Glasgow Thanksgiving

Of course I am a few days late with this post but to be fair I am still stuffing myself with plenty of leftovers and therefore, still in Thanksgiving-mode.

While it was hard to not be at home on Thanksgiving for my first time ever, we hosted a delicious feast for 25ish of our friends last Saturday which, I have to say, was a complete success. I spent the last few weeks gathering and sourcing all of the ingredients that I would need so we had all of the traditional favorites (although, since only 2 of our guests were American, no one would have known the difference)

– turkey (crown, not a full bird) with gravy
– mashed potatoes
– sweet potatoes
– green bean casserole
– cornbread stuffing with apples
– homemade cranberry sauce
– homemade pumpkin pie (with homemade crust)

– additional appetizers and desserts from friends

The biggest challenge was dealing with our convection oven – apparently these are supposed to cook faster and more evenly but it takes literally 2-3x as long to cook anything (plus it’s in Celsius…) I had one in my school apartment in New York and could never get it to cook properly either, so I’m really not sure what the big deal is and I am not a fan.

But anyway – some friends came over the day before to help with the pies and miscellaneous chopping, which was a big help! I also finally bought a microwave last week so that was great for some last minute reheating. None of my international friends had ever eaten a proper thanksgiving so they were all impressed and I was so happy to share our most delicious holiday with them!

My thanksgiving options at Tesco…no thanks

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(After my grocery delivery arrived with the turkey!)

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Party prep

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Took me a LONG time to make sure the turkey was done! Dumb oven.

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Plus so many pies.

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Happy friends

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Happy hostess

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Some more beautiful things…

GSA shop at Christmas

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Reid lobby at Christmas

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George Square at Christmas

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Happy plants

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Ceilidh fundraiser at school last night

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Tea and frangipane for studio

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Next week is the last full week of the term so this week = paper writing + presentation prep + hopefully some Christmassy things

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Stay-cation

It’s been a while and a lot has happened! This week was very busy with school work but for reading week last week, I opted to stay in town since I had a few school appointments scheduled. Here are some of my nice outings:

Tennent’s Brewery

Mackintosh “House for an Art Lover” (not an actual house – built in 1990s, based on a competition design proposal drawings by Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his wife, Margaret MacDonald)

Glasgow Science Center followed by an amazing walk along the Clyde River

James Bay concert at Art School

Miscellaneous walks around the west end including the discovery of a lovely community garden

Kelvingrove Art Gallery

Argyle Street Christmas Market*

*Glasgow has already been in full Christmas-mode for several weeks, which means LOTS of delicious treats to enjoy (including delicious souvlaki at the market!)

Holiday sweets here are THE BEST:

– sticky toffee everything (including lattes)
– mince pies (usually, “mince” refers to ground beef except during the holidays, when it is a sweet pie/tart filling made of fruits like apricots and raisins which are cooked with sugar and brandy, etc. Divine.)
– stollen (technically German but I’m not picky since it’s amazing and plentiful)

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Mom requested to see more photos of me, so here you go:

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The Pot Still, home of 500 whiskies (I drank about half a dram and had enough)

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George Square at night

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(Took us a minute to realize this was a fake owl, but the other birds are real)

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Kelvingrove Art Gallery, as seen from Kelvingrove Park

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Salvador Dali

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Only in Scotland…

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Best cure for a long week: tea and pecan cheesecake at school

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This weekend = preparations for our big Thanksgiving dinner next Saturday!

If you’re tired of photos of Scottish skies..

…I can’t help you – here are some more!

I don’t have class on Tuesday’s, so I took a long walk over to the east end to check out the Glasgow Necropolis, a massive hilltop cemetery. It was really impressive, and a beautiful day to visit: mild weather, not windy, but very dramatic skies.

Some of the monuments were so old and falling over – definitely not a place I would want to be after dark! I especially liked the boldly painted gates of some of the crypts (okay – I admit that’s a weird thing to say)

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George Square ready for Christmas

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The Tennents Brewery

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Then I went to Glasgow Cathedral, right across the street

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My walk back was just as beautiful!

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Our dear Mac building

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The last few days have been mainly sunny, although sometimes quite cold:

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…which also means tea and cake is always a good idea.

This is a Gregg’s nut (imposter cronut, I assume)

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Post lunch at the Vic

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November 5th was Guy Fawkes day, and an annual fireworks celebration/carnival in Glasgow Green. (Sidenote, fireworks can be purchased in supermarkets here. Yep.)

It felt like entire city was out in the park, probably also since it wasn’t raining. We didn’t try any rides, but found the most amazing hot donuts (and watery hot chocolate) to deal with the cold. The fireworks were pretty decent and were synced to superhero music – there was also a full moon!

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Yesterday I ventured to Waitrose, which is a much larger and nicer supermarket than the ones closest to our flat. I found some amazing things including mince pies, pale blue eggs, and gingerbread porridge. It’s about 25 minutes from our flat but I have a feeling I will be making the trek often. They also sell Frank’s Redhot – I’m sold!

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A few last beautiful things:

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This week = reading week and hopefully a trip out of town!

It’s November!

Hard to believe how fast time has been flying! I’ve been a little bit lazy (due to the dreary, rainy weather earlier this week) and fighting a wee cold (although 95% better now) but this morning the sun is mostly shining and I woke up motivated to post another long-overdue update!

