Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! Happy Turkey Day! Happy eat everything you see and don't feel guilty day! Until tomorrow anyway. We are (thankfully, even though I do love being a hostess...), not hosting Thanksgiving this year and we are off to the in-laws to Hood River! I can't wait. Everything my mother-in-law makes is amazing, so basically I will come back next week 10 pounds heavier. Yeah, I'm not really kidding. I'm super excited! Hood River has gorgeous views, delicious food and great shopping. The best part is that its 4 days off of work to spend not working, with family. I hope you all have a perfect day and that you take advantage of the time with your family!

Some things I am thankful for:

My husband. He loves me and takes care of me and our family. He fixes things that I never could. Finds solutions I am too lazy to find. He never lets me get away with not talking about it when I'm in a bad mood. He is the most amazing father to our two daughters and he exceeds every expectation I ever had in a husband. He thinks I am the most beautiful woman in the world. Which makes me shudder to this day. I know he is crazy. But that's ok.

My 2 gorgeous daughters. Princess and Peanut (not their real names). Princess, is truly a princess and the girliest of girls. I thought I would have to force her to be like me, and she turned out that way anyway. I love her sense of imagination and her friendliness. She says hi to everyone we see. I wish I had that. Peanut has the sweetest soul I have ever seen. Her big sister both loves and beats on her, and she receives both with a gentle and accepting spirit. Her little voice saying "I love you" which is really hard to decipher for most people is the most amazing sound I have ever heard.

My family. I am one of 6 children and I have always loved it. I told my husband before we were married that I wanted to one-up my mother and have 7. Views change a little after you get knocked up the first time. I always loved our holidays together. Six kids seemed like it wasn't quite enough. There was so much love between us, but I wanted more. Nothing can describe the memories my siblings and I have shared together. I only hope my own kids can have half as much joy growing up. My parents, who were more generous than I appreciated when I was younger and I can't even believe their generousity now. They showed us one of the most beautiful marriages I have ever witnessed and I feel lucky, because now I can bring some of that into mine.  

My job.... I hate it. Really I do. But it allows me to stay home all the time with my girls and I would never trade that for anything. No career with cute suits or big promotions could sway me from what I have here at home with them. My poor husband, sees our two daughters during the week for maybe 3 hours a day. Its terrible! I am so lucky to be able to spend all day with them, even though at times it sends me searching through the wine bar by the end of the day.

This blog. I started this blog about 6 months ago now, not even sure that I wanted to really go through with it. I was so nervous and a little bit excited, but decided to just do it already! I found an outlet that I had been searching for, for a long time. I have always wanted to be a writer, and even though this isn't quite what I envisioned, it makes me happy and it keeps me sane. And now I've had over 10,000 views to my blog, which seems pretty amazing to me!

My readers. Yes. You! If this turned out to be something that only my mother and husband read, I think I would have curled up in a ball with a pint or two of ice cream (Ok, ok, wine) and deleted the thing. Crying. And determined that my talents were worthless. But you give me worth! You make me feel special! And you make me believe that I actually have good things to share. That is truly beautiful and I am so grateful to you all. I hope I can continue to share beautiful things with you and inspire you to create beauty in every way in your own homes.  

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

What To Make This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is tomorrow! We are literally ONE day away! Have you decided what you are making for the feast? If not, get busy lady! It's tomorrow! And if you are lucky enough to be a guest who doesn't need to bake, cook or roast something tomorrow, then feast your eyes and get ready for all the deliciousness! I have included a few of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes to get you in the mood for food!

The Bird

I have used this turkey recipe both times that I hosted Thanksgiving at our house and I'm proud to say that some family members even said it was the best turkey they ever had. I never like turkey....and I loved this one.

