Category Archives: Thanksgiving

We Are Still Thankful!!!

In this mini blog, we share how to make lollipop turkeys and a fun idea for easy place card holders. (Warning – pine cones are back!)

LOLLIPOP TURKEY CRAFT:

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We decided to put a Thanksgiving twist on the lollipop ghosts that are one of our Halloween staples.

You will need:

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  • lollipops (we use Tootsie pops)
  • one sheet of 8 1/2″ x 11″ white card stock for each turkey
  • orange tissue paper
  • small googly eyes – any color
  • 1 sheet yellow construction paper
  • scotch tape
  • double stick tape
  • markers and crayons
  • ball point pen
  • scissors

How to create:

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  • Print out our turkey template (above) onto card stock
  • Color with crayons and markers
  • Cut out with scissors
  • Our turkey body is 5.5 inches from top to bottom but when printed from the blog on our printer it comes out 5 inches. Either size works fine.

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  • Wrap pop with 4-inch circle of orange tissue paper and tape to secure. Make sure a bit of the lollipop wrapper shows to create the turkey’s waddle.
  • With double stick tape, add mini googly eyes and 1/4-inch yellow paper triangle for beak.
  • Poke hole in turkey with ballpoint pen.
  • Place lollipop into hole and fasten stick to back with tape.

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Make it fancy! Use markers, paints, crayons, whatever your favorites are. These turkeys were made with sharpies and highlighters.

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Gobbling fun!

One last thing: Carefully remove tissue paper from pop and put it back on turkey body with double stick tape, so you don’t end up with a headless turkey.

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Lollipop ghosts:

Open link below for how to make the easy lollipop ghosts that were the inspiration for these turkeys.

https://funclesarts.com/2015/10/30/last-minute-mayhem/

PINE CONE PLACE CARD HOLDERS

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Spray paint some flat-bottomed pine cones gold (or whatever color works in your decor). Add a themed holiday sticker to computer-generated name plates. They make great place card holders for Thanksgiving or any gathering.

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The gold spray painted cones are great, look for them in future holiday posts!

We are thankful for our loved ones, our health and for you, too!

Enjoy!

Roy and Kevin

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Happy and Fun Thanksgiving to All!!!

“Gratitude is the best attitude.” – Unknown                                                                                    Source: Quotegarden.com

Happy Thanksgiving! As Turkey Day approaches, we revisit updated versions of a couple of our favorite side dishes, a hostess gift idea, some of our favorite Thanksgiving things, what we are thankful for, the garden (now patio) update and, of course, the bears!

FAVORITE HOLIDAY SIDE DISHES

Sweet potatoes with bananas

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Check out the recipe here!

https://funclesarts.com/2014/11/22/thanksgiving-the-third-blog-post/

Cranberry sauce with jalapeno peppers

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This zingy favorite is sure to surprise!                     Heat one 14 oz. can of whole berry cranberry sauce over medium heat until it liquefies. Finely chop one jalapeno pepper (remove seeds and ribs to make less spicy if desired) and add to cranberries. Simmer for 5 minutes. Cool at least one hour until mixture solidifies.

Check out last year’s post, where this recipe first appeared, to find a crunchy cranberry sauce variation with a touch of citrus!

Click here for the post and recipe:

https://funclesarts.com/2014/11/14/thanksgiving-continued/

HOSTESS GIFT IDEA

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Baked goods are great hostess gifts, but time constraints around the holidays can make baking from scratch difficult. We suggest using quality mixes. This pumpkin bread was made from a boxed mix. Add dried cranberries, raisins, nuts or whatever you think will work to personalize your goodies. Make it your own! It’s a great gift when wrapped and paired with specialty tea. You can find delicious mixes and ready to bake treats at any supermarket. Easy and appreciated!

“Thanksgiving, man. Not a good day to be my pants!” – Kevin James (comedian)

THANKSGIVING TREASURES

Cornucopia

This cornucopia has been in Roy’s family for as long as he can remember. It was the subject of a recent “veg art” photo!

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Pilgrim candle

Kevin’s family has had this pilgrim candle a long time, too. His mom gave it to us for Thanksgiving just a few years ago. A treasure for sure.

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“Family gathers to share good noise and good food, gratitude abounds!”

poet Alexandra Elle (source goodreads.com)

PATIO UPDATE (FORMERLY GARDEN UPDATE)

The bee is bee-fuddled by the change in the impatiens.

