Thanksgiving Weekend in Napa 2017

I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving! I know mine was! It was just the break I needed, and now it’s back to reality! i’m going to keep my recap as brief as possible for 5 jam-packed days, because I need to get back to studying (or sleeping).

I left after class on Tuesday and made great time! I got back just in time for happy hour with the pup.

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For dinner, we got pizza. GF for me!

Wednesday morning, I was up early and ready to attack the day (…or aware of how much schoolwork I had…). I started the morning with a quick workout in the backyard with the uninvited help of Chloe. I did 20 minutes of 5 push ups, 10 russian twists (each) with a 20 pound med ball, and 15 squats.


It turned out to be a good one, and I was actually sore the next day!

Then, it was time to see the podiatrist about my ankle pain. It’s definitely not broken, nor a bone bruise. I’m a weird case but the diagnosis is an ankle sprain, and I have an ankle brace to wear. So TBD.

I spent the afternoon on schoolwork, catching up on some lectures. The first I watched in the car on the way to pick up my turkey trot bib (my mom drove), and the second I watched with a furry friend.


For dinner, we had Cooking Light’s Chicken, Apple, and Butternut Stew recipe, which we added spinach to and topped with aged cheddar. YUM.


Plus cornbread!

Thanksgiving morning started early with the turkey trot!

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As you may recall, my ankle has prevented me from running for the past 3-4 weeks. Besides soccer (which was sketchy). So I had no idea what was going to happen. The above snap is referring to my plantar fasciitis as well which has for some reason flared up as well…So yeah, I had zero expectations and just hoped to finish in one piece!

The weather was perfect; nice and warm compared to what it normally tends to be!

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Right on time, me and 22,000 friends were off!

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Given I hadn’t run in a month, imagine my surprise when 8:10 pace felt really easy, and I casually was a few seconds off my PR? What?? Even better, my ankle was shockingly good. It started getting sore about half a mile in, then loosened up and felt good! So that was unexpected!


On the way home, I stopped by to meet my sister’s kitten, Ash.

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Then, we got ready to head off to Napa!

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When we pulled up the the hotel in Napa where we would have our Thanksgiving dinner, imagine our surprise when we saw this:


Turkeys! And definitely not wild, just hanging out on the front lawn. It actually turns out they’re fire refugees, and showed up when their home burned down in the wildfires.

Then, it was time to eat!

Plate 1:


Cheese, sushi, and most importantly, pumpkin soup!

Plate 2:


Mashed potatoes, turkey, cranberry sauce, heirloom carrots, and two highlights: purple polenta with green olive relish and roasted brussels sprouts.



Cheesecake, pumpkin pie, raspberry mouse cup, chocolate covered strawberry.



Friday morning, my mom and I did spa treatments, and then it was time for wine!


The first stop was the Bistro in St. Helena.

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We shared a grilled artichoke, and then I had an avocado salad with fresh mozzarella and olive oil.

We did our typical St. Helena things, including a trip to the pet store, Woodhouse Chocolates, and a gluten free chocolate chip cookie split 3 ways for dessert.

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Our first winery of the day was Pine Ridge. They have a really good and unique white that is really reasonably priced at Trader Joe’s, and we’ve passed the winery so many times that we decided we should stop in! Plus the grounds were beautiful.

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Cabernet Sauvignon is their specialty. The staff was super nice. I’m not super into red wines, so they let me sub out some whites in their tasting. Even though it’s not my thing, I could tell the Cabernet was good quality!


We ended up getting a great discount on the tasting from our hotel too! For our next stop, they pointed up across the road to Robert Sinskey,

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This ended up being a great suggestion. We all enjoyed the unique white wines we tried, and I even really liked the Pinot Noirs we tried. They also provided little snack plates with their tasting, and they even made a special GF, nut free plate for me!


Our last stop of the day was Domaine Chandon for some Black Friday shopping.

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We also got delicious truffle popcorn.


We made it back to our hotel just in time for hot chocolate and the tree lighting!

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Saturday morning, I went for about a 2 mile run. The loop around the property has always been one of my favorite places to run, and I’ve run along there every year for at least 10 years. This year was different. Tons of houses along the loop were just gone, after the terrible wildfires. The set of condos next to where we were staying was wiped out as well, rooms that I’m pretty sure we stayed in at one point. It’s so sad, but the positive is that people are moving forward and already rebuilding.

As for the run, my ankle wasn’t having it and I cut it off early, opting to instead meet my parents for a breakfast buffet.


Omelet to order!


We did our typical shopping and eating in the morning, and then headed out by way of Napa Smith brewery.


It was a great discovery! They had a ton of different options, and we enjoyed tasting different things.

The rest of the day was spent studying with my favorite study buddy, and watching STANFORD BEAT NOTRE DAME. What a game!


Sunday morning was spent taking an awesome spin class, studying, and more studying. IMG_6569

My mom made vegetarian chili for lunch, and then I baked Chocolate Zucchini Banana Bread, and added fresh cranberries. Yum!

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For dinner, my dad grilled chicken for salads with shredded apple and aged cheddar.


Finally, it was time to make the trek back. Traffic was surprisingly fine, and I made amazing time! When I got back, my roommate and I got the house ready for Christmas, including a tree!

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And the cat!

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She didn’t TOTALLY hate it. She definitely didn’t like it, and walked around super awkwardly! She looked adorable though!

And that’s a wrap!