Pumpkin Pasta

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This is a yummy pasta dish using the last of the season’s best: PUMPKIN!  And it is so easy.  This could also be a wonderful side dish on your Thanksgiving table.  Make the sauce and pour it over orzo for a rice like side dish.  Or serve it over mini shells and let the sauce get stuck inside.  This dish is kid approved with two thumbs up!  Enjoy!

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Thanksgiving Decorating Ideas

How do you decorate for Thanksgiving?  Sometimes I feel like it is that in between holiday that gets lost.  All of the stores have Christmas decorations out now and Halloween has just passed.  It’s almost easier to jump from one right to the next.  But Thanksgiving is so important.  It’s a time to reflect on all that we are thankful for. 

Here are some inspiring ideas to spruce up your home for Thanksgiving.

I like this simple mantle from Urban Romance.

Or these I found on Shelterness.

And some amazing table settings and dining room décor!

found via Google search

found via Google search

found via Google search

found via Google search

This is Beautiful....BUT,where do the platters of turkey, dressing, and MASHED POTATOES go...I guess it's buffet style..haha

There are some very fantastic and easy decorations out there.  Candles always warm up a space.  And I am in love with home made bunting.

found on homedecoratingideas.com

 

from My Fabuless Life.

Thankful Bunting, Thanksgiving Bunting, Bunting Banner, Thanksgiving Garland, Pennant

available on Etsy

I am feeling inspired, how about you!  Follow me on Instagram to see how my fall decorating comes out!

October Menu Options–Faves for Fall

I am participating in the 31 Days series with The Nester.  I will be blogging for 31 days straight!  Wish me luck!  Therefore, my weekly menu will be halted for the month.  I may sneak it in once in a while, but to be safe, I wanted to let you all know.  So here are some of my Fall favorites to get you through the month!

Butternut Squash Soup

Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad recipe

Kale Salad

So Easy and Tasty Apple Streusel. Photo by Tea Jenny

Apple Streusel

Slow Cooker Beef Stew IV Recipe

Beef Stew in the Crock Pot (This is close to my recipe.  I don’t use any flour.)

Bacon-Wrapped Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

Bacon Wrapped Meat Loaf (I use the cornbread stuffing mix.  And I don’t add any cheese.)

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Beet Salad with Goat Cheese (mixed greens, cooked beets, walnuts and goat cheese with Balsamic vinaigrette)

Pork, Apple and Cheddar Meatballs with Egg Noodles

Apple Meat Balls

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with Cream-Cheese Filling

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies (no, I don’t bake, but these look so good I have to give it a try!)

** I have realized how much I truly change recipes and make them my own.  Some of them I will definitely have to write down and post!

Slow Cooker Chicken with Apples

There is absolutely no way to make slow cooked meals look good in pictures so I’m sorry for the lack of good pictures.  I tried.  Really, I did.

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This is a wonderful fall meal.  It has all the flavors of the season.  It has been kid tested and approved, too.  My neighbors made it the other night and I got a thumbs up from the whole family.  (Thanks, Bob and Melora!)

1 pkg. chicken thighs with skinIMG_5926

1 C apple juice

2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

 

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1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1/3 C packed brown sugar

1 onion, sliced

2 apples, cut into slices or IMG_5923chunks

 

 

 

Season chicken with salt and pepper.  Brown them on both sides.  Place in slow cooker with skin side up.  Sprinkle each thigh with a little of the brown sugar.  IMG_5920

Mix together the apple juice, cider vinegar and mustard.  Pour around the chicken.

Arrange the onion and apples around the chicken.  Sprinkle the rest of the brown sugar over the entire dish.

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Cook on low for 6 hours.

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I suggest serving over brown rice or quinoa just for a little nutty flavor.  Also, a couple sprigs of thyme arranged on top of the whole mixture in the crockpot would add a hint of flavor.  I didn’t do it this time but I will next time.

Super Easy FALL Letter Blocks

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This project was very easy to do.  And I did it all for $4!  Yep.  4 bucks!

First you need a 2×4 from your local hardware store.  Then measure out 4” blocks.  Cut them to size and sand the edges.  (Isn’t Prince Charming cute when he uses power tools?!)

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Next, gather your cutest helpers to help paint!  For this project we did two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Barcelona Orange.

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Once the orange was dry, I chose to make a white wash out of ASCP in Cream and water.  I brushed it on the orange blocks and let it dry.

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Then I found a font that I really liked online and free-handed it onto the block with chalk.  That way if I messed up I could just wipe it off.  I’m not a good artist!

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Then I painted the letters black using Van Gogh Chalk Paint in Revenge and a small paint brush.  (I am deeply in love with Van Gogh paint, but I’ll discuss that another time!)

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Once the black was dry, I lightly distressed each piece and brushed over them with a matte finish polyurethane.  All in all I think it took 1 hour and it was fun.  My kiddos loved it and I got to “get my creative on!”

