Friday, October 28, 2011

~Good Things for October~


Oh yes, the good things.  Well, I had to be very selective this month about what I was able to try as I've been playing Mother Nurse to my sick family.  When I had a few minutes here and there I sought after a few things for October that would simplify and/or beautify our life.  So, here they are.  A few ideas are from past October issues that I just couldn't resist trying.


Photo Gallery

Frozen Assets October 2011 issue

My kids love pancakes. I've always made them fresh and I guess I never really even thought of freezing them in large batches for later use.  So when this idea came up, I was all for it. 

Our pumpkin pancakes were a huge success.  Below is the recipe for you to try.  It really is quite similar to eating a slice of pumpkin pie.  


For a spiced breakfast treat, whisk 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour; 2 tablespoons sugar; 2 teaspoons baking powder; 1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon, ground ginger, and salt; 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg; and a pinch of ground cloves. In a separate bowl, stir together 1 cup milk, 6 tablespoons canned pumpkin puree, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and 1 egg; fold mixture into dry ingredients. Melt some butter in a skillet over medium heat; pour in 1/4 cup batter for each pancake. Cook pancakes about 3 minutes per side; serve with butter and syrup. Makes 8 to 10.


Everything is lined up and ready to be flattened like a pancake.
The pumpkin pie spices and the flour before mixing.
As I said, this really looks and tastes like a pumpkin pie!  At this stage, you would have fooled me if you said that you were making a pumpkin pie instead of pancakes.
I got out my large griddle and began flipping. 
This was just a few of what we had.  I think I made about 30 pancakes that were then frozen.  As a busy mom, I can't tell you enough how nice it is to pull a bag out of the freezer for breakfast that's still considered homemade!  Really cool idea. For freezing directions, please refer to October 2011 MSL Good Things article.


Pumpkin Flower Vase October 2006

For several years now, I've been making these pumpkin flower vases in the fall.  This is an older idea from Martha but it will never go out of style.  

The pumpkin is cut open at the top, seeded and gutted and then a flower vase is set inside.  Sarah and Gabriel helped me pick the marigolds and purple opal basil for the arrangement.  This is a fun and festive project.


Jack-o'-Lanterns Made Tall October 1995

 Since Halloween is still a few days away, I have held off on carving the faces.  However, the idea of making miniature topiary-lanterns was intriguing and so I have many different ones scattered about the property.  Below are just a few pictures of what we have.  These were all grown here at the property.   

Chipper Picker-Upper October 2011 issue

Rather than using the suggested kettle-cooked potato chips (although you could use them or any chip that you like) I decided to try kale chips instead.  Originally, I thought that I picked up a bag of unflavored chips but apparently I got the curry flavor.  That didn't leave me with much room to experiment with spices, so I added a touch of turmeric to the chips for both flavor and nutritional benefits.  I'm not a huge fan of the curry kale chips but I think I'll try the chips again, plain this time and then I'll spice them myself.

Going Batty October 2011 Issue

 Once the bat template was printed, I began cutting away in order to create some super-cute bats for the front door.  The kids were thrilled about having bats out front of our house.  I have yet to decorate fully for Halloween in this picture, but it conveys the idea nonetheless. 

Quick Costume October 2011 Issue

I have an old pair of glasses that was perfect for this quick costume idea.  For an understated Halloween look, one could simply add a few spiders to the sides of an old pair of glasses.  The article goes more in depth about making a headband with a bat or spider added to the top it, and how to fashion a quick bird-face costume all while using an old pair of glasses.

Squash Quesadilla October 2006

Wow!  This was great.  I have never had a squash quesadilla before.  A roasted butternut squash puree is spread onto two warmed tortillas and there you have it, a squash quesadilla. 

~Good Things for October~

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