Thanksgiving 2021

in the midst of everything going on, I don’t have any urge to buy anything that is on sale right now. But I do want to take some time to reflect on the plentitude I have and gratitude.

This year I am thankful for:

  • My brother moving to New York and being able to spend more time with him than I have since… I left for college, maybe? And being in the same city as him since the same time?
  • Having the means to both support a local restaurant for Thanksgiving for a second pandemic year and supplement that meal with more of our favorite sides and desserts that we always finish too soon and wish we had leftovers of
Showing off my new charcuterie board skills to my brother! Accompanied by a fresh apple cider take on a Moscow mule (but no vodka for me hehe)
  • The good health of myself and my loved ones
  • Modern medicine and public health measures that have helped make said good health possible
  • All of the well wishes from folks in the wake of my grandmother’s passing
  • Being able to attend 4 weddings over the past 3 months after not seeing anyone in person for a year and a half
  • Making new friends locally despite a global pandemic
  • … who let us enjoy cat-sitting and their fantastic view of the Thanksgiving parade
  • Technology allowing me to stay in touch with my parents (and my other long-distance friends and extended family), even after not seeing them for 2 years

Before I go on, I wanted to take a moment to gently remind myself and any readers here that the myth of the first Thanksgiving is, in fact, a myth. Here are a few things I’ve learned about the history of Thanksgiving:

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Friendsgiving 2014

Thanksgiving is the time of year that we gather our family ’round and feast a-plenty.

For your family away from family, there is Friendsgiving.

This year’s Friendsgiving was the best one yet! We really stepped up our food game this year:

Clockwise from top left: mac & cheese, stuffing, mashed potatoes, rotisserie chicken, gravy, cranberry sauce, salad, brussel sprouts

I accidentally ended up doing a lot of the food prep for our meal (oops) because I’m a bit of a control freak in the kitchen (ooooops). But I like to think it was practice for when I prepare a full-on Thanksgiving meal for my family + guests this week.

We also had a gorgeous veggie platter and some sparkling apple cider, hollaaaa~ (And my friends had wine XD)

We ran into a small SNAFU when the oven at Jen’s place refused to work, throwing off my plan to roast the brussel sprouts and bake the mac. So, in the end, I just sauteed the sprouts and left the mac unbaked. 😦 They still tasted great!

Awwwwwwww yeah.

I’m excited and also scared for my Thanksgiving at home, but I feel a renewed sense of confidence in my ability to cook. (Also, I’m trying not to think about the turkeys I’ve made in the past, which, as most turkeys end up being, were not properly browned and a bit dry.)

After helping ourselves to seconds and getting some pumpkin pie, we cuddled Jen’s cats and watched Love Actually, to kick off the holiday spirit with a classic Christmastime movie.

Best scene in the film because it’s one of the sweetest moments of the best relationship in the film

My friends and I may be scattered as we go off to school and new jobs and new things next year, but I hope we’re able to do Friendsgiving every year in spite of it!

Do you celebrate Friendsgiving?
What are you having for your Thanksgiving meal? What are you most looking forward to?

Also, stay tuned because, with any luck, I will have an actual holiday music playlist (or 5) ready for my Friday post! FRIDAY, the official day I may start blasting holiday music without fear of haters.




Black Friday/Brown Thursday

(In the debate between “Grey Thursday” and “Brown Thursday”, I like brown because that’s the color of most of the Thanksgiving foods, I guess? XD)

(I’ll update this with photos and video when I feel like getting around to taking and editing them. XD)

I did most of my shopping with my family on Thursday after everyone was food coma’d. I don’t really like the idea of shopping on Thanksgiving, a sacred day for eating and being with family. I also hate the idea of salespeople having to leave their families to work on Thanksgiving. 😦
However, we spent all of Black Friday showing someone around New York, and people ditched us after dinner anyway, so around 8 PM we headed out to Best Buy, figuring that it wouldn’t be too hectic after 2 hours of being open.

I did wait in line outside of Best Buy a few years ago, so I was extremely glad that I didn’t have to do that this year. My cousin (well, actually his dad is my dad’s cousin, but he shall henceforth be referred to as “my cousin” and not “my second cousin” or whatever) had one objective: The Big Bang Theory season 6 DVD box. He is upset that the design scheme for the DVDs changed after season 3 and now they’re inconsistent with each other on the shelf. (Serious stuff, people! Open your eyes to the ugly truth.) As for myself, I wanted to get:

  • An external hard drive – I was extremely panicked when my computer died, so I want to make sure I can back up my files
  • SD card – When I lost my camera, I lost my 8 GB SD card for my camera, and now I only have my 2 GB one. I like having more on hand, preferably in a larger file size.