Kiss of Lemon Turkey (Source:
Kiss-of-Lemon Roast Turkey

1 turkey (14 to 16 lbs.), rinsed and patted dry (giblets and neck reserved for stock)
4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1 lemon, zested and halved
2 onions, root ends discarded, then halved with skin on
2 teaspoons dried thyme
Coarse salt and pepper

Place the turkey in a large roasting pan. Using kitchen shears, cut off the first two joints of the wing, leaving the drumettes attached to the bird (reserve the wings for turkey stock). Let the turkey come to room temperature for 1 to 2 hours. (And remember to take out the neck and plastic bag of giblets.....don't wanna leave THAT in there. Thank goodness my mother saved me from that one year).
In a small bowl, mash together the butter and lemon zest with a fork. Smear the butter mixture all over the turkey. Squeeze lemon juice over the bird and put the lemon halves in the cavity. Place 2 onion halves in the turkey cavity, and the others in the pan. Sprinkle the thyme, salt and pepper over the turkey.
About 20 minutes before roasting, position a rack in the lowest part of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees . Tie the legs of the turkey together. Transfer to the oven and roast for 1 hour. Rotate the pan a half-turn, lower the temperature to 350 degrees and roast for 1 hour longer. After the second hour, using a bulb baster or brush, baste the turkey with the pan juices. Continue roasting, basting once or twice, until the bird registers 150 degrees to 155 degrees on an instant-read thermometer inserted into the inner thigh, about 30 minutes longer. Using tongs or a sturdy spatula and a two-pronged fork, tilt the turkey to pour any juices from the cavity into the pan.
Transfer the turkey to a large carving board, tent with foil and let rest for 30 minutes before carving and while you make gravy.

The Sides

If I ever give up my absolute favorite stuffing recipe, this one would be a close contender. I love the unique ingredients!

Pear, Prosciutto, and Hazelnut Stuffing (Source:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add prosciutto; cook, stirring, until crispy, about 5 minutes. Drain on a paper towel.
Wipe out the pan and heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, fennel and shallot and cook, stirring, until softened and beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes.
 Add sage, thyme and rosemary and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Transfer everything to a large bowl and gently stir in bread, pears, parsley, hazelnuts and the prosciutto. Add broth; toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon the stuffing into the prepared baking dish; cover with foil.
Bake for 40 minutes; remove the foil and bake until the top is beginning to crisp, 25 to 30 minutes more.

I love Chef Anne Burrell from the Food Network. Everything she makes looks amazing. Wish she was my private chef!

Sweet Potato Casserole (Source: Anne Burrell/Food Network)

2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 3)
1 orange, zested and juiced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup diced dried apricots

1/2 cup oatmeal
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter, cut into pea-sized pieces
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put the sweet potatoes on a sheet tray and roast for 35 to 40 minutes. The sweet potatoes might still be a little hard in the center- no problem!

While the sweet potatoes are baking make the topping. In a food processor, combine the oatmeal, brown sugar, olive oil, butter, and walnuts and pulse until mixture comes together.

When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel them and cut them into 1-inch chunks. Discard the skins. Put the potatoes into a large dish and add the remaining ingredients. Mash together with a potato masher until well combined.

Transfer the mixture to a 2-quart casserole dish. Crumble the topping mixture over the potatoes. Bake until the mixture hot all the way through and the topping is brown and crispy, about 30 minutes.

No one can make them like my sister can. But we can at least try!

Pan Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon (Source:
Pan Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon | KneadForFood - Food Blog Recipes
1lb Brussel Sprouts
3 Strips Thick-cut Bacon
1 Tbs Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

 Preping the brussel sprouts is the only time consuming part of the entire recipe.  For those that may not have worked with brussel sprouts before, just cut off the end that was attached to the stalk, making sure to cut the stems of the outer most leaves.  Those leaves should almost fall right off now.  Cut the brussel sprout in half making sure to cut through the core so that it holds together.
Cut the bacon in thirds and fry it in a medium heat pan.  As a bacon press, I use some aluminum foil and a pot that is just smaller than the pan.  It works great and costs nothing.  If you want to be really efficient, don’t throw the foil away when you’re done with it, as you’ll need again in a bit.
When the bacon is done, remove it but leave the fat behind.  Add the olive oil to it with some salt and pepper.  Place the brussel sprouts face down in the pan and cover the pan with the foil.  Covering the pan with foil will trap the steam that is let off and cook the sprouts evenly.  Turn the heat to medium-low and cook for 10-12 minutes.  When the brussel sprouts are good and caramelized add the bacon back in to reheat. Serve immediately or turn off the heat and replace the foil to keep them warm for dinner.

