Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Foodie Friday -Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

I found a new twist on an old classic from Six Sisters' Stuff.  I love Snickerdoodles, so I just knew I had to give this pumpkin version a try.  I am really enjoying all of the PUMPKIN recipes out there at this time of year.  There's something warm and comforting about it once the leaves start to fall and the weather gets chillier (is that even a word??).

They were pretty easy -your basic Snickerdoodles, but add in some pumpkin puree.  But they had a slightly new and unique flavor that I couldn't get enough of.  I ended up eating way to many (as per usual) as one of my kids did NOT care for them at all.... picky, picky!

I whipped the dough up in no time with my KITCHEN AID (the love of my life... just kidding... well, sort of) using the cookie paddle.

Then wrapped it up to let it chill in the fridge for a while.

Next you form it into balls (1 to 2 inches) and roll in a sugar, cinnamon and ginger combo.

 Place them on a cookie sheet (ungreased!).  I flattened mine slightly with my fingers before baking or they puffed up too much instead of spreading out and flattening out a bit.  Bake at 400 F for 4-7 minutes (until just VERY lightly browned on edges).  Cool.  Then curl up with a few of these babies and a tall glass of milk -YUMMO!  And just for good measure... wrap up in a cozy blanket and take in a good chick flick!  Hope you all have a great weekend and a Happy Halloween next week! 

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles (Recipe from Six Sisters' Stuff)

1 stick (1/2 cup) margarine
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree
1 large egg
3 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon

*Follow directions above or head over to Six Sisters' Stuff*

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Inexpensive Halloween Decor

I can't believe it's already half way through October!  I've been pulling out the Halloween decorations -some old ones from last year, some hand me downs from my Mom (who is moving and getting rid of TONS of stuff), and some new additions on the cheap. 

I came across some super cute FREE printables via (where else?) Pinterest and added those to some cheap-o frames from the Dollar Store.

Keep Calm and Scary On printable found HERE.  One Hour Broom Parking printable found HERE.

And, of course, some cobwebs and spiders -courtesy of the Dollar Store as well. 

You can pick up a bag of these small pumpkins at the grocery store (or other various gourds and maize) for only a few dollars.  They make a great addition to Halloween decor on a budget!

The Thanksgiving printable (My turkey, 'tis of thee) can be found HERE.  And the Eat, Drink and Be Scary one is HERE.

My mom gave me this cute painted wood skeleton too.  Plus I have my Halloween Wreath I shared with you last year that I still love.

What are your cute and inexpensive decorations for Halloween?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Foodie Friday - Vanilla Pudding No-Bake Cookies

Do you remember these Chocolate No-Bake Cookies?  Well, one day when we were over at a friend's house for a play date, we made some Vanilla No-Bake Cookies.  While the kids played, we baked.  That's usually what seems to happen at Marsha's house.  We are either trying some new recipe she has found or trying out a craft or crochet pattern.  It's pretty fun, actually. 

But anyway... these no-bake cookies are one of my favorite easy cookies.  They use vanilla pudding powder instead of cocoa.  Yummy!  I was thinking maybe one of these days I'd try different flavors of pudding to see what they taste like (peanut butter, butterscotch, etc). 

Anyway, here's the recipe.  Enjoy!

Vanilla Pudding No-Bake Cookies:

2 c sugar
3/4 c butter or margarine
2/3 c milk
1 package instant vanilla pudding
4-5 cups quick oats
1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix sugar, butter and milk in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.  Boil for 2 minutes.  Turn off heat and add pudding, oats and vanilla.  Mix well and let stand 5 minutes.  Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper.  Cool. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Foodie Friday -Butternut Squash Soup

Happy Foodie Friday!  Sorry about the oopsie last week.  I had the Foodie Friday post all scheduled and then Blogger let me down.  It never posted!  Grr.  Don't know why the scheduling never works, I always have to post manually. 

Anyway, folks, as much as I hate to admit it, FALL is finally here.  They were predicting snow a few days ago... which we narrowly escaped! Whew!  I'm still in denial about the snow -mostly because I don't want to walk the kids to school in it on the days hubby has the van.  A second car is looking pretty good about now.  LOL.

But one thing I love about fall is the colorful leaves, Halloween decorations, and..... all the recipes with squash and pumpkins!  So many comfort foods -Warm, cozy soups, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin snickerdoodles, etc.  Yummy!

Today I'm sharing one of my favorite (EASY) soup recipes for Fall -Butternut Squash Soup!  It simple and fast -only takes about 30-40 minutes from start to finish!  And did I mention DELICIOUS?!  It has a great creamy texture and taste with a little kick to it. 

First you saute your chopped onions in some butter.  Then peel your squash (and remove seeds) and cut it in cubes.  Put that in a pot with the onions.  Add water, bouillon cubes, marjoram, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.  You bring it all to a boil and cook for 20 minutes (or until squash is tender).  Then cut up the cream cheese and dump it in.  Then blend it with an immersion blender.  Warm it up, but don't boil.  DONE!  Easy as pie! Speaking of pie, that also sounds really good right about now.  I could go for some Lemon Meringue.... sorry, random tangent alert....

The kids weren't too thrilled with it.  It had more of a kick than I had remembered.  I think (since I'm a baby) I would put in less pepper and cayenne pepper, but my husband LOVES it like this so maybe I'll just suck it up.  Either way, it's still pretty darn tasty.  Just so you know, I doubled the recipe.  That fed me and hubby for several meals, plus we made extra to share with an older couple from church who have health issues.  I made some homemade rolls to go with it -MM! MM!  And, of course, I used some of the roll dough to make Gooey Cinnamon Rolls!  Have a great weekend -and Happy Thanksgiving to all you Canadian readers! 

Butternut Squash Soup:  

6 Tbsp chopped onions
4 Tbsp butter
6 cups cubed butternut squash
3 cups water
4 bouillon cubes
1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 (4 oz) package cream cheese

Saute onions in butter, add rest of ingredients (except cream cheese) and bring to a boil.  Cook 20 minutes (or until squash is tender).  Add cream cheese.  Puree with an immersion blender (I did this right in the pot, but removed it from the heat first).  Reheat, but do not boil. 

For Homemade Rolls:

Use the dough recipe from my Cinnamon Rolls post.  Let it rise twice.  Then form into rolls and dip the tops in melted butter.  Place in a greased baking pan.  Cover and let rise again.  Cook at 400 F for 12-18 minutes.  Brush tops with melted butter. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Christmas lists

Does anyone else get the Sears Wishbook?  Ours came and the kids were so excited to go through it and look for things to put on their Christmas lists.  So we had a little fun with it.  I got us some BIG construction paper in different colors.  Blue for Carter, pink for Chloe, yellow for Hailey.  We went through the wishbook and cut out things they liked (and I wrote the page numbers beside each) and we glued/taped the pictures to the papers.  This way, even if Grandmas and Grandpas don't order from the Wishbook, they at least have an idea of the kinds of things each child likes/wants. 

The best part about this project?? I got my kids to stop asking (at every turn of the page) "Can I have this?" and start asking "Can I put this on my list?"  Now they are coming to understand that just because it's on their list, that doesn't mean they WILL get it, it is to help everyone know what they MIGHT like to have.  After awhile I didn't have to keep answering that question.  It was nice.