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Sharing at:

It’s Fall Y’all Link Party at The Lettered Cottage

Fall Around The House

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I love fall!  It is truly my favorite season of all!  The cooler weather and the leaves changing just gives me such a feeling of contentment.  I don’t know how else to describe it!

I love the colors of autumn… red, yellow and orange mixed with brown and still a hint of green.

And fall food… soups and stews and squash, oh my!

In honor of this wonderful season I have started decking out my house for fall.

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Just a little touch here and there.  A leaf or two.

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No space would be complete without an antler.

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And this will easily transform into Halloween, but I hold back until October 1st!

Sharing at:

Wow Us Wednesdays at Savvy Southern Style

Falling for Fall at The Inspired Room

It’s Fall Y’all at Thrifty Decor Chick

Weekly Menu 9/16–9/20

As you are reading this I am on my way home from a wonderful visit with my family.  We all flew up to Maine to celebrate my mother’s birthday which is actually today!  Happy Birthday, Mom!

 

Monday – Pizza!  We will go out for this.  I haven’t been home to do any shopping so the fridge is bare!

Tuesday – Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

 

Wednesday – Pasta with Proscuitto, Tomato and Olive

// Prosciutto, tomato, and olive spaghetti

Thursday – Stuffed Peppers (a DC original!)

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Friday – Shrimp Pad Thai

pad thai noodles with shrimp

Weekly Menu 9/9–9/13

I feel like Fall is in full swing.  Football is on, evenings are cool(er), and leaves are beginning to change.  I am pulling out the fall decorations and giving the house a little lift.  I want my menu to reflect that, too. 

Monday – Pasta Primavera – this version is full of squash – zucchini, yellow and butternut all make an appearance.

Tuesday – Beef Stroganoff

Wednesday – Brown Sugar Chicken with Apples in the Crock Pot – chicken thighs with a brown sugar and Dijon mustard rub slow cooked with apples in apple juice.

Thursday – Cheese Ravioli in Sage Butter – so easy it hurts.  Make Buitoni cheese raviolis according to the package.  Melt butter in a pan then add 10 fresh sage leaves that have been chopped.  Pour the butter over the cooked ravioli and sprinkle with parmesan.

Friday – It’s another baseball day so there will be dinner on the go.  Probably sandwiches. 

Weekly Menu 9/2–9/6

Happy Labor Day everyone!  I hope you all are relaxing and soaking up the last days of summer!  I know I am.  It’s been a blitz of boating, “pooling”, and grilling.  I love this time of year – the corn is a little sweeter, the tomatoes a little juicier – all because I know its almost over.  So here’s to the end of summer!  Enjoy the menu!

Monday:  Farm Fresh Quinoa – this is my own recipe made with red and white quinoa, fresh corn, tomatoes, onion, zucchini and parsley all in a creamy sauce.

Tuesday:  Tomato Pie – Never made this before but it looks delish so I’m giving it a try!

Tomato Pie with Basil and Gruyere Cheese

Wednesday: Roasted Chicken and Red Pepper Quesadillas

Thursday: Steak and Blue Cheese Salad – super easy!  Just using a frisee mix, caramelized shallots, blue cheese and tomatoes you have a fabulous salad.  When you top it with steak, it’s dinner!

Friday: Seafood Linguine – a mix of shrimp, crab meat and scallops in a creamy sauce.  It’s my dad’s recipe and one of my favorites!

Refrigerator/Freezer Concoction

OK, so I never, NEVER, create my own recipes.  I’m just not that good.  But we are leaving town tomorrow for Thanksgiving and I didn’t want to do any grocery shopping.  I looked in the refrigerator this morning and found some fresh (sort of) sage, one onion, a half empty bottle of white wine (how did that happen?) and garlic.  In the freezer I had chicken thighs.  Soooo I had an idea – white wine braised chicken thighs with sage!  Now, when I say braised, I mean a 30 – 45 minute braise, not the 6 hour kind of braise.  I know, low and slow is better, but I didn’t have that kind of time.  So here it goes:

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4 chicken thighs – bone in, skin on

12 – 15 fresh sage leaves

1 small onion

1 clove garlic

1/4 C white wine

1/4 C chicken broth

4 Tbsp. unsalted butter

salt and pepper

 

Rinse and pat dry the chicken thighs.  Salt and pepper both sides.  Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add chicken thighs and brown on both sides.  Once both are browned, leave skins side up.  Add onion, garlic and sage.  Sauté for 1 –2 minutes.  Reduce heat to medium.  Add wine and broth.  Stir and cover for 30 min.

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It was actually pretty good.  My son and husband both asked for seconds.  I served it with roasted carrots and sweet potato in a maple syrup glaze.  By glaze, I mean drizzled over the top.  I do what I can.   

Happy Thanksgiving!  I wish everyone safe travels and enjoying their family!  I am thankful that you are reading my blog.