11.26.2014

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy Thanksgiving Week!
The girls and I have been off school all week.
It has been glorious....no big plans...staying in our pj's most of the day & doing some baking!
In October & November I make tons and tons of things with pumpkin in them, but once December hits, I switch over to Christmas baking mode and I keep the pumpkin on the shelf and replace it with all things Peppermint & Chocolate. 
The girls wanted to make cookies this week, so we decided on these ones:
 Here is what you need:
  • 2 cups  flour
  • 1 1/3 cups quick or old-fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 bag of chocolate chips
Directions:
Combine flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in medium bowl. 
Beat butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar in large mixer bowl until light and fluffy. 
Add pumpkin, egg and vanilla extract; mix well. 
Add flour mixture; mix well & stir in chocolate chips. 
Drop by rounded tablespoons onto baking sheets (I use a cookie scoop)

 Bake at 350 for 14-15 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned and set in centers. 
You will love these cookies. 
They are soft and delicious.
The pumpkin, oatmeal & chocolate chips taste so good together.
 All 5 of us love them....Luke even pulled up a chair to the counter and stole 2 of them from the plate when he thought we weren't looking. 
Hope you love these as much as we do.
Need more Pumpkin Recipes? Check out these ones:
 Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies {HERE}

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles {HERE}
Pumpkin Cheesecake {HERE} We will be having this for Thanksgiving dessert again this year.

Pumpkin Bars {Recipe HERE}
 Pumpkin Ice Cream Cake {HERE}

Pumpkin Bread {HERE

And, some savory recipes with Pumpkin....
Sweet Potato Black Bean & Pumpkin Chili {HERE}

Baked Ziti with Pumpkin, Sausage & Spinach {HERE}

 I hope you have a great Thanksgiving!
Enjoy!

11.20.2014

26 Acts in 26 Days in honor of 26 People

In 26 days, it will be December 14th.
December 14th marks the 2 year anniversary of the Newtown shootings where 26 people (20 precious children & 6 adults) lost their lives at Sandy Hook.
Just like I have done in the past 2 years,  I will be doing 26 Acts of Kindness in the next 26 days in honor of the 26 lives that were lost.
 My heart still aches for the community of Sandy Hook & Newtown. 
They are still in my prayers & I haven't stopped thinking about them.
As you may remember, my friend Laura lives in Newtown & her 2 youngest children go to school at Sandy Hook. They physically survived the shootings, but the emotional wounds will never go away.
Laura did a guest post on my blog last year for the 1 year anniversary of Sandy Hook. It was beautiful, you can read it {HERE}
You may remember that after the shootings occurred in 2012, I also did 26 Acts of Kindness.
For ideas, you can read what I did HERE and HERE
Last year for the 1 year anniversary, I did 26 Acts of Kindness as well.
You can what I did in 2013 HERE
 Here are some more Random Acts of Kindness you can do:
  • Pay for the order of the person behind you in the drive-thru line.
  • Send friends and relatives notes or letters of encouragement on the back of your kids’ artwork.
  •  Leave love notes for your spouse or kids in their lunch.
  • Bring water, coffee, or hot chocolate to outdoor workers (like the crossing guard at your kids school or bus driver)
  •  Buy a soda or candy bar for the cashier when you’re checking out.
  • Give a restaurant or coffee gift card to someone (bank cashier, postal worker, homeless person, or random stranger)
  •  Send a silly card to brighten someone’s day.
  •  Call or email someone you haven’t talked to in awhile, just to ask how they are.
  •  Send your spouse a text just to tell him something that you appreciate about him.
  • Hide a kind note in a library book.
  •  Bake cookies for someone. (Postal carrier, neighbor, elderly friend, Sunday school teacher, Teacher, Teacher Aide, School Secretary, etc)
  • Leave coins on a parking meter or the machines at a laundry mat.
  • Pay the toll for the car behind you.
  • Give a huge tip on your next restaurant bill.
  • Offer to return someone’s shopping cart to the store.
  • Let someone go ahead of you in the checkout line.
  •  Pay for someone’s meal at a restaurant.
  • Donate food to a food bank
  • Bring your child's teacher a coffee or treat
  • Send your child's teacher an email just to say thank you
  •  Make a meal to share with a sick or busy neighbor.
  • Offer to keep a friend’s kids so she and her husband can have some time alone.
  • Make cards for nursing home residents…and deliver them with your kids.
  • Pick up trash at the park.
  •  Thank a soldier & write them a note/card.
  • Make care bags for the homeless (Tolietries, bottled water, food store gift cards, non-perishable/ready-to-eat foods.)
  •  Buy car wash coupons and give them away.
  • Leave extra coupons on the store shelf next to the item they’re good for.
  • Tape envelopes with quarters to vending machines.
  • Take homemade cookies or cupcakes to the police or fire station.
  • Pack a date-night box  (red box movie, popcorn, soft drinks, movie candy) and leave it on someone’s doorstep. Ring the bell and run!
  • Bring a friend or neighbors Donuts one morning
  •  Take magazines, crosswords or Sudoku puzzles to a waiting room at the hospital
  •  Take flowers to a nurses’ station – for the nurses.
  •  Purchase a store gift card or a gas card and send it to a friend in need.
There are SO many simple things you can do. 

