The Shady Porch: 11.11

11.30.2011

Rock 'N Share Party #5

Are You Ready to Party?!  I know I am! I can't wait to see what you've been up to!

 However, first, allow me to introduce you to the latest inductees to the Rock 'N Share Gallery (on Pinterest). These were the most viewed posts from last weeks party!
Each of the following blogs have many more projects to inspire you!

ROCK 'N SHARE GALLERY INDUCTEES Week #4
Mesh Wreath by Easy Breezy
DIY Holiday Mercury Glass Tutorial by Charm Bracelet Diva 
Marshmallow Wreath by Eclectically vintage
  Wren, Kathleen & Kelly 
Congratulations & Thank You for joining the party! 
Be sure to get your Rock 'n Share Gallery Button! (on sidebar)

Now on to today's Rock 'N Share!

The only requirement is a link back! (no link = no feature)--- a text link at the bottom of your post, or a Rock 'N Share button (see button code below)!   You may copy and paste this text link onto your blog post, in the event you are not sure how to do it otherwise.     The Shady Porch
  
It's NOT a requirement to join my blogalthough I love it if you would! 
** I always follow back!  Just leave me a comment, so I'll know!**

I also ask ...
  1. Everything be family friendly!
  2. Link up your own projects...something that you've created.
  3. Link to a specific post not your Home page!  No Etsy shops or other businesses!    
  4. Mingle! Introduce yourself (comment) on other party projects! Be kind! Make new friends! 
I reserve the right to remove links that are in violation of these requests!
    **I will be sharing my personal favorites on my Facebook throughout the week!**
    Most viewed posts make the weekly Rock 'n Share Gallery!


    Party will be open NOW through Friday (midnight).

    Be sure to check back each Wednesday to see if you've been featured!








    11.28.2011

    Homemade Butterfinger Candy

    It's a annual tradition for the hubby and me to make goodie gifts for his colleagues at work. In selecting the candies to prepare for this year, I found a recipe for homemade Butterfinger candy bars. Can you say "Instant Winner?"
     
    I thought the recipe was probably going to be difficult, costly, and time-consuming. Wrong, wrong,...and wrong! It's easy, cheap, and microwave fast! 

    We made a test batch and all of our taste testers recognized the "Butterfinger" flavor at once, and the most common response was, "That was like having the freshest Butterfinger candy bar ever!"
    Homemade Butterfinger Candy #recipe #candy #dessert #giftidea
    Homemade Butterfinger Candy
    Homemade Butterfinger Candy by The Shady Porch #candy #butterfinger #peanutbutter #microwave

    11.25.2011

    DIY French Script Shade: How To



    You might recognize the lamp...this past summer, I did a remake on this thrift-find pineapple lamp. I also did a decoupage remake on its original shade. However, I was never a fan of that style of shade so, when I ran across a deal on this self-adhesive shade, I snatched it up.
    DIY French Script Lamp Shade #craft #DIY #copycat #decor
    Pineapple Lamp with DIY French Script Shade
    I knew when I bought the new shade that I wanted to make my version of the Ballard Design Empire shade with the French script. 
    Ballard Designs - Script Empire Shade
    To do this, I  removed the paper template that comes affixed to the self-adhesive lampshade, using it as my pattern to cut out my off-white cotton material (from an old bed skirt, I no longer use). The shade is already sticky when you remove the template paper, so all I had to do now was slowly wrap the material around the shade, smoothing out wrinkles as I went along.
    Adhesive lampshade with paper template still attached.
    Once the shade was covered in my fabric, I had to get words and symbols that looked similar to the French script on the inspiration shade. I used Power Point fonts to create the template I needed.  I printed them, cut them out and then, as you can see in the picture, taped them inside the shade so they showed through the translucent fabric.
    DIY French Script Lamp Shade #craft #DIY #copycat #decor
    French inspired words and/or fonts taped inside the shade.
    Now it was just a case of tracing the words/symbols using my black Elmer's Painters marker. I did this until the shade was covered in words, phrases, and symbols. I love how it turned out and I think the lamp is so much prettier with its new shade! 

    Other Shady Porch projects you might like....

    11.22.2011

    Rock 'N Share Party #4


    Welcome...I'm so glad you could stop by! First, allow me to introduce you to the latest inductees to the Rock 'N Share Gallery (on Pinterest). These were the most viewed posts from last weeks party! 

    Each of the following blogs have many projects to inspire you!

