This year, Thanksgiving was filled with a few “firsts” for us–first time we haven’t spent Thanksgiving in Long Beach, first time hosting the gathering, first time talking with family via video chat…but although it was filled with very new experiences, we had a really great time.
Growing up, my family was extremely close with the Julian family (Diane, Dave, Matt & Brandon), so they decided to come to San Francisco and spend the holiday with us. Brandon arrived from Humboldt (where he’s earning his degree in Early Childhood Education, should be done this winter!) earlier than the rest of the gang so he stayed with us Tuesday night. Then on Wed., Dave, Diane and Matt arrived after the long drive from LA around 11:30 so we decided to get a bite to eat. Matt had seen Cali Pho Nia which I’ve blogged about previously and was craving Vietnamese so we all enjoyed a great lunch together. That afternoon we watched a family video of us kids (the two Julian boys and the three Delmar kids) putting on skits, showing off our Halloween candy loot, and dancing the Time Warp from Rocky Horror Picture Show…awesome! The video definitely gave us some laughs, watching ourselves dancing away in our 80’s and 90’s clothes, haha.
Thanksgiving morning Diane woke up not feeling so hot 🙁 but she was a real trooper and came to our apartment early anyways to help cook! We popped open a bottle (or two) of champagne to help us get through the hours of cooking and enjoyed some amazing appetizers that Diane and Jessie provided…
Mid-morning Kevin and I had a nice time chatting with his family via his and his brother’s PlayStation 3 gaming systems (I guess they are good for something! haha) We’ve done it a few times before but it was really special doing it on a holiday when we weren’t able to be with them in person.
Brandon cuttin’ up the sweet potato fries while Jessie and Matt keep him entertained with their story-telling.
Jessie, Matt and me
Early in the afternoon my mom and Kevin surprised us with another video chat session, this time with my mom, my Aunt Tina, my Uncle Joey and Luke the family dog! 🙂 We had a great time talking with them with the video streaming, it felt like they were right in our living room with us!
Jessie and her friend Kimberly who joined us for the holiday
Kevin and Dave (and Lola) anxiously waiting for the food to be done
Entertaining ourselves as the turkey finished cooking, playing a game that Brandon told us about called “Pictionary Telephone” (so much fun!)
So what was on the menu, you ask? Well, let me show you!
Mmm, mmm, mmm! Part one of the amazing meal
I had to put a special picture of Kevin’s homemade dinner rolls (and not just pour-out-the-box-and-mix-with-water kinda homemade, I’m talking yeast-and-rolling-out-the-dough-and-letting-it-rise-overnight kinda homemade!
And to finish off the meal…plenty of desserts! Kevin and I were in charge of the desserts and Jessie’s friend Kimberly brought the berry pie for us to share as well. We made two pumpkin pies, capirotada (Mexican bread pudding) and a tiramisu trifle dessert…delicious!
The day after Thanksgiving, instead of spending our time standing in lines with the rest of the world, we spent a quiet morning at home and then met up with the Julians at the SF Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) which Kevin and I hadn’t made it to yet. We went specifically to see the Richard Avedon photography exhibit but enjoyed the other exhibits as well.
I don’t think Kevin was too impressed, probably thinking “I could’ve done that”, haha
Kevin wanted to call this one “Pucker Up, Buttercup” and I couldn’t agree more! haha
One of my favorite pieces about African-American novelists and literary figures
Now onto the main exhibit!
He had tons of amazing portraits of both famous and not-so-famous characters. Here are my favorites…
One of my favorites, Janis Joplin
Louis Armstrong (I’ve been listening to his music a lot lately)
The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1963. I had researched this group for my senior thesis on black and white women’s experiences during the Civil Rights Movement (one of my favorite time periods in US History), so this was really exciting to see.
After spending a couple of hours in the museum we made our way to Union Square to get a bite to eat at a small Italian cafe before heading out to see the Christmas tree lighting. After 30 minutes of holiday songs by the boy’s choir, one of the American Idol losers, and some church chorus group they finally lit the tree to everyone’s enjoyment! Then the streets flooded with people wanting to get home and I’ve never seen it so packed. Even though I joke about the annoying show they put on before they lit the tree, it was a great way to get in the holiday spirit!
Diane and Matt
Matt, Brandon and Kevin
The Julians’ last night in the city we decided to introduce them to the wonderful world of Goood Frickin Chicken which Kevin and I frequent. As expected, the Julians loved the food there and we had a great last night together hanging out like old times.
We had a really great weekend spending time with family friends and now that we’ve got a taste for the holidays, the countdown to Christmas in Long Beach has officially started! We’ll be driving down either the 18th or 19th and can’t wait! 🙂