Pumpkin Mesh Wreath

First, YAY!! This is my first “official” post on my new site! And WOW…what a pain in the rumpkus (is that a word?) the Blogger to WordPress move has been. THANK GOODNESS for Dynamics of Design. Without them, this site would still be sitting here blank I’m afraid. I will spare you all of the details, but it has definitely been one thing after another. Oh, and did I mention that I happened to have surgery AND my computer crashed during all of this as well? Ha! Fun times. Not! Moving on…

Pumpkin Wreath

This Pumpkin Mesh Wreath is festive, (I think it’s cute), cheap, and super easy to make. I don’t do a lot of Fall decorating, but I usually have a Fall wreath, a couple of garden flags, mums, and pumpkins. Our weather has been so wacky, that my mums are already mostly dead (or lack of water could have caused that. Go figure.)

Since I’m a visual person, I’m going to show each step in pictures. I will explain the best I can, but it’s really easy.

Wreath Supplies

Step One: Supplies

  • One wire wreath (I bought mine at Walmart, I think it was $5)
  • Pipe cleaners (ideally in orange, but I already had these from another wreath. $1 from Dollar Tree)
  • long roll of mesh ribbon (This was from Walmart or Sam’s Club, also around $5)
  • ribbon for the top of pumpkin (I used green burlap – $1 from Dollar Tree. See Step 3)

How to begin

Step Two: Making Body of Wreath

  • Place six pipe cleaners at the top and six at the bottom of  the wreath form. If you look at it as a clock, place the first one at 10:00, the last one at 2:00, and put the other four randomly in between for the top. (You can adjust to exactly where you need them as you go along.) The bottom ones can go between 4 and 8:00.
  • Start at the top “10:00” pipe cleaner, attaching the end of your wire mesh. Pull the mesh down and attach at 8:00 as pictured above (is this clock reference getting old, or is it just me?!).

Body of wreath

  • Repeat the up and down pattern with the mesh until the wire wreath form is covered. If you want it fuller/thicker, just add more pipe cleaners to hold in place. Once the wire is covered, you can adjust/fluff wreath to get the look you want.

Final step

Step 3: ‘Stem’ of Pumpkin

  • I used the above pictured burlap ribbon. However, I think a wired ribbon would look better, and give the “stem” some shape and hold. The burlap kind of just lays there.
  • There is no technique for the stem…I just attached it to the top in and up and down pattern, using the ends of the pipe cleaners that were already in place holding the mesh.

And that’s it! I spent $12 and technically I already had the wreath form and pipe cleaners. You can remove the mesh and add something different for Christmas, or you can save the pumpkin to use next year. It’s nothing fancy, and I may tweak it here or there, but overall, I think it’s cute.

I never thought I would like the mesh wreaths, but somehow they grew on me. How about you? What kind of decorations do you have for Fall? Any Blogger to WordPress nightmares you’d like to share?!

This post has been featured at:

VMG206

 

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseSkip to my LouI Should Be Mopping the FloorHuckleberry Love (Tuesday) Naptime Creations, Memories By the MileVMG206The Cookie Puzzle (Wednesday) The Newlyweds PilgrimageFluster BusterGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My Time (Thursday) Joyful HomemakingLamberts Lately (Friday) Project InspireJust Us FourDiana RamblesClose to HomeVintage ChicThe Diary of a Real Housewife 

Pumpkin Pie Millet Porridge

I have been trying out some different grains over the past year or so, and most recently it has been millet. I wasn’t sure what to do with it, so I went to my favorite source, Pinterest! I’ve tried serving it as a side, like I would rice or cous cous, but I wanted to have other options too. Since I’ve made pumpkin pie oats, and pumpkin pie quinoa, I figured a pumpkin pie millet was in order!

It was hearty, filling and very tasty! Oats will always be my favorite “porridge” I think, (because I don’t consider grits to be porridge. Grits will always be number one with this Southern gal!) but this was a nice change that only has 2 grams of fat (zero saturated), 9 grams of fiber, and 7 grams of protein per serving! Not to mention other vitamins and minerals. So…that’s a pretty healthy bowl of porridge in my opinion. (And it’s gluten free!)

