Aloha My Scrappy Friends!! It is the beginning of the month again!! I know I say this all the time, but I am always amazed at how fast this time of the year goes. Before we know it it will be holiday season, with christmas around the corner.
Even though it often flies by quickly I love blog hop time. I love revisiting my friends blogs and catching up on what they have been creating within the month. I often will look through their blog and see all the goodness they have been sharing. This team I am on, the Spiegel Mom Scraps team is so inspiring. They encourage me to keep pushing and striving to be more creative each month. I love that about our group!!
I hope you feel the same way as you are hopping along this month, inspired to go create something beautiful and meaningful to your life and family. Whether you are a family of one, ten or in between.
Lets move along on this hop, shall we. Don’t forget that I have the list of the ladies joining in on the hop this month, if you at all get lost along the way. You should have come from Sarah’s blog! Isn’t her work so pretty?!
This month I am going to be sharing tons of 8 1/2 x 11 layouts for my Cozy Album I am working on. I am making layouts of tons of things we do in this holiday and winter season that pertain to cozy. I want to add lots of recipes and it to have more of that homey old style scrapbook feel.
Today I am sharing a layout a made about Christmas wreaths. For the past six years we have lived in a place that was much warmer in temperature for Christmas. It’s just how it is there. No changing it. My kids really don’t think anything about it. It is all they know. But my husband and I grew up in the east. I am from upstate New York, and christmas time is most usually cold and maybe even snowy.
There is something about a christmas wreath that means snow, chilly fingers, and the smell of evergreen in the air. It makes Christmas time come alive. Since we have been married I have have some kind of wreath hanging up around the holidays. This is my favorite time of the year. I think it’s all the cheer, and memories I had growing up. It’s fun.
When we were in Hawaii I started buying real evergreen bough wreaths to put on top of our table. At the beginning of the holiday season you could get them at the local commissary. It was the only way to get that real christmas feel. It might have been a little more money than I wanted to spend for evergreen limbs, that really weren’t all that impressive looking. But I wanted the kids to have a little bit of what I grew up with in terms of memories of the holiday season.
This is the perfect type of story or thing to add to my album. Something we can look back on and say, this is why mom did this or where that tradition started. This year I hope to actually cut a Blue Spruce Limb off our tree to use for the table. I am looking forward to that fresh pine smell and the color of the fresh cut pine well be so vibrant.
I bordered my 8 1/2 x 11 layout with a newsprint paper to give it a vintage feel. I also pulled out my Christmas stuff to give the layout that holiday spirit feel. The deep rich colors of the Shimelle Christmas paper are perfect.
I used a big shipping tag from the Spiegel Mom Scraps store as a layer. It also was a great place for stamping a title with tile alphabet stamps. I used an old Scraptastic Stamp Set that had some branches and leaves on it. The stamp adds details to the layout without being really heavy. I added a red bow to the top of the tag.
Each layout in this album has leaves on it. I love that this is something I am doing throughout my album. I used a silhouette cut gingham and newsprint leaves this layout. It adds to the holiday feel. And I love the texture the layered leaves add. The ends of the leaves curl up which are great when layering them. It gives places to tuck things into. I added some red and white twine around the bottom of the photo and the layered leaves. It makes me think of a homemade package tied with a bow.
The crisp white from the doily helps lights up the layout. I like the way a little white helps the layout not seem so dark because of all the rich colors of green and red. I also added some phrase stickers with holiday sayings on them around the layout.
This phrase sticker is tucked under the leave at the top with a wood button. The wood helps make the layout feel more natural.
Aloha My Scrappy Friends!! I thought it would be a fun idea to share my recipe of Pumpkin Soup since earlier I shared a layout I made about this yummy bowl of Autumn goodness.
This soup may have started from an actual site, but over time I have kinda tweaked it to my family and my preferences. Little things like adding Ground Smoked Chipotle powder add a nice smokiness that mixes well with the smell of crisp and fallen leaves.
Adding farm fresh roasted Butternut Squash is a newer addition and really helps enhance the pumpkin flavor. I love using fresh ingredients to my families meals to help keep the costs down, but also support local businesses and farms in my area.
Here is a reminder of what this yummy soup looks like all done.
Here is the recipe, which makes a nice big pot full. ( On a side note when I made this the other day, per cup, so 8 oz, this bowl of soup has about 10 grams of carbs. This is a very healthy soup with tons of vitamins and fiber and little sugar.)
1 TBSP Coconut Oil
2 TBSP Butter
2 Celery Stalks, finely chopped
1 medium sweet onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
3 TBSP AP Flour
2 TSP Poultry Seasoning
2 Tsp old bay seasoning
2 fresh Bay leaves
Salt to taste
Papper to taste
About 28oz can Pumpkin Pureed (plain pumpkin)
2 Tsp Hot Sauce (Chipotle Chili powder 1 Tsp) (Optional)
6 cups Chicken Stock (I also like a 1/2 chicken, 1/2 beef broth mix)
2 cups Heavy Cream (or milk)
1/2 Tsp Nutmeg
Optional 3 cups pureed Butternut squash
1 apple chopped
1/4 red onion finely chopped
2 TBSP lime juice
pinch of Lime Zest
1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
1/2 Tsp ground Cinnamon
1 Tsp Chipotle Chili Powder
2 TBSP honey
1. Heat Soup pot to med high Heat, Add oil and butter.
2. Add and saute onion, celery and carrot. Add Bay leaf and Saute for about five or so minutes.
3. Season Veggies with Salt and Pepper. Add Poultry seasoning, Old Bay, Chili powder and hot sauce. Cook for another 5 or so minutes until veggies are tender. Stir often from sticking.
4. Add flour and cook for a couple of minutes. You want the flour to get a little color. This helps develop flavor.
5. Whisk in Chicken Stock and Bring to a boil.
6. Whisk in Pumpkin puree in large spoonfuls (If you are adding roasted Butternut Squash puree add it here like pumpkin.) Incorporate Pumpkin really well.
7. Simmer soup for 10 minutes to thicken.
8. Add Cream and Nutmeg.
9. Reduce heat to low and keep warm until ready to serve.
10. Make relish. Combine all relish ingredients and mix. Add relish to the top of the soup in bowl.
If you want to take a look at the layout I made about this soup you can read about it on the SpiegelMom Scraps Blog. This upcoming month of November I will be sharing quite a few layouts and recipes that I make to full comfy and cozy in the Autumn and Winter months.