Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Wow Us Wednesday

Happy Halloween! Thanks so much for stopping by today to link and to read the creative and wonderful post that link up here. 


I made Carissa's Food Blog Curry Chicken Salad for my dinner, so good! Curry is a spice that is not use nearly as much as it should be; just ask Dr. Oz!
Craftiments has the cutest and easy Halloween decoration for you.
Get Your Life Organised gives a good way to menu plan and shop wisely, you need to read this.


Sole Searching has an easy and delicious recipe for Caramel Rolls. Bet you will make this one.
The Chicken Chick wrote a good tutorial on making your own Mozzarella Cheese, something I have always wanted to do; looks easy!
Table for Seven has a different sort of recipe that is easy and I think your whole family will love; BBQ Beef Biscuits.


I will be Pinning all of the Features!
 *I have new buttons if you want one! They are more in my right hand column.*

Button pic 9


If you have been featured Please choose the button you like best.
Wow Us Wednesday is a linky for:
  • All items, projects or ideas made by you.... crafts, art, photography, furniture re-dos, organizational feats, recipes, money saving tips, decorating ideas, party plans, you name it! Please don’t forget to link back with text link or button!
  • Please consider following me, and visit some other linkers and comment there too. 
  • Link up to three post and please do not re-link ones from the previous week. Link to the specific post, not your blog home page. No Etsy shops or giveaways, please!
I would love to feature projects I choose and share them the following week - by submitting a link to this party you are allowing authorization for your project to be featured with a photo from your post. Featured links will include a photo and a link back to the originating site.

**I have a Mason Jar link up in the Pantry there in my right column. Please add your post using Mason jars. **

Thank you so much for linking up with me. I'm sorry that time has not allowed me to stop by and comment on each link. Please know I appreciate you all!


I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pumpkin Pie Spice Syrup

*This post has been updated! See the very bottom for my explanations. This syrup is a keeper at my house. We use it in Ice Tea all summer, in coffee and over caramel ice cream as our favorites.*



When we were at Apple Annie's last weekend I noticed they had a variety of flavored syrups. One caught my eye, Pumpkin Spice Syrup; that would go perfect with my Pumpkin Pancakes from last week! Well it's Pumpkin everything right now and I love it, so being the D.I.Y.'er that I am I said "I can make that!" and began first thing Monday morning.  It's super easy, delicious, and a lot less expensive than store bought. There are a few different versions out there and I will show you mine. I call mine Pumpkin Pie Spice Syrup.



Put 2 cups of water in a saucepan, stir in 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, and 2 tablespoons of pureed pumpkin. Bring to a boil and let it sit for about 20 minutes until cool. Measure out 2 cups of sugar and set aside.



Put a coffee filter in a funnel over your jar and pour in the spiced cooled water. This will take a while so have some patience. You can change out the filter to speed things up if you like. It really doesn't need to be filtered but it is such a nice color after being filtered and mellows the sharpness of the spices a bit. *Because of the addition of pumpkin, be sure you refrigerate this syrup.*

After it is filtered, measure and add more water if needed to bring it to a 2 full cups. Return it to the saucepan and sprinkle it with a scant tablespoon of Sure Jell. ** (Sure Jell is a package pectin used in making jams and jellies, it is optional in this recipe) Mix well and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Stir in sugar all at once and return to a boil. When it is boiling hard, boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat, stir in 1 tsp of vanilla and let it cool. Don't leave out the vanilla, it really makes this syrup special. 

**If you don't want to use Sure Jell you don't need to, it just adds some thickness to the syrup. Boiling before sugar is added won't be necessary, and boil it about a minute after the sugar is added and don't stop stirring.



Wasn't that easy? Serve it over pancakes, use it instead of sugar or honey in hot cereals, stir it into plain yogurt, or perhaps over ice cream. It's so good! Maybe even in your coffee? Hmmm, I'll have to try that next. Wouldn't this make a super gift from your kitchen?



I thought that you might like a tag for your freshly made Pumpkin Pie Spice Syrup so I made you one. Use regular printer paper or a sturdy card stock. 





