The holidays are rapidly approaching and we're gearing up to host Thanksgiving here on the Outer Banks! We have hosted Thanksgiving every year since Jason and I got married and it is truly my favorite holiday to host. I've hosted Christmas and Easter as well but with little ones in our home, I always end up feeling a little bit overwhelmed trying to make sure those holidays go smoothly and that the real reason for the holiday is celebrated. So, I am always happy to host Thanksgiving. Not to mention, most of these delicious recipes I can make with my eyes closed by now so it's a low stress meal for me to cook!
This year is a little bit different for us because we are in full blown nesting mode while we prepare our home for our 3rd baby to join us. It has been a little bit more hectic to plan for company and the holidays with a baby due just a few weeks after on New Years Eve. I'm sort of half way decorated for Christmas and half way still in Fall mode, think pumpkins in the driveway and the Christmas wreath on the front door. While decorating for the holidays is usually one of my favorite things, this year I am scaling back a little bit and trying to make my decor be more of a winter theme. By doing it this way, I have an easy excuse to leave out my decorations all through January without feeling like we're in Santa-land for months on end. My table decor for Thanksgiving and Christmas is going to pull double duty as well and I'm super excited with how it turned out!
We love our extra long table from Wayfair.com. It's the perfect table for hosting a big gathering with the easy to insert leaf and the bench seating on one side is great for multiple people with little bottoms! ;) This is the first year that I have had a full size dining room table so I'm super excited about that! I am dressing it up with tiny coastal treasures to give our guests a true Outer Banks holiday. Penny and I collected oyster shells along the ocean in Kitty Hawk and after cleaning them up and allowing them to bleach in the sunshine, I spray painted them with Rustoleum spray paint in "Pearl Mist." The color came out a little bit more silver than I was hoping but I think it works! :) I lightly hit the pumpkins and gourds with the paint too... It's possible I was getting a little spray paint happy.. luckily I ran out of spray paint before I got to the leaves...
I found these silver chargers at TJMaxx a few years ago and assumed that they would only be good for one time use since they are cardboard and less than $10. Luckily, they have outlasted my expectations and I am reusing them again this year! If you watched our Beachfront Bargain Hunt Renovation episode, you probably know that I love pure white spaces. Typically I go for a pure white table cloth for all holidays but this year I am covering it with kraft paper. I love the way it looks and can't wait to see the table surrounded by the people we love and the yummy food we prepare together!
Of course, Thanksgiving isn't about the beautiful table or even the food. It's about taking a day to pause and realize how much we all have to be thankful for. For our family, the early years were certainly nothing fancy but we always made holidays special and we always found a way to help someone else during the holidays. Donating to the local food bank during the week of Thanksgiving is our longest standing family tradition and one that I love watching my kids participate in. Joey has happily showed Penny the ropes and its the one day a year that I actually enjoy taking them to the grocery store and allowing them to fill a cart with anything they want to donate to the food bank. Yes, even if that means that they are running full speed down the isles and sliding on their knees at the end... Picture perfect ;)
But seriously, Beach Food Pantry is such an amazing place that blesses so many people, stop by today and drop off a bag of food to help with the overwhelming need in our very own community!