31 Days {Day 31}: The Acorn Squash and Blue Cheese Finale

Hello Dears! For those of you who have stuck with me through these 31 Days…thank you! Sending a huge {{{hug}}} your way 🙂 I had bigger plans for these 31 days than I was able to accomplish – thanks in large part to finding myself in the throes of major home renovations… But I committed to the journey, and I’m not one to back out of a commitment. So, although a little lack-lustre, we made it to the end of the 31 days together! Woohoo!!!!

It was fun blogging about fallish things for a whole month, but I have to say, I’m looking forward to throwing off the confines of a theme…I never really thrive creatively under constraint!

So for our last day, I’m leaving you with a recipe for a side dish that is super simple, and features one of the stars of this season: acorn squash.

All you do is place two halves of an acorn squash, cut side up, into a crockpot. Add a dab or two of butter (I like truffle butter) and some salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours. Carefully remove, and top with carmelized onions, a drizzle of maple syrup, and blue cheese (or try parmesean or gouda if you prefer a more mild flavor combo). Enjoy! Have you missed any of our 31 Days? Here they are:

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!
Day 26: Bringing Fall Inside
Day 27: Easy Entertaining Cozy-Style
Day 28: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 29: Weekend Projects for Autumntide
Day 30: My House Fall Style Part 2

 

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31 Days {Day 30}: My House Fall Style Pt. 2

Well, I had all these great plans to share more glimpses into my cozily decorated-for-fall house — but then the renovation bug bit us in a bad way — and my once clean, decorated, peaceful home turned itself inside out and upside down (well, ok, we might have helped a bit with that)! SO, since there are only one or two surfaces that are even decoratable at the moment – I thought I’d show you just a couple more pics that I had previously taken before disaster struck.

We’re lovin’ this crisp fall weather that has struck Virginia of late! Time for hot cider and comforting soups. Sitting in front of the fire, keeping yummy candles lit all the time, and wearing super fuzzy socks to bed. 🙂

So far on the 31 Day journey:

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!
Day 26: Bringing Fall Inside
Day 27: Easy Entertaining Cozy-Style
Day 28: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicy
Day 29: Weekend Projects for Autumntide

31 Days {Day 29}: Weekend Projects for Autumntide

Can you believe we made it to the weekend again? Last one of October (little tear escaping the corner of my eye)…

BUT, it has been a grand month of weekends, and I shan’t wish to freeze time, because who knows what delights tomorrow will bring? Hopefully for me, tomorrow will bring with it a semi-livable house. 😉

Anyway…here are a few projects I’ve found around the web that I thought you just might enjoy trying out this weekend (as always, click on the picture to be taken right to the host site):

Delicious sounding pumpkin mousse recipe from It's Overflowing. Simple, yet fancy...that's how I roll!

 

Like FlyLady, it's time to start thinking about Christmas...like it or not! Melissa has some great tips to start getting your home ship-shape in preparations for the holidays!

 

Emily shares how to make these cute apple cider cups. But don't wait for a party, why not makes these sweet little treats for your family as a surprise nightcap this weekend?

 

Don't have much in the way of fall decor, but want to add a little seasonal pop? Here's a quick, inexpensive, beautiful way to do just that - thanks to Amanda at My Heart's Desire Blog!

Happy Weekending Dear Ones!

31 Days of Autumn Inspiration:

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!
Day 26: Bringing Fall Inside
Day 27: Easy Entertaining Cozy-Style
Day 28: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity

31 Days {Day 28}: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity

Want more 31 Days?

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!
Day 26: Bringing Fall Inside
Day 27: Easy Entertaining Cozy-Style

31 Days {Day 27}: Easy Entertaining Cozy-Style

For those of you who aren’t all into multi-course meal entertaining, work outside the home all day, or just like the idea of make-ahead meals for company, here’s an idea for you:

Last year, one of my favorite cool weather entertaining meals became soup, sandwiches, and pie. Simple. Welcoming. Unpretentious. Love it!

One of the best thing about this menu is that I can fix the soups ahead (even days ahead) and then just reheat them the day company was coming. I typically make two kinds of soup for company so that people can have a choice – or they can try them both! If the soup had been in the freezer, I’d just break it up and throw the frozen chunks into the crockpot all day on low. Of course you can cook many types of soups and stews fresh that day in the crockpot too.

The sandwiches can be made ahead as well. Depending on the soups I’m serving, ham and cheese biscuits with mustard/butter/garlic/Worcestershire are delicious. Just assemble and wrap in aluminum foil early in the day. Store them in the fridge, and throw them (foil and all) into the oven to heat up when your guests arrive. Cold sammies are good too though: ham (good with anything), pimento cheese (good w/ tomato soup), chicken salad (good with carrot ginger soup) – you get the idea!


If the soups you are serving are pretty light, you can also have condiments on the table such as croutons, olives, carrots/pepper sticks, and cheeses for guests to enjoy with their meal.

The pie can also be baked in the morning and left out to cool on the counter. Once it’s completely cool, it will rest happily under a cake dome until after dinner. Reheat it if you like, and serve with ice cream or whipped cream. Of course if you’re in a time crunch, you can always buy a frozen or deli-made pie!