*Updated info* I made some changes to the original recipe.
I tried this recipe many different ways trying to come up with a syrup that had a nice thick consistency that didn't thin out when it was poured over hot pancakes. I had a lot of trials and errors and I have decided that the recipe will have to do as it is. I tried adding more sugar less sugar, pectin, jell powder, and I still came up with about the same thing. Except for that time when I added a lot of sugar and cooked it too long and it became crystallized!  
 Don't get me wrong! This is a delicious syrup, I just wanted it to go from the fridge to the hot pancakes and maintain it's consistency; I think that I need to quit and move on! Also, I understand that adding a tablespoon of vodka to the finished syrup will prolong it's refrigerated shelf life. I have not tried this tip. 

I link at these parties.

I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Monday, October 29, 2012

Arizona Travels

Business took my husband and I to the south east portion of AZ last weekend. then we took a little time off and enjoyed some touristy stuff while we were there. First stop, Tombstone, the home of the famous OK Corral shoot out. 

Now we have been to Tombstone before so I wasn't necessarily interested in seeing another actor portrayed shoot out though they are a lot of fun to watch, or the other typical Tombstone scenes. I was interested in having a good meal and we had it on good authority that we would be happy with a meal at the Longhorn Restaurant. We had a very delicious meal there and the service was very good. 





We asked our hostess at the Longhorn about seeing the sights and her recommendations since we had been there before and we had about an hour to walk around. She suggested the Court House, a $5 dollar entrance fee, as a must see. Then the St. Paul Episcopal Church, because the church was very well preserved and free to have look. 

Then we headed east towards Wilcox, AZ, home to apple and pecan orchards, and several vineyards. We wanted to go to Apple Annie's and pick apples, shop in the bakery, and eat one of their delicious mesquite grilled burgers. 



This was our first visit to Apple Annie's and it was crowded with families enjoying the beautiful weather. The second thing we noticed was that there is an aroma of baking apple pies that is to die for! We were disappointed though as all the apples had been picked from the orchards and we had made the trip especially for that reason many miles out of our way. Next time we will call ahead and check availability. 

The bakery was filled with wonderful farm fresh goodies and things you would not normally find in a grocery store such as pickled Jalapeno Eggs, Chipolte Spice Olives and Peach Amaretto Pecan Honey Butter. Of course they have a selection of pies, ciders, cheeses and butter too. We bought a jar of honey, but soon left since there were no apples to pick with out the grilled burger or nary an apple. 



If you are visiting in Arizona and want to take home something unique then think about a jar of Mesquite Blossom Honey, it has a wonderful desert flavor; or T shirts that are stained/dyed with the red dirt from around the Sedona redrock area. These two products are true Arizona and are readily found. 

We enjoyed our travels and it was fun to play tourist for a little while.

I link at these parties.

I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Grandparent's Say It Saturday




Welcome all to Grandparent's Say It Saturday!
Add your link here every Saturday at Grandparent's Say It Saturday. I have new blog buttons if you would like to have one.

I had a delightful visit with Lisa from Grandma's Briefs yesterday and met her handsome and extremely well behaved grandsons. It was a joy to meet her and be able to sit face to face with a lady who I have admired online for sometime. Sometimes you wonder about the writer behind the blog and try to decide if they are all that. I wasn't a bit disappointed, Lisa is as lovely and wonderful in person as she is on her blog! Lisa, I hope we can do it again one day :)

Button pic 9

Please link up to three post, not to your home page, and link that back to Family Home and Life. While you are here I hope you will visit the other linkers and come back to see who links up later. We all love comments! No Etsy shops or giveaways please. This link closes on Monday night. 
Be sure to visit Lisa at Grandma's Briefs to join her linky, GRAND Social, on Mondays. Thanks for linking up with me!



