Fall Favorites

I’m writing this post as one of a group of posts with other bloggers about some things/items we just love about Fall. After you read my post, check out their posts below and see what things other people like about fall as well!

There are things uniquely fall that I just love. The smell of apple cider, colorful leaves, and crisp mornings with a steaming cup of coffee, to name a few. While summer is my favorite season, I still enjoy fall, and all the different smells and sights that come with it.

I started working on this list and realized that my favorite things about fall seem to center around food. Caramel sauce, sweet potatoes, tea, etc. It’s just that time of year when I feel like baking and cooking. I included some food on my list but did my best to include some other things as well.

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1. Mickey Jack O Lantern – I purchased this years ago at a silent auction. The tag said it was Disney though. Every fall, we pull it out and my kids use it as their bathroom nightlight all October and November.

I hide it again when we return home after Thanksgiving, and we save it for next year. I think the kids love seeing the fun Mickey smile through the fall, plus it’s not terribly bright so it makes a perfect nightlight.

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2. Fall Candles – I just love candles, and fall has some really great scents. Pumpkin, leaves, cinnamon, apple, etc. All those wonderful, comfort scents that come with fall. Plus since it’s getting cooler out it’s nice to have a candle burning to give the feeling of warmth – since I don’t have a fireplace.

I love a fireplace, there just isn’t one in my house. So I make do with what I can. For me, that means lots of candles in the fall and winter months.

My favorite brand is Yankee Candle. They just always burn well and smell so great! This Autumn Wreath scent is one of my favorites, it’s fall, without being festive. Since I like to save the December holiday scents for December so I can enjoy fall for as long as possible.

The real trick with candles is keeping my kids from blowing them out before I’m ready. Since my kids just love blowing out candles.

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3. Russian Tea – My husband introduced me to this years ago. It’s a super simple “tea” to make, delicious, and so perfect for a crisp fall evening. Last week, I mixed up my first batch of Russian Tea for this fall. It’s something everyone in my family loves. And with the Tang, it even has some vitamin C.

I love to mix up a mason jar full and just keep it on my counter for whenever I want a cup.

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Russian Tea

1 cup Tang
1 cup instant tea (I prefer Lipton)
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Pour all ingredients in a mason jar, close the lid, shake until well mixed.

To make tea, mix two heaping spoonfuls of mix with boiling water in a coffee cup.

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4. Salad Spinner – It’s that time of year when my CSA gives me lots of lettuce. Around here, we get lettuce in the spring and lettuce in the fall. My salad spinner is a lifesaver. I love salad, and fresh lettuce is delicious, but it’s a pain to dry.

This salad spinner works great, and is so easy to use that usually my kids spin my lettuce dry for me. I usually spin a whole head of lettuce, dry my spinner, then just cover it with a towel in the fridge and I have delicious, clean, lettuce in my fridge for days!

I bought my spinner a few years ago so it’s no longer available on Amazon, but I did find one that looks just like it.

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5. Leaves – And last but not least, I just love the leaves in the fall. I love the colors, the crunch, and just the fun of making a pile and then playing in it. I don’t do much jumping in leaves these days, but it sure is fun to watch the kids play in the leaves. The great part is the play, rake, play, and wear themselves out, then all come in and take baths. It makes for a very fun day for them with minimal effort from me.

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What’s one thing you love about fall? Check out these other awesome blogs for more fall inspiration!

Joanne from Seasonal Family Fun | Stephanie from Wife Mommy Me | Alicia from TaylorLife | Rachee from Say It Rachee | Jenny from Chocolate ‘N Children | Jennifer from Simply At Home Mom | Jenn from More Than A Mom Of Three | Laurie from Steals & Deals For Kids

* This post does contain affiliate links.

 

Kale Salad

I have tried every way I can think of to get my kids to eat kale. I finally gave up, and when I got kale in my CSA box this week I figured I would end up eating it all myself.

I made this delicious Kale salad and the first time I made it I made just enough for myself. Well, my 2yr old and my 7yr old came along and ate the entire salad for me. Apparently, they like it raw, but not cooked!

Kale Salad

1 bunch of Kale
1/4 cup raisins
1 yellow pepper
1/4 cup cherry tomatoes
Italian vinaigrette dressing

Rinse and remove stems from the kale. Then chop the kale into pretty small pieces. Dice the yellow pepper. Put all vegetables in a bowl, add Italian dressing to taste and stir well.

Super easy and so delicious!

CSA Week 3

There were so tasty things in my box this week. And some vegetables I’m not that familiar with. Be prepared for fun recipes tomorrow!

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More green onions – I have got to find a use for this. This is 3 weeks in a row, and they’re all sitting in my fridge…

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Radishes – the recipe I tried last time¬†was pretty good. But no one in my family really likes radishes, so I’m going to have to try something different. Also, I have the tops this time. I’m thinking I’ll try a pesto and see whether I like the carrot top pesto or the radish top pest best.

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Beets – I’ve never ever cooked beets. I’ll be looking at lots of beet recipes this week! They have the tops too. I’m pretty sure I can use these like any green similar to kale. I’ll be finding out what the taste difference is!

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Spinach – we love spinach salad! I doubt I’ll have enough to do more than just salads. Especially since this is our preferred way to eat spinach.

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While we’re discussing salads, here’s a head of red lettuce. I see some delicious salads in my future!

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More Kale – I love cooked greens but the kids and my husband are not impressed. I’m going to try kale chips this week, maybe those will be better received…

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Tomatoes – I love tomatoes. And these are huge and delicious looking. Can’t wait to start eating these.

Come back tomorrow to see what I did with all these familiar and unfamiliar vegetables.

 

Kroger Skillet Meals

Thanks to Bzzagent I got to try Kroger skillet meals, Kroger frozen garlic bread, and Kroger salad kits for free.

I loved the garlic bread. Actually, everyone loved the garlic bread. I’ve bought several packages since trying it and it always gets eaten. Quick and easy to make. Goes great with pretty much any meal!

The salad kits are great too. You get a salad with dressing and toppings in just the time it takes you to pour everything in the salad bowl. No chopping and slicing.

Combine these with the skillet meals and you have a very fast dinner. (cooks up in under 10 minutes, which is nice because with 3 little kids I never have enough time to make supper). I tried the shrimp skillet meal and wasn’t impressed with it. It tasted great but there just wasn’t 4 servings in the bag. With the garlic bread and salad we almost had a complete meal, I think the skillet meal would have been enough if it was just me eating instead of me, husband, and kids.

I almost made it for guests but I decided to try it first, and I’m glad I did.

Now, the skillet meal tasted great and it was super easy to make, so I would have no problem serving it to guests (it had lots of nice vegetables in it too), just know that the serving size is small so you either need to get double what you think you need for your main course, serve it for lunch instead of dinner, or serve this as a side.

All in all, a tasty product, I’ll just have to buy two next time.