Friday, October 12, 2012

Autumn: A Pretty Home and Yummy Food on a Budget

Dear friends,

Are you ready for autumn?  I'm not quite there yet, since it's still so warm here in Orlando, but I'm working on it. My husband is going to retrieve our autumn decoration bin from storage this weekend, but in the meantime, I'm making do with what I have available already, as well as some new items.  You can see what I've done for autumn in years past here: Easy Autumn Decorating on a Dime.

Today's post is a lot about autumn decorating, and a little bit about food and hospitality.

I wanted a few extras new fall pretties for my home but I don't have a lot in the budget right now.  Fortunately, as I walked into Olde Time Pottery this morning, I stopped at a table outside and subscribed to the local newspaper for a low rate, and they gave me a free $10 OTP gift card as a bonus.  So while I had been planning to just browse, I actually got to buy a few things!

I bought this wall basket to hang on my front door
last spring, as you can see in my post 

Today I bought these silk flowers for $3.49
at Olde Time Pottery, and tucked them 
into the basket with a folded over doily.
(In addition to the ribbon and hook, the basket is anchored
to the door with a strong magnet.)

Other recent additions:
The two pilgrims are from Dollar General ($1 each) and the
two small wood signs are from Olde Time Pottery ($1.50 each).
The silk flowers and flower pot were gifts.

A closer look at the pilgrim maiden

The ceramic pumpkins, which hold tealight candles,
were on clearance at Olde Time Pottery for $2.60 each.
On Halloween, we'll put them outside on our garden wall,
and light up the insides for jolly jack-o-lanterns!
The basket is full of homemade potpourri.
My husband gave me white roses
for my birthday last month.
After the blooms finally wilted,
I dried the petals on a rack. (See below.)
Since white roses don't have much aroma,
I added orange scented oil and a
little bit of food coloring to perk them up.

White rose petals on a drying rack.

Two days ago, I happened to walk into the Goodwill thrift store and while my kids were trying on clothes, I sat down on this lovely chair nearby.  It felt comfy, is in terrific condition with sturdy fabric, matches the burgundy and creamy yellow colors in my living room, and was only $40.  Since we needed extra seating in our living room anyway, I bought it on the spot and hauled it home in my big old van. It seems like there is someone always in it doing homework or hanging out.  I wish this picture did it justice.  It's really pretty.

I guess that's about all my budget can handle right now, so I'll be glad to get my big bin of stuff out and around the house.  

I've also got a handful of big fat acorns that I brought from  Maryland.  I haven't figured out how to display them on my bedside table yet, but I'll think of something.

A happy memento of my trip...
And now to the food...

The Aldi store is stocking lots of yummy pumpkin flavored products this time of year.  I decided to try out the pumpkin spice cookie mix, which is about $1.50 per bag.  My 11 year old daughter made up two packages and baked them on pizza pans (one package per pan) for mega cookies.  She cut them in to big wedges and served them warm with whipped topping.  We'll definitely be buying more of these this season!  They are like pumpkin pie that you can eat with your hand.

Delicious pumpkin spice cookie with whipped cream!

I bought these plastic plates, some in burgundy
and some in dark green, at Dollar General.
They were four for $1 and I bought 20.
Our large family used them now for snacks and lunches,
and they'll be great for serving desserts to a crowd
at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

My dear friend and fellow blogger Tonya Travelstead invited me over for breakfast this morning.  She made premium oatmeal cooked with apple chunks and drizzled with honey.  She also served hot chocolate and apple wedges.  Delicious, healthy, and so perfect for an autumn breakfast!

Tonya loves hospitality and sets a gorgeous table.

Oatmeal made with steel cut oats
- I love the hearty texture!
Tonya wrote this on her blog:
Healthy Eating: Steel Cut Oats
She says they are usually about $4 per container,
but they Aldi carries them seasonally for about $2.
I'll be looking for them!
Of course what I like most about breakfast with Tonya... is Tonya!  I think I've known her for almost 30 years and she's a real sweetheart!  We used to walk together a few times a week and I think I need to start joining her again. (See Meeting Halfway.) Another thing I like about Tonya is that she is a wealth of information about saving money, making a cozy  home, showing hospitality, and loving God and family well. You will love her blog Mrs. T's Thoughts from a Titus 2  She and I both shop at Aldi and write about it.  Her blog series is at Tonya's Aldi Product Reviews and mine is at Groceries from Aldi.

Like food?  I've got a whole bunch of recipes on my blogs.  These are perfect for autumn and the holidays:

In case you missed them, I also have some posts on my main blog from my trip to Maryland last weekend with my oldest daughter and two grandsons.  Real autumn colors on the trees!  Take a peek...

  • To Grandmother's House (And a Petting Zoo) We Go

  • Apple Picking, Fritters, and Goofy Gourds at Larriland Farm
  • Beauty and Diversity on an Autumn Sunday in Maryland

  • I'm so glad I took this trip because not only did I get to see my family in Maryland, and help my daughter travel with her little guys, but I also had special time bonding with my grandsons.  The two year old sweetie actually told me, "Grandma, I love you!" for the first time, and my daughter just texted to tell me that he had called me his "honey" -- probably during his bedtime prayers!  Awww!  He melts my heart!

    I guess that's all for now! A happy autumn to you and yours!  If you have written about autumn on your blog, leave your link in a comment so the rest of us can enjoy it!

    This post will be linked to:


    1. What a GREAT find at Goodwill! I bet it is just lovely in your living room and I know my kids would be the same way...plopping in to read a book, do school work or just cuddle with their babies. ;D Olde Time Pottery...sounds like a neat store. Maybe if I venture your way some day, I'll have to try and stop in there. Looks like you did well with your new additions to your fall decor. Thanks for stopping by today, too and sharing your links.



    2. I'll definitely be looking at more of your recipes! (Found you at the Raising Homemakers linkup)

    3. Thanks for sharing your decor and recipes and thoughts. Happy Autumn! Bless you, GAil

    4. I really enjoyed your Autumn decoration ideas and recipes that you shared. It is a wealth of ideas!!

      Thank you for sharing over at WholeHearted Home this week. Hope to see you again next week.

    5. Great ideas and adorable decorating! Thank you for sharing and linking up! Blessings!

    6. Glad you enjoyed the breakfast time, as did I. :) I need to walk more after looking at this photo of myself!! :)

    7. Those cookies are delicious! :)


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