Thanksgiving Day!…Just a couple months late…

Hey all! Hope your Tuesday is going well. I begin my semester later today, and my heart is racing out of my chest. It’s a stressful week here in the OldMackDonald Household (The “D” in DJ stands for Donald FYI). He has some interviews for internships, and I have my first NP clinical. I don’t know if I’ve ever been so excited and nervous at the same time. Due to this, I may not get caught up like I thought I was going to around here- I’m trying to cram in a 300 page diagnostic textbook in a couple days as a review. I think January will be a blur, but I’m hoping to find my groove after enough time. I’m really going to try to be more intentional this coming semester with finding balance. I do have a few posts on the back burner again that I whipped up over break, so I’ll release those in the coming weeks.

Anywho! Jumping on in..

On November 26th I had my hair brightened! I hadn’t had it done since June prior to that, so it was quite the change going back this blonde. But I think I prefer my hair somewhere in between.

I woke up extra early on November 27th to bake a pecan pumpkin loaf to take over to my mom and Pete’s for thanksgiving. I also had a can of cranberry sauce sitting around I grabbed as we left. DJ and I both just recently discovered we enjoy cranberry sauce within the last couple years but have only tried the Ocean Spray kind. Maybe next year I’ll try to make some from scratch! I know the cranberry sauce convo evokes some strong opinions- would love to hear yours!

I did some Insanity in the afternoon while listening to Radio Rental (a new podcast I became obsessed with). Right before hitting the road, my white coat came in the mail! It’s exciting, but I feel like I don’t deserve this yet. Hopefully I’ll “grow into it”, but the imposters syndrome is real, y’all. P.S. I have ironed this since, don’t ya worry, hehe.


We drove to the Fort Worth Area to join my mom, Pete, Halston and Kevin for dinner. We chatted up a storm the whole evening and played Catch Phrase (looove that game!). My mom made the vegan stroganoff I featured a few posts ago for the girls and some regular meat for the guys.

Then November 28th was Turkey Day! My sister and I woke up early to get in a nine mile run together. I love runs with her; it’s where we catch up with no distractions and have our best conversations.

It was a particularly emotional Thanksgiving since it was the 10-year date of my Dad’s passing. There have been many times where I’ve wanted to recount how incredible of a Dad and person he was on here, but it feels daunting- how can words do justice to describe such a phenomenal father and the most tremendous loss in our lives? I miss him and love him more than it seems words could communicate. However, my sister did an amazing job conveying even what I’m feeling and thinking, so I’ll share what she said; I could not have said it any better.


That afternoon we Facetimed the rest of my siblings and shared some of our favorite memories of our Dad. I think over the years I’ve learned how to “sit” with a certain amount of pain, but this year was particularly tough. But, being able to be with my sister the day of (and the rest of the fam) and chat with my siblings was a blessing. It was a bittersweet day I’ll reflect fondly on.

Going back to the morning, after our run, we helped prep some food with my mom and then ate a yummy breakfast of an egg scramble, fruit, vegan bacon, toast and some pumpkin bread too!


We started around 4:00 pm with appetizers, and my mom brought out Tom the Turkey pineapple. Isn’t he cute?


I loved her place settings too.


And here’s a portion of the goodnesss! I couldn’t picture everything in one photo- but some of the favorites. My mom even made a seitan turkey for us non-meat eaters!


We laughed how Hal is photo-bombing us in this pic haha.


After eating our incredible food we indulged in Pete’s famous pumpkin crunch. The guys particularly went to town. Both DJ and Kevin made a whole otha’ meal out of dessert alone! Tis’ the season!


We watched the Ellen Degeneres special on Netflix to round out the evening. It was a memorable and wonderful Thanksgiving <3

Before leaving in the morning we enjoyed my mom’s Monkey Bread. I haven’t had this in years, and holy moly y’all, I forgot how scrumptious this was. DJ described it best- it’s like eating only the best part of a cinnamon roll.


Thanks for reading! Sometimes when holidays pass I just want to move on from them because I get too nostalgically achy for family and those moments. But, although I still feel that to a degree, it’s fun reflecting and reliving these memories! Especially with the semester starting soon, it keeps things in perspective.

Questions for you:

  • Have you had Monkey Bread ? (If this is a no, you gotta try is ASAP!).

xo <3


38 thoughts on “Thanksgiving Day!…Just a couple months late…

  1. when I opened your blog the first thing I thought was “Yum! Monkey bread” I haven’t made it in years. it is SOOOOO sooo good. I need to make it again.

    Sounds like you have a good thanksgiving weekend and it was a perfect time to be home with family. I’m sure your dad would be so proud of you and everything you have accomplished in life.