    Rock 'N Share Gallery Inductees
    By Things We Fancy

    Lion's Head Corn Chowder
    by Moogie & Pap
     Kitchen Renovation Progress
    by Blue Chateau Interiors

    Congratulations & Thank You for joining the party! 
    Be sure to get your Rock 'n Share Gallery Button! (on sidebar)
     
    I know the approaching holidays have tightened our schedules all the more! In the event you don't have anything new ready to post, feel free to post something from your archive!! I simply ask that it be new to the Rock 'N Share party and seasonably appropriate. 

    The only requirement is a link back! --- a text link at the bottom of your post, or a Rock N Share button (see button code below)!   You may copy and paste this text link onto your blog post, in the event you are not sure how to do it.     The Shady Porch

    I also ask ...
    1. Everything be family friendly!
    2. Link up your own projects...something that you've created.
    3. Link to a specific post not your Home page!  NO giveaways, Etsy shops or other businesses! I will remove links that are in violation of this request.
    4. It's NOT a requirement to join my blog, Facebook or Pinterest page, although I would appreciate it.  **Just leave me a comment and I always follow back!**
    5. Mingle! Introduce yourself (comment) on other party projects! Be kind! Make new friends! 
    **I will be sharing my personal favorites on my Facebook throughout the week!**
    Most viewed posts make the Rock 'n Share Gallery!

    Party will be open today through Friday (midnight).
    Each Wednesday, I share the latest Rock N Share Gallery inductees here!
    Be sure to check back to see if you've been featured!




     

    Chicken Dumpling Casserole

    If you've ever made chicken and dumplings, you know that it's an art to get the dumplings right. I've been told the secret is to add the dumplings to a "rolling, boiling" stock...and sometimes they do and sometimes they don't. In the cases when the dumplings DON'T turn out alright, it is usually because, for lack of a better term, they melt. You can drop a lot of dumplings in the pot, but sometimes,when it's time to serve them, they've dissolved into the broth. Still, even with all the trouble dumplings can be, they're still a southern Sunday favorite.
    Chicken Dumpling Casserole  #chicken #casserole #dumplings #Sundaydinner #Southern
    Chicken Dumpling Casserole...a new twist on the southern Sunday favorite!
    When I ran across this casserole recipe, I thought, "If this actually tastes like dumplings, this could be an excellent replacement to the troublesome original!" Well, I made the casserole, and it was very good. I did think that the next time I make it, I will add some poultry seasoning to the broth and I would add a bag of frozen mixed vegetables to make it into a chicken pot pie to make it a more complete meal in one dish. Either way, it received the thumbs up rating at my house.                                      
     

    11.20.2011

    Festive Tortilla-Cream Cheese Appetizer

    One of the major things I want to be during the holidays is PREPARED! Having been caught off-guard on occasion, I have learned the hard way that preparedness is a stress reliever. 

    One of my favorite tips to is to have a go-to food item you can whip up in very little time - or have waiting in the fridge! - for impromptu entertaining.
    Tortilla Cream Cheese Appetizer by The Shady Porch
    Tortilla, Cream Cheese, Green Onion Roll-ups

    11.17.2011

    Jell-O Pretzel Dessert

    I am a late-comer among fans of the salty-sweet combo.  My friend from high school always said she loved the two together and would eat chips with her candy bar, but I never thought it sounded that good. I was just fine with a candy bar or chips. However, palettes change and I now understand her appreciation for that tasty combination...thanks to this Jello Pretzel Dessert!

    Jell-O Pretzel Dessert
    Jello Pretzel Dessert 

    11.15.2011

    Rock 'n Share Wednesday #3


    Welcome!


    Here are the latest inductees to the Rock 'n Share Gallery on Pinterest


                Each of these blogs contain many projects that will inspire you!              
    Check 'em out! 

    Congratulations & Thank You for joining the party! 
    Be sure to get your Rock 'n Share Gallery Button! (on sidebar)
     
    Now for today's festivities...I hope you're ready to share your latest Recipes, Crafts, DIY projects, Decorating Tips, Photography, Art or Thrifty Finds...because we can't wait to see them!

    The only requirement is a link back! --- a text link at the bottom of your post, or a Rock N Share button (see button code below)!   You may copy and paste this text link onto your blog post, in the event you are not sure how to do it.     The Shady Porch

    I also ask ...
    1. Everything be family friendly!
    2. Link up your own projects...something that you've created.
    3. Link to a specific post not your Home page!  NO giveaways, Etsy shops or other businesses! I will remove links that are in violation of this request.
    4. It's NOT a requirement to join my blog, Facebook or Pinterest page, although I would appreciate it.  **Just leave me a comment and I always follow back!**
    5. Mingle! Introduce yourself (comment) on other party projects! Be kind! Make new friends! 
    **I will be sharing my personal favorites on my Facebook throughout the week!**
    Most viewed posts make the Rock 'n Share Gallery!

