Monday, November 30, 2015

First-Time Tradition: Black Friday Family Hike

How was your Thanksgiving?  I feel like this was the best one we've had in a very long time.  We hosted for our families for the very first time this year! Being two thousand miles away certainly deters the frequent family visits! =)  But this year we had 16 people, four dogs and our two cats in our little mobile.  And it was so wonderful!  Not a perfect meal, but perfect time together.  

Not the purpose of this post, but a couple recipes we have for Thanksgiving that I love (and some were asking for) are the whole wheat rolls (shaped like these pumpkins if you have the time!) with French Cardamom Apple Jam, Balsamic Rosemary Ham, slow-cooker cranberry sauce, Broccoli Casserole (recipe to come) and Spiced Cider (this one is my husband's concoction and I'm hoping he'll let me share this one here soon, too!)

What I really want to write about is a new tradition we were able to start this year and I definitely want to uphold in future years: a Black Friday Hike!  While this may not have been feasible at our Fairbanks home, hiking in this mild climate’s November was refreshing!  After a bacon-and-eggs breakfast, all interested piled into a car and drove just down the road or the maze of trails at the arboretum. 

It was quite frosty, but only on the north side of the hills and became quite pleasant in the sun.  We just dressed in layers and I had room in my pack for all the extra layers as we hiked on the south side.  Another perk of having some grandparents along: extra arms to carry tuckered tykes! 

 We ended up hiking about 3 ½ miles, some of it quite steep, and I’m proud to say my eldest did it all on his own!  Boy, did they sleep good that night!

It felt like the perfect activity for the day after Thanksgiving as we were able to go out and explore together (hikes are much more fun for my little wildlings if the grandparents are along!) and we worked off some of the feast from the day before!  And I hate shopping, so that wasn’t even an option, anyway!  How do you celebrate Thanksgiving after the meal?  I love how each family does certain things to make the celebration uniquely theirs!

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