Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Centerpiece for Fall

Only 2 more days to Thanksgiving!!  I am excited and a little sad it came up so fast :)  I had some big plans for my table decor this year, but we have had so many things going on this month that I didn't quite make them happen.  I did get the basic components I needed, but I haven't had time to add the extra touches.  I wanted to continue my 'Rustic Glamour' theme from Halloween - so there is some glitter and metallic paint just waiting to be used!  I am still hoping I'll get a big burst of energy and will get them done before the big day, but if not there's always next year!!  I did have a chance to put this centerpiece together - and I like the simplicity (but I miss the glamour).  The extra large jars are awesome.  I was originally planning to have the pillars in them - turns out the opening wasn't quite large enough (really - they were an 1/8" too small!!).  I used a mixture of acorns, cranberries, pumpkins and pinecones to bring in the 'rustic' - as well as the burlap and lace. 
Overall I am happy with how my centerpiece turned out. 
Tomorrow is our post about the food we made for our luncheon - I can't wait to share!
Have a great day!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Paper Turkeys

This weekend we had a Thanksgiving Luncheon at my house, which we will post about on Wednesday, and I wanted to have a fun craft for the 3 kids to do.  I loved how simple these paper turkeys were, and I think kids of any age can do them and have fun!  We were a little late eating so we didn't get to sit down with the kids for very long and do this (and when we tried Winda kept trying to give kisses and lay on the crayons), so these are mostly adult made, but they had fun picking colors and playing with them after they were done :)

To make them:
Color your uncoated paper plate with crayons, markers or anything else you would like (I think tissue squares would have been fun, but they went home before we made these).  Color one whole plate for the tail, and a circle or body shape for the face/body.  You can get as detailed as you want - add a body shape, arms/legs, or more face features.  Cut the body parts out and attach together with double-sided tape or glue.  Add googly eyes.  Cut the tail plate in half - but cut it off-centered so they will be different heights.  Attach all three pieces together (2 tail pieces and the body/head).  You can also make cuts to flair the ends (I did this but you can't really tell unless you move them).  Have fun!!

Whose excited for Thanksgiving?  This girl is!!
Have a great day!

Friday, November 21, 2014

We're Thankful!

I found this handy dandy pumpkin wire frame. I just love any thing chicken wire! I really enjoy the Thanksgiving tradition of saying what we are thankful for. I think it's good to do this through out the year. For now I'm going to start with this to help my son to remember to give thanks. What's great is that he picked it out in the store. So he is already into it!

I picked out everything else that went with it. Got it home and tried to use regular o'l chalk on the sign and it wasn't showing up at all. So today, when I should have been posting, I went back to the craft store and found a wet chalk pen and that worked great!

I'm sorry I'm posting so late. I have a list of things, don't we all, I want to do or start. Every time I would begin something I would figure out I don't have a key component. I really wanted to be sure this was up for a little while so that we add to it as we go.

Next week we will have something special to show you for Thanksgiving. So check back with us. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Kitchen Inspiration

    I found this jar a few months ago and I loved it at first sight.  I almost didn't buy it since I was looking for a wedding shower gift at the time, but I couldn't leave it behind.  Luckily, it was only $15 (at my favorite, can't leave without something home store - HomeGoods) - so I took it out of my lunch money budget so I wouldn't feel guilty lol.  I am sure most of you know I have a "little" bird obsession, and I like how simple this design is.  I also really like the colors used, so I decided to use it as my kitchen inspiration.  I can use all the colors at once, or alternate them how ever I feel like.  I think they look nice with the gray walls behind the jar, and I don't think they will clash with anything I plan to do in the living room.  I still haven't decide if I'm going to incorpoate more birds into the kitchen decor or not, but I think if I do it will be in small doses.  I don't want to known as the bird lady!!  My current plan is to fill the jar with cupcake holders, but it will be a while before I can actually put it in the 'right' spot so that may change.  For now, I am happy with the little smile it brings me every time I see it in my kitchen, and I've already bought a few things to tie in the colors.  I can't wait to finally see a finished kitchen!!
Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Out of this world granola bars

I'm in trouble! These are so good! I want to double my batch next time, but I can't eat a double batch by myself...can I? No definitely not. 

