Let the Holidays Come…to YOU

by LCCotter on November 21, 2012

My friend Jess wrote this awesome post about how to let the run come to you (us). It struck a cord with me. Yes, I apply this to my running (no numbers runner, remember?) but I also think it can apply to the way we live life or more so, the Holidays. Let the Holidays come to you (us).

When I looked up the synonym for LET in the thesaurus, it actually had the definition “sit still for” in there. Interesting, yes? Notice I didn’t say “make the Holidays come to us.” Huge difference right? Let versus make.

It’s Holiday season, yes, and we tend to get way too ahead of ourselves. I mean Christmas planning before Thanksgiving and New Years resolutions before we even hit half way through December.

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Why not let the Holidays come to us. Why not let the moments come to us? Can’t we just focus on the day instead of pre pre pre planning our holiday menu?

I know, easier said than done. Most of us feed off that control. To take charge. To get everything “just right.”

But you know what? Some of my best Holiday memories are the ones that just came, without any control! Someone forgot the pie, we burnt the turkey, got stuck at the airport, decided to go out to eat instead. We made the holiday what is was with what we had and who we were with.

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I’m not saying don’t plan anything. I’m saying don’t set high standards. I’m saying be adaptable. I’m saying focus on the purpose rather than the planning. I’m saying be unconvential if it’s more affordable. I’m saying let’s let the Holidays roll out one day at time, one pie at time, one hug at time. Ya know?

Here are a few stress free ideas/tips  that might help when it comes to Holidays planning or unplanning. haha. Winking smile

  • Don’t be afraid to nix a side dish and put out a salad. Easy to throw together and you can always add in seasonal vegetables like squash, brussel sprouts, etc.

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  • Offer tea, coffee, biscotti/cookies and/or a dessert wine. Then have someone else bring a pie. More choices. Offers a little down time after the meal. It’s cozy.

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  • Use your fruit. It’s cheap. Peel and slice pears, apples, plums, and peaches. Coat with a little butter, cinnamon, and sugar. Toss it all in a pyrex pan and bake at 450F for 25-30 minutes. Serve with a little cream and honey on top.

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  • No time to cook a turkey. That’s fine! Grab two roasted chickens and slice up. Or roast a turkey loin and slice it on a platter. I’m sure the pilgrims won’t mind.
  • Make the day about the people and the purpose first, then the food. Anything tastes good when you’re with good company!
  • Play! Get outside and enjoy the day. Enjoy the festivities. Don’t feel the need to be in the kitchen 24/7 watching the pot boil. Last year (in New Zealand) we played tennis all day before realizing we needed to get Christmas dinner started. Haha.

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  • Be accommodating. Have someone with a food allergy or a specific diet coming? Easy, make a stew or buy some vegetarian tamales. Trust me, tamales and spicy cranberry chutney are a good combo! haha.

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I have to admit. It’s easy to sucked into the Holiday go go go. I mean SUPER EASY! But the moment you feel your “moments” slipping away is when you need to stop. Stop and let the day unfold as is. Like Jess said, let the run (or in this case, the HOLIDAYS) come to you. And once it finds you, take it all in, one breath of FRESH AIR at a time.

So what do you think? Are you in? Slow and Stress free Holidays please!

Cheers,
LC

{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura @ LauraLivesLife November 21, 2012 at 7:04 am

I totally agree – in everything, I just need to take things one day at a time, especially when it comes to healthy habits AND enjoying Thanksgiving even though I have a marathon I’m worried about the marathon on Sunday!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 7:21 am

Sunday is a good 3 days away from thanksgiving. You can do this. Be confident and enjoy your thanksgiving first friend. I believe you can!

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Kelly November 21, 2012 at 7:04 am

Great advice friend!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 7:20 am

i know you can agree!

p.s.
I need to make your gingerbread truffle. I am craving it!

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Michelle @ Eat Move Balance November 21, 2012 at 7:43 am

Great message! Slow down—it all goes by so quickly anyway. It’s over before you know it….it’s not worth stressing. Be present–enjoy! :)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:35 pm

i know and then you are depressed that you didn’t enjoy it while it was there. ya know?

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Tina @ Best Body Fitness November 21, 2012 at 7:53 am

My post this morning is a similar topic or thought. I talk about how much I love Thanksgiving because it is so simple and focuses on just being with loved ones and reflecting on blessings instead of go go go go go go go. It is so easy to get lost in the season rather than truly celebrating how God intends us to – RELATIONALLY. Thanks for a beautiful post and reminder this morning. I wish you the best of holidays tomorrow!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:34 pm

oh i agree. I loved your post this morning too. Same wavelength for sure. Gods intention for us is to praise and give thanks! Happy thanksgiving to you and your sweet family. Hugs friend!

