Friday, October 26, 2007

Flickr Friday Fave's: PUMPKIN LOVE

Just a few pumpkins to help you make it through the month! I'm lovin' (Plovin' - pumpkin lovin' - for Leigh-Ann) the pumpkin necklace & purse on the top row. And how cool is the pumpkin-lined wedding aisle?

fff's 10/26/07 Pumpkin Love

I'm off to carve pumpkins! Stay tuned to see what we come up with!

Monday, October 22, 2007



It's here! It's here! Today's the day we Texans have been waiting for - the first cool front of the season. It's crisp and breezy and just......wonderful. As soon as Adventure Man gets home, Reilly (Adventure Dog) and I are going to ask him to take us for a walk!

Friday, October 19, 2007

FFF's 10/19/07

fff's 10/19/07
Originally uploaded by thingspondered

Forgot to do this last week, but I've been very inspired by some of this craftin' cuteness!

The four corner pics are the work of the talented hollydoodle. Click here for her shop+blog.

I'm loving the little felt pumpkin & cat, the outrageous-colored owl, and the funny little turkey. The pilgrim hat placecards are on the agenda for our Thanksgiving craft, Cody. Sound good?

And I'm just about to jump into that center picture - my favorite picture this week. I love me some autumn!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Who's the Boss?

Does that title date me, or what?

front of folder
Originally uploaded by thingspondered

So yesterday was Boss's Day, but at our office we were already having a big October birthday shindig, so we "postponed" Boss's Day until today.

We'd recently sampled a DELICIOUS Mocha Punch recipe, courtesy of our pastor's wife, so we decided to go with a coffee break theme. We had the Mocha Punch with cookies, and gave our bosses Starbucks gift cards in these little gift card folders. This one is one that I messed up - the scored lines are crooked - so I kept it as a sample. I cut them out of a regular size manilla folder, and added score lines with my paper trimmer/scorer. I made the coffee stain by coloring on the lid of my Stampin' Up marker, then I filled it in with a lighter color. I tied each folder to an individually wrapped biscotti.

On the inside of the card, I included a post-it with the "To Do" list for the day.

inside of folder

Our executive pastor (in charge of personnel) got an extra note on his. Our children's minister (a woman) got a "girly" bow. Here is the whole set of them:
folders with biscotti

Everyone enjoyed the coffee break! And, dear reader, here is a link to the recipe for the Mocha Punch, so you can enjoy a break too! It tastes very much like a Starbucks Mocha Frappucino, but you get a lot more "bang for your buck", as this serves 20 or more. You should be able to buy all the ingredients for under $12.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Now We're Cooking!

recipe box 1
Originally uploaded by thingspondered
One of my favorite kinds of crafting involves taking an old or discarded item and giving it a new purpose. While I'm on the topic of recipes, I thought I'd share this little recipe box and coordinating cards that I just "repurposed" into a gift.

I picked up the cute tin at a thrift store and knew right away it was begging to be a recipe box. It was just the right size! I took it home and scanned the side of it, then Photoshopped it a little to age it. Then I sent it to Publisher and faded it to make it the background of the recipe cards (you can't see it very well in these pictures). I also Photoshopped the big rose and put it on a black background. I added that to the recipe card and the magnet. I also included tabbed divider cards.

Here's the top view:
recipe box 2

What have you "breathed new life" into?

Fall...It's Not Just for Pumpkins!

fresh apple cake
Originally uploaded by thingspondered

We had a birthday celebration at our office today. One of the birthday girls loves apples, so I took advantage of a great opportunity to pull out this wonderful recipe:

Mrs. Norvell’s Fresh Apple Cake

(From My Kitchen by Barbara Richardson McClellan)

2 c. sugar
1 c. oil
2 eggs
2 ½ c. flour
1 ¼ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
3 medium apples, peeled & chopped
1 c. chopped nuts
¾ c. raisins (if desired)

Preheat oven to 350°. Flour or sugar a 9x13 pan, or line with foil. Mix oil and sugar, then add eggs. Mix dry ingredients and add to sugar mixture. Add apples, nuts, and raisins. Mix well and bake for 50-60 minutes. Cool and frost with the following:

2 c. brown sugar
½ c. evaporated milk
1 stick butter
¼ tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix first four ingredients in saucepan and stir over low heat until blended. Bring to boil over high heat. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and beat until cool and of spreading consistency. Add vanilla. You may wish to garnish with extra nuts. If it's very humid, you may need to add some powdered sugar to the frosting to get it to a spreadable consistency.

