What I Learned on Thanksgiving Vacation

Thanksgiving vacation was a whirlwind. Everything went by so fast, but I did learn some valuable lessons…

1. Never travel on the day before Thanksgiving. It can turn what is supposed to be a 4.5 hour car ride into an 8 hour ride from hell complete with hallucinations and plenty of cursing.

2. Always take immune boosters before a trip like Vitamin C and elderberry. Because getting sick on vacation stinks.

3. Even though the stuffed seitan roast is a thing of beauty, use a higher aperture for the “vegan Thanksgiving plate shot” so all the food is in focus. Not just the roast. (Not shown is the gravy. For a description of what is on the plate, click here and scroll down).

Vegan Thanksgiving - Luminous Vegans

4. Going shopping on Black Friday will result in getting “shot and stabbed”. My mother’s words, not mine, when my niece mentioned a sale. (For more of my mom’s words of wisdom, go here or here).

5. Leave the work at home because chances are it won’t get done and it will be there when you get back.

Luminous Vegans

6. Kids (and a blonde wig) keep you young.

Luminous Vegans

7. Family is everything.

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8. Cleaning up can be fun. Just depends on how you look at it.

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Hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving!

34 thoughts on “What I Learned on Thanksgiving Vacation

  1. coconutandberries

    Haha, glad you learnt some lessons ;)
    Looks like you had a fabulous holiday despite the horrendous journey and illness! Your meal looks scrumptious, even the parts I can’t fully see. I usually go for low aperture too as I can’t be dealing with tripods for higher aperture shots.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Amen about the tripod thing. I got a tripod that was like a step up from the cheapo bend and fold one that I used to have….but I never use the darn thing because I hate having to pull it out. Plus I like to move around with my camera a lot because I use a fixed focal length lens and the tripod is not really good for that.

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thank you! I did work hard on the roast so it does make sense to focus on it.

      I had second thoughts about giving the wig to my nieces. Neal saw it on me and was like —uh, you should keep that. :-) But in the end I left it with the kids.

      Reply
  2. Andrea

    I found myself nodding in agreement with your lessons — I think I learned all of them at one time or another. Judging from your ‘luminous’ photos, your Thanksgiving was a great success! And at least you remembered to take a photo of your plate. :)

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      What’s weird is that I am sure I have learned these lessons before as well at some point or another….but I just never seem to *really* learn from them I guess. I tend to be stubborn about things like bringing work with me because I think I am superwoman and can do it all.

      Hope you had a great holiday!

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Haha, thanks Camille (about the wig)!

      A relaxing Thanksgiving at home sounds absolutely perfect. That is what we would normally do (and spend Christmas at home instead) but we had to switch things up a bit this year.

      Reply
  3. Kylie @ FotV

    Excellent lessons to learn and I have learned a lot of them myself over the years! Looks like you still had a great time besides travel woes and illness, I guess that’s the magic of the holidays!

    Reply
  4. Deanne O'Donnell

    Your Thanksgiving meal looks so similar to ours it is silly! Which recipe for stuffed Seitan roast did you use? I use an adapted version of Miyoko Schinner’s.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Awesome! I used Isa’s stuffed seitan roast from Post Punk Kitchen. Not the first time making a seitan roast, but it was my first time making a stuffed one. It came out soooo delicious. I will have to check out Miyoko’s roast. Maybe I’ll make that one for Christmas!

      Reply
  5. Richa

    true that! travelling totally is a pain. and people are getting shot and stabbed:)
    family is always everything:) i miss them so much. They were at our house in august and everyday was so much fun. love the gorgeous meal! i used your iphone speaker amplifier trick yesterday on our road trip to the mountains!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      I am so glad that you were able to use the iphone speaker trick! As a reader pointed out, it also works if you stick it in a bowl.

      Will your family be able to come for a visit for the holidays? I won’t be able to visit mine over Christmas, but whenever I don’t see them I usually facetime them or skype them.

      Reply
  6. mihl

    I think your picture is gorgeous, no matter how big your aperture was. I think I might invent Thanksgiving for my family, just to have a seitan roast.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Aw, thank you! Yes, I forget that not everybody celebrates Thanksgiving. But seitan roast is really good for anytime of the year that you have a lot of hungry people around. :-) I want to make another because it was just so darn tasty!

      Reply
  7. acookinthemaking

    This is wonderful and I am cracking up at the pictures of the dogs by the dishwasher! And, assuming #2 happened to you, I hope you’re feeling better!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thanks Ashley! Yes, I did get sick but am feeling better after taking a lot of elderberry, resting and drinking lots and lots of tea.

      The dogs were funny. The little dog is my sister’s and we were at her house. So my sister’s dog is used to being the one who “gets to” lick all the dishes in the dishwasher. But since my dogs were taller, my sister’s dog was kinda left in the dust…:-P

      Reply
  8. Cadry's Kitchen

    Sorry about your travel woes! We traveled on Thanksgiving itself, and the traffic was non-existent. It was awesome, because it greatly shortened the amount of time it took to get to Chicago, which usually has quite a bit of freeway back-up.

    Other than the travel snafus, it looks like you had a marvelous Thanksgiving! Pups really know how to celebrate a season right! :)

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      I am totally going to have travel on the day of Thanksgiving next time. Sounds like that worked out really well for you guys! I would love to drive on an empty high way and imagine that I’m driving in some post apocalyptic world :-)

      Reply
  9. Maggie Muggins

    Very valuable lessons. I had no idea that Thanksgiving was the busiest time to travel in the States, I can’t imagine being stuck in a car that long, I go full on loopy after 4 hours. Your meal looks awesome! Especially that seitan roast.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      The seitan roast was Isa’s from PPK! I’ve made roasts before, but it was my first time making a stuffed roast. It was soooo good.

      Are there busy travel days/time in Canada? I learned my lesson and will never do that again. I was seriously hallucinating that figures were crossing the highway in front of me. The worst part was that Neal and I could not split the driving because we had to take two cars as I was giving one of our cars to my 15-yr old niece.

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thank you Sarah! It definitely was nice to hang out with my nephews and nieces. The seitan roast was Isa’s from PPK. I’ve made roasts before but never stuffed! It was soooo good!

      Reply

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