Tyler Florence. Everything he makes is simple, but he somehow makes the simplest of ingredients the best thing you ever tasted!

Velvety Mashed Potatoes (Source: Food Network/ Tyler Florence)

1 cup heavy cream
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 large Yukon gold potatoes, peeled
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil, optional

Warm the cream with the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until the butter melts; set aside.
Put the potatoes in a medium saucepan with cold water to cover. Bring to boil then add 1 teaspoon of salt and reduce the heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the potatoes are very tender. Drain. Pass the potatoes through a food mill or a ricer into a large mixing bowl. Stir in the warm cream and butter mixture until the cream is absorbed and the mixture is smooth. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper and finish them off by stirring in 1/4 cup olive oil.

The Dessert (aka the best part of any meal)

So I made these for a Friendsgiving we went to last weekend and I couldn't believe how they turned out. I told my husband to pray that they turned out before I made them. God must love him, because they were the best macrons ever! Literally, perfect. Everyone at the party raved about them! Master the macron and you will feel like the coolest person ever. Seriously. I'm not divulging my secret tricks quite yet. But I will at least give you the recipe that I based mine off of. This woman is gorgeous and so is all the food she makes! I want her new book!

Pumpkin Macarons (Source:
For Macron shells
1 1/4 cups plus 1 teaspoon confectioners sugar
1 cup (4 ounces) finely ground sliced, blanched almonds
6 tablespoons fresh egg whites (from about 3 extra-large eggs)
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
orange gel food coloring (optional)

For Filling
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup pumpkin purée
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups confectioners sugar, sifted

Directions for the shells:

To make the macarons: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar and ground almonds. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites with salt on medium speed until foamy. Increase speed to high and gradually add granulated sugar. Add pumpkin pie spice and a small amount of food coloring if using. Continue to whip until stiff glossy peaks form. With a rubber spatula, gently fold in the confectioners' sugar mixture until completely incorporated.
Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. Fit a pastry bag with a 3/8-inch #4 round tip, and fill with batter. Pipe 1-inch disks onto prepared baking sheets (or ovals with stems for pumpkins), leaving 2 inches between cookies. The batter will spread a little. Let stand at room temperature until dry, and a soft skin forms on the tops of the macarons and the shiny surface turns dull, about 15 minutes.
Bake, with the door of the oven slightly ajar, until the surface of the macarons is completely dry, about 15 minutes. Remove baking sheet to a wire rack and let the macarons cool completely on the baking sheet. Gently peel off the parchment. Their tops are easily crushed, so take care when removing the macarons from the parchment. Use immediately or store in an airtight container, refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.

Directions for the filling:
Beat all ingredients  until smooth. Then sandwich between macaron shells. 

My favorite Thanksgiving pie is Pecan. Not a huge fan of all the nuts, but I LOVE the filling. Yum! And with some vanilla ice cream too!? Ugh, kill me now!
Pecan Pie (Source: Food Network)
Picture of Pecan Pie Recipe

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter (1 stick), diced
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Flour, for rolling the dough

5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
2 cups chopped toasted pecans
1 to 2 tablespoons bourbon
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 eggs, lightly beaten

Make the dough by hand: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fingers, work the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter. (If the flour/butter mixture gets warm, refrigerate it for 10 minutes before proceeding.) Add the egg and stir the dough together with a fork or by hand in the bowl. If the dough is dry, sprinkle up to a tablespoon more of cold water over the mixture.