    1. Yes! I hope you do make it soon 😋 I bet your boys would just love it too!!

      Thank you so much- that really means a lot to me. 💓 I appreciate your kind words and stopping in. Have a great rest of the week.

    1. Happy all holidays to you too 😆 thank you for your encouragement and cheering us on always! 💞

  2. I love you are recapping Thanksgiving! Oh my Lana ocean spray cranberry sauce is the best! I love it so much!
    I love that you go on runs with your sister and oh my gosh I am sending you so much love! Halston’s message made me cry. It really showcased your Dad and the love you all have for him. Anniversaries are hard, but especially major ones like this one. Huge hugs. They are tough, but you got it right when you said sit with the pain. Sometimes I think we try to run away from it (I know I definitely do and am guilty of it) instead of embracing it. It is an unfortunate part of life, but also a testament to being able to love someone so amazing.
    Girl I am SO hungry now (And I just polished off all the Indian food including Dahl soup!) Everything looks so yummy! I am so happy you had such a great Thanksgiving! I hope you have an amazing semester! <3

    1. Your comment warmed my heart so dang much. 💞 I love what you said about being able to love someone so amazing 😭❤️ so true and such an incredible perspective. Thank you thank youuuu.

      That Dahl soup sounds sooo good 😋 thank you for stopping in and just making my whole night ❤️

  3. I absolutely LOVE that you can use the OldMackDonald pun, haha — what irony! Oh Mackenzie, reading the post brought some tears to my eyes. I don’t even know what to say, but I’m so thankful that you got to spend wonderful time with your family during this wonderful time!

    I bet receiving your white coat is really making life a reality. You’ve got this! I didn’t know you had more siblings other than your sister, but I’m glad you all could connect and celebrate. Also, I like monkey bread but I don’t like the sticky feeling, so I don’t like pulling it apart, haha. I hope you are having a wonderful week! ♡

    1. Oh my goodness, thank you so much Steph ❤️ 😭❤️ I do have an older sister and older brother (they’re “half” siblings, but I don’t really see the half 😉 ).

      Ohhh I hear that! Can always get around it with a fork right?! 😋 thank you again for your sweet and thoughtful comment! Have a great weekend!

  4. What a lovely Thanksgiving and to be together with family! Your Dad is so proud of you and I know he loves seeing you in your white coat!

    You’ve got This semester! Sending lots of prayers for you!

    Happy New Year!

    1. I think I’m going to try to make homemade cranberry sauce next year 😍 thanks for reading, Nancy!

  5. I’m so sorry that Thanksgiving fell on the anniversary of your father’s passing. It must have been so hard but I pray spending it with your family in person and virtually with your siblings helped even just a tiny bit.

    Your mom’s dinner spread looks delicious!! I’m dying at the pic of your sister photobombing you. It looks too real in a way haha.

    Monkey bread is the bomb!! We have it as part of our breakfast on Christmas morning and I agree with DJ’s view on it.

    I hope the start of the semester went well!

    1. Thank you so much, Maureen! Being around family was really the biggest blessing <3

      Haha we thought the same thing! At first glance you may think she was just poppin' her head in!

      And YES!! It is sooooo stinkin' good!

      Thank you so much 🙂 Hope you are having the best weekend!

  6. Such an amazing thanksgiving! First time we all have been together in 5 years!! How is that possible? Can’t wait to hear al about your new semester and clinical experience. I love you, MOM.

    1. Hi mom!! <3 That is SO crazy it had been that long. I'm so glad we were able to all be together, it was a special couple of days <3 And thanks- I cannot wait to see you in a couple weeks :)

  7. You look like a natural in your white coat! Even just through blogs I can tell how hard you’ve been working so you totally deserve that coat!!
    We discovered from this past Thanksgiving that cranberry sauce is a must. It doesn’t seem like much, but when you don’t have it you definitely notice that it’s missing.
    I’m so sorry about your dad. He sounds like an incredible human being. Sending you lots of love!

    1. Aw thank you SO much <3 That really means tons, Jess.

      And yesss I can't believe we have basically gone our whole lives without ever putting it on our plate at thanksgiving- it's such a great compliment!

      Thank you for your kind words and stopping in <3

  8. I’ve never had Monkey Bread but it looks delicious. Those are great pictures you had in here, with my favorite being your Dad with his girls by his side and you and DJ on Thanksgiving Day, and of course you in your new white coat,looking all official. You must start carrying around Smalls, or its facsimile, not in the crook of your arm, but by your fingertips to lengthen your arms for your new white lab coat. You’re official looking – that gave you a boost I bet!

    1. Oh it is just so scrumptious! I wish I could share some with you- we had it when we were younger on special occasions, but have not have it in forever. I forgot just how yummy it was! Thank you for your sweet words <3 This warmed my heart.