Pumpkin Pie Millet Porridge

1/2 cup millet, uncooked
1 1/3 cups water
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
1 1/2-2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
maple syrup, honey or brown sugar – to taste
pecans, walnuts, etc for topping (optional)

milk or cream for topping (optional)

  • Combine millet and water in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 10 minutes. 
  • Add pumpkin puree and pie spice. Stir and let simmer another 10-15 minutes until millet is tender, stirring occasionally and adding extra water if needed. (The amount of water will depend on personal preference as far as consistency goes. I let my water absorb, and then added milk once done.)
  • Add a little sweetener if desired, and serve with a drizzle of syrup or honey and nuts, if using. Toasting the pecans really gives them a wonderful flavor, but I skipped this step because I was hungry! You can also top with milk or cream – however you like your porridge!
  • This recipe makes 2 servings. Add water or milk when reheating to reach desired consistency. This reheats well and does not get as “mushy” as reheating oatmeal.

Recipe Source: Naturally Ella

Anyone else trying new foods? I am trying to decrease the amount of gluten in my diet, just to see if it makes a difference in how I feel. Some days I do really well, and other days….not so much!

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseSkip to my LouI Should Be Mopping the FloorHuckleberry Love (Tuesday) Mandy’s Recipe BoxSowdering About in SeattleNaptime Creations, Memories By the MileVMG206Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) The Newlyweds PilgrimageFluster BusterGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeTessa the Domestic Diva (Thursday) Joyful HomemakingMiz Helen’s Country CottageLamberts Lately (Friday) Project InspireJust Us FourDiana RamblesThe Better Baker,Close to HomeWalking on SunshineVintage ChicDaily Dish

Pumpkin French Toast Casserole

I have two words to convince you to make this…streusel topping. Is not everything better with a streusel topping? Well, almost everything.

This is probably the best French toast casserole I have made so far…and I’ve made several. It is very similar in taste to my Easy Baked French Toast with Streusel Topping but this has the added benefit of pumpkin…which is a vegetable, making this healthy *wink wink*. I really liked the texture as it wasn’t ‘soggy’ like bread pudding and as I said, the streusel topping just takes it over the top. It makes a nice, sweet, cinnamon-y crunchy topping.

Pumpkin French Toast Casserole

 6 1/2 cups stale French bread, cut into approx. 1″ cubes
5 eggs
1/4 cup honey (or maple syrup)
1 cup milk
1 cup canned pumpkin puree (or fresh, but not canned pumpkin pie filling)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
Streusel Topping:

1/4 cup butter, cold
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Grease or spray an 8×8 inch baking pan.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, honey, milk, pumpkin, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice.
  • Add bread cubes and gently stir to combine.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, flour, and pumpkin pie spice. Cut in butter until crumbly.
  • Add bread mixture into prepared pan, gently pressing down with a spatula.
  • Sprinkle streusel over the top.
  • Bake for approx. 45 minutes or until topping is nice and brown and the center is puffed, indicating the middle is center is cooked. The casserole will deflate a little as it cools.
  • Let casserole sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
Can be served plain or with your favorite syrup (or this quick and easy version if you suddenly realize you’re all out!)
Recipe adapted from A Kitchen Addiction
The original recipe (link above) said to use softened butter for the streusel. I do not recommend that because the streusel becomes a gooey, sticky blob of cinnamon butter. Ask me how I know this. I had  to carefully try to spread it over the bread cubes. The end result was delicious, but I think you will get a better crumbly, traditional streusel by cutting in cold butter.
Also, if you need an egg-free version, both of these are pretty good! Egg-Free French Toast Casserole and Egg Free Baked Pumpkin French Toast.
This recipe was featured at:
Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
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Thank you ladies!

