Apple Picking

Picking fruit on the farm

Picking fruit on the farm

I love so many things about the fall and living out in the country. One of my very favorite things is picking apples. I remember, as a little girl, getting loaded up in to the car and going apple picking out at this farm that isn’t actually a farm anymore but it does still exist as a store and winery. Since I can’t go there for apple picking anymore I have found other places to take Sydney. This year we headed out to Macintosh Fruit Farm to pick some apples and enjoy a nice day on the farm.

apple picking

apple picking

Sydney was so excited about this. I knew she wouldn’t be too much help, but she did pick a few before she just picked up an apple and started eating it. She loved running through the apple trees while I filled our bags full of apples. After we picked our fair share of apples we headed towards the back of the orchard and found some Asian Pears so we filled up a nice bag of those as well.

pulling an empty wagon...riding in a full one

pulling an empty wagon…riding in a full one

It was nice to fill up a couple bags of fruit, straight off the tree for us to take home. After we filled up our wagon we headed back towards the farm for some shopping in the store, some play time, and some lunch.

play time on the farm

play time on the farm

Sydney is currently obsessed with farm animals so it was awesome that they had a couple houses and a donkey for us to check out. She played on the playground and even played in the little sand pit they had. She was so happy playing that she didn’t even want to go eat lunch even though I knew she needed to eat. I eventually was able to pull her away and we enjoyed a yummy lunch and then picked up a few things in the store before we headed out. Overall it was a really great day and I think we’ll actually try to go back before the season is over. Now… what to do with about a bushel of fruit? Lots of cooking and baking for sure.

 

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DIY: Fall Wreath

I know, it’s almost winter, but I have the cutest DIY fall wreath and I just can’t keep it to myself. I also have a super cute Christmas wreath that I’ll be sharing here in the next week or so to. I think I’ll be turning this in to a really cute spring wreath but we’ll just have to wait and see about that.

Supplies:

Supplies.

Supplies.

  • Yarn
  • Foam wreath
  • Felt
  • Ribbon
  • Hot glue

What to do:

Settle in. The first part takes a bit of time and patience.

Get to wrapping.

Get to wrapping.

Tie a knot and wrap your wreath.

Next up, making your flowers. Cut your felt pieces in to circles – depending on how big, or small, you want your flowers to be will determine the size of your circles. Once you have all your circles cut out you will cut those in to spiral strips.

Getting the flowers started.

Getting the flowers started.

Once you have cut your felt in to the spiral strips you will take one end and start wrapping it around itself (which sounds hard to explain but once you’re actually working these flowers that will make sense).

Ta-da! Flower.

Ta-da! Flower.

After you have your wreath all wrapped with the yarn and you have your flowers all made all you have to do is put it together. Determining how you want your flowers arranged will be up to you based on your own likes and dislikes but I don’t think there is really a wrong way to do it.

Arrange the flowers on your wreath.

Arrange the flowers on your wreath.

I added a ribbon to my wreath, but that was my preference. I think if you wanted to leave it with just the flowers it would look just as nice. I also tied a tiny ribbon at the top of the wreath to be able to hang it. It is small enough though that if you wanted to use one of those over the door wreath hangers it would fit.

Final product.

Final product.

What do you think? If you make (or have made) your own wreath let me know I’d love to see them!

Tasty Tuesday: White Chicken Chili.

Last weekend the coldness of fall rolled in and I was looking for an easy, warm dish to fill us up and keep us warm. The answer was simple. Chili. But… that’s my husbands dish. And when he makes chili… well my kitchen becomes a disaster zone and there’s a lot of clean up involved which is the complete opposite of easy that I was looking for so instead of raining that peril down on my myself I went with another favorite. White Chicken Chili. It’s delicious and much easier on my kitchen.

Ingredients

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 2 garlic cloves minced (or 2 tbsp prepared minced garlic)
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 can black beans (rinsed)
  • 1 can corn (undrained)
  • 1 can Rotel (undrained)
  • 1 package ranch dressing mix
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 8oz package light cream cheese

 

Directions

Directions

Directions

  • In a large skillet heat oil and cook onions until transparent.
  • Add minced garlic to skillet and cook for approximately 1 minute
  • Set crockpot to low and  chicken breasts
  • Add onions and garlic once finished cooking
  • Add black beans, corn, rotel, all spices, and ranch dressing
  • Stir
  • Add cream cheese on top (I cut it up in to small pieces but you don’t have to because it will eventually melt together)
  • Cover and cook for 6 – 8 hours
  • Shred chicken before serving using 2 forks

(as a frame of reference, I put mine in around 11 and it cooked on low until about 4:30 when I shredded the chicken and added it back to the crock pot for about an hour before we ate)

Shred chicken.

Shred chicken.

I think it can be a bit spicy but not too spicy that you can’t actually taste its flavor. Pregnancy really messed up my ability to eat spice though because no one else that eats it thinks it’s really that spicy. If you’re opposed to really spicy chili you could adjust your chili powder/cayenne pepper to your liking.

