10 Minute Fall Porch

IMG_6615.JPGI know you call someone who isn’t in the Christmas spirit a Scrooge or maybe you say “Bahumbug”. But what do you call someone who hasn’t gotten in the Fall spirit? “Pumpkin-boo-hoo”? Or should I call myself a “still-feeling-like-it’s-summer-too-early-for-Halloween-humbug”?

O.K. Mar. It’s October 16th, not June 16th. Get a move on! Or as my sweet Daddy used to say to hurry us kids along….Heeroja!

I remember when my kids were younger and I would go all Halloween Crazy! Pumpkins, spider webs, witches, ghosts….yup, dem were the good ol’ days.

Now? Ten minutes baby!

IMG_6609.JPGMy poor little birdbath has been empty for a couple of months now. I like using it by my front door because my house sits so far away from the street, it lifts up whatever I feel like showing off that season.

Gather your supplies. I went to a local church that sells pumpkins as a fundraiser. I go every year and just load up. I like knowing that the profits go to help those in need. This year some hoodlums decided to be real jerks by slicing and dicing a thousand dollars worth of pumpkins. (Arrrrgh! What gets into people?) Anyway, volunteers were quite appreciative of my purchases. I’m going to go back for more. Hey! If you’re in the Spartanburg area, buy your pumpkins from St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church!

The wreathes and floral spray came from Hobby Lobby. Can I just say that Hobby Lobby is where all the cool people go? I’m looking for a floral spray when I see my friend Linda loading up her cart with burlap ribbon. I take a quick left down the aisle to hug her and say hi. As we are standing there Ouuuing and Aahhhing over all the pretty colors and patterns, around the corner comes Jenny pushing her cart full of ribbon. Linda and Jenny learned to make burlap wreathes at Garden Club and were at the store buying more supplies. We stand there a couple of minutes discussing different color combinations and design ideas, when this sweet lady who overhears our conversation begins to show us her creations on her phone. Oh my goodness! The four of us are just ouuuing and aahhhing all over again. I’m sure we sounded like a bunch of hens in the hen house.

Did you know that right now at Hobby Lobby, the fall and Christmas stuff is on sale? 40% off people!!! But here’s a little secret our sweet listening-in friend told us….if you want to buy the burlap ribbon, you have to buy it from the fall or Christmas areas. How pra-tell are they different from the regular burlap ribbon over here in the floral department, you ask? Well, Friend…the fall ribbon has an orange label and the Christmas ribbon has a…wait for it….Red ribbon! Now why on earth does it matter? I don’t know. But Linda and I went to the Christmas aisle.

On our way to the HoHoHo section of the store we run into another friend, Mary Alice. (See. I told you this is where all the cool people shop.) She was looking for three decorative fall plates, just so you know.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch….

IMG_6610.JPGAnd back to decorating my porch in ten minutes….I stacked my pumpkins with a grapevine wreathe in between. My bottom pumpkin was stemless, which allowed the top one to sit flat on top.

IMG_6611.JPGI took apart a floral spray. Did you know you could do that? Yup! You can do anything you want to do to it. Just take some scissors to cut the plastic that surrounds the wires. Then just bend the wire back and forth to separate. You knew that.

IMG_6612.JPGBecause the stems are made with wire, bend those babies and tuck around the pumpkins. Easy! Because my topiary sits in front of a window, I made sure the flowers went all the way around to look pretty from the backside too.

IMG_6613.JPGI went to my basement and found this wreath for the door. My niece made this wreath for me a couple of years ago and I added the flowers, straw and ribbon. The ribbon is a little faded, but lucky for me ombré is in! Yea! That’s what we’ll call it…ombré. But I’m not done yet.

IMG_6615-0.JPGThere. Perfect. You know what? It took me longer to write this post than it did for me to fall up my stoop.

Hey, Thanks for dropping by! Happy Fall Y’all!

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Caramel Apple Crisp

IMG_6600.JPGI had two ziplock bags of cut apples left from this weekend. I had to use them in some delicious way. I checked my cabinet and saw I also had a bag of Kraft Caramels. BINGO! I was going to make-up my own little dessert.IMG_6601.JPGI chopped the sliced apples and threw them in a large pan. How many whole apples did I chop? I seriously have no idea…4? 5? Four sounds good. Four chopped apples into the pan. Sprinkle some cinnamon and add a splash of whiskey. (So far, not real exact measurements. Guess I’ll never be on Food Network.) Why whiskey? Well, I thought the apples needed a bit of liquid to get them soft and add flavor. I’m sure apple juice or cider would be delicious, but since I didn’t have either one of those, I used whiskey. Throw in a handful of raisins, if you would like. I did. And I liked it!IMG_6597.JPGI put a lid on it and cooked the apples until they were soft and the liquid disappeared.

IMG_6602-0.JPGAs the apples cooked, I chopped up pecans and EXACTLY 12 Kraft caramel squares. (How’s that for being precise?) But you know what? You can use as many as you would like!!! Go crazy! Use 15 or 23 or the whole dang bag!

IMG_6603.JPG In the microwave I melted a small hunk of butter. I guess it was like 2 tablespoons. I stirred in a cup or so of granola and the chopped pecans.

IMG_6604.JPGAfter a quick taste test, I realized it needed a little something-something. In went some brown sugar and a splash of vanilla. Stir, stir, stir. Second taste….yum!

IMG_6592.JPGI poured the apples and raisins into a buttered dish.

IMG_6598-0.JPGSprinkled the chopped caramel pieces on top of the apples.

IMG_6599-0.JPGSpread the granola on top. Baked this baby in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes. We’re looking for the caramel to be melted and the topping to be lightly browned.

IMG_6596.JPGYum!

Caramel Apple Crisp
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Put next 4 ingredients in a large pan, stir and cooked covered until apples are soft:

4-5 chopped apples 1tsp cinnamon
Handful of raisins A splash of whiskey

While waiting for apples and raisins to cook, stir together:
2 Tbl butter, melted. 1 cup granola
1/2 cup chopped pecans. 1 Tbl brown sugar
1tsp vanilla

When apples are soft, pour into a buttered baking dish. Sprinkle with:
12-15 Kraft Caramels, unwrapped and chopped

Bake in a 350 degree oven until caramel is melted and topping is slightly browned.

Happy Fall Y’all! Hey thanks for dropping by!

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