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The tomato cages are waiting to be transformed into Christmas trees or some other holiday creation!

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Bonus picture: We love bittersweet, a fall vine with berries which grows abundantly on our property. Bittersweet make a great fall decoration, but be warned, if you use it indoors, the berries can stain!

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FOOD ART (FORMERLY VEG ART

Fruits and vegetables ready for Thanksgiving!

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JOKE OF THE WEEK

What sound does a space turkey make?  Hubble . . . Hubble . . .Hubble!!!                                       source:101thanksgiving.com

THANKSGIVING TRIVIA

Here is some interesting trivia about Thanksgiving!

http://www.examiner.com/article/50-family-friendly-thanksgiving-trivia-questions-and-answers

Thankful

We are thankful to have wonderful, supportive families, great friends and fun and creative lives. Plus, the 10-0 Pats!!!

THE BEARS

The bears get in the act with their own turkey hats.

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Last but DEFINITELY not least, we are thankful for your support and kindness!

Enjoy!

Roy & Kevin

Pre-Thanksgiving Fun!

This week, try our turkey chili, and check out our decorations, gift ideas, garden update, and, of course, the bears!

TURKEY CHILI

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This easy, money-saving chili recipe makes a big batch and stretches a pound of ground turkey or beef. It’s a warming, make-ahead meal and leftovers freeze great, too! You’ll gobble it up!

Ingredients:

  • one lb. lean ground turkey
  • one large onion, chopped
  • one tablespoon minced garlic
  • one tablespoon olive oil
  • three 15.5 oz. cans each of black beans and red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • one 16 oz. can fat-free refried beans
  • one 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • one 10 oz. can diced tomatoes with chilis
  • two cups water
  • one quart box (32 oz.) of reduced sodium chicken broth
  • one lb. bag frozen pepper strips
  • 1/2 cup chili powder
  • one tablespoon cumin
  • one teaspoon oregano
  • one tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • one tablespoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons masa flour (in a pinch, finely ground tortilla chips work great, too!)
  • salt to taste

How to prepare:

  • Brown ground turkey in olive oil with chopped onion and grated garlic.
  • In a large saucepan, add the beans, tomatoes, pepper strips, chicken broth and water.
  • Bring to a simmer and add browned meat and onion combo. Add spices and masa flour; simmer for 20 minutes. That’s it!

Serve with tortilla chips, cheese, sour cream, olives and your favorite toppings!

THANKSGIVING DECORATIONS

Thanksgiving banner

This festive banner is fun to make!

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Check out the directions here:

https://funclesarts.com/2014/11/07/thanksgiving-post-number-one-the-holiday-blogfest-continues/

Playing dress up

Roy’s hand-made scarecrows like to dress up as pilgrims for Thanksgiving!

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Cards as decorations

We save our holiday greeting cards to use as decorations. This week, they are combined with the leaf print cards we made a couple of weeks ago to decorate a door in our apartment.

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Check out the blog, “Autumn Leaves”, to learn how to make these leaf prints.

https://funclesarts.com/2015/11/07/autumn-leaves/

GIFTS FOR KIDS

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Keeping kids engaged and entertained during holiday celebrations can be a challenge.  For Thanksgiving, we bought the holiday clings on the left so the children can adorn the windows (check with your hostess to make sure it is okay.) Also, nothing beats coloring and sticker books for creative fun. Give Christmas-themed books to the kids at Thanksgiving so they can enjoy them the whole holiday season. Washable markers are the way to go. Kids love to color!

Speaking of color, we are pleased to see our Christmas cacti, a gift from Kevin’s mother several years ago, in full bloom!

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Hostess Gift Idea: Christmas cacti survive with very little attention and provide the gift of beautiful blossoms at least twice a year.

GARDEN UPDATE

When we started cleaning the patio, it looked like this:

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After close inspection, we realized that the pepper and 2 tomato plants were ready to go. So thankful for the hundreds of peppers and tomatoes we harvested this growing season!

We kept some of the blossoming plants, which still provide color. The patio is now ready for our winter decor. More to come in future blogs.

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VEG ART – TWO FOR ONE!

In anticipation of this week’s predicted frost, we picked all of our tomatoes and peppers. They are ripening in a paper bag (great way to hasten the ripening process).