Last weekend we went to an awesome concert (Jungle) at probably the most awesome venue ever, The Arches. The venue is located in a brick viaduct underneath the Glasgow Central Train Station – I’m sure you’re all thinking that sounds terrifying and sketchy but I can attest it is in great condition/impressively renovated and structurally sound. I didn’t even see any sewer sludge ala Ninja Turtles, as expected.

I originally bought the concert tickets in July (before I had a visa or a flight or anything) and since The Arches has a restaurant attached, there was a discount if you purchased your prefix dinner along with your concert tickets. The food was actually really delicious and the restaurant also shares some of the brick archways of the main venue space so it was really cool.

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We were pretty close to the front while Jungle was performing, but this is the view looking back, which gives more of a sense of the arched space.

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It was a really great night and such a unique experience!

Last weekend we also changed our clocks back one hour so it’s been getting dark so early, especially when it is cloudy! It has also been very windy, which makes the rainy days especially difficult. I’ve noticed that hardly anyone wears rain boots here – I remain baffled by this and while I understand they are not necessary for the constant drizzle we have on some days, other days it downpours for hours and I see girls in Keds and ballet flats. That being said – I have no shame in wearing rain boots – before I bought them I had one day of wet socks and it was not fun.

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I’ve been cooking most of my own meals lately but have also begun craving certain foods, like Dos Toros burritos, so I decided to venture to a Mexican place called Pinto that people were raving about on yelp. (Sidenote: There were even some reviews that said something like “if you are American, this is better than Chipotle!!” I personally would eat Dos Toros over Chipotle any day of the week but I figured by default, Pinto would be the closest thing to DT on this side of the pond) I was really excited when I walked in because it smelled delicious, but I have to say my “bare burrito” aka bowl was very bland and disappointing.

I think I might give them another shot sometime (perhaps with nachos?) but for now I will continue to daydream about dos toros…

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Here is a bus stop on Sauchiehall Street

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Buchanan Street at night

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Lastly, Halloween! I finally successfully transformed into a lobster for two nights in a row – so fun! We went to a few parties around school and enjoyed the warmish and non-rainy weather, and all the weirdos that came out to enjoy it too.

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(Claudia was a gumball machine – so cute!)

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Happy Saturday!

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Good things.

I’m happy to announce that after 5 weeks in the dark ages, we FINALLY got internet in our flat on Monday! There was a portion of the day when we both were going to be in lectures, and I was so worried (and half-expecting) that the installer would come while we were at school, and that we would have to reschedule and wait another month and NEVER get internet BUT somehow it all worked out!

Also on Monday I picked up a package of cookies and treats – such a thoughtful and nice surprise from a group at Holy Cross – the cookies have become an especially nice addition to my afternoon tea breaks! (Maybe I’ve also been having one or two with my morning coffee..)

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On Tuesday, most of our class went to Edinburg to meet our professor for a tour around the city, since he lives there. Apparently the remnants of Hurricane Gonzalo (the one that just hit Bermuda) were passing over Scotland that day and although it was mainly sunny, it was SO WINDY and SO COLD, which made for a very intense day. That being said, it was great to see so many different, non-touristy areas of Edinburg and get a local perspective on the city history, as well as more recent developments.

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SCOTTIE DOGS: HIGHLIGHT OF THE DAY
(Our teacher asked if the jackets were to keep them warm – no, apparently they just had gotten their photos taken)

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New goal in life is to live in a house this color:

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For lunch we got amazing baked potatoes at a tiny hole in the wall – unfortunately we had to stand on the street to eat but it hit the spot! This is vegetable curry with sour cream

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St. Giles cathedral

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(Love the blue ceiling)

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(Also love the colors of this shop)

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I realize I just posted a ton of photos but the day was just so picturesque (although I still prefer Glasgow) and I just couldn’t resist taking so many shots!

Here’s a few more from around Glasgow to take you back to reality:

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Rainy Sunday.

Such a fun weekend! On a Friday, we had about 25 classmates and friends over for a housewarming/potluck/”help us use our living room” party.

There was so much amazing food (some of the same chefs as the previous party) and I’ve been happily enjoying the leftovers these past few days.

Dinner prep (I made tortellini with olives and tomatoes – inspired by a similar dish I used to get from Agata and Valentina in New York…womp womp)

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I also made us a door sign

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We also turned on our electric fireplace (without the heat since it was in the balmy 60s for a change!) for the occasion. All in all it was a really great time…now, to start planning our big American thanksgiving meal..!

Yesterday I decided to take advantage of the nice weather and went to Kelvingrove Park without a jacket! It’s a really such a gorgeous park.

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At night, I went with some friends to see a friends’ band at “nice n sleazy”, which is a bar/small concert venue. (It sounds much sketchier than it actually is, and is conveniently right around the corner from school)

After, I met other friends at The Art School (our student association) for a big dj party, called freaky freaky (not sure why), which was super fun and also open to the public so there was A LOT of fascinating/trashy/bizarre attire present. There was also a balloon drop, which is a plus for any Saturday night activity.

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Lastly, here are a few more Glasgow shots for your enjoyment.

Tomorrow = internet in our flat day!
Maybe time for another party??

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