The Smell of Fall

I thought I’d do a little throwback Thursday today with this post.  It’s from a couple of years ago, but I make it consistently throughout the season.  It is my “recipe” for bringing the smell of Fall inside the house.  My mom used to make this, and leave it simmering on the stove for hours….letting the cinnamony smell penetrate the house over Thanksgiving/Christmas/Fall gathering of choice.  Such happy memories it brings back!

A couple of cinnamon sticks, 4 or 5 whole cloves, a splash of vanilla extract and the peel of an apple.  Throw it in a small pot with a cup of water and simmer.

As long as you keep water in it, it will spice up your kitchen for hours!

September 2015 Cleaning Calendar

I don’t know about you, but this month is looking pretty clean for me.  We traveled for much of August, and now that the kids are in school full time, there’s no one home to make messes!!  Ok, ok, so maybe it’s still a little messy….a girl can dream, can’t she?

We got a little tease of fall this week with temperatures only in the mid 80’s and a breeze.  It would have been lovely, but it was also rainy and muggy.  But I’m looking forward to the seasons changing and being able to open up the windows for some fresh air!  Maybe I’ll add cleaning windows to the calendar in October!

September 2015 Cleaning Calendar


Click here to download or print your copy of my September 2015 Cleaning Calendar and share it on Pinterest and Facebook!

Happy Cleaning!

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DIY Fabric Pumpkins

Where, oh where has my October gone?!?!  Y’all, we have been so busy!  Between the normal holiday craziness, and several impromptu trips, I am feeling very scattered!  And addition to all of that, I just signed on for TWO big craft fairs in November.  Yes, the same November that is 4 days away.  What the heck am I thinking?!?!

So, bear with me as I attempt to find time to tell you all about our travels, edit photos, carve pumpkins, make Halloween costumes, and prepare for craft shows {with some new items in the inventory!!}.  Hang with me these next few weeks, because it’s gonna get good!

This morning, I have a super quick tutorial that I’ve been dying to share with you.  I stumbled across these DIY Fabric Pumpkins on Pinterest a while back, and have just now gotten around to making them.  And let me tell you, once I picked out the fabric and realized how easy they were to make….I couldn’t stop!  Even Jayna made a couple!

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

Like I said, I found the tutorial over on My Blessed Life.  She’s got dimensions for the fabric and a terrific step-by-step process with pictures.  Her pumpkins are also much cuter than mine {she added ruffles and leaves}…maybe I’ll go back and embellish mine later.  But for now, I’m focused on ease and speed.

For each pumpkin, you are going to need a rectangular piece of fabric, some batting, a couple of big glass beads or rocks, a stem, and possibly some twine or string if you want ribbing.  As for the fabric sizing, the closer your rectangle is to a square, the “rounder” your pumpkin will be {like the big orange or the small multi-color chevron above}.  If your rectangle is long and skinny, your pumpkin will either turn out fat and kinda flat {like the black checked or the orange dotted}, or tall and skinny {like either of the yellow}.

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

The very first pumpkin I made, I had a long skinny piece rectangular piece of fabric.  I sewed the long sides together to create a long tube {right sides together!}, then I turned it right side out and hand-stitched a gather along the bottom of the pumpkin, pulling the ends of the thread {I used embroidery thread for durability} together and tying, in order to “close” the bottom of the pumpkin.  Then I filled it with batting and a couple of rocks at the very bottom {just to weigh it down a bit}.  I then hand stitched another gathering stitch around the top and pulled the strings to “close” the top of the pumpkin.  I wrapped string around the pumpkin, top to bottom, to attempt to make the ribbing on the pumpkin.  And lastly, I hot glued a branch for the stem.


My fabric had been too tall and skinny, and so everything was just off.  He kept falling over, and his ribbing wouldn’t stay put.  He’s lucky he made it into my photo shoot at all!  My second attempt was another tall and skinny pumpkin {the other yellow one}, but I made it slightly wider, and it turned out a little better.

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

Then I cut a few more tall and skinny rectangles, but this time I stitched them closed along the shorter sides, which created short, squatty, flat pumpkins.