I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Friday, October 26, 2012

Family Harvest Day 2012





We had a wonderful time at our Family Harvest Day and had a smaller crowd than last year. We kicked off the day with family group photos on the straw bales set up for this purpose. We are short on boys in our family but the girls make up for it with silliness and rough housing! No get together is ever complete with out a wrestling match with Papa :) 



Then it was on to the fun and games! First we had a sack race that I completely forgot to photograph.  After a short break we had a three legged race with a child paired up with an adult. Even the adults had fun with this one and I think we had three or four races before moving on to the next activity. Then we made Scarecrow faces on paper plates all voting to forgo the full size Scarecrows we usually make.


All the kids had decorated a pumpkin to bring and they had a parade around the yard and through the house while carrying and displaying their pumpkins. (I only took the one small pic of that above). Look at these fancy pumpkins! The middle one is Cinderellas Coach, she is inside. The one on the end is Dr. Pumpkin that is happy to make house calls. Great job! 

After this we enjoyed a home cooked pot luck meal that celebrated the fall harvest time. I used the dishes and flatware I purchased last year in keeping with a 'out in the country, down on grandma's farm' feel I was attempting to achieve inside a big city limits :)


There was plenty for the kids to do with a huge yard to run in, a trampoline to jump on, and a large swing set complete with a slide and fort. The kids all the way down to the two year old had an archery lessons using the straw bales for their targets. The oldest girl there, is a very good shot. The day ended with a swim in the pool, yes it was warm enough here for that! 

What  a lovely, fun and relaxing time to visit and play; while celebrating the Harvest season and the blessings we all enjoy through out the year. And we didn't need a theme park or carnival; we accomplished it all the backyard with our family. We made some wonderful memories that day! 

If you would like to read about another grandmother who puts on a Holiday gathering for her family that is out of this world wonderful, then head over to What Happens At Grandma's.  I may be linking this post at these link parties




I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Apple Harvest Color Palette


Apple Harvest Color Palette

I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wow Us Wednesday

Welcome to Wow Us Wednesday! 
Below are my weekly features and as you can see there are more than four! It's so hard to pick just four, so I picked eight! By the way, I also pin all my features. I hope you all will too, just make sure you pin from the original source.


Our Cultivated Life has a delicious and healthy gluten free meal that's also pleasing to the eye.
Chocolate, Chocolate and More linked a Fried Apple Milkshake in a Mason jar! I love fried apples (my southern roots ;). Joan please link this one up in my Pantry linky on my sidebar there that's just for Mason jar post. :)
Healthy Branscoms has dinner ideas that will save you money by planning ahead; a habit near and dear to my heart.
Call Me PMc made a cute Holiday decoration re-purposing bottles. Re-purposing is the way to go when you can!



Alderberry Hill shows us her beautiful Fall Front Porch. 
Mixed Media Vintage gives a tutorial on printing on fabric, a good technique to know for crafters. 
Crafty Journal has a cute and easy Holiday project.
Sow and Dipity has amazing Christmas displays.

*Special NOTE: Art Club Blog has some advice for us bloggers and pinners, please stop by and read this one.


 *I have new buttons if you want one! They are in my right hand column.*


Button pic 9


If you have been featured Please choose the button you like best.
Wow Us Wednesday is a linky for:

  • All items, projects or ideas made by you.... crafts, art, photography, furniture re-dos, organizational feats, recipes, money saving tips, decorating ideas, party plans, you name it! Please don’t forget to link back with text link or button!
  • Please consider following me, and visit some other linkers and comment there too. 
  • Link up to three post and please do not re-link ones from the previous week. Link to the specific post, not your blog home page. No Etsy shops or giveaways, please!
I would love to feature projects I choose and share them the following week - by submitting a link to this party you are allowing authorization for your project to be featured with a photo from your post. Featured links will include a photo and a link back to the originating site.

**I have a Mason Jar link up in the Pantry there in my right column. Please add your post using Mason jars. **

Thank you so much for linking up with me. I'm sorry that time has not allowed me to stop by and comment on each link. Please know I appreciate you all!




