Sunday, September 30, 2012

Puff Paint on a Pumpkin

I saw this idea on Pinterest.....


My mom and I were talking to my dad and husband yesterday about how so many of our sentences begin with "I saw this on Pinterest" and how they just don't get it. Haha, so great.

So back to what I saw on Pinterest: puff paint on a pumpkin. I thought this idea was so cute and wanted to try it. The picture I pinned came from this blog. She used a fake pumpkin but I wanted to use a real one.

When we were at Green Bluff yesterday, we picked a pumpkin off the vine for this very craft purpose. Today while the applesauce was cooking in the crockpot, I had time to get my craft on.

Supplies: pumpkin (real or fake is up to you), pencil, black fabric paint, paper towel.

According to the blog's directions, I traced my swirls with pencil first so that I had a guideline for my paint dots. Let me say, this tip was really helpful and I would not have thought of doing it if I hadn't read the blog and then I just know I would have gotten frustrated at my random paint dots not looking like swirls.

It helped to work at a table so that I could rotate the pumpkin and paint all sides. Since I was working on a vertical surface, sometimes the paint would come out way too fast in a HUGE dot. I just used my finger or paper towel to wipe it away and re-do. Working on a pumpkin is very easy to clean up and start over.


Pleased with my craftiness!

Now this puff painted pumpkin wasn't just going to sit all alone. Oh no. After 2 1/2 months living in our house, it was finally time to do some decorating. I had bought some little pumpkins at Green Bluff as well so I had those to use. Then I went and grabbed some of the decor pieces from our wedding and put it all together to make a nice fall display for our kitchen window! I love how it turned out.

I made all the decor pieces for our wedding. As I made them many months ago, I knew I would keep them for home decorating opportunities just like this.

My husband was really excited about the window display too. He thought it looked so nice and was happy I had finally been able to decorate.

Happy Fall Decorating!


Positively Splendid

I Can Can

No, that wasn't a typo and no, I don't mean the dance. I mean canning food and now I can do it!

Ever since we planned on going to Green Bluff, I knew that I wanted to pick our own apples, make homemade crockpot applesauce and then can it. Sometimes my lofty homemaker plans come true, and this one did.

I had two different recipes pinned and kinda combined/spun off of both of them. Here are the two blogs I referred to: SkinnyTaste and Women Living Well. For my recipe, we used 5 varieties of apples: Jonathan, Jonagold, Gala, Honeycrisp, and MacIntosh. We used 2 crockpots, 26 apples, 3tsp of lemon juice for each crockpot, about 1/2 cup water in each, and I didn't measure how much cinnamon I sprinkled in each one. I did not use any sugar (hubby is anti-sweets haha). The applesauce is kind of tart so adding brown sugar might help with that but we both really like the tart flavor. I put the crockpots on high and it was done in 3 hours. I used an immersion blender to get the chunks out and then we canned 6 pints of our applesauce and had a bit leftover to eat now.

Here are the pictures of our applesauce adventure!

Attaching the apple peeler/corer/slicer to the counter.

Oh yah, tools in the kitchen! Hubby loved doing this!

Apple slinky


Peeling away

Adding lemon juice

Love having his help in the kitchen

Apples and cinnamon all ready to become applesauce

Adding a bit of water

Blending out the chunks

Nom nom nom
How many jars will we get?


Applesauce takes a bath

Woo hoo!

We did it! We made our own applesauce and canned it!
I am linked up at the following blogs:

Movie Review: Won't Back Down 

A few weeks ago, I posted the trailer to this movie and said I was going to go see it. My husband took me last night. Except for one other person, we were the only ones in the theater. I thought that was kind of sad since I think this kind of movie is important for people to see. My husband jokingly pointed out that the demographic of people who would want to see this movie (teachers) don't make enough money to be able to go to the theaters...haha...not so funny but kinda true.

Anyways, on to the movie review.
I'm not sure if it was our theater or the movie, but it was really hard to hear what they were saying. After about 20 minutes, we moved closer and could hear better then, but the actors did talk fast so it could have been a combination of the movie and us.
Once we could hear it better, we really enjoyed it. I even cried a couple times. The story is very moving. 

Synopsis: A caring mom fights hard for her struggling daughter. She goes against teachers, parents, and the school board to turn a failing school around to save not only her daughter but all the students.

I thought the acting was good and the story was believable. There is so much red tape and politics in the school system. It is messed up. Yes, I'm a teacher and I just said that. This movie had a happy ending, which sadly I'm not sure how realistic that is.

One part that I didn't like--while the mom was being with campaigning, writing a proposal and working hard to fight for this school turn-around, her daughter seemed out of the picture. I didn't see the mom working with her daughter to help her read and write. I do believe this mom did the right thing to speak up and fight for better education, but I would hope parents would also spend time educating their own children.

It certainly wasn't an action, romantic comedy, or happily ever after story. But if you like inspirational/educational movies, this would be one to see!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Green Bluff Fall Fun!

My parents had been to Green Bluff before and I heard all about it so this year I decided for sure we needed to go! I created this idea that I wanted to pick my own apples, make my own crockpot applesauce and then can it! It was ambitious, but I wanted to do it for several reasons: to celebrate fall, to try something new, to take pictures, to take a break from work.

So we put it on the calendar and my parents joined us for a great day! Following are some fotos of our festive, fall frolicking featuring fresh farm food! :)

Pumpkin Donut!

My husband doesn't like sweets, but he usually doesn't make this much of a face haha

Driving through orchards

My wonderful parents!

Picking our own pears!

Pumpkin Cannon. It shoots pumpkins 1500-1800 feet!

Racing through a straw maze.

We picked our own pumpkin right off the vine!

Picking raspberries

Apple tree. Each apple has the name of a different variety on it.

I think we make a great pear! :)

Even though the weather was more like summer than fall, we had a great day with my parents picking our own produce and perusing the pretty prairie places.