Pumpkin Planter

I only have fake pumpkins right now...we'll probably buy a real one next week. In the meantime, I clustered several together on my porch.
Then Monica's cute idea inspired me! (see Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Pumpkins from Grammie's Garden! )
I remembered this urn in my backyard and brought it out to the front porch to display this big pumpkin.

pumpkin planter Originally uploaded by thingspondered

Check out Meredith's cute pumpkin idea here, too.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

It Pains Me to Show This...

Aggie Pillow
Aggie Pillow Originally uploaded by thingspondered

But I need to celebrate! As a Baylor girl, I hate to wave the Aggies, but as an Aggie's daughter, I guess I can toe the family line just this once!

My mother-in-law ordered this pillow. It has been a challenge! It was my first time to do piecework, a quilt block, braided trim, and an overlapping back (like a pillow sham). You practiced seamstresses will recognize the faults, but for a novice like me, it's worth celebrating!

Here's a picture of the back:

Aggie Pillow back

Go Bears! (And Aggies, I guess!)

Pumpkin Cake Promise

Here's the other delish fall recipe I promised. A church member, Jennifer, brought this cake to a luncheon at our church office during October Clergy Appreciation Month a few years ago. It was so delicious that we were all begging for the recipe. It is a very rich cake - the kind you want to save for special occasions, because you'll want to eat the whole thing yourself! I would take pictures of it, but I can't allow myself to make it until Thanksgiving!

Jennifer's Pumpkin Layer Cake
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups pumpkin pie filling
  • 1 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (I use walnuts)

Mix dry ingredients, then add eggs, pumpkin, & oil. Mix well, then blend in nuts. Grease and flour two 9" cake pans. Divide batter between the two pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 - 2 Tbsp milk

Blend until smooth, add the milk until frosting reaches a "spreadable" consistency. Spread some on top of the bottom layer of cake. Add the top layer, then frost the cake competely. You may wish to garnish with toasted chopped nuts or mellowcreme pumpkins.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Awesome Autumn Pumpkin Bread

vintage pumpkin patch Originally uploaded by thingspondered

OK...I know I promised 2 recipes, and I promised that I'd post them over the weekend. Well, I was busy being creative and I forgot. You'll forgive me, won't you? Especially if I give you the recipe for The. Best. Pumpkin. Bread. Ever.? Well, here it is!

A former coworker shared this recipe with me. She used to bring it to our office in the fall.

Nancy's Pumpkin Bread

  • 3 c sugar
  • 1 c Crisco oil
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1-lb can pumpkin
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 1/2 c flour
  • 2/3 c water
  • 1 c raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease pans. Combine sugar & oil. Add beaten eggs & pumpkin. Sift dry ingredients and add to creamed mixture with water. Add raisins. Pour into greased pans & bake for about 1 hour, until done. Use either 2 5x9 loaf pans or 5 mini loaf pans.

Now, I am not a big fan of raisins, but they are perfect in this. You could also add toasted walnuts or pecans. Or leave them all out...if you want to be boring about it. Just make the bread. You'll thank me for it! And since it's so easy that you'll want to make extras, your neighbors will thank me for it, too!

Friday, October 5, 2007

FFF's 10/5/07

FFF's 10/5/07
Originally uploaded by thingspondered

So here are my Flickr Friday Fave's for this week. This collage has a sort of vintage feel to it.

I love, love, love that little embroidered birdie. You must check out LittleLovelies' other lovelies!

And I'm starting to feel the fall love, even though it's still quite balmy here in Texas. I wanna sit in the pumpkin patch and sing with those two cuties! Would you look at those GORGEOUS heirloom tomatoes? Yum. And the litle acorns in the bottom left corner are really sweet glass beads by Lori Flanders. I love them!

So many pretty finds on flickr this week, but my favorites are the puppy dog paw and the 2 hands on the top row.

Tune in this weekend for some seriously yummy autumn recipes!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Music to Blog by

Leigh Ann at Freckled Nest shared this tip to add music to your blog. She explains it far better than I could! I'm not even sure if I've done it correctly! (And while you're at Freckled Nest, drop Leigh Ann a little note and let her know you're praying for her...she just lost her beloved grandpa.) But hopefully you are enjoying some of the music that blesses me & puts a smile on my face! The player is at the bottom of my blog...check it out!