This year for Thanksgiving we went OUT to eat. In my 40+ years on this earth, my family has never strayed from the big home-cooked Thanksgiving. But my mom decided she did not want to spend hours preparing and cooking and cleaning. She wanted to actually be able to sit and eat with no worries. I was so happy about this. We reserved seats at the East Wind Caterers Thanksgiving Day Buffet. Definitely worth doing at least once in your life.
We got back to my Mom's house before 5. She had stocked up on what she calls "pickins" - cheese, crackers, rolled cold cuts, hot chocolate, cookie dough to bake, etc. And by about 7-8pm we were all a little hungry again. We put some Christmas music on and went about putting together Mom's new tree. (We always had real trees growing up, but when cousins of mine saw their house burn to the ground because their real tree caught fire, we've used artificial ones ever since.) It was a pretty and pre-lit and about 6.5 feet tall. Mom has lots of ornaments from when I was little and it's always so fun to put them on the tree.
We left at around 11am the following morning. K went to work and, in the evening, hung out with her best friends on a main shopping strip here in Queens. J went to the dance studio to start choreography on her new duet. Dance was 2 hours and then she met up with a bunch of her homeschooled friends to go ice skating at the Pond at Bryant Park. It's beautiful there at nighttime. She had a lot of fun and then slept over her friend's house.
My tree is going up this week and I'm happy to report that about 90% of my Christmas shopping is done.