I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pumpkin Pancakes



I love pumpkin anything! This time of year I go crazy with all the yummy pumpkin goodies all over the place and I can't have any due to eating gluten free. I'm not one to spend a lot of time in the kitchen when I am only cooking for myself so I decided to see if I could adapt a high protein *pancake recipe into a Pumpkin Pancake recipe. It is so good and satisfies my pumpkin cravings. I love this recipe because it is high protein, low carb, and easily adaptable for gluten free needs. Great for getting eggs into the kids too. I made two batches of these this weekend for two of my grand kids and I. They asked for them again at snack time ;)



 Here's your round up of ingredients. Using a blender makes these super easy to mix and clean up is quick.



Break eggs into blender first, add cream cheese, pumpkin, a dash of salt and spices. Optional ingredients are flour and baking powder. Use a gluten free flour if you like. Blend well, you may need to stop and use a spatula on the sides. 



Pour into a hot skillet, plate up and enjoy!







Pumpkin Pancakes

2 eggs
1 TB of cream cheese
1 TB of pumpkin
1/2 tsp of spices (I used pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon and nutmeg are nice)
dash of salt
1 TB of flour  *Optional (your choice of variety, gluten free or not)
1/4 tsp of baking powder. *Optional 


Place all ingredients in a blender and blend well; pour into a hot skillet. Brown and turn. This batter is thinner than traditional pancakes and each cake is thinner. This recipe will make about 6-8  three inch pancakes.

This recipe will double or triple very nicely if desired.

Check out my Pumpkin Pie Spice Syrup to go with these. 

* Flour and/or baking powder is optional in this recipe. It will work fine without either ingredient but may not be as fluffy or thick; perhaps more like a crepe. 

*I believe Susan Sommers came up with this recipe originally but I am not sure.

Linking at these awesome parties!

I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Monday, October 22, 2012

Make Your Own Scrap Book Paper

I have been having some fun playing around with PicMonkey and I have found a way to make my own scrap book papers to use online or perhaps print out. These are fun and easy to make once you know the steps. There are many ways to use these 'papers' online and I will be showing you some ideas in the future. 

**Update** PicMonkey has started charging for some of it's features though most features are still free. I will be checking out other free sites to see what they have to offer and let you know what I find. In the mean time, a good free site is Ribbet.

I made this tutorial as clear and as short as I could manage, however it is still long! Not hard! but long. It will be as easy as pie once you have done it a time or two!



I like to start making my scrap book paper with an inspiration photo (the one on the left). This helps me stay with in a color palette to keep everything coordinated beautifully. For this set of papers I am using a Zinnia photo from my blogger friend Debra over at The Homespun. She takes amazing photos! I asked for permission first. 



1.   Go to PicMonkey and click on 'Create a Collage' Then click on 'Upload Photos' in the upper left corner. Upload your inspiration picture. It will appear next to the 'Upload Photo' box. Drag and drop it into your collage anywhere. 




2.   Back at the left side click onto the little icon shaped like an artist palette. The rainbow color bar appears and you will see a little dropper just above the bar to the right. Click on the rainbow bar anywhere, then on the dropper picture, and your cursor becomes the dropper. Take it to your inspiration photo and choose a color from it. I am choosing the palest yellow I can find for mine. Left click when you have your color picked.

3.    Now drag your inspiration photo off the collage. When it is completely off the collage you will see that the entire background is the color you picked. This is your base for your scrapbook papers. Click save at the top and choose a name for your collection. Mine is named 'Debra's Zinnias' :) Close the window by clicking the X in the upper right hand corner.

4.    On the PicMonkey home screen choose 'Edit a Photo', then upload your blank colored scrap book paper your just made. In the left column click 'crop' and choose '8x10' in the drop down box. Click 'apply'. Your paper is now a standard 8x10. Save this to your pictures as it will become the base for your next papers. 



5.   Click 'Overlays' in the left column and at the top choose 'Your Own', and then upload your inspiration photo. Expand it, (move your cursor over the outline around the photo. An arrow pointing to each side will appear. Hold down you left mouse button and pull) to cover a good portion of your base paper. A color bar will be to the right. 

