a thanksgiving by the bay

We just got back from five days in California. Glorious! It is super sunny in Denver but there's just something about that California sunshine. And the palm trees. And all the water. It makes sense so many people want to live there. (And that there's so much gosh darn traffic.) But anyway! Yes. We spent Thanksgiving in Marin county, north of San Francisco. It was a long weekend full of all the things Thanksgiving long weekends are supposed to include: family, wine, turkey, football, walks, runs, laughs, games, fires, pies, coffee, hugs, dishes, and of course brussels sprouts.

This Thanksgiving was extra special, too, because it was Willa's first Thanksgiving dinner. Last Thanksgiving she made an appearance of course, but it was after a nap that took up most of dinnertime and at just five-months old, there was obviously no turkey or even gravy enjoyed. This year, she sat with us at the table and ate some bites of most of the dishes. Her favorite by far was the pumpkin pie! She tried, not so stealthily, to grab bites by the fistful. It was impossible not to laugh hysterically before composing ourselves and enforcing appropriate manners.

^^ it's going to be a beautiful thanksgiving! ^^

^^ eating cheese appetizers and meeting new friends ^^

^^ one of willa's favorite things to do all weekend was to watch the "ducks," which pretty much meant any and all birds. ^^

^^ bergström pinot noir. and the much-enjoyed cheese plate. ^^

^^ ready to eat! ^^

^^ a beautifully arranged plate of thanksgiving fare, if i do say so myself. many thanks to the hardworking and magnificent chef! as well as those of us who de-leafed brussels sprouts! ^^

^^ willa was really into "cheers"-ing everyone on the deck as we enjoyed post-dinner/pre-dessert wine. it was a real crowd-pleaser. ^^

^^ pumpkin pie face ^^

I also had a great success this year: I'm pretty sure it was the first year in all my Thanksgiving history that I did not stuff myself silly. I ate a full-sized plate of food and went back for seconds. I ate two of the three pies offered. I had several glasses of wine. But I did not feel ill. It was delightful. The reason, I think, was plenty of vegetables. I loaded up on brussels sprouts and squash and cabbage and mushroom stuffing. Patting myself on the back...although, as I'm writing this, I'm kind of wishing I could go back in time and eat a bit more. Gosh I love turkey dinner.