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katie November 21, 2012 at 8:09 am

No stress! Just wonderful family time, the best part!

Happy Thanksgiving to you guys! <3

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:59 pm

and enjoy that salad beast! hehe.

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kim k November 21, 2012 at 8:13 am

Yes, no stress over a holiday that is supposed to be about giving thanks!

Side note, last night i was thinking about your healthy bites venture… for those of us who dont have facebook (i know, i know) would you consider creating a website for healthy bites? That way i can pass along to my friends who dont have facebook or cant access facebook at work…and i wouldnt have to pester you by emailing everytime i have an order. Just a thought :)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:34 am

i’m working on that. Just takes time and money. I need both, LOL! They can always check out the healthy bites tabs above on this site and email or comment there to order. THats kinda what i am doing now.
p.s.
get on facebook so i can talk more to YOU!

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Erika November 21, 2012 at 8:18 am

I gotta know…what kind of cake it that?;)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:35 am

hehe, it’s pavlova. A kiwi cake, like meringue. SO SO GOOD! My kiwi husband makes the best. I have a recipe in here somewhere for it.

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Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) November 21, 2012 at 8:23 am

You know what’s funny, the holidays aren’t about the food, but about the family and taking a moment to reflect on being thankful. The food is just the bonus. I never stress over what we’re having or when it will be done. We will definitely not go hungry, that’s for sure and for that, I’m incredibly thankful! I am definitely taking the time to relax (Tony is on crazy deadline right now, so I’m trying to keep him stress free too) and just enjoy where I am at the moment. Nothing more, nothing less. I hope you have an incredible day with family Lindsay and enjoy your stress free holiday! xoxo

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:39 pm

oh i hope tony gets time to relax. You are so good to him. Mrs Destressor! Happy Thanksgiving!

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Kierston November 21, 2012 at 8:25 am

This is so great and I love how you simplified this special holiday for all the goodness it has to offer…if you just LET IT (no planning…a little planning required).

We celebrated Thanksgiving a few weeks ago in Canada. We celebrated the moments together as a Family. There was some planning, but there was also a lot of unplanning whereby, we let the special moments happen :)

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:40 pm

love that! i bet it was perfect. You are so good and simplifying and enjoying.

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danielle @ Clean food creative fitness November 21, 2012 at 8:28 am

Love this! So simple but so often forgotten! Thanks for reminding us.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:43 pm

sometimes the simplest things are the hardest to remember. ;-)

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Katie @ Talk Less, Say More November 21, 2012 at 8:33 am

I’m ALL about stress free holidays. We’re taking Christmas Eve for the family from my Grandma (whether she likes it or not) this year and I know there will be plenty of “oh my GOSH!” kind of stress from my mom. I’m going to do everything in my power to keep relaxed and bring a sense of “it’s okay” to the holiday. :)

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Michele @ Nycrunningmama November 21, 2012 at 8:48 am

I needed this post today. My in-laws are coming in from Alaska and we are having Thanksgiving over here – first time I’m ever hosting a holiday (b/c we just bought our first house in May!!). I’ve been stressing about all the little details while also trying to clean and do all that goes along with having your in-laws living with you for a week!!
Beautiful post…beautiful words…beautiful message. Thank you for the reminder. xoxo
Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, friend!

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Amanda @RunToTheFinish November 21, 2012 at 9:06 am

YESSS I hate that we are so busy planning for the next holiday that we skip enjoying the current one!! I feel like you are in my brain lately

Love the salad idea too, great tips

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Bre November 21, 2012 at 9:10 am

Happy Thanksgiving, my friend. Pass along the wishes to James (and your fam too). Stress free is the way to go; my family is all about that for Thanksgiving and Christmas now.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:51 pm

maybe next year you can join us!! ??

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Bre November 21, 2012 at 5:08 pm

omg. YES! that would be amazing!

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Nichole November 21, 2012 at 9:35 am

Happy Thanksgiving!! I hope you and the WHOLE family have an amazing holiday weekend:)

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Heather (Where's the Beach) November 21, 2012 at 9:44 am

I would love a slow and stress free holiday. I think tomorrow will finally be as close as it gets for us. It can be hard having a divorced family and trying to cram in 3 different houses into a single day. Tomorrow should be different though (fingers crossed). Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:51 pm

oh i bet that is hard. But I am sure you are the peace maker and make everyone feel loved. <3

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Adri {Food-N-Thought} November 21, 2012 at 9:56 am

Yes! Let us not become so preoccupied on what our holiday “should be like” than we miss the beauty of spontaneous and real moments. This one is huge for me because I tend to be a big time planner, but lately God has given me so many unplanned enjoyable moments that I have learned to let go of all that “control” that I really don’t have anyway. Happy Thanksgiving my dear!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:53 pm

i love that God is speaking to you during this time. Less doing more being. His plan, not Ours!

