Tag Archives: Fun

A Very FriendsGiving

19 Nov

For the past 3 years Nathan and I have hosted a pre-Thanksgiving dinner and game night for our friends.  Its great to be able to see everyone and relax together before the hectic holiday season starts.  This has become my favorite event of the year and we always have a full house.  Nathan and I prepare all of the food for the main meal, and ask people bring an appetizer or a dessert to share.

25LB Turkey

This year we had a 25 lb turkey and 10 lb ham!  The usual side dishes made their appearance-the green beans, mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls, and cranberry sauce.  Yet, this year some of the side dishes had a slight spin on them.

Instead of doing corn this year, I made a very delicious Corn Casserole Paula Dean’s Corn Casserole Recipe.  AMAZING! Many thanks to Paula Dean-it turned out great.

Corn Casserole and 10lb Ham

Another difference this year was the stuffing-I fried it!  My coworker Ed gave me this idea and its so simple and oh so good.  Make your stuffing as usual and let it cool enough so that you can roll it. Once you have rolled the stuffing into balls, coat with egg and flour and fry away.

Fried Stuffing Balls!

Elise helping out in the kitchen

I have found that doing prep work early cuts down on the stress of having everything ready at the same time.  The mashed potatoes were made earlier in the day and put in the crockpot to keep warm.  Serving the potatoes in the ceramic pot also cuts down on dishes later.

Make it easy on yourself by making things early.

Finally all sitting to eat

Must be good if Nate is up for seconds:)

After dinner it is game time!  Our yearly tradition is Pictionary with guys vs. gals.  We make up the categories ourselves and think of things for the other team to draw.  I would just like to note that the girls usually win 🙂  This year we also played Cards Against Humanity.  HILARIOUS! This game is always sold out and you have to be on the waiting list if you want to buy it.  I know a few of us have already added it to our Christmas list.

Nate’s turn at Pictionary.  Of course Cheetoes has to see what the fuss is all about.

The holiday season always serves as a reminder of things that are important in life.   I am very thankful to have such wonderful friends and family, both nearby and those far.

I hope you and your families have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Cheers, Tara

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Falling For Fall

17 Sep

Fall is by far my most favorite time of the year! Don’t get me wrong, I love summer and everything that comes along with it; the beach, pool, cookouts, outdoor games, sun dresses and sandals but to me none of that even competes with fall! The fresh smell in the air, cool breezes, sleeping with the windows open, leaves changing color, the return of Football and of course, Starbucks, Pumpkin Spice Latte! Fall is so colorful, cool and fun and holds an even bigger special meaning to me now; since Joe and I’s anniversary is September 24. This year the first official day of fall is September 22, but fall has been in the air the last couple of weeks. I always look forward to fall not only because it means the end of summer humidity and bug bits (was it just me or were the mosquitos worse than ever this year?), but because Halloween, my birthday and Thanksgiving aren’t far away!

With the beginning of cooler weather comes the changing out of your wardrobe. I have been waiting probably since the beginning of August for the weather to cool, so I could break out my favorite boots, scarves and sweaters.

The cooler fall weather gets me excited for a visit to the pumpkin patch, apple picking, apple cider and Halloween activities.

Another fall activity MUST is camping. I have always L.O.V.E.D camping, if you have read this blog before you know I L.O.V.E a lot of things and camping is just another one of those things. There is just something about camping and being in nature that eases me. My parents used to take my sisters and I camping when we were little. Each morning my dad would heat a little tea pot of punch over the camp fire. Before he handed us our little mugs he would put a cinnamon stick in it. The smell and taste of the punch was comforting and warming. I would sit by the campfire and drink my little cup of cinnamon-y goodness. I haven’t had it since I was little, but I want to make it this year when we go on our family camping trip with my aunts, uncles, cousins and sisters. For the last couple years we have gone camping at Point Lookout State Park in St. Mary’s County, Maryland. The park is gorgeous! If you live in Maryland or if Southern Maryland is close enough to you to travel I highly recommend this campground! So many trails to explore and you are right on the water. Last year our camp site backed to the Chesapeake bay, so at night we crabbed off the pier and my cousins, sisters and I took tons of sunset pictures. I can’t wait for our camping trip this year, cool crisp nights sitting around a campfire with family, playing games, talking, laughing and eating s’mores until we feel sick. It’s those simple pleasures that make fall so special to me. The pictures below are from our camping trip last year.

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This last one is of my sisters, cousin and I.
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One last reason I am so glad that fall is here is because I can start running outside again without the presence of stifling humidity! Yey!

In honor of fall here are a few of the fall things that have caught my eye:

I can’t wait to try this Pumpkin Pie White Hot Chocolate recipe! It looks so easy to make and delicious!

This Martha Stewart Chicken Pot Pie recipe will be perfect for a cool fall night.

I.Want.This.Outfit! Perfect for fall!

I’m loving these green accessories.

I am thinking about turning attempting to turn one of my old sweaters into these adorable mittens.

Last year I made the fall wreath below that I found here. I was really happy with how it turned out and am still searching for an idea for my wreath this year.

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I hope all of you are enjoying the cooler weather as much as I am! Are you trying any new fall recipes? Have you already brought out your fall wardrobe? I wore my favorite boots for the first time last week. Oh how I missed them! 🙂

Cheers!
Elise

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