30 Things For Which We’re Thankful For

Photo by The Tomcat Studio

Photo by The Tomcat Studio

Happy Thanksgiving!  In honor of the holiday, we thought it’d be fun to put together a gratitude list – 1 for each day of the month in November. Some of these are silly, some are serious – but each and every one of them played an integral role in the success of Stacy McCain Event Planning in 2013.  In no particular order, we give you 30 Things for which We’re Thankful:

  1. Double sided tape
  2. Coffee, in any way shape or form
  3. Wet Ones
  4. Overnight shipping
  5. Amazon Prime
  6. Gold spray paint
  7. TurboScan
  8. Matte lipstick
  9. Our hardworking and dependable assistants

    Photo by Sasha Gulish

    Victoria, Myla, Stacy and Julia.  Photo by Sasha Gulish

  10. SFMTA meter cards
  11. The fuel that keeps us going: Twizzler Filled Twists, Pirates Booty, and Trader Joes Just Mango Slices
  12. Our fabulous new zip code (94123!!)
  13. SoleMates
  14. The liquids that keep Allie hydrated: Refreshe Sparkling Water and Go Girl Energy Drinks
  15. SnapChat
  16. Tip Toes Nail Salon
  17. Business insurance
  18. Gotts Roadside Food Truck Vendor Meals
  19. Small, family owned transportation companies
  20. Pay By Phone
  21. Google Maps
  22. The best intern in the world and our very favorite Southern Belle, Julia

    photo (45)

    Hey, Y’all!

  23. PowerPoint Seating Charts
  24. International Orange
  25. Dutch crunch sandwiches from Yountville Deli
  26. Lionel Ritchie’s “All Night Long” 
  27. Our chic on-site aprons
  28. Fastrak
  29. VSCOcam and Whitagram
  30. Little Black Dresses that are slimming, forgiving, and easy to accessorize (can I get an Amen?!)

Stacy McCain Event Planning wishes you a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday spent with delicious food, wine and excellent company!

Photo by Ginny Branch

Photo by Ginny Branch

Roasted Sweet Potato and Cauliflower Soup with Cinnamon Dusted Pecans

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we’ve all got menu planning on our brains.  We wanted to share a recipe that Allie recently wrote which highlights some of the season’s tastiest produce.  It can be dished out into tall shot glasses and served as a passed appetizer, or plated individually and served to guests as a starter at the table.  Either way, this beautiful and hearty soup will be sure to impress your guests and whet their appetite this holiday season.

Makes 8 Starter Sized Portions


  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled
  • 2 Tablespoons + 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 4 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large yellow onions, diced
  • 4 Tablespoons + 1 Tablespoon of butter, divided
  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, toasted and ground
  • 1 rounded Tablespoon ginger powder
  • ½ cup whole pecans (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Place a large roasting pan in the oven as it preheats – this will give the vegetables a nice golden sear when they are added to the hot pan
  3. Break off the cauliflower florets from the core and place in a large bowl
  4. Cut the peeled sweet potatoes into wedges of ½ inch thickness.  Add to the bowl with the cauliflower florets
  5. Toss the prepared vegetables with the 2 Tablespoons salt and 4 Tablespoons olive oil to coat
  6. Carefully add the vegetables to the pre-heated roasting pan, stirring quickly to evenly distribute the pieces
  7. Roast for 30-40 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until the pieces are lightly browned and soft
  8. When you are 20 minutes into the roasting of the vegetables, heat an extra large pot over medium heat and add the 4 Tablespoons of butter
  9. Next add the diced yellow onions and 1 Tablespoon of salt
  10. Sauté the onions until they become translucent
  11. When the vegetables are finished roasting, carefully add them to the large pot
  12. Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth, adding enough to cover the vegetables by ½ inch.  Bring to a boil and then lower to the heat to a simmer.
  13. Simmer for 20-30 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and falling apart.
  14. Puree the mixture with an immersion or standard blender, adding more broth if necessary to achieve desired consistency.
    • If you’re using a standard blender, work in batches ~ only filling the blender hallway as the hot liquid will expand while you’re pureeing the soup.
  15. Season with the cumin, ginger and additional salt to taste
  16. Meanwhile, toast the whole pecans until fragrant, then immediately toss with the additional Tablespoon of butter, ½ teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon.  Once they’ve cooled, chop finely
  17. Transport soup to serving bowls, garnish with a small amount of pecans and dish up hot.

The Anti-Guest Book

No, we don’t mean “anti” as in we’re against guest books. Not at all. We just think that the traditional “sign your name in this book, that will sit on our bookshelf to collect dust” is a bit stale. But we still love the idea of your guests leaving you a few words of love or maybe even some marriage advice, during your wedding. We’re seeing some super creative and fun ways to do this and just had to share.

These coasters are super cute! Plus, they can be an extension of your day-of wedding paper goods, carrying the overall look from your save the dates, invitations, programs, etc.

Instead of just writing their name in a random book, why not ask your guests to write their birthdays on a calendar? What a cool and useful idea!

And what about at the wedding? How do you display all those love notes? Add them to your wedding scrapbook by creating small individual envelopes for each note.

We love the idea of adding some fun to your wedding via your guests’ notes. This fun Mad Lib is such a clever idea and will keep your guests entertained during cocktail hour!

For more ideas outside the box (er, book), how about having your guests write mini notes on wooden puzzle pieces?

Keep the games going by using a Jenga pieces for a place guests can leave you and your now hubby little notes. You’ll enjoy playing these games for years to come and will love to reminisce about your wedding day.

These thumb-print trees are becoming popular, especially for earthy and more rustic weddings. What a sweet reminder of your special day that can be hang in your home.

You can always keep it simple and sweet and incorporate your guests’ notes into your wedding decor. Here are more of our favorites…

We love the simple ideas above, but go crazy for unique “anti-guestbook” ideas, like what Bay Area photographer Meg Perotti did at her November wedding. They had guests decorate glass ornaments, including little love notes, and then hung them on their first Christmas tree the next month. Love!!

Check out more unique “guestbook” ideas on our Pinterest…and if you like what you see, please do follow us 🙂