Lazy Girl's Fall Decor: Painted Pumpkins

This is the simple, non-crafty alternative to actually carving pumpkins... because I suck at that. Painting pumpkins requires very limited supplies and it means you don't have to gut them - because, let's face it, that's a pain in the ass. (Although, I did see a neat trick on Conan last night to suck the guts out with a vacuum. Genius!)

I did two pumpkins - one in polka dots and one in chevron. You'll need -

  • Pumpkins. I used medium-sized pumpkins, about the size of a volleyball. Less to paint, lighter to carry. 
  • White acrylic paint
  • Paint brushes or sponges (a makeup sponge works great for the polka dots!)
  • Tape. I used masking tape, but wish I would have used painter's tape. I think it would have given me cleaner lines, with less bleed. 
  • Newspapers, paper plates - just to work with the paint on and not get it all over the floor. 

For the chevron pumpkin, just tape a zigzag pattern around the whole pumpkin making it as thin or thick as you like. I started with the middle line, and then decided to paint the whole top white too. I like the way it looks with the stem painted.

The nice thing about the acryllic paint is that it dries pretty quickly. I did two coats of the white and let it sit overnight. Then, I peeled the tape off. Be careful though! Pulling it off too quickly may rip some paint off with it.

For the polka dot pumpkin, I dipped a round makeup sponge in paint and just started stamping away starting at the top row. Be conscious of how you're spacing your dots so that it evens out as you make your way around the pumpkin. (I guess I could have measured or something... but that takes way too much work.)

Make sure you press each dot down gently enough that it doesn't just smear, but hard enough to make an imprint - think of it like applying an instant tattoo!
Place on the front porch with some fall flowers and bam! domestic goddess. 


Standing Guard

This means more to me than ever right now, with my little brother in OCS at Quantico. Stay strong, Will!


Alton Brown's Whole Pumpkin Pie Soup

Hi. Can we talk for a sec about this pumpkin goodness? And how my boyfriend is the best cook ever? I don't even like pumpkin (or at least, didn't think I did) and this was amazeballs. 

  • 1 whole baking pumpkin, approximately 4 pounds, rinsed (We got ours at the Tower Grove Farmers Market)
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil 
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, diced 
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1 clove garlic, minced 
  • 1 small apple, peeled, cored, and diced 
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth 
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream 
  • 2 ounces goat cheese 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves 

  • Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • Make a lid on the top of the pumpkin by cutting around the stem at a 45 degree angle. Make sure the opening is large enough to work within. Remove the seeds and fibers with a metal spoon or ice cream scoop and kitchen shears. Reserve the seeds for another use (We toast them with some salt and they taste like popcorn!). Brush the exterior of the pumpkin and the lid with vegetable oil. 
  • Oil a round casserole dish large enough to hold the pumpkin and place the pumpkin inside. 
  • Combine the butter, onion, salt, garlic, apples, chicken broth, and heavy cream in the hollow pumpkin. Replace the lid of the pumpkin to cover. 
  • Bake for 1 1/2 hours. 
  • Remove the lid. Add the goat cheese and thyme and bake an additional 30 minutes, uncovered.
  • Remove the pumpkin from the oven. You can gently scrape some of the flesh into the soup mixture and puree with an immersion blender to desired consistency, or just scrape the sides as you eat it (that's what I did). 


Morning Musings (7th Ed.)

Being the house where people can come to after a late night to crash on the couch is nice, in theory. But when you want to get up and make coffee and watch TV in the morning and they are sleeping there.... it's kind of annoying.

When is okay to reveal a spoiler?

I used to say I hated winter - but I love boots and sweaters and the holidays, so I guess I don't really hate all of winter. I just hate winter weather. This morning, we had some cold rain and it was a teeny little glimpse towards what's coming.

The Cardinal's only have to win FIVE more games to go #12in12. That blows my freakin mind.

Are there any girls out there that actually enjoy showering in claw foot tubs? I'd love to know your secrets.

It took me too long to discover jeggings.


Target's Holiday Look Book

I had pretty good success with the last Shops @ Target event, snagging a USA cutting board and gold woodpecker candlestick holder, and I've already got my eye on a couple items in their Holiday Look Book. Rumor is it hits stores and online December 1.
Tracy Reese Top 
Altuzarra Tray, Cocktail Shaker and Lowball Glasses

Kale Salad with Apple and Lemon-Dijon Vinaigrette

Simple, delicious dinner for a weeknight comprised of a kale and chopped apple salad (we used fuji and golden delicious, I think). Dressing is just lemon juice, dijon mustard, balsamic vinaigrette, honey and olive oil. Goes great with a grilled cheese with gouda and a glass of riesling. 

Bread of choice is Companion's white (for the grilled cheese) and miche (for the not-pictured-because-they-were-still-in-the-oven croutons) that we picked up at the Early Bird Outlet. Kale and apples are from the Tower Grove Farmer's Market

[and yes, I am aware that I haven't posted in nearly a month and I come back with this lame picture of my dinner last night as opposed to any news about my move, my trip to LA, my brother leaving for the Marines, etc. I am aware, and I'm sorry.]

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