I ended up getting:

  • A 2 TB portable external hard drive – I didn’t plan on getting such a large size and I didn’t think that portability was so important, but my dad convinced me since it’s more convenient to be able to carry it around AND if I keep up at the rate that I’m currently going with my photos and videos, then I’ll need the large storage capacity.
  • A 16 GB SD card adaptable to micro-SD – Not sure why I needed micro-ness, but maybe if I want to carry the files on my phone? Iono. I declined the 32 GB one because I worry about having TOO many files on one card in the unfortunate event that I lose it or something. Also, I would never upload if I had so much storage space on one. XD
  • A wireless mouse – I gave my old one to my brother and then he broke it. So. I don’t use them much but if I need one, I’ll have one.
  • Headphones & earbuds – For my listening needs, since my old ones are on their last legs now. I got the warranty for the headphones but I’m tired of getting them for these Skullcandy earbuds… sigh.

Because of that external hard drive, I ended up spending the most money at Best Buy this weekend.


My brother made me take him out to the mall around midnight because he wanted to get some clothes. I had some things in mind to get, too. PLUS we were in New Jersey visiting my “cousin”, so you know what that means:

No sales tax on clothing holla at me!

Even though I was pretty annoyed about being out so late when I wanted to be asleep, and a little grumpy with my brother, I had a productive late night trip. I got:

  • 2 Disney graphic tees – I stopped buying graphic tees for a while, but I bought quite a few this past fall. I’ve been especially into getting graphic tees that harken back to my childhood, i.e. Disney, Super Mario Bros, TMNT. I got these at Macy’s, where they were on a clearance rack for half off, I think. PLUS the cashier put in some promo code (I’m guessing for Black Friday?) so both T-shirts together only cost me a little bit over $10. (And remember, no tax, holla.)
  • Black button-down blouse, aubergine button-up cardgian, & red lace-trimmed tank – Just picking up some basics from Old Navy; no real rhyme or reason here but I’m sure I’ll wear these plenty.
  • RED PANTS & cream sweater with lace sleeves – I have been searching for red pants for no less than a year and a half. And I finally finally found them, YES. This thrills me. I’ve been struggling because every time I would see red pants, they’d be super duper skinny and cause me pain. Also, the sweater is cute, but I’m mostly excited about this red pants thing. I’m still excited about them today. (Also, shoutout to the super helpful sales associate at Delia’s!)

And then, I did a bad thing. I splurged on something on Saturday. I’ve been eyeing this for a while and I know I don’t need it. I know this. But here we are:

The Sephora Favorites Super Stars Beauty Essentials gift set (no longer available on their website).  I saw this at Sephora a few weeks ago and haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. It’s $75, which is more than I like spending on anything, let alone on beauty supplies since I, uh… don’t really wear makeup. Ever. ^^;; I have a bit more knowledge than would appear, since I watch a lot of Youtube beauty gurus and read a lot of magazines.

But dudes, the value is so incredible. There are full-sized products in here, and these are all consistently listed as holy grail products. (That famous eyeliner, that infamous blush/bronzer duo, the argan oil, oh my.) I basically do not need to buy any other makeup/beauty product again. (If you like beauty products, you definitely should buy this. The value is through the roof, and it’s way more economical than buying more than 2 or 3 of these individually. The value of all the items separately is over $280. I only wish it came with a nice bag also, like some of the other gift sets. (Case in point, the Sephora Glitz& Glam set, which I almost bought had I not seen this Super Stars set. That is also a super great deal, if you’re looking for something for yourself or to give as a gift.) (I wish Sephora was paying me to say this, but these gift sets are such a good deal and so dangerous for your wallet.)

In fact, I will be adding to my resolutions that I will not be purchasing any other makeup/beauty products unless something goes empty that I need (e.g. my moisturizer, etc.). Because honestly, I won’t need anything ever again. Ever. Never for never.

I also got my Beauty Insider birthday gift! That was a surprise, since my birthday is in December, but I guess they have us all ready, so I got Benefit’s They’re Real! mascara & Watt’s Up highlighter earlier than I thought I would, so yay.

Sephora Beauty Insider Birthday Gift 2013
Photo courtesy of

That is my little haul from the weekend! My Thanksgiving in and of itself wasn’t terribly eventful. We ate dinner with my family and some of their friends and spent time freezing in New York (I may go into that day in a later post).

How was your Thanksgiving weekend?
Did you buy anything over the weekend?