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseSkip to my LouI Should Be Mopping the FloorHuckleberry Love (Tuesday) Tickle My Tastebuds TuesdaySowdering About in SeattleNaptime CreationsMandy’s Recipe Box, Memories By the Mile,Inside BruCrew LifeVMG206Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) The Newlyweds PilgrimageFluster BusterMostly Homemade MomAdorned from Above,Ginger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeTessa the Domestic Diva (Thursday) Project Inspire,Joyful HomemakingMiz Helen’s Country CottageLamberts Lately (Friday) Foodtastic FridaysJust Us FourBacon Time with the Hungry Hungry HypoDiana RamblesThe Better BakerThe Best Blog Recipes,Close to Home30 Handmade DaysA Peek Into My Paradise,The Jenny Evolution Walking on SunshineVintage ChicLady Behind the Curtain (Saturday) Six Sisters’ StuffMade from Pinterest

Pumpkin…everything!

I’m sure you’ve gotten the memo…it’s Fall y’all. I’m not sure where the summer went, but it’s G-O-N-E. I actually had to break out a jacket yesterday for my Little Man’s soccer game. As far as I am concerned, the only good things about cooler temps is the “let’s make everything pumpkin” craze. And it’s in full force…and I’m ridin’ that train baby! Pumpkin Pie yogurt – YES, Pumpkin Spice Oreos – haven’t found them yet, but looking! Pumpkin Lattes – YES! And the list goes on (and on. and on…). So, I decided we needed a pumpkin round up! Here goes…pumpkin everything!

Pumpkin Spice Cake

 Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal  or
Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal  or
Pumpkin Pie Quinoa or
Overnight Pumpkin Oats – What can I say? I have a thing for pumpkin and grains!

Honey Pumpkin Muffins or
Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin Spiced Scones

Baked Pumpkin French Toast {egg free}

Vegan Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

Pumpkin Spiced Gingerbread Granola

Brown Sugar Pumpkin Cheesecake

Easy Pumpkin Beer Bread or
Pumpkin Cornbread or
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread or
Pumpkin Yeast Bread or
Spiced Pumpkin Biscuits

Pumpkin Spice Chex Mix

And a little story on how to NOT roast pumpkin seeds.

Are you a pumpkin fan?

Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal

I love oatmeal. L-O-V-E it. And adding pumpkin to oatmeal makes it even, you know….mo’betta 🙂 Especially when you add all the delicious Fall spices that makes everything with pumpkin taste like pumpkin pie. I already have Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal, Overnight Pumpkin Oats, and Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats  on the blog, so it was only natural that I try a baked version. Baked oatmeal has been my least favorite way to eat my oats because it’s always seemed a little dry. However, that all changed with this recipe.

a little maple syrup on top didn’t hurt either

Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal

  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 1-1/2 cups milk (I used unsweetened almond-coconut milk)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup xylitol (can use sugar substitute or more brown sugar)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (I mix my own)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill 7-grain Cereal (or more oats)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • turbinado sugar for sprinkling on top (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 °F.
  2. Spray an 8 x 8 baking dish with non stick cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients from pumpkin through salt, until blended.
  4. Stir in oats, pecans and raisins. 
  5. Pour the oatmeal/pumpkin mixture into prepared baking dish and spread evenly. 
  6. Sprinkle the top with turbinado sugar if desired.
  7. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes, then remove foil and bake for additional 10-15 minutes or until center is set.
Recipe adapted from RelativeTaste

This was great to prepare on Saturday and have the leftovers for the rest of the week. I cut mine into 9 squares, for about 5 Weight Watchers points per square. Some days I ate it with a little sugar free syrup over the top, and other days I added more milk and turned it into a creamy bowl of pumpkin oatmeal goodness.