Alternatively, make the dough in a food processor. With the machine fitted with the metal blade, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt until combined. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter, about 10 times. Add the egg and pulse 1 to 2 times; don't let the dough form into a ball in the machine. (If the dough is very dry add up to a tablespoon more of cold water.) Remove the bowl from the machine, remove the blade, and bring the dough together by hand.

Form the dough into a disk, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 1 hour.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough with a rolling pin into a 12-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie pan and trim the edges, leaving about an extra inch hanging over the edge. Tuck the overhanging dough underneath itself to form a thick edge that is even with the rim. Flute the edge as desired. Freeze the pie shell for 30 minutes.

Set separate racks in the center and lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Put a piece of parchment paper or foil over the pie shell and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake on a baking sheet on the center rack until the dough is set, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and lift sides of the parchment paper to remove the beans. Continue baking until the pie shell is lightly golden brown, about 10 more minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

While the crust is baking make the filling: In medium saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and stirring constantly, continue to boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the nuts, bourbon, and the vanilla. Set the mixture aside to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. (If the crust has cooled, return it to the oven for 5 minutes to warm through.) Whisk the beaten eggs into the filling until smooth. Put the pie shell on a sheet pan and pour the filling into the hot crust.

Bake on the lower oven rack until the edges are set but the center is still slightly loose, about 40 to 45 minutes. (If the edges get very dark, cover them with aluminum foil half way during baking.) Cool on a rack. Serve slightly warm or room temperature.

If you are scrambling at the last minute for a Thanksgiving recipe, I hope this helped you. If not, I hope you're hungry! Can't wait for tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Kids Table

If you are hosting Thanksgiving at your house this year (I'm so glad that I'm not this year) one thing you may have forgotten is the kids table! It's easy to overlook and then you end up just throwing out a card table at the last minute. But the kids deserve a special table too! Here are some adorable ideas for creating a cute space for the littles in your life.

How simple and adorable is this? Simply cover a table with craft paper and draw on "place mats" under the plates. Put out cups filled with crayons and the kiddos will be occupied for at least a little while. Love the little pears in cups as well. Source:

How about this sweet little table? Pilgrim hats hold crayons for coloring. Mini "pies" can hold treats such as candy corns. And the paper drumsticks for the place cards? You just can't get cuter than that! Source: Be Different Act Normal

Then there is the always adorable Pottery Barn Kids table.

And if you were a really talented and patient seamstress, you could even make knockoff place mats and turkeys just like these. How cute are the acorns hanging from the trees? Source:

paper bag popcorn turkey
I'm loving this paper bag turkey! There's even a surprise snack inside! Popcorn! Source: One Charming Party

And last but not least, if you wanted to whip up a few Fabric Pumpkins, they would make a perfect centerpiece for the kids table. They are unbreakable and so cute!
If you are looking for ways to keep the kids entertained throughout the evening, just remember to keep it simple. The last thing you want to be doing is supervising the kid's crafts instead of visiting with the adults!

1. As shown above, laying craft paper on the table and letting the kids color is a great option.

2. Another cute idea is making nature inspired picture frames. Fill a few bowls with twigs, acorns, feathers, etc. Then let the kids glue on their designs onto the frames (You can get cheap $1 ones at any craft store). When they are all dry you can put a picture of the kids at Thanksgiving in it. Your kids will have a sweet reminder of their relatives and friends!
Here is one I whipped together for miss Princess the other day. I used hot glue to cut down on drying time, but plain Elmer's glue will work fine. You don't want to leave the kids alone with a hot glue gun!

3. Then you could always go for the classic hand print turkeys. Get basic colors of non-toxic and washable paints. Red, yellow, orange, brown, green. Let the kids paint their hands and carefully press onto paper. Fill bowls with googlely eyes and feathers and set out glue so that they can embellish the turkeys.

