Thanksgiving Bon Voyage

Frock Files // Thanksgiving in Hawaii

Like so many of you, we’re heading home today to spend Thanksgiving with family. Mine lives all the way in Hawaii, which is a pretty long trip from New England. But the many hours on a plane are always worth it because my family is amazing and, well, what kind of person complains about having to travel to Hawaii?

Anyone who’s migrated from place to place knows that one of the downfalls is leaving a piece of your heart behind every time you move. Over the years, the missing part has become harder and harder. When I lived in Portland, I desperately missed the seasons in New England. Now that I’m back here, I really miss my friends and a bunch of little spots that I came to love in Portland. And, oh, Hawaii. My whole family lives there and I miss out on weekly family brunches, all of my niece and nephew’s birthdays, and the lovely comfort of growing into adulthood alongside people you’ve known all your life.

Frock Files // Thanksgiving in Hawaii

Occasionally, I get the urge to move back home and my island friends and family laugh at me. “You? Here? You’d get antsy in a month!” Which is true. (They know me so well.) I’ve lived almost my entire adult life off the island.

So these annual trips home are precious to me, especially now that I get to share them with James. We love staying in Kailua and driving right next to — and through — the unbelievably lush mountains. We love going to the KCC open market at sunrise on Saturday with my parents. We love having shave ice with my sister’s family, hanging out on the North Shore, and pretending to be tourists while sipping umbrella cocktails at the Mai Tai Bar.

Frock Files // Thanksgiving in Hawaii

I’m so thankful for the abundance of beauty in my life, both here and in Hawaii, and for the ability to go back every year. Wherever you may be traveling — whether one block or thousands of miles — I hope that you’re also surrounded by love and good eats.

P.S. I’m taking the rest of this week off, but check back next Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday for gift guide, recipe, and DIY posts! And follow me on Instagram to see what we’re up to in the aloha state!

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Weekend Links + Options

Weekend Links + Options // Frock Files

What a whirlwind of a week! Isn’t that always the way it is before a big trip, though? Since I only see my friends and family back home once each year, I make a special effort to get a little more groomed before going home. My resolution to schedule self care is in effect – at my haircut on Wednesday, I took Sarah’s advice and scheduled my next haircut exactly eight weeks down the road.

Now we just have some last minute errands to run, a family birthday party to throw, and a bit of packing to do — and we’re off! To ring in a festive weekend, I’ve rounded up five fascinating links just for you.

Weekend Links

The moment you realize your mom went through exactly the same things you’re going through right now.

Adorable kids learning about charity in such a fun way! (Think: lemonade stand for the wintertime.)

European flash mobs are classier.

More options = more happiness?

Bourbon! Chocolate! Pecans!

P.S. See you back here on Monday for one last post before we jet! What are you up to this weekend?

Pennies for Love: A Note of Thanks

Pennies for Love: Thanksgiving Love Note

Way back when I worked in an office, I had a co-worker who celebrated her six month mark with the company by writing each of her team members a thank you note. While I’ve always given thank you notes for the gifts that come wrapped in paper, I’d never really thought about writing them for the bigger gifts; the ones that keep on giving every single day.

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Thanksgiving can be an overwhelming time of travel, cooking, and arrangements, but in thinking about giving thanks, perhaps there’s room for one more tradition: a thank you note to your significant other.

When James and I got married, we had the hardest time figuring out where to begin with our vows. In the end, we decided to write all of the things we wanted to promise each other. Now, on Thanksgiving, I’ll give him a note that echoes those vows by writing all of the things he does (and is) that I’m thankful for.

I love this method because it makes these big feelings so much easier to condense into words. Simply begin each sentence with “I’m thankful that you…” or “I’m grateful for…” and go from there. You may not get everything in there, but you’ll get what really matters.

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The best thing about this private giving of thanks: it’s a good reminder to yourself, as well. We so often get caught up in the day-to-day that stopping to remember why you love your husband or wife, boyfriend or girlfriend, may slip our minds.

A thank you note causes you to step back and see what you already have. You might even find that without your nose pressed to the page, it’s much easier to see your love story emerge from the individual words.

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Photo by Frock Photography for Bedsidesign

Pennies for Love Logo

A Simple Meal

Andrew Montgomery Silver Spoon

Every day, around 4pm, I become ravenous. I start out trying to be good — I’ll have an apple, some tea, or a few almonds. But usually, I end up on a tear and out comes the cheese or the frozen dumplings we always have on hand. If I talk to anyone, I’ll say, “Oh my god, I’m starving.” But it’s not true; I’m not starving. I have lunch every day at noon and dinner every evening when James comes home, and even after our bellies are full there are plenty of things in the kitchen to tempt us.

Lately, though, I’ve been thinking a lot about people who don’t have the security of three meals a day. Although I’ve always been aware that hunger is a problem, recent changes to the food stamp program have put the issue of food insecurity in the spotlight, and I’ve heard several stories on NPR that I haven’t been able to get out of my head. Under the new restrictions, people are given a mere $1.40 for each meal. Panera CEO Ron Shaich spent a week on the same budget and discovered that it was painfully difficult to create meals — especially nutritious ones — for such a small amount of money. In the middle of the challenge, he found that all he could think about was what he would do for his next meal.

Contributing to the fight against hunger is about as simple doing good gets. Even when I was on my own and my workflow was limited, I wouldn’t think twice about spending $3 on a drink or buying a can of soup. Oftentimes, people are afraid of making contributions because they feel like they don’t have enough to give. But even a single can of food is going to help someone who needs a meal. It’s a small, simple gesture almost all of us can make.

And there’s a bonus too: helping other people always increases your own happiness. So even if you’re in a tough spot, and especially if you’re in a funk, give what you can and you may just find that what you receive is worth much more.

To learn more about what you can do to help end food insecurity, or to make a donation, visit the Feeding America website.

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Photo used with permission from Andrew Montgomery

Thanksgiving Name Card Pie Toppers

Thanksgiving Feather Dessert Toppers

Believe it or not, Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away! It’s one of my favorite holidays, primarily because it revolves around delicious food.

That said, I think it’s sometimes easy to forget that the day is all about giving thanks. This crafty idea brings graciousness down to a personal level by asking each guest to write a note of thanks to another guest. Even if it’s something small, it will make the holiday that much cheerier!

You’ll Need:

Felt
Scissors
Hot glue gun
Floral wire cut to 2-3” lengths
Cardstock
Pens
Tiny clothespins

Instructions:

Thanksgiving Feather Dessert Toppers

1. Cut pieces of felt into the shape of feathers. The easiest way to do this is to cut a leaf shape and snip tiny gaps along the sides.

Thanksgiving Feather Dessert Toppers

2. Put a line of hot glue along the back of the clothespin. Press the floral wire into the glue and roll it around a little to make sure it’s embedded completely.

3. Turn the clothespin over and add another line of hot glue, then carefully adhere your feather to the clothespin.

thanksgiving-feathers-3

4. Cut out strips of cardstock and write each guest’s name on one.

Thanksgiving Feather Dessert Toppers

5. Before dinner, have each guest draw a name. Ask each person to write a note of thanks to the person whose name they drew.

6. Collect the names, place them in the desserts, and hand them out to the right people. Each guest will get a piece of pie topped with a little note of thanks!

Thanksgiving Feather Dessert Toppers

And now it’s my turn to say thanks! Thank you to everyone who sent best wishes and the kindest thoughts about Frock Files turning two yesterday. You’re all wonderful friends and I’m so lucky to have you!

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