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Hope everyone had a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving break!

Slowly sinking back into the reality of the schoolwork grind... but first, I wanted to reflect here about my past week. I headed to New Haven to visit my best friend who is almost done with her first semester at Yale University's Master of Public Health program. On Thanksgiving morning, we woke up bright and early, walked through some chilly weather, and volunteered at a local soup kitchen. Our goal was to package 800 Thanksgiving meals for homeless and families in need. I was in charge of the string bean scooping and my best friend was in charge of the carrots. Veggieeeeessss. We also met this adorable little girl who wore a turkey hat. Children typically were not allowed to volunteer, but they make an exception for Thanksgiving. This was my first time volunteering at a soup kitchen on Thanksgiving day. It felt so rewarding to help just a little bit during my morning. It made me think about how this could be something I do every year for many years to come! I mean, why not?! It was just a few hours during the morning, and we headed back home afterwards to prepare our own Thanksgiving meal.

My best friend, T and I used a brine for the turkey thighs and drumsticks which we soaked over night. We buttered them up and stuck them in the oven as we awaited our guests to arrive. T, being the generous soul that she is, invited some of her MPH classmates who didn't go home for the holiday. We had a simple, but filling meal, ending with my favorite Thanksgiving desert -- warmed up pecan pie with vanilla ice cream! YUM!

I hope everyone had a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving surrounded by loved ones. There's a lot to be thankful for, your health, the health of your family and friends, meeting new people who widen your perspective, who challenge you, who inspire you, who motivate you... being able to make yourself a delicious meal, being able to purchase a delicious meal, having an education, having a voice, sleeping on a bed... it's so easy to take little things for granted. I hope you all were able to reflect a little this past week on just how #blessed we are!

Keep striving to new heights as we start making our ways into 2018!



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