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jobo November 21, 2012 at 10:22 am

I love this Lindsay!! So so true, little tweaks can mean all the difference between a stressFUL and stressFREE holiday. It’s about those unspoken moments, the ones we allow for and LET IN, instead of the hustle and bustle. I will keep this in mind tomorrow for sure, thank you!! Have a wonderful FREE holiday!! XO

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:54 pm

you and jess have been inspiring me to do so!

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Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table November 21, 2012 at 10:30 am

I don’t know… if someone forgot the pie I might freak out a little. ;)

Seriously, there are some great tips. And I’m still swooning over that coffee. Happy Thanksgiving!!!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:53 pm

thats when you bust out more wine and/or egg nog. then everyone forgets about that pie. haha

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Casey November 21, 2012 at 10:51 am

Couldn’t agree more- My most memorable holidays are the ones that didn’t go as planned. Happy Turkey Day, friend!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:54 pm

have a wonderful GF turkey day!

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Amanda @ .running with spoons. November 21, 2012 at 11:14 am

Life is what happens when we’re busy making other plans. I try not to stress too much over the holidays, especially because, like you said, the best memories are the ones that don’t go according to plan.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:52 pm

which makes me think… why do we plan so much?

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Katie @ Katie Moves November 21, 2012 at 11:32 am

Wonderful advice! I hate getting to ahead of myself..you feel like you have to think 3 steps ahead of yourself but I would love to just spend the holidays with whatever comes my way. sounds like a plan :) and GO! xoxo have a wonderful thanksgiving darling!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:56 pm

amen to that! let’s take one step at a time. ya know?

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Alysia @ Slim Sanity November 21, 2012 at 12:07 pm

This year’s holidays are going to be very stress-free for us. We’re staying in Dallas and all our family is in the Midwest. Tomorrow, we’re just going over to our friends’ place where we’re making chili, watching football, and drinking wine. :) haha non-traditional meal, but so much easier!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:56 pm

forget thanksgiving, i’m coming there!

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the delicate place November 21, 2012 at 1:40 pm

pavlova i spy?! totally agree. i have found myself ‘holding back’ so hard in busting out the xmas tunes! thanksgiving is a day that needs to have the celebration too :) holiday meals are so easy for me, i always prepare simple but rustic dishes and you know what…a 12-13lb bird takes just under 2 hrs to cook! so you don’t have to slave away the day!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:55 pm

that is correct! my husband makes the best pavlova. its why i married him. Just kidding.

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Danica @ It's Progression November 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm

I love this post…I was just talking with a friend this morning about letting the stress and worry of the holidays go and just really being present with my family and friends–laughing, talking, and just enjoying ourselves! Life’s too short to worry about the plans, making up the perfectly healthy dinner plate (so sick of reading/hearing about that all over!), or making the decorations look perfect…thanks for the great reminder and some fun tips–I love that idea about the fruit!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:57 pm

agreed. I say just let it roll. Healthy, not healthy. No plan, no stress. Just enjoy the day off with good people!

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Allison @ Life's a Bowl November 21, 2012 at 2:42 pm

I’m totally in! Some pre-chopped fixings and a TJ’s pumpkin pie are making appearances this year… I’d rather spend 30 more minutes with my family than standing over an appliance! To each his own, but for me semi-homemade is my favorite :) I hope y’all have a wonderfully blessed and tasty holiday!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Tj’s is totally homemade to me!

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Calee November 21, 2012 at 2:47 pm

I love these tips! Seriously, if I was to run a Thanksgiving or holiday meal, this is how I would do it.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 2:48 pm

shall we boycott families and meet up instead? hehe.

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Missy November 21, 2012 at 2:51 pm

I was born in. LOL.
I am a letter when it comes to prepping the meal (haven’t been deflowered) but man oh man what a thought provoking thing because in MANY ways I have to let the holidays just come instead of worrying so much about other things.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 3:02 pm

bahaha, you are so in, always have always will be.

p.s.
I knew you were wise like that. I admire you.

p.p.s
I loved your post yesterday. Meant to tell you. I love hearing you heart.

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natalie @ will jog for food November 21, 2012 at 3:17 pm

I love meal planning for holidays! hehe

But this year we weren’t sure about what we were doing until Monday. I thought we were going to eat out since it was just the 2 of us. But Jay’s friend wanted to come for Thanksgiving so we are cooking :)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:40 pm

i kinda like those last minute get togethers. Relaxed and fun. You’ll be a great hostess!

