Cocktail Hour: Our “Traditional” Thanksgiving Cocktail

For most people, no Thanksgiving would be complete without the turkey and all of the fixins, but in our house it also includes this little cocktail. We were first introduced to this tradition several years ago on a Thanksgiving that we celebrated at a friend’s house. When asked about the origin of the cocktail we were told it was an old family recipe. Little did we know, another guest actually found it on the internet and brought it as his contribution to the meal. Oh well, it may not be the traditional Grant family cocktail that I originally thought but it has been a tradition for our family ever since {Thank you Britt, Justin & Hadi}.

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Traditional Thanksgiving Cocktail


Traditional Thanksgiving {from Holidash}

Ingredients (for one cocktail)

1 1/2 oz Wild Turkey bourbon whiskey
1/2 oz Brandy
1 tsp Rose’s lime juice
4 oz cranberry juice cocktail


Fill Collins glass (I used a highball) half full of ice, add ingredients and stir. Garnish with a lime wedge if desired.


Easy Thanksgiving Appetizers

So, my plan was to find a way to paleo-fy one of my favorite holiday brunch recipes. BUT I just couldn’t get it together in time. Don’t worry, I still plan to make it happen soon, but in realizing that I didn’t have enough time to pull that post together, I realized that I hadn’t even planned any of my paleo dishes for Thanksgiving. As I said before, I don’t cook Thanksgiving dinner, but I did plan on trying to make some special tasty sides that would help keep me on track. So I’ve gathered together a group of really yummy-looking appetizers that are easy, won’t ruin diners’ appetites, and will suit the paleo and non-paleo crowd alike. And you can probably easily get the ingredients before tomorrow if you don’t have them. I’m thankswinning.

Easy Thanksgiving Appetizers

1. these crispy prosciutto cups with pear look gorgeous and only require three ingredients;

2. paleo spiced nuts. heck yea;

3. the roasted beets with olive oil + sea salt from Sweet Paul are so beautiful, I might not be able to eat them. what? it could happen;

4. I’d serve pita chips for the non-paleo folk and kale chips for primal peeps with this cranberry avocado salsa;

5. I love the colors of these oven roasted cherry tomatoes and I bet they pack a sweet bite without filling you up;

6. you had me at olives, but turn them into orange + herb roasted olives? I’m yours fo sho.

Pretty Packaging for Leftovers

I don’t know about you, but if I could limit my holiday culinary indulging to just the actual holiday day, I’d be so much happier when January 1st rolls around. One way to do that? Continue the spirit of Thanksgiving by GIVING AWAY Thanksgiving leftovers to dinner guests. With a few simple supplies and A Feteful Life’s tags and labels for leftovers, you can set up a leftover station faster than you can trim a proper turkey (and I say that not knowing how to trim a turkey — I avoid it because it appears to take a long time). I stuck with brown kraft, white, a pretty plum color and a touch of gold. And, as a thanks to you, we are giving you FREE tags and labels — just click right here to download them! You can print them on sticker paper or tape them on with a little gold washi tape.


1. I’d start by putting out a mix of kraft and white take-out boxes, like these from Think Garnish. A good variety of sizes will ensure your guests have the right package for whatever grub they’re taking home. Seal the lid with an AFL sticker label or secure it with twine and tie a tag on.

2. You can’t go wrong by having plenty of gold washi tape around and you can use a small piece to secure a lid, close the flap of a bag, or tape on an AFL label. I love the real metallic shine of this one from a cute Portland Etsy shop.

3. Metallic gold and plum baker’s twine are the perfect functional accessory for your packaging setup. Wind a few lengths around your take-out box and tie on an AFL tag to make sure your sweets stay put.

4. Make sure to download A Feteful Life’s Tags and Labels to dress up your leftovers and remind your guests what goodness they’re taking home.

5. Kraft striped paper bags are a great size for a slice of leftovers, savory or sweet. Close it simply with a piece of gold washi tape or make sure little fingers stay out by tying it up with twine. Love these ones from cutetape (a super cute store, btw).

