Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Haloween everyone! I hope you all have a wonderfully spooky and fun day.

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Roundup

Halloween is tomorrow! Have you decorated, carved your pumpkin, bought candy and figured out costume(s)?

Halloween fun from around the web...
Bats made out of chocolate snack cakes
Spooky treats bags that glow in the dark
Fashion-y costume ideas
Generate some Halloween themed crossword puzzles
Halloween party ideas
Candy Frankensteins
Clever melted witch push up pops
25 Food Costumes to avoid
Delicious sounding bloody popcorn brains
An amazing spooky ghost pizza
Some Halloween decorations you probably already own

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Stay safe!

My office is closed today due to Hurricane Sandy; Greg and I are both getting some work done at home while the wind howls outside. I hope all of you who are in the path of the storm are safe inside today.

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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Bake Sale for Beka

The amazing Megan of Wanna Be A Country Cleaver is hosting a bake sale on her blog today for her dear friend Beka of Kvetchin' Kitchen. Please take a moment to stop by Megan's blog today or tomorrow and see what's available, and if you are able to, please bid on something.

All money raised during this bake sale is benefitting the  Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America.

I am donating a batch of my favorite sugar cookies, so let the bidding commence! There are also a bunch of other delicious items donated by fellow bloggers to bid on as well as some sponsored goodies like a Kerrygold gift basket, a Le Creuset dutch oven, and lots of fun cookbooks.

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Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday Fun: Halloween Infographic

I recently came across this great infographic with all sorts of Halloween related facts, I had heard some of these before, but some were completely new to me.

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pop Culture Pumpkins

The Huffington Post has put together an amazing slideshow of pop culture themed jack o'lanterns. I am just in awe of what some people do with their pumpkins. I tend to stick with the classic face. But these are really something. You can see all the full slideshow here, and I picked some of my favorites as well:

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

2 years!

Today is Greg's and my second wedding anniversary. To celebrate, we decided to go away this past weekend to the lovely New England town of Northampton. Northampton is full of fun shops, amazing restaurants, and beautiful scenery. There was also a great art festival that we went to as well. It was fabulous to get out of the city for a few days for a little escape, and tonight we're going out to dinner to do some more celebrating.

hotel northampton, our room had a lovely balcony

so much gorgeous color

Main Street, Northampton

there were pumpkins everywhere, they were all beautiful

yankee candle flagship store in Deerfield

wandering around an old cemetary in Amherst where all the markers were dated in the 1800s

lovely views while driving

home of the best cider donuts ever

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

All Hallow's Read

I just learned of All Hallow's Read this year, and I'm really excited about it. What it is is that during the week of Halloween, or on Halloween, you give a scary book to someone. I think it's a fabulous idea, the site also has some sticker templates so you can anonymously leave the book for someone to find while still getting the word out about All Hallow's Read; what a fun treat to stumble across during the Halloween season.

Two years ago, Neil Gaiman started this tradition with a blog post mentioning that there aren't many traditions where books are given to one another.

And while we're talking about giving books out, please take a minute to check out UNICEF's Book Or Treat.

Do you have a favorite scary/Halloween-themed book? What book would you like to give somebody this Halloween for All Hallow's Read?

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Caramel Corn

Awhile back, my boss brought in some caramel corn that his wife had made. It was really delicious and I immediately had to e-mail her for the recipe. I made a few changes to the original recipe, and came up with some amazing caramel corn.

Caramel Corn 
2 bags plain microwave popcorn 
1 cup unsalted butter 
1/2 cup corn syrup
2 cups lightly packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped pecans

Pop the popcorn according to instructions. 

Pour popcorn into a large mixing bowl (I used two), you want to have enough space in the bowl to toss the popcorn with the caramel.

Preheat oven to 250, line two sheet pans with foil and line counter with parchment paper.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add corn syrup, brown sugar, and salt. Increase heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Once boiling, allow to boil for 5 minutes without stirring. 

Remove the sugar mixture from heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla, the mixture will foam up.

Quickly pour caramel over popcorn and toss to coat. It will feel unmanageable and will not coat the popcorn evenly, but do not worry.

Spread the popcorn onto the prepared pans and bake for 50 minutes, stirring and rotating the pans every 10 minutes. During the last 20 minutes of cooking, sprinkle the pecans into the popcorn.

Turn out the cooked popcorn onto the parchment lined counter to cool and firm up.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Fall Fun and Howling Halloween Features

Thank you to everyone who linked up for the Fall Fun and Howling Halloween link party that I co-hosted with Second Chance to DreamMakin My Apt a HomeCondo BluesThe Cookie a Day ChallengeDomestic Randomness and Claiming Our Space. I've had a blast looking at the great Halloween and fall projects, recipes and everything that you all have posted.

Today, I, and all the other hosts will each be featuring some of our favorite links from the party (it was so hard to choose favorites! Everything was amazing). Please be sure to stop by the blogs of the other co-hosts to see all the features!

And here's a button for you to grab to show off your featured post :-)

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Spooky Portrait of your Home

Lew Lehrman of The Haunted Studio does amazing commissioned paintings of your home, but they aren't just a typical painting, he makes them into amazing spooky scenes. I know that when Greg and I get a house, I will definitely going to Lew to make a haunted masterpiece out of our home.

Here are a couple examples of his transformations:


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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Creepy Candy

There's so much great, gory candy available for trick or treaters this year. I have come across a lot of really unique varieties that I would have loved to get in my treat bag.

body part lollipops from ThinkGeek

skybar zombie food from CandyWarehouse

gummy mummies from Oriental Trading

coffin creeper lollipops from Blair Candy

gummi eyeballs from Munchies Sweets & Treats

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Etsy Love: Halloween

etsy is chock-full of amazing one of a kind finds to celebrate Halloween. Here are a few of my favorites:

graveyard terrarium from Face of the Earth

salem broom co. pillow tuck from Olde Time Gatherings

potion bottles from pbleu

skull sugar cubes from Dem Bones

tapers from Creations by Minda

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Monday, October 15, 2012

Woodchuck Apple Crisp

Little is better in the fall than an apple crisp. This recipe has a twist in a bottle of hard cider that gets reduced down and added to the filling. It adds an amazing extra oomph to the crisp; truly delicious.

Woodchuck Apple Crisp
7 medium apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
1 12-oz bottle hard cider (I used the Woodchuck Fall Limited Release for this)
1/2 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour

1 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
2 cups quick cook oats
3/4 cup all purpose flour
8 tablespoons butter, melted

Pour cider into small saucepan over medium-high heat and reduce to a half cup of liquid. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice and vanilla.

In a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Add apples and toss until evenly coated. Drizzle the reduced cider mixture over the apples and toss to combine.

Pour apple mixture in a buttered baking dish. 

Mix together the brown sugar, oats and flour, slowly pour in butter, mixing with a fork until well distributed and crumbly. Sprinkle topping evenly over the fruit.

Bake for 45 minutes at 350.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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Friday, October 12, 2012

Friday Fun: Choosing the Right Apple

Slate has created an amazing flow chart for what apple variety to pick based on your chosen apple related activity from bobbing to baking to carving to throwing. It's both a handy and hilarious chart.

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Cranberry Bog Tour

Groupon recently had a deal for a cranberry bog tour that I couldn't pass up. We went this past weekend, and while the tour wasn't exceptional, the weather was gorgeous, it was still fun to see a couple of bogs. Plus we came home with some fresh cranberries.

field of cranberries

this cat was roaming amongst the cranberries

antique cranberry sorter

flooded bog

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