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Lisa November 21, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I love this! Such a strong message. And I love the idea of allowing the holiday to come to us. Sit still and let the holidays come, instead of getting ahead of ourselves, planning months in advance. It seems that we are so busy planning for things, we miss out on opportunities. I don’t want that to happen this year!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:41 pm

me too! let’s keep each other accountable. k? hugs friend!

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Lou November 21, 2012 at 4:25 pm

Nice Pav!!!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:41 pm

made by the hubs of course!

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Mo November 21, 2012 at 4:29 pm

This reminds me of the year I announced we were having tamales {that I bought from a friend who makes them fresh} for Christmas dinner. It took me less that 20 minutes to heat them up and throw together a salad. I actually got to ENJOY time with family rather than stuck in the kitchen.

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:42 pm

ohhh ya, perfect! love that Mo!

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Brittany @ Delights and Delectables November 21, 2012 at 4:34 pm

I love this! I’m trying to be stress free and just let the holidays come to me. We are doing everything different this year, so it is hard to let go of traditions for us. However, it is going to make things much less stressful!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:43 pm

you are getting to enjoy a new tradition. Embrace it! those are the best moments friend!

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kalli November 21, 2012 at 4:40 pm

LOVE THIS! can i tell you i am taking it easy. in fact i bought a semi cooked meal from whole foods so i would not stress of fret about the food. it looks like you are letting goodness come to you-love that my friend :)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:45 pm

oh yes, the best! I think Whole foods and TJ’s counts as homecooked.

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Ashley @ Freckles & Spice November 21, 2012 at 5:07 pm

I’ve been trying to tell my mom this all morning! Oh my gosh this post is so perfect right now.
Travel plans and work schedules are being a pain for xmas and now she doesn’t even want me to come home. She is working xmas day and I have to work xmas and possible xmas day so I thought the best option would be to fly in for dinner on xmas and then spend the next 2 days we both have off together – but now she doesn’t want to decorate or for me to come at all, hates the holidays, doesn’t want to bother, making it sound like I don’t want to be there. I kept telling her its about the time spent together not the day on the calendar. I am bummed about it to – i dont want to be alone in new york but I thought that was a good option. gaaahhh! crazy
And I have to say the tamales with the cranberry relish sounds awesome. I plan on doing that with leftovers and some TJ’s tamales :)

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:44 pm

come here! visit me. Christmas in texas!

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Carli November 21, 2012 at 8:01 pm

I enjoy the holidays and don’t think that I’m typically stressed by them. I enjoy the cooking and while I might think about it, I’m not going to break a sweat if something goes awry. You can always have some steamed veggies as back up!

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LCCotter November 21, 2012 at 8:44 pm

oh yes, steamed veggies to the rescue! actually, those are my favorite.

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Malita November 21, 2012 at 10:11 pm

What is sticking out of the sides of that cake?

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LCCotter November 22, 2012 at 6:57 am

bahahaha, it’s like the new zealand version of twix, but no caramel. Honeycomb with chocolate on it. James’ younger cousin decorated it, can you tell?

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Heather @ For the Love of Kale November 22, 2012 at 9:52 am

One word: AMEN!

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She Rocks Fitness November 22, 2012 at 11:40 am

Slow and stress free holiday pretty please! So far it is going that way. Early client, yoga, and about to take Kala for a walk. Then heading to friends for dinner. Looking forward to relaxing the rest of the day and working on not stuffing myself like a turkey, but savoring the food and the moments. XOXO

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LCCotter November 23, 2012 at 1:01 pm

savory is key! i know you do it well! Hugs!

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Jess November 22, 2012 at 9:27 pm

I know you know this already but I love you friend. Do you know how many times I thought about this very blog post while prepping for Thanksgiving yesterday and this AM?? I swear it was your words that kept me calm today especially. You are so good for my soul!! Love YOU!

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LCCotter November 23, 2012 at 1:05 pm

i am so so glad. I am always there in spirit with you. And i always feel your encouragement on my runs. Thats what friends are for, good for the soul!

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greengirlrunning November 23, 2012 at 1:00 am

This was exactly what my family and I have been talking about! We have had a special Thanksgiving tradition for the past 34 years, but this year it changed due to an illness in the family. We were all separated, all very sad and unsure of what to do. But then we decided to just roll with it. It was different, and strange but still wonderful! I’ll keep this post in mind through the rest of the year for sure :)

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LCCotter November 23, 2012 at 1:03 pm

so sorry you couldn’t be together, but i love that you celebrated a new tradition and it was wonderful. HUgs!

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Stacie @ Snaps and Bits November 23, 2012 at 8:40 am

We ordered a re-heat meal from Whole Foods. So easy! That way, we could enjoy our day out of the kitchen (mostly)!

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LCCotter November 23, 2012 at 12:47 pm

i think wholefoods is homemade! way to relax and enjoy friend.

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