Thanksgiving “Pumpkin Pie” Kids Craft

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Thanksgiving “Pumpkin Pie” Kids Craft


Here’s a simple craft “Nana” did with my children. Cut the pumpkin pie out of orange and yellow construction paper and glue to your card. Cut small orange tissue paper pieces and have the kids glue the tissue paper onto the pie. Top off your pumpkin pie with a dollop of white tissue paper “whipped cream.” My oldest cut out the paper and wrote “Happy Thanksgiving” and my youngest glued the tissue paper down so everyone helped make the craft.

Fall Snack Mix

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I made a couple batches of this for our school bake sale. It’s super easy, makes a ton and is addictive! I am including both sweet and a savory versions.
Savory Snack Mix: (Straight from Chex box)

3 Cups Corn Chex cereal 

3 Cups Rice Chex cereal

3 Cups Wheat Chex cereal

OR any combination you prefer. I used 4 Cups of Corn and 4 Cups of Rice Chex and added a Cup of Goldfish

Here’s where it gets fun – You can do any addition you like, it’s up to you!

1 Cup mixed nuts. (I used almonds in the savory and pecans in the sweet)

1 Cup bite sized pretzels 

1 Cup garlic bagel chips or Melba toasts

I mentioned above that I used one less cup of cereal and added 1 cup of goldfish crackers. The possibilities are endless.

1-2 Cups candy corn to the savory/1-2 Cups m&ms to the sweet mix (add to mix after it bakes and cools)

Combine dry ingredients (except candy) in a large bowl and add the savory or sweet coating below:

SAVORY: Use this coating if you are doing the savory mix

1-1.5 sticks butter, melted 

2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1.5 teaspoons seasoned salt

3/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

Whisk until combined



SWEET: use this coating if you are doing the sweet mix

1-1.5 sticks butter, melted

3/4 packed brown sugar

2 Tablespoons vanilla extract 

Whisk until combined 


Baking Instructions:

Preheat oven 250 degrees

Pour over the snack mix in a large bowl and mix together until evenly coating all the snack pieces.

Spread out on several cookie sheets. Bake for one hour. Take the treys out of the oven and mix with a spatula every 15 minutes while baking. Let cool, add candy and enjoy! 

Autumn Chili

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Autumn Chili


Nothing says Autumn more than a big pot of chili! This recipe was given to me by my dear friend and neighbor, Shannon. It’s super easy and pretty healthy for you too. 

1 lb ground turkey

1 lb ground turkey sausage 

1 lb 90/10 ground beef

5 carrots peeled and chopped

5 celery stalks, chopped

1 large onion, chopped 

Garlic to taste (I use about 3 cloves minced)

1 can each – drained and rinsed: black beans, small white beans, golden hominy (you can find the hominy in any grocery Goya section)

2 cans of diced tomatoes. You can use flavored ones like the Fire Roasted diced tomatoes by Hunt’s or Rotel if you want to add a kick)

1 large can crushed tomatoes

3 packets of McCormick chili seasoning, feel free to add more chili powder to taste. OR any homemade combination instead of premade packets. Example: 5-6 Tablespoons chili powder, 1-2 Tablespoons Ground cumin, 1 Tablespoon paprika, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, 1 teaspoon onion powder)
Sauté the garlic, onions, carrots and celery until tender. Remove from pan and set aside. Brown then drain the meat. Add the vegetables and meat to a large stock or soup pot. Add the spices, diced and crushed tomatoes, and beans. Bring to a slow boil then reduce to low. Cook for several hours. I find that the longer it simmers, the more tender the meat becomes. *Tip: brown the turkey, sausage and beef separately. It’s easier to break up the chunks when you brown the meat in batches, especially the sausage.


BLT Flatbread Pizzas

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Here’s a different take on the flatbread pizza. I’m a huge bacon fan so this really did it for me! 

Flatbread of your choice and flavor. I think I used Wegmans brand wheat for these 

2-3 slices of fresh mozzarella

Crispy bacon chunked into pieces

Lettuce and tomatoes diced 

Mayonnaise mixed with a tiny bit of water or lemon juice to thin it out (put in ziplock bag and clip the corner off to drizzle). 

Preheat oven 400 

Bake the breads on a cookie sheet for about 5 mins or until they crisp up a little on the bottom. Then, add your cheese and continue to bake 5-10 mins until cheese is melted and the flatbreads are crispy. You don’t want them too crispy so keep an eye on them after the 5 min mark. Let cool a little then add your bacon, lettuce, tomatoe and drizzle the top with the mayo mixture. Cut and enjoy! For a spicier smokey option add a tablespoon of adobo sauce from a can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce to the mayonnaise. 

In the photo I also did a Caprese Flatbread (recipe just like BLT but with diced tomatoes, basil leaves and a balsamic drizzle)

In photo – Left: BLT Flatbread and Right: Caprese Flatbread 
  

Disney Baked Potato Soup

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Hi again! It’s been a while but I’m back! With the weather starting to get cooler here I have been craving soups and stews so here is the first of many to come.

Straight from the Disney blog (blog)

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Loaded Baked Potato Soup
Serves 6
1 pound bacon, roughly chopped
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
3/4 cup diced celery
4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and diced
4 medium red potatoes, diced
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 cups heavy whipping cream
Optional garnishes: chopped chives, bacon bits, sour cream, shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese

In a 6- to 8-quart stockpot over medium heat, fry bacon until crisp.
Remove bacon and drain on paper towels, reserving half for garnish. In bacon fat, cook onions, carrots, and celery until the onions are translucent. Add potatoes and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Whisk in flour and stir constantly over low heat until the flour is cooked and the mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add chicken stock and half of the bacon. Season with salt and pepper.
Over medium-high heat, bring the soup to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes or until the potatoes are soft. Mash some of the potatoes for thicker, creamier texture. Add whipping cream and simmer for 5 minutes.
Adjust thickness by adding water or stock. Soup should have a creamy consistency.
Season to taste, and garnish with toppings.

Hot Onion Dip

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If you are looking for a super easy and delicious dip for Super Bowl or any winter party – this is it! You can pretty much serve this with anything but I tend to pair it with tortilla scoops and Bugles. Yes, I said Bugles! Fun for the fingers and taste buds. Carrot chips and celery would also go well with this dip.

1 medium sweet onion, finely chopped or 1 frozen bag of diced onions thawed and drained
2 packages cream cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup Hellman’s mayonnaise (you may as well go all out – this is not a low fat recipe)

Mix all ingredients together and put in a medium baking dish. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until brown and bubbly.

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Christmas Advent Calendar

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Christmas Advent Calendar

I wanted to add something different to our stair garland and saw a few ideas on Pinterst.com and Etsy.com. I went to Hobby Lobby and got these fantastic little gift bags in Chevron print for .49 a piece. I found the stamped numbers on Etsy. (I will include the link below.) I put little treats like smarties, little bags of goldfish crackers and cookies and a different Christmas activity we can do each day. So far, we’ve had a great time counting down to Santa! Today’s activity was to make a snowman craft.

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Advent Calendar day numbers are from Gnomenotes on Etsy.com.