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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Pumpkin for Dinner: 5 Ways

As soon as I saw the first advertisement for Pumpkin Spice cappuccino, my heart started fluttering for all things pumpkin! I found some amazing pumpkin dinner recipes to share with you to help you get your pumpkin fix.



Baked Chicken With Pumpkin Rice makes for a hearty and tasty meal that is perfect for a blustery fall day.


Easy Pumpkin Chili is on my must make. This looks like a great meal for the crisp days of October.


Healthy Shrimp Etouffee makes a special dish everyone will adore that is as good for them as it is tasty.


Pumpkin Ravioli and Garlic Butter sounds like a dream come true for pasta lovers.


Black Bean Pumpkin Soup makes for a fantastic meal on a chilly autumn day.



What is your favorite pumpkin for dinner dish? I can't wait to read all about it in a comment.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Chewy Cherry-Nut Bar

We love healthy snacks that we can grab and go. With 2 very busy kids and a schedule that never stops I have to make choices that can satisfy the family and that can be eaten easily {as little mess as possible}. We love cereal. We can't resist the chance to try recipes that are made with cereal. I think you will enjoy this recipe too. It is perfect for back to school breakfast or an after school snack.


Chewy Cherry-Nut Bar

Ingredients 
1 cup Great Grains Crunchy Pecan cereal
Nonstick organic canola oil spray
2/3 cup whole raw almonds, very coarsely chopped
2/3 cup raw pecans, very coarsely copped
2/3 cup dried tart cherries, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons golden flaxseeds
1/4 teaspoon fine-grained sea salt
Grated zest of 1 orange
1/2 cup agave syrup

Baking Instructions
Position the rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 275 degrees fahrenheit. Line an 8-inch square pan with foil, allowing some foil to hang over the edges of the pan, then spray the foil with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, combine the cereal, nuts, cherries, flaxseeds, and salt. Mix in the orange zest. Add the syrup and stir to coat. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan.

Bake for 30 minutes, gently stirring the mixture occasionally with a silicone spatula to coat with the syrup. Pat the mixture firmly into the pan with a metal spatula. Continue baking (without stirring) until the mixture is golden brown and still pliable, about 40 minutes.

Cool in the pan on a rack for 25 minutes. Using the overhanging sides of the foil, lift the mixture out of the pan and press firmly on the mixture to help compact it on all sides. Then, using the bottom of the pan, gently press on the top of the mixture to compact it more. Cool on the rack until barely warm, about 10 minutes.

With the foil still attached, cut the nut and cereal sheet into 12 bars with a large sharp knife. Allow the bars to cool completely on the rack.

Store the bars in an airtight container at room temperature. Remove the foil before serving.

Makes 12 bars.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes

Thanks to my friends at Post Foods for sending the recipe and inspiring me to share it with you.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Travel With Kids: What to Do in Richland County Ohio

My family had the chance to visit Richland County last month. This was a big step for us, to be branching out into the arena of family travel. Once upon a time, my husband and I could throw a few items in a bag and hit the open road, a trip to the beach {700 miles...} no problem... now we have 2 kids. Our traveling has up until this point has been limited to the time frame of 15 minutes between stops to wipe a nose, find a binky, retrieve a lost toy. Richland County was the perfect place to start our travel adventures as a family. Let me tell you why.

First off, Richland County offers so many possibilities for family entertainment and activities! My kids were thrilled to visit the Mansfield Fire Museum. The display of working firetrucks of the past had my son so excited he could not contain himself. My husband and I enjoyed learning about the history of the area, the fire chiefs of the past and the replicated scenes from Mansfield.

One of the many fire trucks on display at the Mansfield Fire Museum



My daughter adored the trip to the Richland Carousel Park in downtown Mansfield, but my son went wild for it. This is a lovely carousel that has the distinction of being the only new, hand carved carousel to be made in the USA since the 1930's. The animals are lovely, beautifully detailed. The ride goes surprisingly fast to the delight of kids. The music? Classic! It completes the experience in a wonderful way. We loved the gift shop as well, they had tons of great trinkets and toys to make ideal souvenirs.  We loved that the rides are affordable and the carousel was truly a work of art.

Girls just wanna have fun on the carousel...
funny faces for selfies anyone?

He loved it! He wanted to do it again and again! 
Roo loved the carousel. He is still talking about it!

Malabar Farm was the home of famed author Louis Bromfield, this is a lovely property with a rich history. Unfortunately I cannot share much of that with you, we found that the house tour and wagon ride of the property were not child friendly. At least not for our fussy kids. I managed to get a few photos before being effectively sent on my way with my squawking kids. My husband and I agreed we would love to return, without the kids someday. Either way, we are going to try to visit again for Heritage Days this month.

The desk of Bromfield

Papers still in the drawer of the desk.


I will be featuring the Ohio State Reformatory in a post later this week, as well as the scoop on where to stay and what to eat while you are in town with the kids. Have you ever been to Mansfield or Richland County? If so, give us the goods on what is good, what is fun and where feels like home!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Tell Me About It Tuesday

I am so glad you returned to party this week. You have my deepest apologies about the last 2 weeks. School is back in session, and time short on my end. But, hey! We are back!




Let's Party!
Don't forget to visit the 2 links before yours in the party, just to keep it fair! Please visit and share as many as you can. We all love comments. {wink, hint, nudge} 
By linking up you acknowledge that the hostesses may feature your work in round ups, on pinterest or at the next party