Friday, October 31, 2014

25 Cozy Ways to Enjoy Fall

 I was thinking of the cozy things we like to do in our family, that make Fall one of my favorite seasons and decided to make a list of them.  Some of them I've posted about recently, and some I will post about shortly, and some are thoughts, ideas or posts from other fall seasons or other peoples fun that I'd like to try.  Maybe they will inspire some cozy days for you.

2.    Go on a Fall Picnic and look at the beautiful colors of the leaves.

3.    Make a Fall Tea Cozy

4.    Make a Pumpkin cake.  My daughter Marie made the one I linked... I can't wait to give it a try
5.    Drink Hot Chocolate out under the stars: ( try this recipe, also from my daughter Marie's blog.)
6.    Go on a Nature Walk  and Forage for  Fall Decorations 

7.    Make a Fall Snack Mix

8.    Enjoy a Craft Day with the "Little ones" click here, here and here for 3 different craft ideas; the last two from my daughter Elizabeth's blog
9.    Make a Fall Wreath
10.  Light  Cinnamon, Apple and Pumpkin Pie Candles

11.  Crochet some Fall Hot Pads

12.  Make an Apple Pie
13.  Cut out Paper Leaves: 

16.  Make dinner in a Pumpkin.

18.  Make a Fall Gift for someone special. 

19.  Make a Fall Banner: 
20.  Make a Thankful Tree:  I saw this one on Pinterest, and want to do it this year for Thanksgiving.

22.  Make a Fall Centerpiece

23.  Snuggle up to the fire with blankies and favorite books
24.  Have a Fall Tea Party and make these wonderful scones from my daughter Elizabeth's blog 

25.  Make a pot of Chili; Green or Red

  What are some things you like to do for Fall?

Enjoy and be cozy everyone.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Hot Chicken Salad

I 've been making some meals in each of the places I have been in the last month.  I feel a little like I have been cooking across America. When I was in Phoenix, I made a few meals for my Dad.  One of them was this Hot Chicken Salad.  He loved it.  Its one of my favorites too.  Even though this is called Chicken Salad, it isn't really like Chicken Salad to me.  It is just a yummy chicken casserole that has many of the things that you put into a chicken salad, such as Chicken, Mayo, Celery and and onions.  Its a classic "down home" Casserole, that has been a round for quite a while. If you need some inspiration for dinner, this one might be just the thing.  It is a creamy chicken mixture topped with almonds and crackers crumbs for the perfect crunchy crust.

Hot Chicken Salad
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons lemon juice (or the juice of 1 small lemon)
3 cups cubed cooked chicken breast
1/3 cup onion, finely chopped
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup cracker crumbs, potato chips or corn flakes, crushed (I use whole wheat cracker crumbs).
3 T butter, melted

1.   In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, and until smooth.
2.   Stir in the chicken, onion, celery and salt.
3.   Spoon into a greased 11 x 7  or 9 x 9  baking dish. 
4.   Sprinkle with Almonds
5.   Top with cheese
6.   Combine cracker crumbs and butter;  Sprinkle over casserole.
7.   Bake, covered, 30-35 minutes or until casserole is bubbly and cracker crumbs are lightly browned.

 Makes 6 servings.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

A Day in the Life….

I have been soaking in the joy of 3 more grandkids last week and this. I 've been in North Carolina with my son Nathan and his precious Family.  What a wonderful time of catch up we are all having.

It has been pretty non-stop here, so if I haven't checked in with many of you, its because I can't seem to multi-task any more; at least not very well.  My words all come out misspelled and a little funny; but I will catch up with you all little by little.  I thought I would share a few pictures of some of our "doings".  Mostly just the cuteness of the grandkids… you know I can't resist.

We have had some lovely walks and drives, a campfire with hotdogs and "S'mores", a Farmers market, and plenty of running around to keep us non stop busy.  Still have a few more "special days" planned, and perhaps I will share them with you if I can get any good pictures.  I didn't bring my camera this time around… the ones I'm sharing are from my phone, via e-mail, so they are a little pixilated.

Here's the Number One grandson.  Hard to believe Elon is eight years old already.

and here's Asher; he's number two…..

