1-Hour Fall Crafts

1-Hour Fall Crafts

Are you longing to add some Autumn & Thanksgiving decorations to your home but you just don’t have enough time to create anything? Or perhaps you are craft challenged, wanting to make your own decorations but all thumbs when it comes to the actual projects. BHG to the rescue with these easy & quick Autumn crafts for your home. You may find just what you want & impress yourself with your ability! Enjoy!

1-Hour Fall Crafts

14 Time-Saving Shortcuts for an Easier Thanksgiving

14 Time-Saving Shortcuts for an Easier Thanksgiving

There’s no doubt Thanksgiving can be stressful. Preparing for an event that is food focused leaves us little time for prep. Therefore, we need all the shortcuts we can get! Country Living has put together a list of shortcuts to help you take some of the stress out of your Thanksgiving preparations. Make a commitment this year to reduce Holiday stress so you are able to celebrate with family & friends! You work hard! You deserve it!

Shortcuts

Slow-Cooker Thanksgiving Sides

Slow-Cooker Thanksgiving Sides

My slow cookers make Thanksgiving a breeze. I’m able to make dishes in my 3 cookers & relax for hours while dinner takes care of itself. You may not have 3 slow cookers but you can always borrow an extra cooker or 2 or 3 if needed. Especially once you see these incredible recipes from Southern Living. They have come up with a fabulous selection of side dish recipes you can prepare in your slow cookers, including a yummy recipe for sweet potatoes & bacon! Now you can relax a bit & let dinner take care of itself! Enjoy!

Slow-Cooker Thanksgiving Sides

Thanksgiving Decorating Using Fall Finds

Thanksgiving Decorating Using Fall Finds

Thanksgiving decorations needn’t be expensive or hard to make. Autumn is a beautiful time of the year & there are many pieces you can use in your decorations right outside your door. You can also find great items to use to decorate in the grocery store produce aisle. You must simply open your imagination & see all the possibilities around you! Still feeling stuck? Lucky for you BHG has put together a selection of Thanksgiving decorations using Autumn items. Thanksgiving is when we celebrate the harvest, we give thanks for all the beauty & bounty nature has to offer us. It seems just right to use nature to decorate for the Holiday!

Natural Thanksgiving

31 Easy, Homemade Christmas Ornaments

31 Easy, Homemade Christmas Ornaments

When I decorate our Christmas tree each year, I am filled with memories as I hang various ornaments on our tree. The pin & white knit stocking made by a co-worker for The Child on her first Christmas. The bicycle ornament I gave Mr. D. when we were first married. The ornament the church gave me when I was a toddler. And especially, the wax filled ornaments my great-grandparents brought with them from Germany.

As beautiful as those ornaments are, the ones I love the most are the handmade ornaments from friends & made by The Child as she was growing up. Do you have handmade ornaments on your tree? If not, it’s time to add some! If you do, you can always make room for more!

Country Living shares their selection of 31 easy to make ornaments. Many can be made with & by your kids. Prepare them for your tree this year. Then, enjoy the memories they stir up each year as you decorate your tree!

What is your favorite ornament on your Christmas tree? Tell us about it! Share the history & why it means so much to you!

Easy to Make Ornaments

40 Thanksgiving Potluck Recipes

40 Thanksgiving Potluck Recipes

Hosting Thanksgiving at your house this year? Wondering how you are going to prepare all that food without losing your mind? Who says you have to provide all the food? Simple Joy Rule #2 says “Ask for Help.” If you are having a crowd, there is no need to wear out yourself or your wallet. Make dinner a potluck! Provide the turkey & let your guests each bring their favorite Thanksgiving dish. You can always fill in the gaps but this makes sure everyone has their favorite dish on Thanksgiving.

Midwest Living has provided you & your guests 40 recipes that are perfect for Thanksgiving potluck. Use one of these recipes or use one to help you decide what to prepare. A Thanksgiving potluck allows everyone to take part in dinner preparation. What is someone complains about you hosting a potluck? Well, give them a hug & thank them, LOUDLY, for offering to host Thanksgiving dinner NEXT YEAR !

Thanksgiving Potluck

Easy Thanksgiving Centerpieces

Easy Thanksgiving Centerpieces

I enjoy creating centerpieces & tablescapes. We have 2 piece in our living room that are perfect for a tablescape. What’s the difference between a centerpiece & tablescape? Well IMHO, a centerpiece is a single arrangement of flowers or other floral decoration. It may have 2-3 other pieces to go with it but the placement of this arrangement is the center of the table. A tablescape has multiple elements that can spread along the entire table. While this may seem more difficult to create, I find it’s actually easier. Instead of all the emphasis being on the one piece, bits of colors & decor spread out across your table.  It can be very expensive to purchase a pre-made centerpiece for you Thanksgiving (or any other) table. A tablescape should use small pieces that simple add a splash of color to your table. In the photo above, the pears & small pumpkins can be used all along the table. I would call the table decoration in the photo a tablescape.

Whatever you call it, it can be easy & fun. Simple add bits & pieces to the bare spots in your table, step back & fill in where you see the need. To help you get started, Midwest Living offers a selection of easy centerpieces for your Thanksgiving table. Now, relax & have fun with it!

Thanksgiving Centerpieces

10 Holiday Gifts to Start Making Now

10 Holiday Gifts to Start Making Now

My family puts a lot of thought into Christmas gifts. Well, into gifts of any kind. Some of our most precious gifts are the ones that didn’t cost much money. The Child returned from an event on Friday with gifts: a Batman shirt for Mr. D (who loves to glare at us while saying “I’m Batman!”) & a small Minion figure named Dave for me. I just LOVE those little yellow guys. Doesn’t matter how much they may have cost. Katy put a lot of thought & effort into getting gifts she knew we would like.

Some of the best gifts don’t even come from a store. Homemade items mean a lot to the people receiving the gift. They show you spent time creating something just for them. Homemade gifts allow you to share the Holiday spirit with a longer gift list without worrying about the cost. Browsing thrift stores & yard sales allows you to pick up unwanted items & turn them into a beautiful & unique gift for someone special.

Now is the time to get started on your homemade gifts. To help you make your list or just get your creative juices flowing, Good Housekeeping has put together a list of 10 simple & unique homemade gifts. Some so easy, your kids can create them for teachers & family. Remember, the best part about homemade gifts is the love you put into each & every item. That’s a Simple Joy that keeps giving all year long!

Homemade Gifts

Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipes

Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipes

When I prepare a large dinner or food for a special event, I use as many shortcuts as possible while still offering my guests a fabulous meal. However, there are certain small things I do to impress my guests. And they are all very simple. People are impressed because it just isn’t the way most people would do it. For example, making dressing from scratch. All it takes is dried bread & seasoning plus the things you always add to dressing. Very easy but the fact I made it from scratch seems to impress people. I’m really not out to impress them but I like to make things special for all my guests.

Good Housekeeping has a way YOU can impress your guests this Thanksgiving: homemade cranberry sauce! It is easy to make, allows you to personalize it & will impress your guests! Plus, homemade sauce has a fresher flavor than the canned stuff. Browse through these recipes & try one! Or, use one as a starting point for your own recipe. You never know what you might discover!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce