Fall Favorites!

Fall Favorites!

My summer lovin’ ways have definitely succumbed to the enjoyment of all my fall favorites!

Fall Favorites!  www.mytributejournal.com

Each season brings with it the colors, tastes and traditions that we so dearly cherish about them!

Fall Colors Are My Favorite!

For me, the richness of all the fall colors are sort of like a big, warm bear hug!

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Colorful chrysanthemums and a variety of gourds always welcome fall so perfectly!   

Fall leaves  www.mytributejournal.comI love to take leisure evening walks or Sunday afternoon drives to see all the beautiful autumn leaves!

Fall Flowers  www.mytributejournal.comSomething as simple as putting a small bouquet of fall flowers in a pretty vase is a great way to set the mood for a new season!  This unique, gem glass vase is from Anthropologie and is very reasonably priced.

Fall Pillows and Plaids Are My Favorite!

Decorative pillows  www.mytributejournal.com

Crate & Barrel plaid pillow  www.mytributejournal.com

I love to put a few decorative fall pillows here and there to help bring a little touch of fall inside my home!  The fun plaid pillow is from Crate and Barrel.    

Decorative pillows  www.mytributejournal.comA classic, plaid stadium blanket is the perfect thing to use to keep warm this time of year, whether you’re going to a football game or just snuggling up to read a good book.  Elliot-HeathDesigns is one of my favorite Etsy Shops that carries a wide assortment of vintage seasonal and holiday pillows.

Fall Pant from The Limited  www.mytributejournal.comI love that patterned pants are part of the fall style trend this year–this plaid pair from The Limited are my favorite.  I’m probably aging myself a bit when I tell you that these pants and shoes are very similar to ones I wore in high school!  I just love it when what was once old becomes new again, then I can tease my daughters and tell them that they are now as cool as I was back in the day!  Ha!  

Fall Decorations Are My Favorite!

My granddaughters have made putting up Halloween decorations and planning my Grandma’s Halloween Festival some of my very favorite things to do!

Halloween decorations  www.mytributejournal.com

I tend to go more for the quirky Halloween decorations, rather than the freaky ones–mainly for MY peace of mind!?  

Halloween witch costume  www.mytibutejournal.comConsidering my cute Marli witch, how can all things Halloween NOT be my favorite!  More ideas for seasonal house décor is coming soon on a new “Creating Your Home Sweet Home” post.

Fall Flavors Are My Favorite!

I have heard that food is memories…and this is the time of year that the memory flood gates seem to burst wide open!

Galzed donuts  www.mytributejournal.comWhenever I have fresh farmer’s market apple cider and soft glazed donuts, I’m always reminded of the refreshments that were served at my grade school fall carnivals.   There are some things that are just meant to go together!

Candy Corn M&M's  www.mytributejournal.comMy granddaughters and I discovered these little Candy Corn M&M’s a few years ago–and now we can’t wait to buy a few bags whenever Halloween candy hits the store shelves!  These M&M’s are truly a sweet blessing straight from candy heaven!     

Speaking of candy…I saw a sign the other day that said, “Halloween scares the diet right out of me!”

Halloween candy  www.mytributejournal.com

Bite-sized candy is just so much fun to eat!  Don’t you remember dumping out your candy loot after trick or treating and sorting through it to pick out all your favorites.

Peach cobblers, apple crisps, they all say happy fall eating–but one of my favorite things to make this time of year is my homemade granola recipe.

Homemade granola  www.mytributejournal.com

Honey Nut Granola

4 cups Old Fashioned rolled oats

1 cup sliced almond     1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup raw sunflowers seeds

1/3 cup canola oil 

1 cup honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  In a large bowl, mix oats, nuts and sunflower seeds together.  Stir in oil, honey, vanilla and cinnamon.  Spread the mixture on a large cookie sheet.  Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from oven and stir.  Continue baking granola until oats are a light golden brown, about 10 more minutes.  Spread warm granola on parchment paper and let cool completely before storing.  I like this granola sprinkled on yogurt or in a bowl by itself with fruit on top.

For our family, pumpkin is another favorite fall flavor–pretty much pumpkin anything!  In fact, I chuckled when my daughter, Mandi, sent me this picture of her recent grocery shopping excursion…

Pumpkin groceries  www.mytributejournal.com

 Looks like a bunch of fall yumminess to me!  I’ll be posting our family’s favorite Pumpkin Roll recipe later this week!