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JOKE OF THE WEEK

Why did the scarecrow win the Nobel Prize? Because he was out standing in the field!             Source:EnchantedLearning.com

THE BEARS

The bears are looking dapper in their mini pilgrim hats!

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Enjoy

Roy & Kevin

Autumn Leaves

This week, we share ideas for re-purposing our Halloween decorations, a seasonal art project,   a quick and delicious recipe for tuna pizza, our garden update and, of course, the bears!

PUMPKINS AND SCARECROWS

Our Halloween decorations included many items that can be used throughout the fall season. The ghosts and skeletons have been exorcised until next Halloween, but the pumpkins and scarecrows now form the basis of our fall decor. With Roy’s handmade pumpkin pillows on the couch, we simply turned the faces to the wall for a quick and easy change-up.

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LEAF ART

This craft is a flashback from grammar school – still fun to do!!!

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You will need:

Leaves, crayons, paper (see tips below), paper towels

To do:

  • Place leaf vein side up on paper towel.
  • Position paper over leaf where you would like the image to appear.
  • With side of peeled crayon, gently rub paper over leaf.

This requires some trial and error. Make sure you have extra paper so you can experiment.

Tips:

  • Pick out different shapes, sizes and varieties of leaves.
  • Use paper that is not too thick. Printer and construction papers work well, but thicker paper, like cardstock, will be less effective. Test out your paper before starting your project.
  • Leaves with prominent stems and veins are great for doing these rubbings.
  • Experiment with different color crayon combinations.
  • Good use for broken crayons.

Scan your completed designs for multiple uses. Print the images onto cardstock for personalized greeting cards. Frame your creation for seasonal decor. Think outside the box, pick up some t-shirt transfer paper, and your creation becomes a fun t-shirt!

Check out this link for info on designing t-shirts with your artwork:

http://www.ehow.com/how_10039627_transfer-pictures-tshirt.htmlZZAS

TUNA PIZZA

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These tuna pizzas are quick, easy and delicious. Simply put your favorite tuna salad on an English muffin, add 1/2 slice of low-fat Swiss (or your favorite) cheese and veggies (if desired). We used chopped green peppers. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes, then broil for 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn. These come out of the oven very hot – let cool slightly before eating.

We used 4 cans of tuna for 6 English muffins.

GARDEN UPDATE

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The unseasonably warm weather continues and has made the garden last longer than we had anticipated. We are still harvesting peppers and tomatoes in November!

VEG ART

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HOLIDAYS COLLIDE!!!

Our Christmas cactus, which we received as a gift from Kevin’s mom, Irene, more than five years ago, is blooming in one of our Jack-O-Lantern pots.

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JOKE OF THE WEEK

If money really did grow on trees, fall would be everyone’s favorite season!

THE BEARS

The bears wanted to help rake the leaves under this beautiful tree, but their (matching) rakes were too big, so they decided to play! (Who can blame them!?)

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ENJOY!

Roy and Kevin

 

Thanksgiving -The Third Blog Post

Wow – this is our 6th blog entry already and next week is Thanksgiving. We are focusing on the meal and table today. Every celebration needs a nice centerpiece, and we saw one which showed a flower arrangement in a pumpkin. We did our own take on that. Also, we have a recipe we got from Rachael Ray a few years ago. We’ve changed it up a bit to make it healthier, yet still delicious! Enjoy!

PUMPKIN & FLOWER CENTERPIECE

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Looking for pumpkins the week before Thanksgiving can be tricky. In our area, they are not easy to find (or else we are looking in the wrong places – hmm, could be). Anyway, we adapted and created the pumpkin vase (pictured above) using the plastic pumpkin in the photo to the left.

For an 8-inch plastic pumpkin, you will need: 80 inches of orange (or the color of your choice) twisted paper cord (one brand available in most craft stores is called creative twist), hot glue gun and glue, small pot of mums or your favorite fall flower that will fit into your pumpkin. Our plant is 4 inches in diameter and 12 inches high.

  • Untwist paper cord and cut into eight 10-inch strips. When untwisted, the paper cord is about 4 inches wide.
  • Cover the Jack-O-Latern’s face with one of the crepe paper strips. You may have to cut the strip in 2 and piece them together, depending on the Jack-O-Lantern design. Secure with hot glue. (The face needs to be covered twice for this project so it will not show.)
  • After the face has been covered once, and starting next to a handle, cover the pumpkin by applying the strips vertically. Glue top of strip 1/2″ into inside of pumpkin. Add glue to middle of crepe paper strip and then glue to the bottom. Overlap strips by about a 1/16th of an inch as you go around.
  • Insert plant.

