ho ho holidaaaays

Christmas post!! Better late than never!

I woke up feeling a bit crappy Christmas morning. I think it was due to getting up super early in Cleveland and traveling all morning. Then once I got back to Colorado, I had to run around and finish up some shopping.  I am normally not that last minute, but things were chaotic before I left for Ohio!  I also may or may not have had a few glasses of wine on xmas eve ;)

I made a huuuge Green Monster on the 24th.  I filled up a 16oz pint glass which was immediately consumed.  I also filled up another pint glass about halfway.  It was the perfect little pick me up Christmas morning. 


Then, some coffee. 


Then Natalie and I started working on Christmas dinner.  We started at about 9:30am.  It was super easy and stress free.  I decided to cook an 8lb turkey [from Whole Foods] in a crock pot.  I searched for recipes and went with this one.  We did a few things differently, but not much. 

All natural, no antibiotic turkey was $1.99/lb at WF


Seasonings: s+p, parsley, paprika, garlic powder, sage, rosemary – This got rubbed all over the bird, inside + out.  Natalie even lifted up the skin to spread right on the meat.


Gross raw turkey photo.  It took no time at all to get the bird ready for the crock pot.


Pat + Nat’s tree…loved the LED lights!



Then we started on the crock pot stuffing, which was my FAVorite stuffing ever.  It was extremely simple and delicious.  I’m not a big fan of the fancy stuffing recipes with nuts + fruit or anything weird.  I just like the standard herbed stuffing with celery/onion/carrots and lots of bread!

Kenna turns ONE in a few days!!


Crock pot stuffing!!  Read the comments for tips on adding less broth, etc.  I cut the recipe in half since there were only 4 of us, but I put in extra seasonings.

Natalie tore the bread into the crock pot dish.  It’s was about a 2.5qt crock pot and worked perfectly!  I got a HUGE loaf of Rustic Italian bread at WF.  It was $4.99 and literally about 10-12” in diameter.  So delicious.


Cooking the veggies in butter…this smelled amazing.


Around lunchtime I made Christmas Oats!!!

so so so so so goooooooood


  • 1/4c oat bran + 1/4c rolled oats
  • 1/2c rice milk + 1/2c water
  • 1/2 banana
  • chia sprinkles
  • chocolate peanut butter glob
  • candy cane crumbles
  • GREEN wheat grass sprinkled on top
  • snowy coconut flakes

It twas’ delicious :)


Thennnn we opened presents + I was bad and didn’t take photos, hehehe.

And thennnn Chris + I took the mutts to a nearby fenced in tennis court to burn off some energy.  They had a blast!


Round n’ round they go


It took awhile to tire them out.  Kenna definitely has more stamina than Dakota.  She was running laps around the whole court with the ball, while Dakota tried to cut her off when she would pass the net.



After that, Chris + I went for a walk on the trails behind P+N’s house.  These shoes make my feet look big but with running pants on they looked like clown feet.  It was chilly outside but so nice and peaceful. 


Bundled up!


After we got back, Natalie + I finished up dinner.  I figured there was no way possible that this turkey would dry out because it was sitting in juices more than normal and keeping the lid on it except for a few times to baste it.  Well, when I first tried the breast meat it was really dry.  I was sad!  I took the turkey out and started carving despite the dryness.  I remembered that my dad always dips each slice of turkey in the juices in the bottom of the pan, so I did that.  The meat sucked up the juice like a sponge and it turned out to be one of my favorite turkey’s ever!!  The seasonings were perfect!


We made salt baked potatoes per the recipe on 101 Cookbooks.  Check out the recipe, it’s pretty crazy.  The ingredients are:

  • 3 CUPS of salt
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2lbs of potatoes
  • 6 garlic cloves

You mix the salt + whites together and pack it on top of the potatoes.  They were THEE best oven baked potatoes I have ever had.  The inside was really creamy and moist.  I didn’t miss the mashed taters at all! 


The only kind of annoying thing was busting open the top + brushing the salt off of the potatoes.  It literally turned into cement!  I had to bash it with a huge knife handle, haha.  The salt stuck to some of the potatoes more than others, but I realized I probably should have dried them more thoroughly before topping with the salt.


The spoon definitely did not break through the salt.  Has anyone ever salt-baked anything?


We also made steamed brussel sprouts, which I had never tried before.  SO GOOD.  The sprouts were really pretty, which sounds strange, but they looked fresher than normal.  They were like little green pillows of veggie goodness. 



