It’s very hard for me to do anything simple and modern looking. It just is. I love to look at trendy simple things: clothes, home decor, scrapbooking pages, patterns….anything. And I love it. But when it comes right down to it, it’s impossible for me to duplicate that look in anything I touch. It starts out simple, but very soon another element creeps in, an extra detail here or there, some brighter color sneaks in….and soon whatever I’m working on is full right up with all sorts of visual junk! Yes, I am a messy person, and it usual shows up even in my “designing” (art, decorating, crafting, junk making, whatever you want to call it). It’s hard to stop myself. I know, I know, I’ve heard: Art is knowing when to stop. And I agree. And I guess that’s where the line between crafty and artist is drawn. All this to say, I felt rather proud of myself for creating (in my mind) a simple modern-looking Thanksgiving table setting this year. It was excruciatingly hard to hold back and not add more and more, but I forced myself and getting some new simple dishes from Ikea helped (and a time crunch helped, too).
Last year’s Thanksgiving table here was more like what I usually do. This year I tried a new color scheme, and I must say I liked it. I just loved the bright colors (that is normal for me) what wasn’t normal was the more simple decorations.A plain white cake stand, a dried gourd (from Guatemala), a couple of small pumpkins and pomegranates, a few candles, a bunch of purplish carnations and a few green flowers. Yes, it did involve a shopping trip to IKEA for a few things: new blue dishes, a couple of blue candles, purple table runner, purple juice jug and purple serviettes. I had lots of orange things already in my stash 🙂 No time for place-cards this year, just a few plain wooden leaves from Walmart. I did print out some Thanksgiving things on kraft paper, but we didn’t really use them…..they were to make a thankful paper chain. We were thankful without the craft. The rest of the photos were taken under the dining room lighting so the color looks kind of weird…. I quickly crammed all the flowers into an orange bowl (and left the other non-color-coordinated flowers in the kitchen).simple but pretty, I thought. And yes, that is an old fashioned jello mold!For that old fashioned, traditional touch. I enjoyed it, even if few others did! I had made one awhile ago, from an old recipe, then totally lost the recipe!! So this was kinda made from my memory: grated carrot, crushed pineapple, orange gelatin (jello), and a cup of plain yogurt. Does anyone have a recipe like that? It would be nice to have the exact amounts!
My daughter the turkey,I mean, my daughter cooked the turkey this year! She did a good job, though we had a few nervous moments 😉
There was a kids’ table this year, with a few Snoopy treats…very simple (not like the other Peanuts kids’ table)When the younger kids couldn’t take the wait for supper, we gave them a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving meal. It’s what Charlie Brown and Snoopy served in the classic cartoon: buttered toast, pretzels, popcorn and jelly beans! (It’s starting to be a tradition!)Another food that is now a Thanksgiving tradition around here is Guatemalan enchiladas! I think this was the day after Thanksgiving, though traditionally they are served on Nov. 1st in Guate. (It was a short weekend with family, so we had to cram a lot of food into it) Mmmmm good!! I’ll have to post the recipe someday…. 🙂 And so that was our little Canadian, American, Guatemalan Thanksgiving!!
I love Snoopy and Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang! I remember looking forward to watching their specials on TV when we were young. (I also love pumpkins) so it was easy to come up with the perfect theme for a fall birthday party for my son. I haven’t watched “It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown!” for years, but I remember how Linus made me laugh, trying to wait all night in a pumpkin patch. So this party started with a little pumpkin patch. I had made some fondant pumpkins for cupcake toppers, and so there were still some just sitting around, waiting to form a pumpkin patch for Linus.Add in a “great pumpkin” and some more chipboard Peanuts characters (from last year’s kids’ Thanksgiving table)…..I had found some little packets of tissues with Snoopy on them, so they were a bit of a favor at each place….There were some other cute and fairly easy pumpkin ideas that were fast enough to put together for this party. My sister told me about using mandarin oranges as little pumpkins….Just peel them and add “stems” from celery, or in this case, stems from spinach leaves! And a bit of cilantro for leaves around the pumpkins. And then a jelly bean favor for each kid, this idea I found here on Parenting.com. I happened to have some red tulle (no orange!), so wrapped the orange jelly beans in it, then added pipe cleaner for a stem (and to hold the bag together) and some green curled ribbon for the tendrils. Didn’t take long to put together.The orange tablecloth and birthday banner I had saved from last year’s Garfield party…My preschool nephews were visiting, so I was trying to think of ideas that they could help out with for this party….baking!! Let’s make some birthday brownies!! (from a box!!)You could always add a pumpkin puree swirl into the chocolate brownies, that would be finger lickin’ good! (or pumpkin and cream cheese!! ahhhh!) Another idea that turned out great to do with the little kids was to make a birthday poster. First I drew a picture of Snoopy with a Sharpee marker on posterboard, then covered it up with white paper and painter’s tape. Then let the kids at it with paint daubers (bingo dabbers?)A fun idea even the youngest can help with!After painting is dry, peel off the tape to reveal….Snoopy!Then an older kid colored the words in with black marker so they’d stand out a bit. Posters, bday banner, favors, centerpiece, check!!….bring on the food and the party!
A happy pumpkin with a jack-o-lantern face from Papa Murphy’s pizza…..it’s the season for those, and they were just right for our pumpkin theme. We love Papa Murphy’s pick up and bake at home pizzas!Time for pizza!Pumpkins! (oops, that’s from something else!)Linus’s pumpkin patch moves over to the birthday brownies….Make a wish….Happy birthday! Check out some more pumpkin ideas…Here are some more pumpkin food ideas that I’ve worked on in the last few days, and they’d be perfect for a Charlie Brown pumpkin theme. My mom told me about some cute pumpkin cheese-balls that she saw, so I tried them out….How to: mix up softened cream cheese with spices (garlic, onion, paprika, pepper, season salt, or whatever you like) and some grated cheddar or mozzarella cheese. I also added chopped sun dried tomatoes. Let sit for a few moments in the refrigerator to harden a bit, then pull it out, divide into two chunks, cover with plastic wrap and shape into 2 balls. On top of the plastic wrap, mark the lines on the pumpkin with a back of a knife. Return to fridge. Later, before serving, take off the plastic and roll the cheese-balls in crushed nacho cheese tortilla chips (Doritos!) and add the stems from some bell peppers.The stems were easy to cut out….cut out from the pepper, along with the seeds, then cut right at the base of the stem, it kind of just popped off….crushed Doritos…I added paprika, but don’t do that, it dulled the color….When you press in the stem, it helps squash it into a pumpkin shape…I took a knife and re-made some of the indentations on the sides….Such cute, tasty little guys!And one last pumpkin idea….we just loved this one! I found a video on how to make these adorable pumpkin buns, by Hani, from Haniela’s. She has all sorts of great how-to videos for lots of yummy eats! She made these in just an hour. My first time to try took close to an hour and a half, but the next time was faster….and really, 35 minutes of that time is letting the buns rise, so really they’re pretty quick to make! And so adorably pumpkiny!! (Click on the link above for her video and recipe! you can do it!) You can make large ones for hamburger buns, how fun is that??Make the dough and cut….Let rise, add egg wash and sesame seeds, Bake for about 12 minutes…Add a stem and there you go!! I didn’t have the big pretzel sticks, so used several small skinny ones. I’ve also seen photos with pecans as stems!I just love those pumpkins!! All pumpkins, I guess. We had a lovely day out at a pumpkin (and everything else) farm and I had such a great time! Love photographing pumpkins!Hope you got some ideas for your next fall party…oh, I just saw that It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown is on TV tonight….pumpkin memories!! 😉