I hope you give this simple, no-fuss, cozy way of entertaining a group for dinner a try. It truly takes the focus off the food preparation, and puts the focus on connecting with your friends! And who wouldn’t welcome a steaming bowl of soup on a brisk autumn evening?

If you’d like to see a list of a few of my favorite soup recipes, click HERE to be taken to my Victuals page where I have my recipes all listed and organized for you.

The rest of the 31 Days:

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!
Day 26: Bringing Fall Inside

31 Days {Day 26}: Bringing Fall Inside

Things are getting awfully beautiful around here in the fall department! The leaves are turning, the berries are ripe and vibrant, the air is crisp…don’t you wish you could just bottle it up and keep it all year round? 🙂

Beauty Berry

So today, I wanted to encourage you to take a walk around your yard, or block, or park, or woods, and bring your clippers with you (make sure you ask permission if needed!).

Fountain Grass

There are so many beautiful bush branches that clip well and bring so much color into your home! Viburnum, forsythia, oak leaf hydrangeas, crepe myrtles, beauty berries, burning bushes, barberries…and don’t forget pretty fall grasses like fountain grass (above) or dried flowers like sedums or hydrangeas. One of my criteria for buying a new bush to plant in our yard is the kind of fall color it produces.

Burning Bush (before the leaves turn)

Of course, if you have pets, be wary of bringing in berry-laden branches unless you know for sure that they aren’t poisonous. Even if you place them up high somewhere, chances are one or two will eventually fall off and roll to the floor!

Nikko Blue Hydrangea

You’ll be amazed at how just one or two branches of a sugar maple in all its glory, plunked in a vase (use stones or marbles in the water to help weigh it down) will add a beautiful designer, natural, FREE touch to your coffee table (breakfast table, or mantel, wherever)! To help the branches absorb water even better, when you get inside: make a fresh cut with your shears and then gently crush the end with a hammer.

Lacecap Virburnum

Go get clippin’!

For more in the series, here’s the list of previous entries:

Day 2: Cozying Up Your Home for Fall
Day 3: The Recipe EVERYONE Should Have for Fall
Day 4: Preparing for Winter
Day 5: My Home – Fall Style
Day 6: Autumn Snack Time!
Day 7: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 8: Some Simple Fall Projects for the Weekend
Day 9: An Autumn Menu
Day 10: A Very Versatile Fall Accessory – How To Tie a Scarf
Day 11: Smoky Sweet Potato Soup Recipe
Day 12: First Impressions – Fallish Front Doors
Day 13: A Prayer for Autumntide
Day 14: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 15: Wonderful Weekend Ideas for Fall
Day 16: Another Autumn Menu
Day 17: Drinks All Around!
Day 18: Crockpot Country Captain’s Chicken
Day 19: Together. It’s a Great Place to Be.
Day 20: The Day She Slacked

Day 21: Friday’s Fall Foto Felicity
Day 22: Autumn Inspiration for Your Weekend
Day 23: An Autumn Menu
Day 24: Lovely Weather for a Picnic
Day 25: Apples, and Onions, and Sausage, Oh My!

A Desperate Cry for Help… A Vigil for Amy

Friends, I have a younger sister that many of you know. She is beautiful, tremendously gifted and creative, and has such a tender heart. For the past 8 years, she has been battling, among other things, an eating disorder. She has fought and at times, has had some victory. But now it seems, it has her very firmly in its evil grasp and I see her succumbing to its power. She has, this week, stopped fighting. She has no will to continue in the battle. No motivation to try.  No reason to live. ED can take your job, your friends, your ability to believe that a normal life is possible…
BUT! I know that God is greater than ALL – even the demons that are the world of ED (eating disorders). HE can give Amy the will  to fight. The strength to live. The motivation to recover. HE can shatter the darkness and cause them to flee. I have seen His power, and it is great!
I don’t want to see her admitted to the hospital and just “kept alive” until her will power returns. I want to see a miracle now. I’m believing it is coming.

Will you stand and fight for her with us? Tomorrow (Wednesday) I’m organizing a prayer vigil for Amy’s life. I would love to know that people are praying all day long for her. Will you commit to pray?

Pray for her battle to be won by God’s mighty hand, and for peace to be breathed into her soul. Pray for this cloud of despair to lift. TODAY.  Pray for strength to fight the inevitable attacks, and hope to know that she can and WILL be in the 30% of people who successfully recover from an ED. ED have statistically the highest rate of death among mental health conditions.

****PLEASE do not attempt to contact Amy directly in any way. Many people have tried to “encourage” her over the years, but have only caused harm in doing so. If you do not have personal experience with an eating disorder, you have no idea how powerful it is, and many people think it’s “just in your head”. I can assure you – it is not. If you care to send a kind word of encouragement to let her know you are praying for her, you may do so to my FB account or e-mail (or snail mail).

Feel free to send this to any people you know who will stand with us and pray. Post it on your blog. Send the link through Twitter. Let’s fight together for her. Let’s be bold.

“You have not because you ask not”.

Thank you for passing it on.