Monday, October 21, 2013

Easy Pumpkin Decorating for Fall

I'm a little late to the game, considering fall has been here for a month already. But this past weekend, I finally gave our front porch a proper (albeit cheap & easy) seasonal makeover.

The star players in my display are the perennial fall favorites: pumpkins & mums. I bought three big pumpkins at Aldi for only $3 each, and four potted mums at Dillon's for $3 each. I prefer pumpkin painting over carving, but I had already done the black & white thing a couple years ago. This year I decided I wanted to go for the gold instead, so I bought a gold paint marker at Hobby Lobby for about $3.50. 

The first thing that came to mind was polka dots, which were simple enough to do freehand (and no one would notice that they weren't perfect circles). 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Fall Baking: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Today I realized it's been two months since I've posted anything, and this makes me sad. There just haven't been a whole lot of new developments with our house, despite the fact that our unfinished basement keeps taunting me every time I go downstairs to do laundry.

One thing I've found myself doing a lot of lately, however, is baking. Since it's officially fall (albeit unseasonably warm), I felt the need to use some of the canned pumpkin that's been patiently waiting in my pantry since last year. In search of a recipe containing ingredients I already had on hand, I found one on Pinterest for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies (via fifteenspatulas).

Since I followed the recipe word for word, you can just head to the original source for the instructions. Basically, all I'm here to say is that they're delicious! The combination of the spices with the gooey chocolatey goodness was perfect. I had one (or three) fresh out of the oven with a glass of milk, and I was a happy girl. They're also probably the softest cookies I have ever made, and they stayed soft even after a couple days. (Although I'd recommend popping them in the microwave for a few seconds to make them warm and melty again.)

One thing worth mentioning is that the original recipe states one batch makes one dozen cookies. Since I felt this was not nearly enough, I doubled the batch. Well, I found myself putting cookies in my oven all evening until I ended up with about 50 of these babies. They were big, too. Don't get me wrong, you can never have too many cookies. Just be forewarned.

So in order to avoid temptation and premature winter weight, I sent some with my husband to take to his office and also stuck some in the freezer to be enjoyed later. And since I only used one cup of pumpkin for these cookies, I still have quite a bit left to try out another recipe!

What's your favorite fall treat? Pumpkin recipes welcome!


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