|We had dinner at POP's on historic Route 66. They have literally hundreds of different kinds of sodas.|
|We showed the fam one of our favorite places: the Oklahoma City National Memorial downtown. Pictured above is the "Survivor Tree" bare and ready for fall. It's still beautiful in it's own way even without it's greenery.|
And then it was time for Thanksgiving! Cynthia, Dre and I stayed up late Wednesday night prepping things (well really I think I went to bed first and left them with more to do) and I was up and cooking from about 8:30-4pm. Making and hosting Thanksgiving certainly gave Dre and I a fresh perspective on what it means when we've just 'shown up' for Thanksgiving in past years. But oh it was so worth it! We're thinking of doing it every year and making it 'our holiday' if our families are agreeable.
Pioneer Woman's stuffing; mashed potatoes; sweet potatoes with homemade granola topping; blanched green beans; honey roasted carrots; roasted broccoli; sweet potato rolls; and Paula Dean's macaroni and cheese made by Dre's classmate Claudine. We had nine people to dinner (my family + us + four of Dre's classmates) and in what my mom called "true Garrison tradition" had enough desserts for everyone to have their own. (Cynthia made not one but two pumpkin pies plus a DF apple crumble.)
|My hero dealing with the raw turkey so that when it was dinner time I still had an appetite to eat yummy turkey. I can deal with raw meat but it really affects my appetite for the item later.|
|Barry and Dre carving up the bird. It was definitely a two person project. :-)|
|My plate. Seriously. I've never worked so hard at a meal and found it so deliciously worth it.|
And since my family left we've just been counting down the days and getting ready to go home. Andree's dad came out and picked up our car and drove it back across country home for us. He loves road trips and we were definitely blessed to not have to make the drive again and worry about Dre starting work worn out from driving. Tomorrow (Tuesday) as soon as Dre gets out of class he's picking me up and then we're getting on a plane and going home! Together. For good. To our own bed. Our dear friends. And a whole new chapter of changes and new adventures!
*My birthday this year was probably the best ever. The simplest way I can describe it is that I just felt loved. Loved by my husband, loved by my friends, loved by my Savior. It's been quite a year and it was just a refreshing weekend in many small and big ways. [Thank you to everyone who contributed and played a part in anyway. I am so grateful and freshly aware of the kindness of God at work in my life.]