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseHomemaker on a DimeSkip to my LouMaking the World CuterI Should Be Mopping the FloorThis Gal CooksWatch Out, Martha!Huckleberry LoveThe Newlyweds PilgrimageSowdering About in SeattleCraft and Repeat (Tuesday) Naptime CreationsMandy’s Recipe BoxLove in the Kitchen, Memories By the Mile,Inside BruCrew LifeSarah Lynn’s SweetsBeBetsy and VMG206Twinkling Trees , Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) Fluster BusterMostly Homemade MomAdorned from AboveLady Behind the CurtainGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeThe Real Thing with The Coake FamilyTessa the Domestic Diva  (Thursday) Project Inspire ,Joyful HomemakingDesigned DecorMiz Helen’s Country CottageThe Mandatory Mooch,   Lamberts Lately (Friday) Not Your Ordinary Recipes,  Simple Living and EatingJust Us FourBacon Time with the Hungry Hungry HypoDiana RamblesThe Better Baker,CraftionaryOne Artsy MamaThe Best Blog RecipesOne Creative Mommy, Michelle’s Tasty CreationsClose to Home30 Handmade DaysA Peek Into My Paradise,The Jenny Evolution Walking on SunshineVintage Chic (Saturday)  Or So She Says…Six Sisters’ StuffIt’s OverflowingMade from Pinterest

Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake {starts with a mix!}

Yes, I went there. I’m all about some “semi” homemade, and a doctored up cake mix can be pretty darn delicious if I do say so myself. Not to toot my own horn or anything, but….toot! toot! This cake was fabulous!

It was moist, not too dense; had a fluffy soft crumb, but wasn’t crumbly; and it was full of warm spiciness without being overbearing. This cake screams FALL! And the best part…it’s a cinch to make! (It also freezes well, which I had to do for portion control purposes!)
You may remember a couple of weeks back I discovered Pumpkin Spice Pudding Mix and jumped on it like a dog in heee……uhm…nevermind – scratch that analogy. Let’s just say I promptly bought a few boxes and immediately made the Pumpkin Spice Eclair Cake (another easy to make, yet crowd pleasing recipe. And it’s no bake!)
Since I’ve been doctoring up devil’s food cake mix with pudding mix for years, I decided to adapt my Chocolate Layer Cake into a Spice Cake….a Pumpkin Spice Cake! It was a winner.

Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake

  • 1 box Spice Cake Mix (I don’t remember what brand I used)
  • 1 (4 oz) box Pumpkin Spice Pudding Mix *This is a seasonal item, so grab some while you can!
  • 1 cup canned or homemade pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (I used fat free. Normally I use plain yogurt, but I was out.)
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease and flour a bundt pan or use Baker’s Spray (cooking spray with flour mixed in).
  3. In a large bowl, mix the cake mix, pudding mix, pumpkin, sour cream, oil, eggs, vanilla and spices. Mix on medium speed for a couple of minutes until well combined.
  4. Pour into prepared bundt pan.
  5. Bake for time suggested on cake mix box for bundt pan cakes or until the top springs back when lightly pressed.
  6. Allow cake to cool for approx. 10 minutes in pan, then flip cake onto wire rack to finish cooling.
  7. Glaze, frost or sprinkle with powdered sugar once cooled. I used a simple glaze of 1 cup powdered sugar, a tablespoon (approx) of Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer, a tsp of vanilla, and a 1/2 tsp cinnamon. The glaze was a little too sweet for me, so next time I think I will just dust it with a little powdered sugar and cinnamon, just to make it look pretty. This is one of those cakes that can really stand alone as far as flavor, but I wouldn’t knock a little cream cheese frosting either 😉

This recipe is a keeper! Also, my dad claims to not like pumpkin but he really liked this cake. To me, it had the flavor of pumpkin pie, but in cake form….which is awesome for me since I like the flavor of pumpkin pie but not the texture.

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseHomemaker on a DimeSkip to my LouMaking the World CuterI Should Be Mopping the FloorThis Gal CooksWatch Out, Martha!Huckleberry LoveThe Newlyweds PilgrimageSowdering About in SeattleCraft and Repeat (Tuesday) Naptime CreationsMandy’s Recipe BoxLove in the Kitchen, Memories By the Mile,Inside BruCrew LifeSarah Lynn’s SweetsBeBetsy and VMG206Twinkling Trees , Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) Fluster BusterMostly Homemade MomAdorned from AboveLady Behind the CurtainGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeThe Real Thing with The Coake FamilyTessa the Domestic Diva  (Thursday) Project Inspire ,Joyful HomemakingDesigned DecorMiz Helen’s Country CottageThe Mandatory Mooch,   Lamberts Lately (Friday) Not Your Ordinary Recipes,  Simple Living and EatingJust Us FourBacon Time with the Hungry Hungry HypoDiana RamblesThe Better Baker,CraftionaryOne Artsy MamaThe Best Blog RecipesOne Creative Mommy, Michelle’s Tasty CreationsClose to Home30 Handmade DaysA Peek Into My Paradise,The Jenny Evolution Walking on SunshineVintage Chic (Saturday)  Or So She Says…Six Sisters’ StuffIt’s OverflowingMade from Pinterest