I’ll confess that one of my favorite things of fall isn’t my husband’s love of deer hunting.

Anthropologie novelty dishes  www.mytributejournal.com However, I did humor him recently when I bought these novelty deer plates for us to use when we’re enjoying a favorite fall snack.  A big advantage of being down to just the two of us is being able to buy a few extra eclectic dishes since we only have to purchase a set of two!

My absolute favorite fall favorite is…

Scooter rides  www.mytributejournal.com

  …enjoying time spent with loved ones this special time of year!

What defines fall for you?  Please share a few things that make the cut for some of your fall favorites.

–Mary

 

Doing White After Labor Day!

Doing White After Labor Day! Doiing White After Labor Day!  www.mytributejournal.com My mother would have told you that when I was growing up, I was prone to break some rules on occasion…so how can I not go against accepted protocol and do a little white after Labor Day!  Besides, some rules are just meant to be broken!

Except, wait–it’s not what you’re thinking…

…stay with me on this one, you just might find yourself wanting to do some white now after Labor Day too!  (Who makes up these rules anyway?!?)

Although the fall air has a definite cool, crisp feel to it, and our white capris are stored away until next summer (sigh!)–here’s how I’m doing white after Labor Day…

When first entering a grocery store now or going for a drive in the foothills, you can’t help but notice all the beautiful fall foliage–their rich colors certainly help me to better embrace the fact that fall is fast approaching!

Fall foliage  www.mytributejournal.com

How beautiful are the colors of fall reflected in a simple white vase!  If you don’t already have some white vases, HomeGoods stores or most vintage thrift shops always seem to have a good supply that are reasonably priced.   

Potted plants  www.mytributejournal.comMy daughter went for the opposite look and put these white flowers in a neat, vintage ceramic pot.  Kalanchoe are a hardy, indoor flowering plant that helps the feel of summer linger a bit longer–even if it has to be inside your house!   

Oh, and if you want some unusual, eclectic white vases to add to your Halloween décor, how about these skull ones?

Halloween decor  www.mytributejournal.com

Sort of creepy-cute in a Halloween sort of way!  You’ll find these at Etsy.com in the Brooklynglobal store.  I love the neat succulent plants in them!  

The other day after work, I had to run to my car in pouring rain and sleet–since I was soaking wet, I actually ended up turning on the heater as I drove home–say what!?!  My husband overheard me when I was grumbling under my breath while changing, so he went and got this white, terry cloth robe we’d received as a gift on our vacation last spring to the Dominican Republic!  I hadn’t really wanted to use it during the hot summer months.

White terry cloth robe  www.mytributejournal.com

Wrapping up in this warm, white robe instantly lightened my mood –I could still smell the scent of the magnolia and eucalyptus oils the spa had used too!  I have seen an assortment of spa robes in various styles available on Amazon.com and at Bed Bath and Beyond.  

I’ve also come to realize that evenings spent reading a good book on my patio are pretty much over until next summer as well.

White cable knit afghan  www.mytributejournal.com

My husband and I recently found ourselves wondering around our local Pottery Barn store while we waited for dinner reservations.  I couldn’t resist this white, cable-knit afghan–it should be perfect for snuggling up in when I want to read during the cold, winter months ahead! 

Of course, you can’t just read books wrapped up in a cozy, white afghan all winter long–you can watch movies and play some games in it too…!

Erin's White Cheddar Popcorn  www.mytributejournal.com

I consider myself somewhat of a popcorn connoisseur.  My mom’s caramel popcorn is just one of my many popcorn infatuations–but if you’re craving a lightly salted, cheesy snack, I’m telling you, Erin’s Natural White Cheddar popcorn is it! 

Speaking of yummy snacks–nurses are well known for having to grab a little something to eat on the run…

Trail Mix w/ White Chocolate Chips  www.mytributejournal.comI always try to have something on hand that is somewhat healthy in my locker at the hospital…adding white chocolate chips to a bagful of unsalted mixed nuts is the perfect, not-too-sweet treat!  My favorite white chocolate chips are the big ones from the Private Collection brand–they are so creamy and good!  