    Party will be open Wednesday through Monday, November 21st.
    Each Wednesday, I share the latest Rock N Share Gallery inductees here!
    Be sure to check back to see if you've been featured!

     

    11.14.2011

    Thanksgiving Cornucopia Centerpiece

    In my quest to get our Thanksgiving preparations finished well before the celebration, I worked on the menu and the table centerpiece today. How are you doing with your preparations? I've handled holidays both ways...early prep and last minute frenzy, and I've learned that, no matter which method I use, everything that really matters gets done. 

    Thrifty find...Ceramic Horn of Plenty
    Holidays are usually spent with people we love who aren't really concerned with  place cards or how I fold the napkins. Sure, they will probably notice any extra efforts and appreciate them, but the celebration won't be any less wonderful if I don't have the magazine cover table setting or a party favor for everyone. So I am going to early prep some stuff... and probably get distracted by life and go into a frenzy later, as the day approaches. 
    Supplies - Cornucopia,
    Silk flowers, Candle, Florist foam




    A few weeks back, I shared pictures from a thrifty shopping haul. Part of that successful adventure included a ceramic horn of plenty (or cornucopia...I just love that word!) When I saw it, I knew I wanted to make it the centerpiece of our Thanksgiving table.  So today - after reading a How-To article on arranging cornucopia centerpieces - I pulled out all of my supplies and got busy.  I'm very happy with the result, although I'm sure someone with proper training on such things could find my flubs.

    Now that the centerpiece is in place, here is my tentative menu for our Thanksgiving dinner.

    Deep Fried Turkey*
    Sausage Stuffing Muffins
    Corn Pudding
    Broccoli Casserole
    Cranberry Relish
    7UP Biscuits
    Deviled Eggs
     Apple Orchard Punch or White Cranberry Lime Punch
    *we've been frying our turkeys for many years now.

    I would love to hear how your preparations are coming! Do you have Thanksgiving traditions? We actually have our Thanksgiving on the Saturday of the OSU-Michigan game! We gather for the game each year and, rather than several long distance trips in the same week, we've combined the two.
    Pin It

    11.12.2011

    Thankful Burlap Bunting for Thanksgiving

    Since I started blogging, I have seen so many cute bunting projects. I can honestly say, I've never used bunting in my home decorating before. My decorating style is most assuredly eclectic; it expresses my taste and meets my budget, too. The bunting as decoration seems to fit both criteria, so I thought I would give it a go!
    Thankful Burlap Bunting for Thanksgiving
    Thankful Burlap Bunting
    I love burlap for fall, and, since I had plenty on hand, I chose to use it to make my bunting. I opted to go the easy route with the lettering since I don't have stencils with the fonts I like for this project (and I'm not confident enough to free hand it!). Therefore, I turned to Power Point, yet again, and simply printed out the letters from the clip art library.

    Next, I Mod Podge'd the printed sheets, both back and front. Once it dried, I went over the lettering with a bright orange paint pen to give them brighter contrast to the muted burlap. Finally, I glued the letters to the burlap flags.

    I'm going to tell on myself...I worked on this yesterday and felt really good about it. Last night, I asked the hubby how he thought I should attach my new project to the mantel and, as I did, I unfurled it to show him, and lo-and-behold, I had glued the letters on backwards. Yep!
    It said, L-U-F-K-N-A-H-T! The hubby was a sweetie, as always, and simply said, "bless your heart." That is when I both laughed and cried. How on earth did I manage to do that? Still wondering...
    Nevertheless, I am glad I was able to fix it and no harm, no foul; in the big scheme of things. 
    I have much to be T-H-A-N-K-F-U-L for!

    Pin It

    11.11.2011

    Chicken Parmesan with Spaghetti

    This quick recipe for Chicken Parmesan is super easy and rivals even the best Italian restaurants, which means a little more pittance can stay in our pockets. This delicious dinner is a great one to serve when having company too. You can prepare the chicken all the way up to baking it ahead of time and then pop it in the oven for the required time, leaving the simple preparation of the sauce and pasta.  

    Chicken Parmesan with spaghetti  #dinner #pasta #chicken #easy
    Chicken Parmesan with spaghetti and garlic bread

    11.09.2011

    Rock 'n Share Wednesday #2


    Welcome!

    First, let me share the first inductees of the Rock 'n Share Gallery! These were the top 3 viewed posts entered last week...