I hope you enjoy this dish. If you make it let me know how you liked it!

ENJOY!

ENJOY!

(also, as an aside, I found this recipe on the internet somewhere more than a year ago… I can’t remember where because I printed it out on paper and there aren’t any identifying notes as to where the recipe came from on that paper so if you’ve seen this recipe please do let me know where so I can give appropriate credit.)

Carving Pumpkins

Sydney has a mild obsession with pumpkins lately. She loves them. Mostly she loves her little pumpkins and has since we brought them home. I am actually concerned that one day she’s going to pick one up and when she drops it that it’s going to just splatter everywhere and she’s going to be a little upset about it… which would lead you to believe I’d be slightly concerned about carving a pumpkin with her. Nope. Not a chance. I was so looking forward to that because I thought she would be so excited about it. I’m not sure why I would have those very contradictory thoughts, but I do and there’s no logic there at all.

This weekend, just in time for Halloween, we set out to carve Sydney’s first pumpkin.

Sydney loves her pumpkin

Sydney loves her pumpkin

As I got everything ready she sat there with her pumpkin. She actually kissed it a few times but I wasn’t able to capture that.

Digging right in.

Digging right in.

After I finally got the top off the pumpkin we dug right in. She was so excited to help…

YAY helping!

YAY helping!

but she didn’t actually remove any of the pumpkin guts. It definitely looks like she did, but all she kept doing was sticking her little tool in the pumpkin, pulling it out, and saying YAY all very excited for herself.

It was adorable.

Oh look, more helping.

More helping!

She was VERY enthusiastic about this part of the pumpkin carving. She was not as enthusiastic about the actual carving part because she kept trying to help by grabbing at the knife so we had to divert her attention from the pumpkin so we didn’t have any accidents.

In case you were wondering, the attention diverting didn’t go all that wonderfully and we eventually were saved by the bed time fairy (for her) and the wine fairy (for mommy). She was pretty upset to be heading to bed because she really wanted to play with the pumpkin, but she was really excited to see it all done and light up the next night.

Ta-da!

Ta-da!

The actual carving of the pumpkin was a little more work than I had anticipated. I figured it would be a fairly quick and easy process.

Ha.

Hahahahaha.

Nope.

That shit was hard. And that wine was my reward for using the craptastic pumpkin carving kit from Walgreens (do yourself a favor and save the $5 and do not buy that kit). I ended using the kitchen knives that the Walgreens kit was supposed to be safer than because the stupid knives in the kit kept bending. They were not quite excellent quality, apparently.

Another reward for my hard work? Delicious roasted pumpkin seeds using this recipe. I actually considered carving our other pumpkin to make another batch. Almost. But not really. They were good though!

Either way though, she really did seem to enjoy herself. I think next year will be much more fun when she can have a little bit more say and actually do some of it on her own. And maybe, just maybe, actually gut the pumpkin.

Pumpkin 2014.

Pumpkin 2014.

Do you carve pumpkins? I’d love to see them & hear about your experiences!

Fall Favorites.

Since it feels like wonderful fall all of a sudden I thought I would capture a few of my favorite fall things .

I just snagged this sweater. And I cannot wait to wear it. It was also a super good deal which is why I didn’t even think twice about buying it. I’m all about being comfortable and this just looks so comfortable.

This pretty much sums up my style. A comfortable pair of jeans, some flats, and a long shirt/sweater is how I pretty much look from fall until spring. I love it.

As an aside, while I like this outfit – those shoes? ARE ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHTY DOLLARS.

No freaking thank you. I might love them a lot, but there is no way that I would even spend that much money on a single pair of shoes. I just discovered this Polyvore website and now I’m pretty sad that everything seems to be outrageously priced. Who is putting these outfits together? Certainly not any average person, right? RIGHT? Do people really spend this much on a SINGLE pair of shoes? No. I can’t believe that.

Moving on. Because that was an upsetting discovery.

I cannot stop trying to find wonderful fall outfits.

How about food? Can you guess?

ALL THINGS PUMPKIN.

That link? It’s for a copy cat recipe of a PSL. I haven’t tried it because I just found it when I googled images for that and I’m pretty excited about trying it myself.

I REALLY want to make this delightful dessert…

I am also ready for some hot soups on a cool day. Steven usually makes a BUNCH of chili each fall/winter/whenever I will let him and sometimes I like to mix things up with a chicken chili. Like this one. It’s delicious & easy and I highly recommend it.

Now I’m all ready to cozy up on the couch in some comfortable clothes, chow down on some chili, and finish off my night with a pumpkin dessert. Bring it on Fall I’m ready for you!

YAY Fall!

YAY Fall!

Enjoy your fall, guys. Winter, and snow, will be here before we know it.

That’s definitely one thing I hate about fall. That it brings on winter.