mom made the best soup in a large pot- plenty for seconds and leftovers! We call it “Garlicky Spicy Tortellini Soup.” It’s super easy, warming, filling, a little spicy, and GOOD! Basic ingredients: (We don’t even use a recipe anymore because it’s this easy. Just stock the ingredients and add as much or as little as you like!) 
  • Package or 2 of Tortellini (we used dry Barilla tortellini, probably the Cheese & Garlic kind, but any would be great! (spinach, 3-cheese, etc.)
  • Large can of stewed tomatoes, cut up
  • 2 cans of tomatoes with green chilies
  • Bag of fresh spinach, rinsed and drained
  • GARLIC!!!!! Few cloves… or bulbs. Ha, no, but this is essential to making the soup that much better (doesn’t garlic just do that to everything?!)

Cook everything and let simmer and add spinach last, just before serving until it shrinks like it does and mixes well. You can add red pepper flakes or S&P, but it’s not really needed.

And, VIOLA! Serve with crusty bread and lots to drink!

Today, of course, is the main event of Thanksgiving! The family is going to be eating real bird, and I’ve seen the whole Tofurkey roast with stuffing, that’s like $27.99, but it’s just me and I’m weary of the Tofurkey brand (although I DO like the lunch “meat” that’s “cranberry-stuffing” flavor. So, that’s holiday-ish!). Anyway, I LOVE Quorn chik’n, so I saw a Turk’y roast (I love how ebonic vegetarianism becomes…) with 5 servings, so I got that to try! 

I’m not a pie fan. I think I used to like it, and I want to like it, but I don’t. We’re having apple & pumpkin pies and Ginger-Macadamia Nut-Coconut Carrot Cake from Vegan with a Vengeance.  Oh-la-la, I’m excited! I’ve got that to cook up today!

We used to have lunch at my mom’s parent’s house, then dinner at my dad’s parent’s. *Phew!* That’s a lot of eating. My mom’s parent’s aren’t alive anymore and everyone’s sort of adopting their own traditions with family, so we’ve decided to give my dad’s parent’s a break since they host Christmas and invite both sides of the family and whoever can make it, comes! We might take the ol’ rascal, Jasper to the park to tire him out, since we’re having a lot of people over today and he’s not a (total) crazy man!

Have a wonderful, giving, loving Thanksgiving!

*Questions for ya:

WHAT ARE YOUR HOLIDAY TRADITIONS?!

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE PARADE (if you watched!)… and/or THE HOLIDAY?!

WHAT ARE YOU THANKFUL FOR?!

I hope you really think about these and really tell the people you love how you feel and take note, not just today, but everyday, for all you have and are able to do! Truly, I’m thankful for so many things I want to cry in appreciation… XOXO~ “Miss OP”

*And yes, I do plan on waking up early to shop. I have to work (changed to later, though!), and even though I rarely buy much, I love the spirit of it and the “kick-off” to the holiday season!

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