 SWEET POTATOES WITH BANANAS

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We tweaked a great recipe we saw Rachael Ray make so it would be healthier. Go to foodnetwork.com for the original recipe for Rachael Ray’s wonderful Mashed Sweet Potatoes.

Here is our version with less fat and sugar:

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds of sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks.
  • 2 tablespoons light margerine (with no hydrogenated oils)
  • 1 sliced banana
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Directions:

Boil potatoes about 20 minutes until tender, drain and put potatoes aside. In the original pot, add margerine and banana slices.  Cook the banana 5 minutes on medium heat and add the juice of the orange. Allow the orange juice to cook out for about 1 minute. Add the potatoes back to the pot with the stock and brown sugar. Mash together until its well mixed. Season with nutmeg, salt, pepper and orange zest to taste. Mash to combine, top with 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans.  WE LOVE THESE SWEET POTATOES!!

JOKE OF THE WEEK:                                                                                                                                       Can a turkey jump higher than the Empire State Building?                                                             Yes! A building can’t jump at all!

Joke source:  Kidsactivities.net

FUN FACTS: According to the website Life123 the first Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade took place in 1924. It was known then as the Macy’s Christmas Parade. Today, the parade is attended by an estimated 3 million people and is viewed by approximately 44 million people all over the country.

Thanks so much for reading, following and sharing these blogs. We have been having fun creating and writing.

1 more blog post before Thanksgiving! Gobble Gobble!

Roy & Kevin

Thanksgiving post number one! The holiday blogfest continues!

Thanks for looking at this blog and at the previous Halloween blog entries. If you haven’t seen the others, please check them out. The fun part for us is creating new things and coming up with fresh ideas every week. This week we show how you can switch things up and make the transition from Halloween to Thanksgiving decorating simple. The Pumpkin About-face Switcharoo takes seconds, and is great for a quick start of your holiday redecorating, and the Happy Thanksgiving banner uses elements of the Halloween banner, for an easy transition.  And it looks great!

PUMPKIN ABOUT-FACE SWITCHEROO! This is a simple trick to switch over from Halloween decorations to Thanksgiving. Simply turn the Jack-O-Lanterns around so the face is toward the wall and the plain pumpkin side faces front. Some of the pumpkins shown above were featured in the 2nd Halloween blog with their smiling Jack-O-Lantern faces. The plain pumpkins are more suitable for Thanksgiving.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING BANNER

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  • Last week, we showed a Halloween banner made with burlap painted with black paint and hung clothesline style and secured with painted clothespins.
  • This week we used the same lines , hung 11″ apart, one over the other, and added 3 more clothespins (18 total for this).
  • For the letters, we cut card stock into 18 rectangles 4.5″ X 3.5″ and cut capital letters out of contrasting paper. (Shortcut: Using 3 X 5 plain index cards would save cutting time and that size works well too.) We used yellow for the base and purple, red and orange for the letters. We had those on hand. Use your favorite colors.
  • Secure letters with glue stick.
  • For the word HAPPY, we hot-glued plastic leaves to the clothespins.
  • For THANKSGIVING, we used scotch tape to secure leaves to the back and bottom of the card stock/index cards. We did the same on the side of the first and last letter .
  • Adjust and center letters for your desired look.
  • Embellish with turkey, pilgrim, cornucopia, or Thanksgiving stickers if desired.
  • Keep it neat, but don’t worry about perfection, the casual look is part of it’s charm.                   (Hmm.. you may be noticing a pattern here!)

A FEW MORE THINGS:                                               

STOCK UP ON STUFFING! According to livescience.com :                                                   “American’s gobble up 46 million turkeys at Thanksgiving” Wow!

THANKSGIVING JOKE OF THE DAY:                                                                                                          If the Pilgrims were alive today, what would they be famous for? Their age!                Source: enchantedlearning.com

Thank you all for following and sharing these blogs! We appreciate your interest!

More next week, including a great craft project and a simple but surprising twist on a classic Thanksgiving recipe! Check it out!

Thanks again,

Roy and Kevin!