I am thankful for my family and my health and all those things...

But dude. Last year when I hosted Thanksgiving, it was smooth sailing - no one complained about the time, no one moaned about having to bring something, no one came up with reasons why we had to do their part for them.

This year is completely different. I don't know if it's because other people really wanted to do Thanksgiving and think that we usurped the holiday (which, c'mon, speak up!) or if our families just really don't want to participate.

To be honest, it makes driving across here and yonder to eat with everyone on Thanksgiving almost worth it. Notice I say almost - the fact is, it's completely unfair for our one- and two-person household family members to expect us to eat full meals at each place. That's why we decided to just do it at our house and have people come over if they wanted... Simple, really. Majority rules.

Because I am the cooking 2/3 of the holiday meal by myself, preparing the house by myself and will wind up cleaning by myself, I've decided to make some executive decisions about next year. Yes, we will have Thanksgiving dinner at 4 pm sharp -- 3, 3:30, or 5. Yes, will only be having turkey or ham -- not both, unless of course you want to bring one. No, I will not buy the ingredients you need to prepare the dish you're bringing. And, no, you cannot make your dish at my house -- if you can't make it ahead of time then we won't be eating it.

Does everyone's family make things this difficult or is mine the only one?

Now - on to wonderful wedding updates:

* I think I've finally decided on centerpieces. I want hurricane glass filled with green apples, pears and grapes, along with miscellanous green herbs like rosmary and sage. I will tie a lavender ribbon around the belly of each glass.

* My ideas for favors have gone from super cheap to super time-consuming. I think I've finally settled on putting together green and purple tissue flowers filled with candies. I'll attached a word to each flower: hope, love, faith, wisdom, etc.

* I have wanted a single-flower type bouquet, but I think I've seen the light. I saw a beautiful bouquet of purple and green garden roses, lavendar, lilac and bells of ireland. just gorgeous. i think some variation of that will be perfect. I want to do a hand-tied ribbon and I plan to create a dragonfly charm to hang from the bouquet.

*My cake toppers are coming together. I want green-iced cakes with purple flowers on top. Nestled in each bunch of flowers I'll put a green crystal dragonfly brooch. I found two beautiful ones on Ebay -- and both are now in my possession. I need just one more.

* I've planned my cake display: three separate cake stands of different heights to hold the cakes (three obviously), purple glass of various shapes, sizes and hues around the cakes and green fruits (like in the centerpieces) scattered around the glass.

Okay. So I'm really excited about things and I wish I could just do it all and get it over with. Alas, there's much more to do. For example, I still have to meet with a few potential cakemakers (though now I'm thinking we could make it from scratch), nail down a photographer and get my save-the-dates and invitations out the door -- just to name a few.

I hope you all have a very happy Thanksgiving full of grateful family and friends.

-- Kelly


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