Centerpieces and/or flower arrangements can be quite costly this time of year.  With Thanksgiving over and Christmas right around the corner it seemed like the perfect time to share the DIY rose and cranberry center pieces we make every Thanksgiving.  My mom got the idea when walking through the flower section in Whole Foods a few years ago.  My mother use to be in charge of making the arrangements, but then my sister took over.  Check out our pretty Thanksgiving table will all the yummy food!!

My sister was kind enough to let me document the process of the center piece creation this year.  So here we go!

What you need:

  • ~27 Yellow Roses
  • 6 bags of whole cranberries
  • 3 square vases
  • water

Place the cranberries in the square vases and add water (but not all the way to the top).

Remove the leaves from the rose stems and hold it up to the vase to determine how much stem to cut off.  Cut off the stem.

Push the rose into the vase between the cranberries.  Then rinse and repeat!!  Each vase will hold about 9 roses depending on the size of the vase.

After you’ve put in all the roses add additional cranberries and water as needed so they are almost to the very top of the vase.  In this end this is what you get.

As you can see we miss counted the yellow roses this year and had to through in a few red ones. I think it still looks pretty cute!

Happy Holidays and DIY!

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With Thanksgiving right around the corner I thought this would be the perfect time to share one of my favorite recipes for the holiday.  This recipe was originally posted back in March, but I felt it was throwback worthy.  By the way I’ve never been a pumpkin pie, bread, etc lover, but this pumpkin bread recipe was a serious game changer!!!  Below is the original post for throwback Thursday.  Enjoy! 

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My sister and I found this recipe for pumpkin bread one fall afternoon when trying to decide what to make that wasn’t chocolate chip cookies. :) Cookies are our go to hang out and watch a movie snack.  We ate nearly a whole loaf in one sitting (or really standing in the kitchen over the loaf of bread) it was THAT good!  It’s now a must have item in our family for Thanksgiving dinner.

Besides the canned pumpkin most items are staples and you probably already have the ingredients in your kitchen.

Ingredients:
2 cups canned pumpkin (or homemade pumpkin puree)
3 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
3 1/3 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon nutmeg
¾ teaspoon ground cloves

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a separate bowl sift the flour into a bowl.  On your last cup of flour add the baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and cloves and sift together.

Combine pumpkin, sugar, water, oil and eggs in a bowl and beat together until mixed well.

Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients slowly and beat until smooth.  Unlike chocolate chip batter this batter does NOT taste good. My sister and I made the mistake of trying the batter and thought the bread was going to be terrible.  But it’s is amazing once it is cooked, promise. So just hold off on any tasting. :)

Grease two 9 x 5 inch loaf pans with Pam or any nonstick spray. For easy clean up I recommend putting tin foil in the bottom of the pans first.  Pour the batter into the 2 loaf pans and try to evenly dividing the batter between the two.

Bake at 350 degrees for 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Get ready for your house/apartment to smells OH so YUMMY as the loafs cook! Remove from oven and allow loafs to cool before cutting.

Cut and server!  And watch out because you will without a doubt eat more than one slice. :)

Happy Cooking!!

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Recipe from the Kitchen of: BlogChef.net

It’s almost time to call our wedding stuff a wrap, but before I do I MUST, must, must share with you my DC bridal shower.  My girls planned a lingerie bridal shower for me which was fabulous and the details were perfection.  The Newlywed Game was was pretty hilarious.   Before the bridal shower they asked my husband questions about the me and our relationship.  Then I was asked the same questions.  For each question I got wrong I had to chew a piece of bubble gum.

In the picture on the left we are all laughing and my sister is passing me some gum since I got a question wrong.  In the picture on the right I am clearly hesitant about the next question that will be asked.

Although I did pretty well I was definitely drooling because I was chewing so much bubble gum by the end of the game.  Do you see the tissue/napkin in my hand … yes I was starting to drool LOL.  That bubble gum is JUICY I tell you!  To go with the lingerie theme my cousin (who is insanely talented in the cake baking/designing department) made this beautiful cake:

I believe it is two sheet pan cakes – one for the base and one for the body – and the boobs were cupcakes.  I’ve been dying for a friend to have a lingerie themed bridal shower or bachelorette.  I would love to attempt to make this cake.  I found one blog that gave step by step instructions on how to make the cake, but it has recently been removed … POUT!  I should have copied the direction as soon as I found the blog – lesson learned.

And because one DIY baked good just wouldn’t do my sister and my mom’s friend made a second.  They made butt/lingerie cookies for all bridal shower guests.  Not only were the cookies yummy, they were so cute!  But these cookies are hard to transport.  The cookies pictured below were among the survivors from the 1.5 hour flight to DC from Boston.  Luckily they planned ahead and made extra in the event that some of the cookies broke during their travel time.  It’s strongly recommended you don’t travel too much with these little guys or they might get ruined.

So what did they need to make these cookies you might ask …

  1. Sugar Cookie Recipe
  2. Heart shaped cookie cutter
  3. White Frosting mixed with different food coloring
  4. Frosting bags and tips

I Facebooked my mom’s friend and she was kind enough to give me some tips on how to make these cookies come out right.   “I used a rolled sugar cookie dough.  Rolled it out and cut them into heart shapes. as soon as they came out of the oven, I cut off the tip end of the cookie, forming the butt part.  It was a lot of trial and error.  I tried doing that before I cooked them, but it didn’t work. they would swell and spread and not even look like a ‘fat butt’. ”  Thanks for the tips Kathy!!  Then the frosting bags were filled with tips and frosting.  From there you just decorate each individual cookie.

The husband showed up at the end of the shower to have dessert with me and all my lovely ladies.  My dad was there as well … don’t worry we wouldn’t leave him out.  :)  As folks were picking out their cookies and saying goodbye I snapped this fun picture of my little sister and husband.  I LOVE the picture and THEM!!!

The shower was SO much fun!  Do you like the cake and butt cookies?  I know I do!!!

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