After they were done steaming, we drained the water, then sautéed them with kale until the kale was done.  Mmmm mmm good


Natalie was on gravy duty.  It was delish…our ladle is so fancy :)


It was bad that the stuffing bowl sat by me during dinner.




Meat just does not photograph very well.


My feet stayed warm in these new slipper socks my mom got me.  I can’t even explain how soft and silky they are.  Somehow, they are infused with shea butter!?  She found them at Bath + Bodyworks.


My plate.


With some wine of course. 


Our meal was so super delicious and really simple.  Christmas dinner does not need to be stressful, as long as you have a few crock pots in your house ;)


Fun little Christmas dinner with our Colorado family :)


Then we played RISK.  I have never played this before and right away was announcing “I do not like this game.”  I ended up winning, hehe.


Do you guys know what LoveSacs are?  Pat put Dakota in theirs and she was pretty content.    


She is so ridiculous.


Oh yeah.  She wore her nails down a lot running on the tennis court and one opened up a bit and was bleeding :(  We had to tape a sock around her paw.  She was not a fan and acted like she was immobile.  It was kind of hilarious. 



I tried making an apple crumble, without a recipe.  I’ve never made one before, so I’m not really sure why I thought it was a good idea to make one with no recipe.  I sliced apples, sprinkled some cinnamon on top and put them in a casserole dish.  Then I mixed oats with a little flour and yogurt, cut in some butter, about 1T sucanat, more cinnamon, and a little milk.  I baked it for about 30min at 350*


I would give it about a 6/10.  It was nice on one hand because it wasn’t heavy and semi-healthy.  I also knew it would be awesome mixed in my morning oats.  I would make it again but do a few things differently and maybe consult a recipe ;)


Had some drinks while playing RISK.  That box of pinot was surprisingly tasty for an on sale price of $7.99.  I would definitely buy it again.  It would be great for camping!!  The Twisted Pine beer was awesome.



December 26th:  The plan today was to move all of our belongings from Pat + Nat’s house to our rental house in Denver.  We made 2 trips with both cars and pretty much got everything except the bed and bathroom stuff.  We had a lot at their house, including our big TV.  It was probably 1/5th of our things.   

I wanted to photograph some of the gifts I got yesterday from Chris and P+N.

Chris got me a sweet Prana yoga mat bag!!  It has a big pocket, perfect for keys + wallet, and even a pouch on the inside that will hold my water bottle.  Love it!


He also got me a cookbook filled with recipes for eating seasonally.  There are tons of recipes that sound awesome and I really enjoy trying to eat as much “in season” food as possible.  He found a gorgeous plate for me too!  Love the shape and colors.  I was also thinking that it will be nice for photos because of the shape.  Sometimes using squash square and circular plates always leave me with a bare spot in the middle of the plate.  With this plate, I think the food will tend to all meet in the middle :)


purdy plate.



Here is some of what P+N got me.  Natalie said the hat is a replacement for the one Kenna ate.  She knows how much I love clear mugs and this one is super durable.  The headband is from Prana and is reversible…love it!


A cuuute bamboo utensil set + chopsticks with a little carrying case.  


Some crazy chocolate that I’m sure is delicious.  I love the packaging!


This green tea sounds amazing.  Goji berry + cacao from World Market. I can’t wait to try it out!


There were a few lovely smelling soaps and a cute mug that is happpppy….


and sad.  


After the photoshoot my oats were done! 

Apple Butter Oats:

  • 1/4c oat bran, 1/4c rolled oats
  • 1/4c ricemilk [ran out], 3/4c water
  • cinnamon
  • baked apples from last night
  • pnut butter glob
  • Natalie’s mom’s homemade apple butter glob
  • walnuts


Ahhhh new plate + bamboo spoon.  It is a perfect oatmeal spoon!  I might need to get more of them.


The apple butter was absolutely amazing.  I loved the texture and it had awesome flavor.  I need to learn how to make that.  I’ve never put apples in my oatmeal.  Super yum!  Not sure why I have never thought to do that because apples + pnut butter are such a delicious combo.


I will probably repeat this exact thing tomorrow.  The walnuts were perfect mixed in with this as well.


Big day tomorrow!!  I better get a full night of sleep because last night I only got about 6.  I can’t wait to get everything moved out of storage.  It will be weird not living with Pat + Nat anymore.  The three months went fast!!  I probably won’t update tomorrow night because I know I will be completely exhausted from moving and cleaning.  Check back soon! 

Also, don’t forget to check the last post with the molasses cookie recipe + puppy chow recipe! mmmm

Night :)