Regardless of the time of year, a classic white shirt is always a good addition to anyone’s closet–add some eyelet, find it on a clearance sale, and it’s sure to go home with me!

White eyelet shirt  www.mytributejournal.com

Worn with a tailored skirt or a pair of pants in any one of the pretty autumn colors available now, a cute, white shirt makes for a great summer to fall transition outfit.  This shirt is from Loft, but I think this one at L.L. Bean is also darling.

It’s a cool, fall evening and my husband is getting ready to go on a business trip.  While he packs I think I’ll fix us a little treat.

Vaniila Bean Ice Cream  www.mytributejournal.com In doing white after Labor Day, a bowl of Vanilla Bean ice cream seems perfect.

Especially when served with our favorite Nyaker Gingersnap Cookies we picked up at World Market the other night!

Nyaker Gingersnaps from World market  www.mytributejournal.com

When I eat these thin, crispy cookies, they always remind me of everything I love about the fall season!

Have you broken the rules before and done some white after Labor Day?  Please share! 

Happy Autumn!

–Mary

A Backyard Camp Out Extravaganza!

A Backyard Camp Out Extravaganza!

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In checking off My Summer Bucket List–one big item remained outstanding until last weekend…

 Backyard Camp Out!  www.mytributejournal.com

It wasn’t like I was purposely trying to put it off–busy summer schedules just didn’t free up a weekend that worked for everyone until last Friday…and it was well worth the wait!

I think it goes without saying that in planning activities for children, you have to learn to expect the unexpected and be flexible, but that doesn’t mean that a little pre-planning isn’t important–it is!  I gave Makena and Marli an invitation about a week before the camp out, then on the night of the festivities, I greeted them with a bit of fan fair!  It let the girls know that I was just as excited as they were–it also set the mood for a great weekend!

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photo (70)My daughter informed me that the girls had packed their suitcases all by themselves and had enough for several days!  So much fun!

A Backyyard Camp Out extravaganza!  www.mytributejournal.com

I think my granddaughters would have been content to run around and play with their balloons, but there was so much more yet to do at our backyard camp out extravaganza! 

My husband and I might have opted for our favorite picnic hot dogs at our camp out, but Makena and Marli love pizza!

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The girls each made their own pizza–that way they could pile on all the pepperoni and olives they wanted!  When kids pitch in and help make their dinner, sometimes they eat it better too!  

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Brand new pj’s are a must at any backyard camp out extravaganza!  Grandpa especially liked these ones!  

It’s always my hope that as I spend special times with my granddaughters, I can introduce them to some of the fun things their grandpa and I did with their mom when she was growing up!

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Our own kids enjoyed many fun, summer nights playing croquet…Makena and Marli loved playing it too! 

Marshmellow treats!  www.mytributejournal.com

No backyard camp out is complete without the marshmallows!  We don’t have a fire pit, so I adapted our marshmallow treat a little.  I cut straws in half to hold the marshmallows, then just filled small bowls with some ice cream toppings and sprinkles and let the girls dip away!

Oh, the sheer joy of watching how quickly a tent can became a backyard fantasy land!

A Backyard Camp Out extravaganza!  www.mytributejournal.com

A Backyard Camp Out Extravaganza!  www.mytributejournal.comThere seems to be no better place for UNO game tournaments and flashlight stories than inside a cozy tent!  Makena informed us that she loved having a late, late night!

For a Grandma who usually prefers the comfort of a nice, soft bed, there was no better place to wake up in the morning than beside these two cute girls!

Photo (79)We enjoyed a leisure morning lounging and laughing with Makena and Marli, then after a yummy pancake breakfast, we played a few more games and were just generally silly together before their mom and dad came to pick them up.

Silly!  www.mytributejournal.com

Grandpa and Grandma’s Backyard Camp Out may be checked off my Summer Bucket List this year, but I think we’ll make it an annual event!

After A Backyard Camp Out Extravaganza!  www.mytributejournal.com I had to chuckle when my daughter sent me this picture of the girls in a text when they were just down the street a few blocks on their way home!  That’s a sure sign that some good playing was done at Grandpa’s and Grandma’s house!  Ha!

What are some fun adventures you’ve enjoyed this summer?

Enjoying Summer!  www.mytributejournal.com

I hope everyone is enjoying what’s left of summer!

 –Mary