Thursday, November 22, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I'm taking the day off to enjoy time with my family.  I hope you all have a wonderful holiday! 


Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Virtual Refrigerator- Clay Figures

Thanks for stopping by and joining us again this week as we host another virtual refrigerator arts and crafts link up.


Alec has been hard at work creating some new characters out of polymer clay.  He searches up YouTube videos and just follows along.  I'm not sure where he gets this talent from as I have tried many times to work with clay and am just awful at it!


His first peacock burned in the oven but the very next day Alec sat back down at the computer and made another one.  This time we baked it on a lower temp and checked it every 5 minutes.  He also made a turtle too.








Once they were both baked, hardened, and cooled he added just a bit of shine to the turtle's shell and the purple peacock feathers using a glaze.




Now without further ado I invite you to grab a "magnet" and link up your arts and crafts posts below and visit some other bloggers to see what they shared on their refrigerators.

Your art project doesn't need to be a stand alone post, nor does it need to be a tutorial.  We love day in the life posts or homeschooling wrap- ups that show art work too! 

So what do you have to share with us?


grab button for Homeschool Coffee Break
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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

November Pinterest Challenge--Maple Apple Butter Muffins

Welcome to the September Pinterest Challenge Blog Hop, hosted by My Pinterventures. The purpose of this Pinterest Challenge is to motivate all the participants of this hop (and you too) to not just pin, but to make it happen!

This month I chose to try this recipe for apple butter muffins and added a bit of maple flavor too.



I made apple butter for the first time this fall and while I really liked the flavor punch I wasn't all that sure how to use it.  I did make some fall Chex Mix using apple butter and a delicious pork roast using it too but I just did not know what to do with what I had left and I thought a delicious breakfast treat would be perfect!

Here's what I used to make my muffins:

2 cups flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter; melted
3/4 cup apple butter (that's all I had left!)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 milk
1 egg

I began by lining my tray with cupcake liners for easier clean up.


Then combined all the dry ingredients in my stand mixer.


Slowly I added in the wet ingredients.


Once my batter was ready I used my large scoop to fill the cupcake liners.  Then baked them at 425 for 15 minutes until a toothpick came out clean with just a few dry crumbs attached.


I set them aside to cool in the pan.



They were delicious!  And so light and airy too.



I just love these Pinterest Challenges!  They always get us to try something fun and new.

In January my boys and I made nail polish marbled mugs.
In February we tried out a new recipe for turkey & cornbread pot pie.
In March my boys worked on making a salt dough map.
In April my boys made some glittery mason jar luminaries. 
In May my oldest on and husband made a hand forged key holder
In June I made zucchini crust pizza for myself.
In July we made cheesy ranch Chex Mix
In August we made blueberry yogurt popsicles
In September we made mocha zucchini bread with dark chocolate chips
In October we made a reversible fall/winter sign for the front porch

 To join next month's #pinterestchallenge, click here to sign-up ⇒ December Pinterest Challenge

Now let's see what other things Pinterest inspired! Head over and visit the other hosts to see what they crafted, cooked, built, or tried!
Pinterest Challenge Blog Hop
Erlene - My Pinterventures • Alexandra - Eye Love Knots Joanne - Our Unschooling Journey • Laurie - My Husband Has Too Many Hobbies Jenny - Cookies Coffee and Crafts • Kristie - Teadoodles Beverly - Across the Boulevard • Sam - Raggedy Bits Debra - Shoppe No. 5 Gail - Purple Hues and Me Chelsea - Making Manzanita • Susan - Suzer Space Julie - Sum of their Stories • T'onna - Sew Crafty Crochet Michelle - Our Crafty Mom • Lisa - Blogghetti Marie - The Inspiration Vault • Kelley - Simply Inspired Meals Debbee - Debbee's Buzz • Shirley - Intelligent Domestications Roseann - This Autoimmune Life • Terri - Our Good Life Lydia - Lydia's Flexitarian Kitchen • Emily - Domestic Deadline • Lynne - My Family Thyme 
• Lauren - Mom Home Guide



Monday, November 19, 2018

100 Days of Science #50-- Fall Leaf Chromatography

We were lucky to squeeze in one final fall science experiment before our trees lost all their leaves.  We took a few minutes one morning to walk around the yard and find leaves in red, orange, yellow, and green; just picking a few of each.  



We wanted leaves fresh from the trees because we knew they would work better.   


We sorted the leaves by color and broke them up into tiny pieces; placing each color in their own jar.



We then took a spoon and used the flat side to crush the leaves; trying to release some of the color before we added some rubbing alcohol to each jar.