And here is number 3 in Nathan's family (number 6 out of all of our grandchildren).
Little Elyse is getting bigger… and as ever is just scrumptious.  I can't get over her cuteness.

Nathan's tomatoes are still growing strong in late October.   He has a growing system where he uses aquaponics.  He grows Tilapia, and circulates the fish water through his vegetables.  I am loving learning all about it.  One of these days, when I have my camera with, I would love to take step by step pictures with him, and show you the whole thing…. another project for another time.

Love this one of Asher helping Elyse ride the scooter.

Campfires, hotdog roasts, s'mores… 

Elyse, on the run, after Church on Sunday.

See what I mean… "The Cuteness".

Have a great Week end everyone; I'll be back in a few days with a recipe.

Sunday, October 19, 2014


Clayton has just been found and is Safe.  Thank You Jesus!!! Thank you everyone for praying.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Urgent Prayer Request

Dear Friends,
Please pray for my friends whose son and grandson is missing in the mountains.  He has been missing for 15 hours now.  There are search parties looking even now, but please pray.  He is 13 years old.  He is the grandson of my dear friend Roxy and the son of my dear friend Amy.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Dessert in a Pumpkin

I have a recipe in my recipe box that I cut out from a Sunset Magazine over 30 years ago.  It is a recipe for Rice pudding in a Pumpkin Shell. I thought it looked so good, and was always going to make it, but never seemed to get around to it. I decided this Fall I would attempt "something like it".    It would go along with last year's "Dinner in a Pumpkin".  I wanted a pumpkin pie type of filling for this one, so I put together a recipe inspired by a few that I had seen on Pinterest titled "Impossible Pumpkin Pie" or  "Magic Pumpkin Cake" recipes.  These recipes are like a Pumpkin Pie, but add flour to the filling which creates a cross between pie, cake or muffin texture.  I loved the little pumpkins as "ramekins", and discovered that they worked wonderfully.   The larger "Sugar" Pumpkins were  also delicious, the filling came out with a more pudding like texture.  Either way… this is something fun to do for dessert during the fall… and a great way to use those pumpkins.

Cut off the top of the pumpkin

Scrape out the seeds and stringy pulp.

I like to put the pumpkin seeds to soak in some salty water for roasting later.

Pour Butter and Sucanat over the bottom and spread evenly over the bottom of the inside of the 

Mix together filling ingredients.

Pour the filling into the pumpkin. Fill it almost to the top.

Measure topping ingredients into a bowl.

Mix together until crumbly.

Pour topping ingredients  on top of pumpkin filling.

Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.  Remove foil and bake another 20 minutes.  

Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Dessert in a Pumpkin

1/2 stick butter melted
1/2 cup Sucanat
1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
3/4 cup Sucanat or Coconut Sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup half and half
2/3 cup flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon clove
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

For the topping:
1 cups flour
1 cup Sucanat or Coconut Sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup cold butter, diced

1.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.     Take the tops off of the pumpkins and clean out the seeds and stringy pumpkin strands.
        Use a spoon to scrape the inside of the pumpkin clean.
3.     Drizzle butter inside the pumpkin, and spread evenly around the inside of the pumpkin.
4.     Sprinkle with Sucanat or Coconut Sugar.  Set aside.
5.     Mix together pumpkin, 3/4 cup Sucanat, eggs, vanilla extract, spices and milk. Mix together
        the flour, salt,
        baking powder and baking soda to the mixture.
6.     Place pumpkins onto a greased cookie sheet and fill with filling.  You can fill it up to the top.
7.     In a separate bowl, make a crumble topping by combining the topping ingredients together.
8.     Mix with a mixer until mixture resembles course crumbs.
9.     Generously pour crumble topping on top of pumpkins. Cover with foil.
10.   Place cookie sheet into oven.  Once solidly on a baking rack, pour 2 cups of water into baking  
11.   Bake for 40 minutes covered. Uncover and bake another 20
        minutes.  The Large pie pumpkins      
        require another 30 minutes (covered baking time).
12.   Cool as you would pumpkin pie and Serve.

Makes 8 mini Pumpkins, or 2-3 small pie pumpkins