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

So much cuter!  I think these ended up being my favorite!  I used a long quilting needle and embroidery floss to sew up and down through the middle of the pumpkin, to create a tufted look.  On the My Blessed Life site, she said to use plastic bags to stuff inside the pumpkins.  I tried that {in the spirit of recycling}, but found they were very noisy, and hard to “sew” through in order to do the tufting.  So I stuck to the batting and rocks {which are easily navigated}.

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

Finally, I tried a couple of “square” pumpkins, with my fabric being just about square in dimensions.  So cute!  Although I did notice that the size of the stem needed to match the size of the pumpkin.  I had used the same branch for all of my pumpkins, except for the “Baby Round.”

DIY Fabric Pumpkins - A Quick and Easy Project from Palmettos and Pigtails

She turned out very cute, since her stem was more perportionate to her body.  Next time I think I will use a variety of sticks for the pumpkins.  But overall, I was very pleased!  The whole “patch” took me about a half an hour to fumble through, and Jayna helped too!

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Fall Festivities

This past weekend was crazy busy, but crazy fun!  It was all of my favorite Fall activities wrapped up into one weekend.  We started it off by getting up early on Saturday and heading over to a local craft show, where we sold my latest and greatest burp cloths, pacifier clips, carseat carrier cushions, and other baby accessories.

Later that afternoon, we packed everyone up and joined the rest of our neighborhood at one of our neighbor’s farms for a fall fest and bonfire.  We were some of the first to arrive, so Jayna and C did some light reading in the cabin while they waited for the other kids.

The adults socialized by the campfire and ate potluck, while the kids played in the fields and in the hay wagon.

The kids all got fun masks to wear, and treat bags to take home.  Millie spend the evening trying to scare the babies {Boo!}, while Jayna enjoyed watching “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”

And I didn’t get any pictures, since it was dark, but the evening ended with a spooky hayride and all the dad’s wearing old man masks and jumping out!  Half of the kids laughed and squealed and half cried!

And we rounded out the weekend by taking a girls’ trip down to a local farm.  Each year we make a pilgrimage to one of the many farms/corn mazes in the LowCountry, but this year we ventured out to the furthest place we could find {thanks to a Groupon!}.  And although the actual location was a total bust, we got some great pictures!

The haybale maze was the first thing we came to, and ended up being the most enjoyable activity!  Keep it simple, and keep ’em happy!  Then we entered the playground….a mixture of broken plastic slides and the old metal playground equipment reminiscent of my elementary school years.

Luckily, our Groupon covered the “corn maze,” which was actually just some sort of gathering of trees.  It was hard to figure out what was the actual path, because you could just walk through the trees too!  But the girls had fun ducking under branches and playing peek-a-boo behind limbs.  We didn’t make it through…ended up trying to retrace our steps as it got darker out!

Our Groupon also allowed us two bags of feed, but out of the kindness of my heart….I didn’t take pictures.  The animals were sad and scrawny…and after being fed all day, not hungry at all!  So I splurged and actually forked over $12 for the hayride {you can’t screw up a hayride, right?!?!?!}.  Wrong.  My $12 got us a three minute ride out to a field where some slightly aggressive and VERY large, slobbery cows were waiting for us to {ahem!} hand feed them.  Needless to say, that was not happening.  But I got some fun pictures of the four of us cowering in the middle of the wagon {as far from the edges as possible, can you blame us?!?!}.

Fall Jayna and Mom

Overall, a busy, but wonderful weekend!  As you can tell by my lack of posts this month, I’ve been spread very thin.  So I’ve made sure to enjoy every ounce of my spare time with the family.  And I’m sure our schedule isn’t going to slow down anytime soon either!   Thanks for hanging in there with me!

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Fall Bucket List {Free Printable}

Let me start by apologizing ahead of time.  Fall is a tough time for me.  Wonderful, but tough.  Tough for me to focus, tough for me to stay inside and tough for me to write.  It is the happiest, but busiest season at our house.  I need to just keep far, far away from Pinterest and all things internet….because I see all of these wonderful fall projects and I just want to close my laptop and start each and every project I see.