My kiddo wanted granola bars. So I set out for a good recipe. I wanted a recipe with crispy rice cereal I finally found this. I'm so glad I found this recipe. I wanted a soft bar. I used dark brown sugar and I didn't have mini chocolate chips. I don't think it really needs it. So I'm going to add some other yummy things like ground flax seed, wheat germ, seeds or nuts. 

Here's my version of the recipe.

1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey (I used wildflower honey)
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
2 cups quick cook oats (I prefer the smaller cuts when it comes to bars)
1 cup crispy rice cereal
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Handfuls of toppings such as mini chocolate chips or mini candy coated chocolate 

Grease a medium baking pan or sheet pan. In a medium bowl pour in oats and rice cereal. In a small pan over medium heat bring butter, honey and sugar until bubbles form. Then reduce to low and cook for 2 minutes. Add vanilla then pour butter mixture over oat mixture stir until all is combined. Press into prepared pan and let sit for 2 hours. I cheated towards the end and I put them in the refrigerator for a bit. Then I cut them into bars and ate a few!

This is so much better than any store bought bar you can buy. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Saying Goodbye

This is a bit of a tear-jerker so if you are at work or somewhere you might not want to be crying - stop reading and come back later...I'll understand.
We said goodbye to Pinky, our cat, this weekend.  It is always hard to lose an animal, but he lived a good life and I find comfort in that.  He was a crazy, quirky, fierce cat - but he was also loyal, friendly, fearless and loving.  He could make you want to pull your hair out and laugh at the same time with the crazy antics he got up to.  For most of the first 5 years we had him, he was an outdoor cat.  He would be gone all day, but still come running when I called him.  I've seen him fight a deer and win (while tethered to a tree), I once caught him playing with an unknown paw (I like to assume he found it), and he would often walk on the top of the (3 story) house and look in the skylights.  After he was diagnosed with FIV 13 years ago, he became an indoor cat - and after a year of adjustment he settled into a semi-pampered life.  His was the only cat i knew who was leash trained - so at least he still got to go outside sometimes.  He loved sitting in the windows and yelling at the birds (to the window blinds' detriment), laying in the sunshine and eating (lots of eating).  He also loved trying to explore - he was always sure there was something we were hiding from him behind closed doors - we always had to double check where he was before leaving the house to make sure we hadn't locked him in a closet or room.  He once climbed a mountain of boxes and jumped 2 feet into a hole in our ceiling - I had to bribe him with food to get him to come out!  He was friendly to everyone, always wanting to get and give some petting.  He was tolerent of dogs and kids - and would even play with them if he felt like it.  He was everyone's best friend.  He was always happy to see you - even more happy if you had treats with you.  He would try to steal food off your plate using his paw to sneak around from the side, while trying to look innocent.  He loved soft blankets and pillows, but his favorite place to sleep was his pizza box.  He was frustrating and fun and he completed our family.  We are all sad that it was his time, but I am grateful that I was able to spend extra time with him and give him a peaceful send off.  He had a good life for 18 years and he will always be loved. 

Pinky will be missed, but we will carry him in our hearts and memories forever.

xo Beth

Pineapple casserole

I'm a huge fan of apple and cheese, so I'm sure I will love this as well. My son wanted to have pineapple upside down cake last night. Of course it was too late to make it, he said it right before going to bed, he's so funny! Well that got me thinking! I really wanted to make a pineapple recipe. I make Paula Deen's Pineapple gooey cake, oh boy is that delicious! Now I want to that too! Oh well, next time I will!

