Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Pumpkin Cake

So it is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.  There are people all over America cooking and making preparations for tomorrow.  My mom has hosted Thanksgiving dinner my entire life.  She has always made the entire meal from scratch.  She is a wonderful cook and baker.  Even as a little girl, I have never liked pumpkin pie ---- I know I know -- some of you are bugging your eyes out at the computer screen.  I am sorry but it is just not my dessert of choice.  SO if I ever blog about a great pumpkin pie recipe, you will know I found the BEST recipe out there -- and I promise I will share it.

Now although I have never really enjoyed pumpkin pie, I do love the taste of pumpkin.  My mom found this recipe, that I am about to share, years ago.  I really don't remember a Thanksgiving without this pumpkin cake.   It is moist, yummy, and pumpkiny -- and it goes great with a cup of coffee in the morning on the days following Thanksgiving.  It is not overly sweet, it is not had to make, and it is not pie.  This year I have the pleasure of making the pumpkin cake for our celebration because my mom asked me to help her.  I decided to have the kids help me with making this easy recipe.

Kids mixing dry ingredients.
Here is my favorite pumpkin recipe

Pumpkin Cake

3 cups of flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts (optional)
1 1/2 cups of oil
2 cups canned pumpkin (1 can)
2 cups sugar
4 eggs

Aidan's face after cracking his first egg -- "it's yucky mommy!"
Zuzu's face after I asked her if she wanted to crack an egg -- "yucky!"
Preheat oven to 350.  Place all dry ingredients in a bowl and mix.  Then place all wet ingredients in another bowl and mix them.  Finally add the wet to the dry and mix just until blended.  Place the mixture in a well greased bunt pan.  Bake at 350 for 1 hour and 10 minutes.  Before serving sprinkle with powder sugar.  Told you it was easy.

Licking the bowl clean
Smiling next to their finished cake -- so sweet!
Happy Thanksgiving 2012.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween Photo Memory Tree

Ever since I was a kid, my mom puts up this cute white branch Halloween tree.  She hangs white light on it and places it near a black caldron with cob webs coming out.  It is very festive.  I always liked it. Since I have had kids, I have looked to buy something similar.  This year I found a tree, a bit larger than I had in mind, at Micheaes.  It is black with purple LED lights.  It can be used outside or inside. I was excited because I got it for 50% off -- which is always nice.  The best part is how I decorated it. I took a picture from kids' past Halloweens, at this point that isn't a lot of pictures, and glued each picture on some felt.  Leaving enough felt along the edges to write in marker the year the picture was taken and put a hole punch on the top.  Through the hole, I put ribbon -- cute Halloween ornaments right?  I even put a few pictures up of my husband and I from Hallos past.  The tree turned out cute, and I look forward to watching the ornament collection grow throughout the years.  I have to say that the kids love stopping and looking at themselves and showing guests when they arrive.

Happy Halloween 2012.