before & after: thanksgiving table



I’ve claimed Thanksgiving as my holiday now since it robbed me of my birthday celebrations as a child. My birthday is November 25th, perpetually the week of Thanksgiving. So no parties, and most of my gifts were doubled as Christmas gifts. I am such a martyr!

Therefore, I took charge and made our house the Thanksgiving destination so I can control the food and never have to suffer someone’s green bean casserole from a can. That’s my birthday present to myself.

Here are some Thanksgiving’s Past.

In 2010, Bryce and I were alone because of a storm and without power for the entire week. It came back on at about noon on Thanksgiving Day. Fortunately, we have a gas stovetop so that did not slow down the gravy production!Past T-Day

This is 2012. Yes, those are folding chairs as my dining chairs, and if you squint hard enough, you can see the Salvation Army couch and unfinished tiles and our temporary staircase. If I remember correctly, Bryce and his dad were nailing up the handrail on that staircase while my dad and I were prepping the turkey.Past T-Day2

Part of my motivation for writing this blog stems from the pang of guilt I would get when I browse gorgeous blogs and people’s before and after posts. They had a finished project! My mindset was so focused on how beautiful this house SHOULD be, that it paralyzed me from reflecting and posting how beautiful this work-in-progress IS.

We couldn’t spend money, even just $50, at Home Goods for 2 shiny vases, a faux fur throw and a pillow with some sparkly thread. That $50 had to go to 3 more bags of mortar and the lumber for the railings on the temporary stair to keep our dear old parents from falling to their death coming down from a nap!

But that doesn’t mean our house isn’t beautiful or shouldn’t be showcased. There’s a lot of valuable work going on here that we want to share with you.

This is the kind of table I would like to set some day. Until then, let’s just focus on the super yummy food that my family and I make every year!

My famous Pumpkin Crème Brulee getting a torch.Past T-Day3

Here’s my tried and tested Thanksgiving Day menu and schedule. Everything is primal except I actually use a tablespoon of all-purpose flour in my gravy so that it has the perfect consistency. In the past I have used potato starch but it gives it too shiny of a sheen and doesn’t get it quite as thick as I like.





Mashed Potatoes


Brussels Sprouts

Cranberry Sauce

Pumpkin Crème Brulee






  • Thaw turkey
  • Grocery shop











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