Pumpkin Spice Eclair Cake

Eclair cake is one of my favorite desserts, but have you seen this?! Pumpkin Spice pudding!

It will turn your favorite classic no-bake Eclair Cake into a seasonal treat! Think creamy, cinnamon-y (yes, that’s a word!), with a hint of pumpkin…all topped with a homemade chocolate glaze (or you can go canned, no judgement here.)
Pumpkin Eclair Cake Collage
It’s delish. And EASY! I’ve posted this recipe over at Eat at Home today, head over and check it out! And I wouldn’t mind it if you left me a little comment love. Here or there. Just sayin’. And I would love for you to give it a pin, or share somewhere. You know, if ya wanted to and all 🙂
I’ve also got a low sugar, low carb version of the traditional Eclair Cake if interested. And did you see the Chinet Bakeware giveaway going on right now?

Pumpkin Pie Quinoa

I’m sorry, didn’t that Groundhog say something about SPRING coming soon?  I think maybe he was wrong. It’s cold. And raining. And I’ve been without heat for ELEVEN days.  Yes, 11 – I’m kinda pissed about it.  I’m fearful the heat repair man will not even come back since I pretty much went off at the without-heat-for-a-week mark.  Thankfully, I live in eastern NC and not Alaska, or Minnesota or places where people have to shovel out of their house.  And, at least I can eat stuff like this to help keep me warm…

After I made the Blueberry Pecan Breakfast Quinoa, and realized I actually like quinoa, I started playing around with different variations.  Since I have this obsession thing for pumpkin and oats (as evidenced by my Overnight Pumpkin Oats, Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats,  and Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal), this was obviously the next breakfast quinoa to try!  Good call.  Good call.  It’s delicious.

Pumpkin Pie Quinoa adapted from Veggie Converter & Blueberry Pecan Breakfast Quinoa

1 cup raw quinoa, rinsed (and toasted if desired)
2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or preferred milk or water)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
 Topping – anything you like (or plain) I added dried sweet and tart cherries, and pecans
Bring the quinoa, and milk to a boil.  Reduce heat, and simmer (covered) for about 15 minutes or until tender and most of the liquid is absorbed.  Add pumpkin puree, maple syrup, spices and chia seeds (if using) and stir until combined.  Heat through.  Remove from heat, divide into 4 servings. Top as desired.
 
Verdict –  {warm!}comfort food. It’s delish, and healthy!  I divided mine up into individual servings, then placed the remaining 3 in the fridge to eat on for the rest of the week.  It was nice having breakfast already prepared, and all I had to do was give it a nuke in the microwave.  Just add a little milk if it is too thick.


Linking this recipe up at Eat at Home, and the Gooseberry Patch Blog

Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats

I loooove oatmeal!  Regular oats, steel cut oats, instant…I like it all, but steel cut is definitely my favorite.  It’s one of the few healthy foods that I eat b/c I want to, not b/c I feel like I should!  Now, if I could just convince the rest of my family….
These oats are made with pumpkin and spices and taste like a big bowl of comfort.

  Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats

 1/3 cup steel cut oats
1 cup water
pinch of sea salt
1/3 cup pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
10 drops vanilla stevia (I use NuNaturals)
Add oats to water with a pinch of salt in a small pot.  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.  Add pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla stevia (or 1 tsp vanilla extract with sweetener of choice – to taste).  Stir to combine and simmer for another 5 minutes.
Serve with walnuts and a sprinkle of raw sugar if desired.
And if you are experiencing freakishly warm weather like we have been in eastern NC, you can have breakfast outside! I’m sorta loving this view 🙂