6. I need these kraft pie boxes (even though there’s usually no pie leftover in our house). The wooden fork is a nice, realistic touch. Who really makes it all the way home with pie leftovers, anyway?

DIY Lacquered Pumpkin Place Cards

DIY Lacquered Pumpkin

It’s just about a week until Thanksgiving! Are you ready for the big feast? I’m in full prep mode since I’m hosting my family this year. Luckily everyone is bringing a side so I only really need to focus on the turkey and stuffing. Phew. But before we get to the eating part of the holiday we need to make things look pretty, right?

Place cards are always a nice way to add something a little extra to the tablescape. I’ve seeing this technique of creating a lacquered look with clear gloss spray paint and I decided to give it a try this year on mini pumpkins. I love how they turned out and now I may be “lacquering” everything.

Thanksgiving Supplies

1. Clear gloss spray paint  2. Spray paint – Any color, any finish. The clear gloss is what creates the shiny lacquered look  3. Mini pumpkin – Any color would work but make sure they have stems  4. Bakers twine  5. Metallic pens. 6. Mini key labels

The steps are pretty simple but being patient is key. You need to do several light coats of spray paint rather than trying to get it all done in one shot. If you spray too much at a time the paint will drip and you don’t want a drippy pumpkin. Luckily the paint dries pretty quickly so you only need to wait 10 – 20 minutes between each coat.

Step 1

To start, set up somewhere outside or well ventilated and then lay something down on the ground to catch any of the excess paint from the spray paint. I set the pumpkins up on old grocery bags but newspaper or magazines would work as well.

Step 2

Like I said above, do several thin coats to get the desired coverage. This is after coat three and it’s just about perfect. I did one more just to be sure.

Step 3

Finally, spray one to two coats of the clear gloss. The plum paint I used was gloss and you may think about skipping the clear gloss coat but please don’t. Think of it like a top coat over your nail polish. It adds more depth and a more finished look.

I let the pumpkin dry for 24 hours before I brought them inside and they still had a bit of the spray paint smell so it may be good to let them air out for 24-48 hours before you plan to use them at the table. After they are ready to go, just write your guests’ names on the key labels and string them to the pumpkin stems with twine. Voila, homemade lacquered pumpkins.

Bottom Photo

DIY Chalkboard Table Runner


Like everyone else, we’ve been smitten with chalkboard paint for some time now. In fact, both of our homes sport magnetic chalkboard walls that receive heavy usage. So when we started seeing chalkboard table runners in stores, but with hefty price tags, we knew that we’d have to figure out a way to make our own in time for Thanksgiving. Turns out it is SUPER simple and we were able to use materials we already had on hand to make a fabulous table runner that is both rustic and modern.

Here’s how to make your own. You’re gonna need to get your hands on:


1. A roll of kraft paper (we’ve used a large roll at least several times a week at my house for years, but are still working on the same roll. If you don’t want to buy a large roll, look for a roll of kraft wrapping paper). 2. A paint tray. 3. Chalkboard paint (a little bit goes a long way, so you can get away with a small can for a few table runners). 4. A bristle paint brush (we used a 2″ brush, but a wider one would likely have been helpful to have as well).

The steps are so simple it seemed silly to break them out. Just roll the kraft paper to your desired length, flip over (to counteract any curl from being rolled up), and weigh down the corners. Then brush on the chalkboard paint in sections, moving your brush side to side along the length of the paper (we tried the roller, but didn’t like the texture it left). You can completely cover the paper, but we left our edges showing a bit of the kraft paper. Let dry.

That’s it. Really. We tested out both old school chalk and a chalk pen — both worked well, we just liked the look of the chalk better. And it erased easily with an eraser.

We used ours to leave cheeky culinary hints for our guests. You could also use it to write placecards for diners, more clearly identify types of food (such as various cheeses on a cheese plate), or keep little ones’ hands busy while you serve dinner.

The options are endless, the application simple, and the end result was such a fabulous, coated-denim like material — I’m kind of obsessed. It even rolled up easily for storage!