This is a southern dish, if you haven't guessed yet I love southern comfort food. I was thinking of having it with chicken. I was reading up on what is usually served with it. Ham is paired with it, which makes sense. So now I wished I had pork chops! I'm serving this with lunch so I'm glad I have chicken, I think it will be lighter.


1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 tablespoon flour
3/4 cup shredded cheese
1 20oz can crushed pineapple
3/4 cup crushed butter crackers
1 stick of melted butter

In a medium bowl mix sugar and flour. Add cheese and pineapple, mix well. Pour into a greased baking dish, I use a small 4 cup capacity stoneware dish. Next pour crushed butter crackers on, and last pour melted butter on top. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 degrees.


Friday, November 14, 2014

Freezing but no snow...yet

It has been so cold here lately! We have been in high 20's low 30's where we live in Washington. It has been clear and sunny, just very cold. Beth, Jamie and I have been debating whether it should snow or not. Jamie and I feel if it's this cold it should snow. Beth thinks it shouldn't because she still has to go to work and drive in it. I don't blame her! When it is this cold and if it snows I like to be at home safe and sound. Especially with a warm drink, like a mocha, and a blanket. I don't know about you, my favorite snow moment is just as it turns dark. You walk outside and look around and see the warm glow from homes and snow falling it is so quite!

What's your favorite winter or snow moment you look forward to?

We hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Turkey Craft with Kids

My son, Xander, has been asking to do a craft. I couldn't think of something. I have this handy dandy box of precut square tissue paper. They are perfect for little hands. Finally I thought a turkey would be fun and currant.

Their fathers sit pretty far back behind them so I thought flipping the plate would look neat, not to mention my plates are printed.

I drew a pin shape for his body, then his eyes, beak, wattle, and feet. Next I colored in his body. Then the fun part! I started with orange on the outside, I did two layers. Next was red, last was brown and I filled in as much as I could.

I can't wait until he gets home from school! I have a plan now so I need to get things set up for him before he gets home. I want to hang them in the window, when we are done.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Pumpkin Muffincake

We're back! I'm sorry we haven't been posting this week. We all have those crazy weeks, we're having one now so bare with with us!

I set out to find muffin recipes yesterday. I found this muffin recipe which is actually cake with a muffin texture. 

This is delicious! Especially with the frosting! I think I might keep the frosting recipe for cinnamon rolls. I initially put a little cinnamon in the frosting. I'm going to add more, I love the specks of color and the taste, 


2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups pumpkin purée

Preheat oven to 350 degree Farhrenheit. Line 2 muffin tins with paper liners.

In a large bowl mix dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients and mix until smooth. Fill each well 3/4 full. Bake for 25-30 minutes, the instuctions I had said a full 30 min and they got a little dark but still moist. Let cool and frost.

Frosting (I doubled the recipe. We like frosting in our house and it's nice to have left overs anyway)

1 1/2 sticks of butter at room temp
1 8oz block of cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
Powder sugar to your liking, I used about 1 1/2 cups
Cinnamon if desired

In a medium bowl beat cream cheese, add butter and vanilla. Slowly add powder sugar, checking for texture and taste. Last add a sprinkling of cinnamon if using.


Friday, November 7, 2014

Deconstructed Carmel Apple on Cream Cheese

There really is no better way to explain carmel and apple. I tried though. This is pretty delicious and pretty simple. I love those recipes where you make, or pour, something tasty over a plain block of cream cheese and then serve with crackers or some kind of transportation to your mouth.

This is just the same. I was thinking of a treat I added to Xander's lunch once, slices of apple with peanut butter and mini chocolate chips. I wanted to make something similar but the crunch of toffee bits and luscious caramel sauce transformed it into an adult treat.

You can make your own caramel sauce. I recommend, the jarred version doesn't taste nearly as good as homemade. Not to mention you know what's in it.

1 8oz cream cheese
caramel sauce 1/4-1/2 cup or however much you like jarred or homemade
about 1/4 cup toffee bits
apple, pretzels or graham crackers

I pulled my cream cheese out of the refrigerator about 30 min before hand. That would give you plenty of time to make the caramel sauce.