Hope this helped to inspire fun ideas for your own Thanksgiving Kids Table!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Your Thanksgiving Table

Thanksgiving is only a few days away! Did any of you see the grocery stores this past weekend!? Holy crazy town! Trader Joe's was a mad house! I love it though. As much as the hustle and bustle can be stressful, I just love it. Everyone sharing the common goal of giving thanks and spending time with family. How beautiful is that? It just makes my writer's heart all fuzzy inside. I'm sure all of you have been busy making preparations of your own. Have you figured out how you are going to decorate your Thanksgiving table? Look no further. I've got you covered. Here is some inspiration for styling your Thanksgiving table this year.

Love this enchanted forest look.
 Thanksgiving Table (14 Pics)

White pumpkins are so pretty. This arrangement is so rustic and elegant.
Thanksgiving Table Centerpiece Ideas (22 Pics)

Purple is my favorite color, so I love how they incorporated it into the Fall theme with this table.
Source: Liz Marie Blog

How about this genius idea!? Remember the Thankful Tree I made? How about making it the showcase of your Thanksgiving table! Guests can read all the thankful leaves (or write their own) as they eat dinner. I'm also totally lusting after the "twig" silverware.

Fur and feathers.....need I say more?


This one is simply stunning and I love the gold pears.


Love how clean and fresh this one is. The newspaper print is so unique!


This one is so easy and beautiful. It's so great how just a quick spray of gold paint can unify your whole look.


Hope this gave you some inspiration for decorating your own Thanksgiving table this year! Have fun!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Fabric Pumpkins

It's Friday and my brain is fried. The week flew by in a second and I think that's why I feel like I have whiplash from the week. I'm so glad its the weekend. We are doing our yearly decorating of Gingerbread houses at Grandma's tomorrow. Princess can hardly wait. She says to everyone, "Hi, I'm Snenna, I make a gingerbread house." And then I go into the explanationn of what she is talking about. Tons of relatives pack into one kitchen and we all decorate gingerbread houses at the same time. We eat yummy soup and warm bread and the kids eat as much candy as they possibly can. Its great. Since it always happens the weekend before Thanksgiving, I feel like it is the kick off to the holiday season. Thanksgiving is next week! I can't even wrap my head around it. I wanted to get one or two more Fall decorations made before then. Today's project is so cute and doesn't require many materials. The only thing about it is that it requires quite a bit of hand sewing. But the end result is so worth it! These fabric pumpkins are so cute and can be customized to anyone's taste. They make a sweet addition to any tablescape, mantle or windowsill.

You will need:
Fabric in colors and patterns of your choice
Sewing materials

There are two great tutorials that I found for this project. One from Danielle Thompson and one from Boho Weddings. Both are great and its worth taking a look at both so you can see a variety of pictures to really see how to do it. Seriously, pictures ARE worth a thousand words. Most of the time I don't even need to read the directions if the pictures in a tutorial are good enough. I've included my own pictures for you also, although mine are much inferior to the others.

1. Fold your piece of fabric in half. Then cut either a 8X16 inch piece for a bigger pumpkin or a 6X12 inch piece for a smaller pumpkin. These are the dimensions for the fabric when it is folded! Unfolded it would be like a 8X32. You can make any size pumpkin, just make sure the length is double the width.
2. Fold so that the fabric is wrong sides out. Sew along the opposite side of the fold with a sewing machine or hand sew it. This is the only part you can really do with the machine, so I would take advantage!

 3. Sew a running stitch all along the top of the piece and pull together as tight as you can.

 4. Make a loop a few times around so that the bunch doesn't come undone.
5. Flip so that the fabric is right side out again. The bunch you just made is going to be the bottom of the pumpkin.
 6. Sew a running stitch along the top and tighten halfway.
 7. Stuff with fluff. Winnie the Pooh style.
 8. Pull the thread and tighten all the way.
 9. Sew closed. Kind of like a football.
 10. Make several if you want a few different patterns and sizes.
 11. Cut out two pieces for the stem.
 12. Flip right sides together and sew all around the sides and top. Leave the bottom open for stuffing.
 13. Stuff with fluff. Then tuck in the bottom edges.
 14. Sew onto the top of the pumpkin covering as many stitches as you can.

