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An Omaha Friendsgiving Celebration

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Happy Monday, my dear friends!  I hope your weekend was as great as mine.  We are now rolling into the final five-day work week of November, and my holiday spirit is in full gear.  It is hard to believe that Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away, but I am more than looking forward to it and the shortened week of work that goes with it.

I am extra excited for Thanksgiving after spending this past weekend back in Omaha with three of my dear friends for our third annual Friendsgiving (here are our first and second celebrations).  I made the almost four-hour drive on Saturday, stopping halfway in Des Moines to pick up my bridesmaids’ dresses.  They look so good and I am in love with the color!  Everything is really coming together, and April will be here before we know it.

Friendsgiving JordanI arrived in Omaha shortly after 1:00.  Jordan and her husband, Ben, were gracious enough to host the festivities this year.  The other guests weren’t expected to arrive until 4:00, so I just enjoyed three hours of spending time chit-chatting and food prepping with Jordan.

Friendsgiving beetsI have always been somewhat iffy when it comes to beets, but Jordan and Ben grew a ton this past summer and are experts at preparing them.  I finally tried and enjoyed beets, but still don’t love the mess that goes along with them.

Friendsgiving beet carrot saladHow gorgeous was Jordan’s arugula salad with beets and carrots?  I was in love with the colors, and it tasted every bit as good as it looked.

Friendsgiving mason jarsOnce the salad was prepped, Jordan got crafty and laid out the cutest fall-themed display with mason jars, festive straws and plates, and pumpkins.  It was at this point that I started to get really excited for everyone to arrive… and hungry!

Friendsgiving turkeyIt probably did not help that Ben had just pulled this gorgeous turkey out of the oven.  I wish you could smell and taste this through the screen.  It could not have been any more perfect.

Friendsgiving brussels sproutsMy contribution for the evening was roasted brussels sprouts.  These were so darn easy to prepare.  All I did was roast three bags of frozen brussels sprouts with a few drizzles of avocado oil and sprinkles of garlic powder, salt, and pepper for about 30 minutes at 425 degrees F.  I’m telling you, roasted frozen brussels are so much better than roasted raw brussels.  Try them if you haven’t already.

Friendsgiving tableThe brussels sprouts came out of the oven just after the turkey had been carved and everyone arrived.  We set out the spread on the table and filled our plates.

Friendsgiving table 2There were carrots, sweet potato casserole,

Friendsgiving table 3mashed potatoes, beet and carrot arugula salad,

Friendsgiving table 4roasted brussels sprouts, and turkey.

Friendsgiving plateI could not eat everything due to my dietary restrictions, but I sure had a full plate of food anyways.  I brought along my own baked sweet potato topped with sunflower seed butter, and filled the rest of my plate with turkey, brussels sprouts, salad, and carrots.  I also brought along kombucha to drink in place of the wine.  My acid reflux has been acting up lately, so I decided to lay off of the alcohol.  It is a bit ironic that my kombucha looked a lot like beer!

Friendsgiving girlsThe Friendsgiving table was full of good food and special people (plus the guys who were off hard at work!).

Friendsgiving turkey 2Every single part of dinner was beyond delicious, but I think we all agreed that the turkey was absolutely the star of the show.  I made Ben tell me all of his secrets, and I am hoping to put some of them to use next week on Thanksgiving day.

Friendsgiving girls 2I was blessed to partake in such a delicious meal, but I was especially blessed to spend quality time with some of my favorite people.  While it was a quick trip, it felt good to be back in Omaha and back with the people I can act silly with and be myself around.  Those are the best sorts of friends, dontcha’ think?  Also, how stinkin’ cute is little Miss Everly?

Jordan and I finished out the evening watching the crazy awesome 10-0 Iowa Hawkeyes football win.  Did you notice I was representing with my black and gold? 😉

The perfect Friendsgiving celebration! #Thanksgiving #Paleo #glutenfree Click To Tweet

I saw quite a few Friendsgiving pictures appear on my Instagram feed on Saturday and Sunday.
Did you partake in your own Friendsgiving feast, or do you have one coming up soon?

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{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Joanna November 16, 2015, 7:58 am
    I'm obsessed with the last photo! Yay for FINALLY being all back together! Us Omaha girls will have to road trip over to Iowa City to see you around the holidays! Joanna recently posted...november coffee chatMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 9:55 am
      Yes, please! You all are always welcome anytime :)
  • Em @ Love A Latte November 16, 2015, 9:53 am
    What a nice thing you and your friends do! All the veggies look amazing!
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 9:56 am
      It is a super fun tradition that I hope we keep up with, especially now that I no longer live in Omaha. I always love a good excuse to go back!
  • Liz @ I Heart Vegetables November 16, 2015, 2:10 pm
    A bunch of my girlfriends and I have a monthly cooking club so last night's was thanksgiving themed. It was so fun!! Liz @ I Heart Vegetables recently posted...Easy Cookie Dough Ice Cream PieMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 4:21 pm
      That is such an AWESOME idea. It sounds like so much fun!!
  • Ashley November 16, 2015, 3:56 pm
    What a fun sounding Friendsgiving!! I roast brussels sprouts all the time but I've never tried roasting frozen ones before! Now I definitely must try that! Ashley recently posted...Homemade Vanilla Thyme Cranberry SauceMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 4:21 pm
      You honestly HAVE to try it! They don't dry out at all like raw brussels sprouts sometimes can. Plus, it's WAY easy to prepare them!
  • Torry @ A World Without Wheat November 16, 2015, 3:56 pm
    I cannot wait for my Friendsgiving this coming Saturday! The food at your dinner looks amazing, I wish I could smell it through the screen! Torry @ A World Without Wheat recently posted...Work + Fun = WeekendingMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 4:27 pm
      Friendsgivings are the best. I bet you will have so much fun!
  • Andrea D. November 16, 2015, 8:26 pm
    Avocado oil? Never used that but it sounds yum! Do you flip the brussels sprouts in the oven half way through roasting?
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 16, 2015, 9:23 pm
      It is so good! Yes, I generally toss them a bit a couple of times throughout the roasting process.
  • Emily @SinfulNutrition November 20, 2015, 7:27 am
    Looks like such a great time! Love the picture of those mason jar glasses. Gorgeous! Happy Friendsgiving! :D Emily @SinfulNutrition recently posted...WIAW: Turkey Potato ChipsMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl November 20, 2015, 1:16 pm
      You can never go wrong with mason jars, right? They are so fun and festive!

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