Put the block of cream cheese on your serving dish.

I decided on an oval bowl to scoop out the goodness easier. Though a plate would look so pretty. Pour caramel sauce on top. I heated up for 35 seconds to help it pour. If you're making it from scratch you won't have to heat up unless you refrigerated it before hand.

Sprinkle with toffee bits and serve with desired dippers.


I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Mushroom Problems?

I have been wanting to post this for a few weeks - to see what suggestions you might come up with - and today seemed like a good time. 

We have a pretty big front yard, but it's mostly moss and clover - very little lush grass lol.  Every once in awhile we notice a mushroom will come up, but no big deal.  A few weeks ago, we noticed a huge mushroom was growing (the ones in the middle picture - they are at least 6" wide)...and then we saw that there were actually a bunch of different types of mushrooms growing in our yard!!  (Not all of the different types are here - I counted 5, but not all the pictures turned out)

I don't know whether I need to be concerned or if I should just leave them until we are ready to replace the whole yard.  Any suggestions?  If I need to get rid of them, I would love a non-labor intensive way to do it - I can't spend a lot of time digging them all out.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Pumpkin Walnut Chocolate Chip Blondies

I'm so late sending this post out we are going to keep it simple and sweet, just like this treat! I love everything pumpkin and on my quest to find all the great pumpkin recipes I came across this one. I, of course, changed it - shocker right?! This recipe is simple to make, is very moist and oh so yummy.

Preheat the oven to 350

I used a greased 9x13 pan lined with parchment paper

2 sticks (1 cup) of softened butter (I used salted)
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 15oz can of pumpkin
1 egg
4 teaspoons real vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of each cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups walnuts

Start by creaming the butter and sugar together in a mixer, blend in the pumpkin, the egg and then the vanilla. While that's mixing, combine the flour, baking soda and all of the spices in a separate bowl. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients little at a time, mixing in between. Hand mix in the chocolate chips and walnuts. Pour into the pan and bake for 30-40 min. Let the Blondies sit for 15 min before eating.


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Oops, what can you do?

So I had a plan for my posts this week - I really did - but then my body laughed and said 'nope'...I have been feeling so much better lately that I got a little too excited and spent most of the weekend organizing my craft room (ok mostly just my books, but they are in my craft room so it counts).  I had plans for some projects I wanted to work on yesterday, but instead I ended up spending the day in bed.  Turns out spending hours bending, lifting and sitting on the floor does not go well for me - which I know but choose to ignore when I'm really into doing something.  Sadly, this meant I didn't get any of my planned projects done :/...stupid body.  So I'm sorry, but I've got nothing for today except the cute picture of Winda hiding in the laundry...hopefully I'll be ready to do them soon!!

Have a great night!

Monday, November 3, 2014

What Fall things I look forward to...

I hope everyone had a great Halloween. It was a nice night. In our town the businesses have people outside giving out candy during a specific time every year. Last year Xander fell asleep so we couldn't go into town. This year I didn't let him take a nap. He had so much fun. He wanted to be "Chase" from a TV show which is a police officer pup. I pinned a make up tutorial for a deer, that was so fun. I think that will be my thing for Halloween every year. What I ever I am I will have make-up as the main event. I thought I had taken pictures, but I can't find them now.

I'm super excited for the upcoming holidays. The day after Halloween I saw Starbucks had out their Holiday cups. They brought a smile to my face. I got married in the fall, but oddly did it Florida they had 70 degree weather, it didn't feel like fall. During our summer I was thinking how nice it was to have warm weather. I didn't want it to leave. But of course we have changes for a reason. Now I'm glad Fall is here. To me it means soups, blankets, warm drinks and watching the leaves change then fall.

I really like slow cooker meals too. I plan on making a couple this week. Look for Wednesday's post on a slow cooker meal.

Tell us what your favorite fall things to look forward to.
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