7.    Decide what you want to design for your scrapbook papers. I will do stripes today. Again click on 'Overlays' and choose 'Geometric', then choose the rectangle. 



A black rectangle will appear on your paper. Pull it so it goes from top to bottom (or side to side) on your base paper then pull the sides in to make a thin stripe the size you want. 




8.    There will be a color bar available; with the stripe still selected, click on the rainbow bar and then click on the small bar to the right to get your dropper. Take the dropper to you inspiration photo, and choose a color for your stripe. Click when you have the color you want. I chose to fade mine 25%; the fade adjuster is also on the color bar. Now select your inspiration photo and move it all the way to the right until it is hidden. It will still be there even though you don't see it when you need it later.





9.   Once your stripe is like you want it right click your mouse and choose 'Duplicate Overlay' as many times as you would like; you can always delete extra overlays. I choose to have five strips this color and size. I moved them around where I wanted them to be. Make sure these stripes cover top to bottom completely. Then I duplicated one, made it thinner, and duplicated it four more times. 




10.  Pull your hidden inspirational photo back onto you paper and choose another rectangle overlay. Repeat with sizing, color, and when it's the way you want it, move your inspirational photo out of the way. Duplicate until you have as many stripes as you want. I choose to make a couple of different sizes in green and faded this one 50%. I wanted one more color so I brought back my inspirational photo and choose a darker yellow and repeated until I had it just as I wanted it. I decided to move some of the stripes around and change the sizes of some of them too. 



Then to finish, I chose 'Merge' on the top bar to merge all the overlays together. Merging fuses your design; you can add more to it but you can't change what you already made. Then, I saved my stripes to my computer using my design name, Debra's Zinnias stripes.




Here is my finished paper in a collage! I love it and it coordinates perfectly with Debra's Zinnia photo. 

Linking at these parties.


I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Grandparent's Say It Saturday

Time has gotten away from me (again) and I am busy scrambling to get ready for our Family Harvest Day tomorrow. I'll be posting about that coming up. I hope you are getting out and enjoying fall activities with our families and loved ones. No I didn't get around to everyone's post from last week yet to read and comment but I will! Possibly on Sunday when I am resting up from today's activities!

I have a video here of my 3 year old Bella, who loves to sing and dance. She was watching TV (that's the blue light you see) and singing this over and over. I grabbed my camera hoping she would continue and she did. she forgets the last line of the song and improvises with a line from another song. It's not great, but of course this grandma thinks it's adorable!



Welcome all to Grandparent's Say It Saturday!
Add your link here every Saturday at Grandparent's Say It Saturday.


Please link up to three post, not to your home page, and link that back to Family Home and Life. While you are here I hope you will visit the other linkers and come back to see who links up later. We all love comments! No Etsy shops or giveaways please. This link closes on Monday night. 

Be sure to visit Lisa at Grandma's Briefs to join her linky, GRAND Social, on Mondays. Thanks for linking up with me!



I have had a lot of content theft lately. If you are reading this post anywhere else but at Family Home and Life then it was used without permission! Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

Friday, October 19, 2012

In a Moment

It is the time of day for restlessness. I move around on feet as quiet as a cat, hands thrust deep in pockets. My mind is still and quiet like the space around me.  But I must move….the need for some sort of action takes me from window to window to door and back again; watching, waiting….



I step outside, breathe and then go back in. Soon; soon darkness will fall and I will settle again, slip back into routine. My thoughts will turn as gears slowly; cogs meshing,  until all returns to normality and this moment is forgotten and past. But right now at this moment, as day is slipping away, ebbing, fading; the hint of darkness is around every corner and on every surface. I must mourn its going, grieve its passing; take my hands from my pockets and let it go.
The promises the day held as sunlight first broke the dawn; the plans and hopes I had for this day, things I wanted and needed to accomplish. The trials the victories, the work and the reward that was this day; take my hands from my pockets….let it go.
Then and only then, can I get on with this business that is my life, turn to what is ahead of me, what needs doing now. In a moment….only a moment….then I can move on.