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Thanksgiving V.2014

This Thanksgiving led us to the sunny skies of Phoenix, AZ to spend the holiday with Bryan’s parents.  We had a few nights at home last week before heading south.  We had Philipp and Sara over to stuff ourselves with homemade pasta, pesto, broccoli, and grilled chicken.  We then spent the night before stretching our stomachs with sweet potato fries at our neighborhood bar, The Neighbor Lady.  I think I was already full by the time the Thanksgiving holiday even officially began.

Thursday morning Bryan and I debarked for Seatac airport and arrived in Phoenix at 3:15pm.  Just leaving enough time to drive back to his parents house, FaceTime with his sis, finish up dinner and devour it.  Bryan’s mom made the full spread for just the four of us; 12lb turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce, green beans, rolls, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, corn pudding, and beets.  What started at around 5pm didn’t finish until 7pm.  Post dinner we did what any rightminded American does; crawl up into a ball on the couch and watch football.  We had both the Texas vs. TCU game on and the Seahawks vs. Forty-Whiners to watch.  This quickly became just focused on the Seahawks game, which Bryan and I were very pleased with the outcome.  We had our choice of three pies:  pumpkin, apple crumb, or grasshopper, before we headed to bed very happy.

Pre Thanksgiving meal...me so hungry.
Pre Thanksgiving meal…me so hungry and Bryan made me take off my jersey for dinner.

Friday morning was started with french toast and ham steak.  After spending a good deal chit chatting Bryan and I decided to work off a bit of the indulgence by going on a trail run/hike on South Mountain, a short 20 minute drive away.  We started off on the rather flat road running and then after 1.5 miles started walking up the incline to Fat Man’s Pass.  We took our time at the top before starting back and decided to run the last 1.5 miles back to the car.  Only a few tenths of the mile did Bryan step very wrong on a loose rock and sprained his ankle horribly.  We had about a mile to limp back to the car and I could tell Bryan was in pretty bad pain.  The rest of the trip was recovering trip for Bryan.  Friday night we cleaned up, Bryan doned his dad’s ankle brace and hobbled to a Cantina for dinner before heading to the Cardinal’s stadium to watch Bryan’s highschool football team win their first State Championship since 1949.  The win was against their rival highschool, also in Chandler, and was a sound victory with about 6 thousand fans in the stands.  It was a late night back to the house.

I'm wearing my boyfriend's Varsity jacket lol.  That one definitely aged us in the crowd.
I’m wearing my boyfriend’s Varsity jacket lol. That one definitely aged us in the crowd.

Saturday morning was another slow start as I got hooked into watching the Michigan vs. OSU game that I thought was going to be a total blowout but was unexpectedly a decent showing for my Wolverines.  Nevertheless, we lost, and wasted the whole morning, not that we didn’t have a gimp to take care of.  After the game all four of us set out for lunch at Paradise Bakery (known as Panera in all other parts of the country).  We sat outside in the shade eating before splitting ways; Bryan and his dad headed to Urgent Care while myself and his mom headed to the nail salon to get mani/pedis.  I think we got the better end of the deal.  After our nails were all prettied we headed home.  More football watching later and Trish taught me how to make her chile rellenos.  I helped her clean, stuff, dip and fry the chiles and I mainly prepped the toppings (typical taco toppings), refried beans, and tortillas.  They were very good (very heavy!) but went down pretty easy with Lon’s homemade margaritas.  Bryan and I headed out to Papago Brewing Company, about 20 minutes away, to meet up with Bryan’s only remaining high school friend still in the Phoenix area.  Katy and Geary were a lovely couple that we got beers with and chatted with until midnight, they were the couple whose wedding we went to the last time we visited Arizona.  Another late night back to the casa.

Making chile rellenos for the first time
Making chile rellenos for the first time

Sunday morning was a much earlier start for us, getting us out of the house for the 9am church service.  It was a bit rough I will say.  We came back for homemade pancakes and bacon (do you think I was beyond full at this point of the weekend?).  I had to do something active, and I feel so bad that Bryan was incapable of doing any.  I went for a run through the neighborhoods and along their green belt path for what ended up being nearly 6 miles.  It was a good run despite still being not used to the hot sun.  Sunday night we stopped at a Chinese restaurant 1 mile away that was highly rated by Yelp and never visited by his parents.  This turned out to be quite the delicious spot.  We ordered a lot but did not take home any leftovers.  Amazing homemade pork potstickers, stirfried eggplant in garlic sauce with minced pork, mongolian beef, sweet and sour pork, house special chow mein stirfried noodles and hot tea.  And we ate it all.  Bryan and I have not had good Chinese in quite some time.  We came back to have a fire in their backyard to share our last night with them.  We later even got them into watching two episodes of Dr. Pol!

Bryan and I at dinner.
Bryan and I at dinner.
Some of the best pork potstickers I've ever had.
Some of the best pork potstickers I’ve ever had.
Northern Chinese style sweet and sour pork (very good!)
Northern Chinese style sweet and sour pork (very good!)
Monogolian beef
Monogolian beef
Succulent eggplant with pork and garlic sauce
Succulent eggplant with pork and garlic sauce
House special stirfried noodles (with chicken, beef and shrimp)
House special stirfried noodles (with chicken, beef and shrimp)

We left early this morning at 6am (5am PST) and our flight arrived just before 11.  I was at work around 12:30 and despite it being just below 40 and with dusting of snow on the ground it does feel good to be back!

Chelsea

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