How To Throw A Pup-Friendly Holiday Dinner Party

Thanksgiving is around the corner and for the first time ever, we have an actual dining space with a real dining table and get this, matching chairs. I think this officially makes us grown ups now. Our dining table through the years have been temporary make-do pieces like a space-saving folding desk (for our 600 sq. ft. apartment) and a piece of Ikea butcher block we had attached hairpin legs to (a thrifty attempt at midcentury mod). 

Thanks to our friends at Rove Concepts, we've finally found the perfect dining set that will be with us for years to come. We're so excited to have partnered with them to give you a glimpse into our new dining area and show you how we plan to throw the best pup-friendly holiday dinner party ever. And when dog people get together, you know there will be merriment and good eats for humans and pups alike!

Plates, Bowls, Glasses: Rove Concepts  |  Flatware, Napkins: West Elm

PlatesBowlsGlasses: Rove Concepts  |  FlatwareNapkins: West Elm

A minimal table setting of soft, neutral colors with a touch of metallic is my jam. Add some tea candles for warmth, little white pumpkins, and eucalyptus branches from Trader Joes (only $3 per bunch!) and the table is set.

DSCF3027_1.jpg

I love the idea of breaking out of turkey tradition and roasting a chicken instead. My girl chef hero Ina Garten's perfect roast chicken recipe is indeed perfection. Simple to prep, SO delicious, and it makes the house smell amazing. Paired with roasted rainbow carrots and onions and it's the coziest meal for a cold winter's evening. 

DSCF2914_1.jpg

I'm currently kind of obsessed with cheeseboards and its smorgasbord of deliciousness. Sit me right in front of the cheese with a glass of red wine and a pup at my feet and I'm good for the rest of the evening. 

Cheeseboard, Candles: Rove Concepts

Cheeseboard, Candles: Rove Concepts

For the pups, I love this recipe for turkey meatballs from our friend Jane of Winding Ridge Lane. As some of you may know, Hoku is allergic to some common proteins so we tweaked the recipe and made a Tofurkey version just for him. Minced Tofurkey meatballs don't hold its shape as well as real turkey meat, so we added extra egg and white rice as needed to bind the ingredients together a little better. He "gobbled" it up. (Heh heh.)

Serving Bowl: Rove Concepts

Serving Bowl: Rove Concepts

But wait! It's not a party yet without drinks. We love the idea of a simple bar cart for guests to make their own Moscow Mules, one of our favorite holiday cocktails. All you need is ice, vodka, ginger beer, limes, mint, and some fun copper cups. No shaker required. (And for the vino lovers, we always keep red wine on hand too!)

Copper Mugs, Glass Vase: Rove Concepts  |  Bar Cart: Target  |  Bar Tools: West Elm  |  Letter Board: Three Potato Four

Copper MugsGlass Vase: Rove Concepts  |  Bar Cart: Target  |  Bar Tools: West Elm  |  Letter Board: Three Potato Four

DSCF3254_1.jpg

The very best part of a Thanksgiving meal? Dessert of course. True to tradition, we whipped up homemade cookies and doggy pumpkin pies for Hoku and pup guests. I gave it a small twist this year and put their initials in cookie form on top! And for the humans, a lemon berry pie. I wish I could say I baked that beautiful masterpiece from scratch all by myself but it's actually from our favorite, local pie shop. There's nothing quite like finishing a meal with a slice of warm pie and a hot cup of coffee. 

Coffee Mugs, Geometric Vase, Concrete Tray: Rove Concepts  |  French Press: Bodum

Coffee MugsGeometric Vase, Concrete Tray: Rove Concepts  |  French Press: Bodum

DSCF2082_1.jpg
DSCF2247.jpg
DSCF2117_1.jpg
DSCF3273_1.jpg

Hoku's favorite spot to hang out during a meal is right under the table, waiting for the occasional dropped crumb. Sometimes he'll even rest his head on our chair or legs and look up with the cutest, most hypnotizing, food-summoning puppy dog eyes and sure enough, it gets us every single time

DSCF3449_1.jpg
DSCF3472_1.jpg

Pups get food comas too so don't forget to create a comfy safe spot for them to relax after they finish their pumpkin pies in exactly 10 seconds flat. Happy November, friends! 

DSCF3557.jpg

This post was created in collaboration with Rove Concepts. All opinions and photos are my own.

Saturday Mornings

"Oh hi, sorry to bother. But now that I see your eyeballs, can we go out now?"

DSCF1928.jpg

Saturday morning walks with Hoku are my favorite. I love the calm, quiet streets, sunrise through the trees, the cooler temperatures. There's no sense of urgency to rush back to the computer to check emails or get ready for meetings. Instead of NPR, I listen to real music (and detox from news of the current presidential election). We take our time, pick up breakfast and coffee at our favorite bakery, and sometimes explore a new route.

What's on your dog walking playlist? "Nothing But Time" from the documentary Mile Mile & A Half is still one of my favorites. It gives me an extra spring in my step and makes me want to climb a mountain. 

DSCF1882.jpg

Our newest dog walking essential are these wireless earbuds from Sudio Sweden to keep me from becoming a tangled mess of cord when I need to grab my wallet or poop bags. It makes me happy when good design meets functionality. (And guess what, our readers can use discount code hellohoku to get 15% off!)

We love meandering down to our little neighborhood village center to pick up breakfast. Although I do enjoy the occasional fancy west LA brunch, nothing beats a simple chocolate chip scone and a no frills cup of plain, black coffee to start the day. While we wait, Hoku says hi to a shitzu friend and I eavesdrop on a group of old timers at the next table working on the NYT crossword puzzle together. Love the small town vibe of our neighborhood. 

It's going to be a gloomy, rainy Halloween weekend here, so we're looking forward to a lot of cozy time indoors. Happy Saturday, friends! 

DSCF1970.jpg

This post was created in collaboration with Sudio Sweden. All opinions and photos are my own.