Days 81-83: Giving Great Thanks

My first Thanksgiving away from home. Food was gorged on, much alcohol was consumed, and a few tears were shed. Read on.

Day 81: Thursday, 11/27/2014

Happy Thanksgiving! Hurray, hurray, hurray! Aren’t you glad you’re not a turkey on this Thanksgiving day? A song from my childhood that has always stuck with me. Well, that and the “Turkey Tango,” which I’m sure all of my VBS friends remember. Good memories… Speaking of good memories, now it’s time to tell you about my Thanksgiving in Israel!

My Thanksgiving outfit :)
My Thanksgiving outfit 🙂

I had decided before I stayed up until 3am that I wasn’t going to work today. Working on Thanksgiving just didn’t feel right, to be honest. But we put our day to great use, no worries. I wrote and posted all of my Greece blog posts before we finished cooking everything. We were expecting 14 people for dinner, and Natalie and I cooked all of the main dishes and sides. The rest of the guests brought wine, salad, or a dessert. Most of them brought wine.

Here’s what was on the menu for the evening:

Drinks/Appetizers

  • Wine (there were at least 8 extra bottles)
  • Apple-pomegranate sangria (made by me)
  • Butternut squash soup (made by Deborah)
  • Orzo and sweet potato salad (made by Daniel)
  • Fruit and nut salad (made by Lea)

Main Course (everything made by Natalie and me)

  • Turkey breast
  • Apple and nut stuffing
  • Pecan-crusted sweet potatoes
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Sautéed green beans
  • Sautéed mushrooms
  • Homemade cranberry-apple sauce

Desserts

  • Apple crumble (made by Erin)
  • Jelly doughnuts
  • Rugelach
  • Plum-raisin cake
  • Assorted cookies (brought by Lindsey)

The big hits of the evening were my sangria and sweet potatoes! I was so excited! Guys, I’m not a total failure in the kitchen! Of course, Natalie helped me, but I think next time, I will definitely be capable of executing my dishes on my own. But seriously, everything was extremely delicious! I was so unbearably full.

Overall, it was a great evening filled with great friends and great food. I’m so happy and fortunate to have found some truly amazing friends here in Israel. I have so many reasons to give thanks this year 🙂

Clockwise starting on the left: Deborah, Deborah’s friend Yonatan, Daniel, Tanya, Erin’s fiancee Tal, Erin, Karen, Natalie, Aaron, Natalie’s boyfriend Snir, Lea, Lea’s friend Deborah, and me. Photo taken by Lindsey, and Tanya’s boyfriend Benny had to leave a little early
Clockwise starting on the left: Deborah, Deborah’s friend Yonatan, Daniel, Tanya, Erin’s fiancee Tal, Erin, Karen, Natalie, Aaron, Natalie’s boyfriend Snir, Lea, Lea’s friend Deborah, and me. Photo taken by Lindsey, and Tanya’s boyfriend Benny had to leave a little early

We all hung out for a little bit afterwards, and a few people actually headed to my apartment where the rest of the group was having their dinner. I decided to head over as well, after cleaning up at Deborah’s. It was a little crazy over there, so I decided to go to my room and call my parents. I shed a few tears about not being with my family for Thanksgiving. I felt particularly homesick, as Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday to spend with my family.

After everyone had left, and way past my bedtime, I FaceTimed my parents and Zach in Hawaii! It was really nice to finally be able to catch up with Zach, as I hadn’t talked to him in over a month. Take a look at our cute family photo:

After my FaceTime with them, I called over to the big family Thanksgiving in LA and talked to the Margolin clan! We also got to take a cute cousin photo-op of all 5 of us (see above).

I passed out after the call ended at 3am. A truly happy Thanksgiving 🙂

Day 82: Friday, 11/28/2014

Food coma day. Well worth it

Day 83: Saturday, 11/29/2014

I once again got dinner with Daniel. We went back to our favorite Mexican restaurant, “Mexicana,” which gives us free guacamole (seriously cannot get over that). We fully took advantage of that fact. I was still in a bit of a weird funk from Thanksgiving, so I was happy that Daniel was free. Whenever I talk to him, he always cheers me up 🙂

After that, I headed over to Deborah’s for another girls night sleepover at her place. I brought the bread and cheese. The cheese happened to be moldy, so we went out and bought some more. We then ate, had some wine, talked, and watched girly TV shows. Exactly what I needed.

If I haven’t mentioned this enough, I seriously have made some amazing friends on this program, whom I know will last a lifetime. Even if at times I feel not so great about certain situations, or just in a random bad mood, I know I can always count on them. So to my new amazing friends (you know who you are), if you’re reading this, thank you so much. I would not be enjoying this program the way I am if it weren’t for you!

-Girl in Israel 🙂

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