 Done! Display on tables, mantels, windowsills, anywhere that needs a little Fall.

You will notice (if you took a look at the other tutorials) that I skipped one more step. They both added yarn around the sides to give it more of a defined pumpkin look. I skipped this because a. I didn't have a big enough needle and b. because I'm lazy. But it looks great if you want to add this step! My way looks a little more home made and a little more vintage. Sure. Lets go with that.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Play Dough

I was super excited the other day to look back at my Fall Bucket List and find out that I had completed half the things on the list! Whoo Hooo! Go me! (Virtual pat on the back) When does THAT ever happen? It inspired me to keep going and knock off a few more. Today I made some Fall/Thanksgiving inspired play dough. Pumpkin Pie Play Dough! Yummy! Just don't eat it ok? I figured with all the holiday family drama that is sure to come up in everyone's lives very soon, why not join the kiddos in the play of dough and get a little stress relief? And this recipe smells amazing. It may even have aromatherapy powers.....I'm just sayin'. Even if you don't feel like playing, the kids will love it for sure.

How to:
I used the basic recipe from my Lavender Play Dough post, but then instead of purple food coloring and lavender essential oil, use orange food coloring (or a mix of red and yellow) and threw in a couple dashes of pumpkin pie spice. Once you pour the hot water on it you can smell the yummy smells of the spices. Mmmmm! Its wonderful.

I'll put the recipe here too, so that you don't have to click through a million pages.

Pumpkin Pie Play Dough (Adapted from The Imagination Tree's Lavender Play Dough)
2 Cups Flour
1 Cup Salt
2 Tablespoons Cream of Tartar
2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1-1.5 Cups Boiling Water (try 1 first to see. That may be all you need)
1 Tablespoon Vegetable Glycerin
Orange Food Coloring
2 Teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice

Stir first 3 ingredients together. Then add the oil and mix through. Add boiling hot water and stir until blended well. Add the extra half cup of water if needed. Then add glycerin, food coloring and pumpkin pie spice and knead through with your hands. Store in a large ziplock bag up to a month.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Thankful Tree

I never usually do much decorating for Thanksgiving, even though I have hosted it at my home a few times. A cute table setting maybe, but not much else. The whole idea is that it is a simple, easy, no pressure occasion right? I mean, cooking a turkey IS a lot of pressure...but you know what I mean. I love seeing ideas for ways to decorate for the holiday, while still keeping it simple and focused on what the holiday is about. Poor Thanksgiving seems to get left out in the decor department. It jumps from Halloween to Christmas every year! I really like the idea of a "Thankful Tree" to be put up as decoration and to get people really thinking about all the gifts and blessings they have to be thankful for. I really like this cute one from Simply Vintage Girl. This is our first year doing it and I already know I want to continue the tradition every year. It is great because everyone can put what they are thankful for on the tree, in their own time and as they think of things throughout the month. And if you wanted to, you could read all of the "leaves" aloud during Thanksgiving dinner. Its a nice alternative to sitting around the table and being forced to come up with something you are thankful for on the spot. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Anyway, its simple, its cute, its totally fitting and here is the how to.

You will need:
Various kinds of card stock in "Fall" colors. I used scrapbook paper as well.
A Mason jar
Small branches (Preferably ones that have already fallen off the tree, otherwise your neighbors will think you are crazy while you try to break of the branches off a live tree! Yep! That was me!)

1. Cut branches to size and arrange in the mason jar. Tie a bow with raffia or ribbon around the jar to add a pretty element.

2. Place somewhere in the house where family members will see it and be reminded to think about what they are grateful for.
3. Cut out "leaf" shapes and punch holes through the end of each one. The simpler leaf shape the better, because you have to make quite a few. Place in a bowl alongside the tree with a pen.

4. Inform family members what they are supposed to do (write what they are thankful for on the leaves and hang on the tree) and hopefully, by Thanksgiving, you will have a tree full of "leaves" showing all the gratefulness in your family!

What things are you grateful for?