Fall is the representation of everything exciting to me in the year.  School kicking off {I always loved school!}, my birthday {it’s October 14th}, the start of the holidays, Pumpkin everything {especially those famous spiced lattes!}, boots, finally cooler weather, etc.  Just everything!

Fall Bucket List Free Printable from Palmettos and Pigtails

We had so much fun with our Summer Bucket List, that I decided to make a Fall bucket list too!  Hopefully I didn’t forget anything {except for the Pumpkin Spiced Latte….that’s been done checked off already!!}  Click on the picture below or here to get your own copy.  Want to know how we made our bucket list magnetic?

Fall Bucket List Free Printable from Palmettos and Pigtails

Back to my apology.  I’m sorry if I get side-tracked.  I’m trying my best to keep my butt in gear and stay on track with writing, housework, etc.  But it’s sooooo nice outside, and all I want to do is play!!  So, I’m sorry if I go MIA on you….check the local Starbucks, I’m probably sitting outside in my boots, sipping a Pumpkin Spice Latte.  Come join me!

What is your favorite thing about Fall?

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The Smell of Fall {Bring it Inside}

I thought I would share with you today my “recipe” for bringing the smell of Fall inside the house.  My mom used to make this, and leave it simmering on the stove for hours….letting the cinnamony smell penetrate the house over Thanksgiving/Christmas/Fall gathering of choice.  Such happy memories it brings back!

A couple of cinnamon sticks, 4 or 5 whole cloves, a splash of vanilla extract and the peel of an apple.  Throw it in a small pot with a cup of water and simmer.

As long as you keep water in it, it will spice up your kitchen for hours!

{Fall} Console Table Display

Have I mentioned before that I get the crafty-itch every Fall?  I don’t know what it is….something about the cooler weather that just makes me want to nest a bit….

So far this year, I’ve been able to ignore the itch, being busy making Halloween costumes and getting ready for my first craft show.  And along comes Target’s Dollar Spot.  I cruised by it the other day, glancing past the Halloween sprinkles, loofas and felt candy buckets….. and spotted some REAL finds!  So I purchased three wire baskets (for my craft room…), a sweet little straw pumpkin, and a small grapevine wreath.  Score!

Combining them with my wire candle holders from TJ Maxx, and leaning them up against my antique window frame with photos of our relatives made the perfect little fall display.  And then Jayna asked me {for the 324th time} how many days left until Halloween.

I found this gem also at Target…had been eyeing it for months in the kitchen section.  But, thanks to my House Manager Meal Planner, we didn’t really need a menu board, so I couldn’t justify the price.  Until now.  As soon as I saw it on CLEARANCE, I knew exactly what I could use it for!

So, 31 fall colored paint chips, a pack of hard-to-find chalk markers  (from Amazon), and $15 at Target later….a beautiful Fall entrance to our home!

And….itch scratched.

What have you done to decorate for Fall?  Leave me a comment with your blog address or link to a photo, and I’ll feature some of my favorites next week!

And Fall Begins….

Fall has always been my favorite time of year.  It represents the excitement of school starting, the anticipation of the holiday season {which we almost always host}, the entrance of cooler weather {finally!} and the general feeling of starting anew.

Not to mention the pumpkin carving, hay rides, Halloween parties, family gatherings, pumpkin flavored everythings….etc.

And the past few years, Fall has also been my downfall.

For some reason, Fall judges me.  She wonders why I haven’t put curtains up on all of my windows yet {hey, at least the kitchen has some now!!}.  Fall persuades us year after year to throw a crazy-scary Halloween party.  She screams at me to try every recipe in my Southern Living Magazine, and to transform myself into Martha Stewart in order to host the perfect Thanksgiving and Christmas at our house.  Fall taunts me with her Pinterest Boards: flaunting beautiful seasonal mantles, whimsical door wreathes and cozy sewing tutorials.  Fall pressures me into starting projects that I can’t possibly hope to finish before She ends, and continues to stress me out throughout her entirety.