You don't need to spend money doing this, many things you can do for free or for minimal cost.
I am so excited to do this again. 
Kate is almost 8 and Claire is 6. They will be joining me in doing the acts of kindness. They are at an age where it is imperative teach them and model to them the importance of doing nice things for others. 
(I will not be telling them why we are doing the 26 Acts of Kindness....I don't think they need to know about the school shootings that happened 2 years ago. When they are older I will tell them, but not at ages 7 and 6. I will tell them we are doing Random Acts of Kindness to be nice)

You can even download this #26Acts printable to keep track.

 Download it {HERE}

As I do each act of kindness, I will say a prayer for each one of the victims families.
Here are the names of the 20 precious children:
Charlotte, Daniel, Olivia, Josephine, Ana, Dylan, Madeleine, Catherine, Chase, Jesse, James, Grace, Emilie, Jack, Noah, Caroline, Jessica, Avielle, Benjamin & Allison.
And 6 staff members:
Rachel Davino, Dawn Hochsprung, Lauren Rousseau, Mary Sherlach, Anne Marie Murphy & Victoria Soto.

You are not forgotten.
 
The 2 year anniversary & the holiday season are incredibly hard for the victims families.
I am going to try & complete my Acts of Kindness by December 14th
 (but if I don't finish by then, that's okay, I will try & get them done by Christmas)  
26 Acts of Kindness in 26 Days.
Honoring the 26 Victims.
I hope you will join me!
If you have any Random Acts of Kindness ideas, please put them in the comments.
 Let's spread kindness this holiday season!

11.18.2014

Tuesday Top 5

Happy Tuesday!
I loved all your comments on the Crib Tent post.
Glad to know I am not alone with a crazy kid. Ha!

{ONE}
 Can you believe that Thanksgiving is next week?
I am so excited. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite days of the year. 
And, Thanksgiving dinner is one of my favorite meals of the year. 
Turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, Pumpkin Cheesecake....I LOVE it ALL!
One of the traditions I do for our kids teachers & our neighbors for Thanksgiving is make them pumpkin bread with a little printable I made:
You can find the printable & recipe {HERE}


{TWO}
 We are also done with our little house remodel. We are in the final stretch.
Last week the French Doors went in. Claire loves watching the work get done, especially when they were cutting a hole in our wall. She talks our contractors ear off and follows him around chatting to him. I wonder where she gets her chattiness from?!? 
 We are loving having a new door to the outside, it totally changes the functionality of that room & our backyard.
Kevin finished all the floors last weekend, he did such a good job. So proud of him!
The project should be done by the end of this week....Can't wait!!!!
My house has been covered in dust for months!

{THREE}
 These are my favorite boots. 
I got them last year.
 I wear them 4-5 times a week. 
Love, love, love them!
{Get them HERE}
They are now 20% off!

{FOUR}
As you might know, I am a Hormel Foods Extended Family Blogger.
Hormel Foods Extended Family Blogger

I wanted to let you know about a Sweepstakes Hormel is having!
Hormel Foods Gives Thanks Pinterest Sweepstakes
Hormel Foods wants to thank all the fans for showing their love and support. 
This Thanksgiving season, you could enter for a chance to win a $700 prize pack. 
Between Nov. 3 to Nov. 21, visit {HERE} and click on the “Thanksgiving Sweepstakes” app. 
Pin together the perfect Thanksgiving meal for a chance to win assorted serving platters, serving utensils, cups and a VISA gift card!  Ends this Friday, November 21st!

{FIVE}
I can't believe I forgot to announce the winner of the Crock Pot on my Crock-tober Giveway!
The winner is:
Amanda
Send me an email or leave a comment and I will get you hooked up with your new Crock Pot!
And, speaking of Crock Pot Meals, here is a round up of all the Crock Pot Recipes that I have on my blog.
 Chicken Tortialla Soup Recipe {HERE}

 Crock Pot Chicken Parmesan Recipe {HERE}

Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe {HERE}

Recipe {HERE}
 
Sweet Potato + Black Bean Chili {HERE}

And, my most popular (and controversial post) & recipe...Easiest Dinner Ever.
This is the most viewed recipe on my blog. You either love it or your hate it :)
Easiest Dinner Ever Recipe {HERE}

I love, love, love my Crock Pot. 
Crock Pot & Soup Season is my favorite!
I am working on a Pumpkin/Butternut Squash Soup right now.
I am hoping to perfect in the next week or so and then I will post it for you guys!

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