We added just enough rubbing alcohol to cover our leaves and then put a lid on them (cling wrap would work great too).


We then put the glass jars in a larger pan and added HOT water to the outer pan.  Basically we wanted to warm up the alcohol to help speed up the process of drawing out the various chemicals that make the leaves the colors they appear.



We set it aside on the counter for a few hours and let the water cool off completely.  We then removed the lids and made sure we had colored alcohol puddles.  (If we didn't I would have added another batch of water and let them sit overnight).

We then cut up strips of coffee filter and put one strip in each jar.


After just an hour or so we could see the colors being drawn up.



We left them sitting overnight so we would see a more dramatic effect the next day.





When our papers dried they looked like this!






We talked about how leaves always have all of these chemicals inside them but the green (chlorophyll) overtakes the leaves in spring and summer because the plant is busy making lots and lots of food.  In the fall the plant isn't working on food production and the other colors become visible.

Others in this series:
2.  Field Trip to the Ecotarium 
3.  Learning About Air Molecules

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Fall Bucket List-- How We Did

I know fall isn't technically over yet but with Thanksgiving this week we soon turn our thoughts to Christmas and all that winter fun.  I figured this was the perfect time to look back at our fall bucket list and see how we did!



1.  Make pumpkin or apple cider donuts using our new donut pans.  I'm dying to try this recipe!-- Check!!  We made some absolutely delicious pumpkin donuts.






2.  Go apple picking!-- Check!! - We actually went a few times!





3. Make our apple pies and a couple other apple recipes-- Check and Check! - We made Jolly Rancher candy apples, apple pies, and apple butter; just to name a few!



4.  Tour the cider mill in Mystic-- Check!  We went one weekend to watch their cider making demonstrations.



5.  Go hiking a few times to notice all the changing fall colors and try out a few new hiking trails-- Check!  I even wrote this post with all our photos from a woodland walk in fall.


6.  Get that bike rack mounted on the car and try out a few bike trails-- sadly Alec's bike broke and we still have not gotten around to repairing it so this was not an option.

7.  Decorate the house for fall--Check!  I was actually quite proud of how much I decorated this year!  I decorated a bit inside and out; even making my own double sided porch sign!

After this photo was taken we added a 1/2 dozen pumpkins scattered around too







8.  Take the boys annual photos-- Check! I do this each fall as Christmas gifts for the grandparents so I can only share the not so good photos here...



9.  Visit Pumpkintown-- The boys took one look at the photos online and told me they thought it was meant for much younger kids.  We decided to meet up with some friends at the zoo for their Zoo Boo days instead.--- So I'd still land this in the Check column as our goal was to get out for some old fashioned fall fun.





10.  Make Twix Cheesecake cupcakes--Check!- Evan actually ended up requesting these for his birthday party and I was so glad to have an excuse to make them!




11.  Try out at least two new fall art projects like leaf print painting-- We made watercolor leaf resist paintings and leaf prints too.







12.  Make either this harvest caramel corn recipe or a fall Chex mix blend-- Check! and Check!-- We loved this caramel corn recipe that reminded us of our favorite winter treat- Christmas Crack! I made up our own apple butter & maple Chex mix that was just amazing!



13.  Go to Mystic Village-- Check!  We spent a delightful afternoon wandering this area of cute shops and enjoying some really yummy pizza for lunch. You can read all about our day here.




14.  Make a fall wreath-- Check!- I made this beautiful new wreath; If I do say so myself!



15.  Go letter boxing. Check!  We found one trail that had 9 letterboxes hidden alongside and it managed to find 8 of them.  We're definitely going to try more letterboxing whenever the weather allows.




16.  Check out an old cemetery and try to make a few rubbings of old gravestones.-- After reading more about gravestone rubbings we discovered that it is illegal in many states (and while I could not quite figure out if it was indeed illegal in our state it didn't seem the worth the risk to try!).

17. Make yarn pumpkins using balloons-- Check!  Alec and I tried this craft one afternoon and Alec just LOVED how his pumpkin turned out.  I could not believe how messy it was.



18.  Bring watercolors outside and paint the fall foliage we see-- Check!  Alec actually wanted to bring our acrylic paints outside and paint some fall foliage.  We weren't able to finish our paintings in one day since acrylic paints take a bit longer to dry but we did have fun (even if it was pretty cold outside!).



19.  Make some homemade pretzels-- Check!-- Boy were they tasty!





20.  Make an exploding pumpkin with baking soda and vinegar and paint--Check!--  We decided to make Oozing pumpkins instead using elephant toothpaste and liquid watercolors.




18 out of 20!  I'm pretty proud of that.

Did you have a fall bucket list?  How did you do?

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