And for whatever reason, I love Fall for doing this to me.  Maybe it’s because I work well under pressure….she pressures me to finish everything before the end of the year.  She is always on top of me…pushing me to learn new things, try new recipes, get out of my comfort zone. I love that she brings out my nesting tendencies, and when its ALL finally finished {just in the nick of time!}…she whispers to me that I need deserve that Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte.

And for all of this….Fall is my favorite time of year.

How to have an American Thanksgiving

Martha came to visit from Canada to celebrate her very first American Thanksgiving.  It’s one of our favorite holidays around here, and it was especially exciting that it was the first one in the new house!  This year, Martha and Loo Loo were around, in addition to Mom Mom, GP, Sue Sue and Papaw.  We missed Uncle Chris, who ended up staying home sick =(.  But still enough people for two turkeys!

On the menu this year:


Rosemary Pecans
Pumpkin Spice Dip with Cinnamon Graham Crackers and Chocolate Teddy Grahams
Spinach and Artichoke Dip with Pita Chips
Hummus and Red, Orange and Yellow Bell Peppers
Sundried Tomato, Pesto and Cheese Torte with Club Crackers
Buffalo Chicken Dip with Tostidos


Two Fried Turkeys
Homemade Macaroni and Cheese
Green Bean Casserole
Sweet Potato Casserole (with pecans, not marshmallows on top)
Broccoli and Onion Deal
Collard Greens and Pace
Pecan Pie and Vanilla Ice Cream
Cake Pops
Lots of Wine!

The boys go up to the Man Cave to watch football, while the ladies set out munchies, watch the Macy’s Day Parade, and start cooking the side dishes.

The guys relax and have a cold one while the oil gets hot….

Make sure the children are being entertained while everything is cooking…

Turkeys are done!

Dinner is served!

We decided to go mini golfing the day after Thanksgiving to work off some of the sweet potato casserole!!

That night, we blasted some Christmas music and put up the decorations.  We haven’t done the outside yet, but the tree and some of the little holiday knick knacks are up!

And the Holidays Begin!

Fall Burpcloth and One Ca-uuuute Baby!

This is the centerpiece on our coffee table in our living room.  To me, it’s the perfect type of decor.  Symmetrical candles, simple and easy to clean up pinecones and pumpkins, a little splash of fall color for my living room.  Everything is contained on a white rimmed plate and the cinnamon scent is heavenly and oh-so-Fallish.  It made me want to create those Fall themes on something.  But I had very little time (and frankly, not a whole lot of energy).  So, the most obvious and functional choice for me was to make a burp cloth.

I found some leaf and acorn cookie cutters in my pantry and decided to make use of them.  I traced them onto some fall-ish printed fabric that I had leftover from another project, and used an iron on transfer to adhere them to some flannel that I use to make burp cloths.  Then I carefully and slowly stitched around each shape with brown thread.  In general, I am terrible at doing this…..but practice makes perfect, right?  Here is the template I used, along with the turkey template from this post.

I folded the fabric in half width-wise with right sides touching and sewed all the way around with a half-inch seam.  I left about an inch and a half open at one end, so I could poke the cloth through to turn it right-side-out. (Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of this step!)

I took another scrap of fabric and cut it lengthwise so that it would wrap completely around the width of the burp cloth.  Allow about 1/2 inch for seams.  I ironed the seams and then straight stitched them all the way around.  Then I sewed the two ends together to get a nice clean look.

Wrap the loop around the width of your burp cloth and position into place and pin.

Follow your existing stitching all the way around on both sides.

Then I stitched around the entire perimeter of the burpcloth again about a half an inch in from my original stitch….I think it makes a more finished look and is definitely a lot sturdier.  Then, I folded the burpcloth in half width-wise and ironed a crease.  I sewed a straight stich across the crease.  This helps with bunching when you wash it, and also helps when folding.

After stitching in the middle, stitch the middle of both side of the crease the same way….creating fourths.

Iron the whole thing and stick it in the wash.  And tada!  You can be festive while getting spit up on! =)

Here’s where I’m linking up this week!