  9. It looks like a wonderful Thanksgiving! My dad and brother’s name is Donald as well. Hooray for the white coat! 🙂 That is such a beautiful tribute by your sister. I have had monkey bread and it is soooo yummy! xx

    1. Thank you so much, Amy!!! And I feel like it’s not that common of a name! Is it generational for you all? It is for DJs (well, alternating generations). Have a great week and thank you for your kind words!

      1. My great-grandfather chose my dad’s name and my brother is a junior. And my brother named his first son Donnie, which is what my brother goes by.

  10. It sounds like you had a really great Thanksgiving. What your sis posted was beautiful.

    You look awesome in your white jacket!! Also, your hair is on point, Mackenzie! Beautiful!

  11. Thanksgiving sounds such a lovely celebration, I wish we had something like that here! All the food looks so yummy, and the table set up is so pretty! I have never even heard of monkey bread, let alone tried it! I so need to !xxxx

    1. Thank you, Chloe!! Oh girl, I hope you get to try some Monkey Bread soon. I would make some for you if we lived close! XO

  12. Lol I love that you came with MackDonald haha I never would have guessed what his first name was lol.
    And dont worry about getting caught up with posts, soon it will be over and you’ll have all this time to yourself. So yes, I’m all for you finding balance and I hope you make it happen. You really need that after studying for such a long time.
    P. S. You totally deserve that white coat!!!
    Your sister’s message is beautiful! I already get a sense that you get your charm from dad!! 💙💙💙 also, I can totally see the resemblance to dad in both you and your sister!!
    Pumpkin breaddd!! I want a slice!
    Is there a story behind Tom the Turkey pineapple?? Or is just because there’s no real Turkey? Lol. Either way, cute.
    What exactly is Pete’s famous pumpkin crunch?? I must KNOWW!!!! Send the recipe my way lmao
    Ahhh oh my freaking gosssshhhh monkey bread!! Never had it but I have it saved in my pinterest recipes. I hope to make it someday because that looks insane delicious.
    Thanks for sharing your Thanksgiving with us, as always my mouth is watering lol.

    1. Hehe glad you appreciated that 😆 Aw thanks, Rossy- I neeed to find that balance for sure, Blogging makes me so happy, and I missed it wayyy too much last semester ! Hopefully I can at least choose an evening here and there to set aside and at least devote a couple hours a week!

      Awww thank you so much! That makes me so happy you say that about the resemblance too 🥰

      Haha no story behind Tom, just a fun decoration my mom had 🤣 and she actually did have actual turkey too for the guys! Tofurkey for us , lol.

      Okay pumpkin crunch is the most magical dessert – it’s like a rich, pumpkin cake with crumbles on top – it’s hard to even describe, but oh man is it good! DJ doesn’t even care for pumpkin flavors usually- but he LOVES it and will mention it randomly in like June 🤣🤣

      Yesss monkey bread is sooo good and I think pretty easy to make (I’ve actually never made it either!)

      Awww thanks so much, Rossy 💓 I am about to head into clinicals and reading your comment helped calm some nerves and provide a fun distraction so thank you 😊 hope you have a great day!!!

  13. Oh I never knew that the ‘D’ stood for Donald!! ‘OldMackDonald House’ 😂 that’s hilarious, I love it, lol. You 100% deserve that white coat & you look perfect in it, it was made for you!!

    My heart breaks for you & your family & the constant pain of losing your father. I know there’s nothing I can say & I will never understand but, I am sending you all the love & tightest hugs. ♡

    My jaw dropped at the fact you & your sis ran 9 miles. & I am in love with your mom’s turkey pineapple!! Oh my gosh!! 😂 The whole spread of food is making my mouth water. So happy you were able to have such a lovely time with family, Mackenzie! Def gonna have to check out this Ellen special– thanks for mentioning it.

    1. Hehe glad you appreciate that 😄 and aw thank you!!! 💓

      Your hugs mean the world Hunida!!! Thank you so much. ❤️

      Lol, Tom the Turkey is a riot 😂 thank you tons! And the Ellen Netflix has received mixed reviews, but overall I think it’s pretty funny and worth the watch! It’s not terribly long either . Have a great day 😊

  14. Your sister’s message about your father was touching. It’s wonderful that you were able to spend Thanksgiving with your family
    I was able to spend Thanksgiving with my parents after 3 years of being in Denmark! We had a turkey dinner (tofurky for me) with my dad’s coworker/friend and his wife. Also I love cranberry sauce!

    1. <3 It was a special day!

      Yesss, tofurkey for the win! Tofurkey + cranberry sauce is an excellent combo. Thanks for reading, Karalee :)

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