    Creamy Potluck Potatoes   from Aunt Nubby's Kitchen 
    Thanksgiving Center Piece   from The Almost Whole Package

    Cranberry Oat Bars  from Miz Helen's Country Cottage
     Each of these ladies have wonderful blogs full of projects that inspire!
    They will surely make you feel welcome if you stop by.
     ---------
    Congratulations, Ladies, and Thank You for joining the party! 
    Be sure to get your Rock 'n Share Gallery Button! (on sidebar)

    Now for today's festivities...I hope you're ready to share your Recipes, Crafts, DIY projects, Decorating Tips, Photography, Art or Thrifty Finds...because we can't wait to see them!

    The only requirement is a link back! --- a text link at the bottom of your post, or a Rock N Share button (see code below)! 

    I also ask ...

    Everything be family friendly and NO giveaways, Etsy shops or other businesses!

    There is no requirement to join my blog or Face book page, although it would be greatly appreciated.  **Just leave me a comment and I always follow back!**

    Mingle! Introduce yourself (comment) on other partiers! Be kind! Make new friends!

    Party will be open Wednesday through Monday, November 14th.
    Each Wednesday, I will have a Rock 'n Share Gallery, featuring a few of the previous week's posts. Be sure to check back to see if you've been featured!


    11.07.2011

    Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes with Bacon

    As children we had certain foods that we loved, and often these favorites last throughout our lives. They include dishes like mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets, pancakes, and spaghetti. So, when I heard that we were making mashed potatoes for this month's Crazy Cooking Challenge, I was happy.
    I love good mashed potatoes! I also love that there are many different ways of preparing mashed potatoes to get many different flavors, kinda like ice cream (yum! ...sorry, I digress).  Anyway, I searched around blog land and found Amber and Ann Kelly's blog, Recipes We Love. These stay-at-home moms just started their blog in January and already have over 500 posts (recipes and meal plans) to share! I can't wait to visit again!

    Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes with bacon
    Crazy Cooking Challenge Winning Recipe!
    Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes with Bacon 
    I found their recipe for mashed potatoes with bacon and cheddar and liked it because it's baked till the top is slightly browned and then topped with bacon crumbles. I chose this recipe because of the addition of cheddar and cream cheese which adds lots of cheese flavor and...this spelled w-i-n-n-e-r  in my house!  I made some changes to the original recipe/preparation which I think serves to make prep easier and, most important, tailors the taste to my family. 

    Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes with Bacon
     
    Baked Mashed Potatoes with bacon  and cheese

    I foil wrapped 6 medium potatoes that I halved and pierced (just to cut down on cook time) and placed them in my crock pot on high for 4 hours. Of course, you may prefer to peel, quarter and boil or even oven-bake, or microwave your potatoes as any of these methods will work fine.

    Ingredients 
    6 medium Idaho Russet potatoes
    6-8 slices of bacon, crumbled (or 1/2 cup real bacon bits)
    4 oz cream cheese
    2 T of chives (or 1/4 c. mixture of chives and diced scallions)
    1/2 c. sour cream
    1/4 c. butter, melted
    1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
    1 t. kosher salt (add more if you prefer, this is tailored to my family)
    1/4 t. pepper

    Directions: Once the potatoes have baked in the crock pot, half the halves and scoop out the potato into a large bowl. Set the skins aside to freeze and serve as a side dish at a future meal.

    In a large skillet over medium heat, fry the bacon until crispy. Drain, cool and then crumble half the strips into the potato bowl. Set aside remaining bacon crumbles. Using a fork, mash and mix the potatoes and bacon crumbles. Add the cream cheese, butter, and sour cream, and stir until combined and  creamy. Add the chives, 2 cups of the cheddar cheese, salt and pepper. Stir until well combined.

    Transfer potatoes into a buttered baking dish. Top with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 degrees until the top is golden brown and the potatoes are heated through, approximately 30 minutes. Remove from oven and add remaining bacon crumbles for garnish.  Serve immediately.
    Mashed Potatoes by The Shady Porch
    Muffin pan meatloaf, Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes,
    and garden green beans. 



    I hope you try this dish; I know it would be a winner on your dinner table too!

    Other recipes you night like...

    11.04.2011

    Turkey Menu Chalkboard

    Every magazine, catalog, and web site I've looked at has holiday preparations in full swing, and it's inspired me to get with the program! The other day, I jokingly (kinda) made a comment that there was no such thing as trash around our house anymore! ha ha! What I meant was that I wanted to make sure we looked at whatever we discarded with an eye toward giving it a second life! For instance, toilet and paper towel rolls, jars, bottles, etc. It wasn't long after that my brother brought in an arm load of scrap wood pieces and a cracked old pizza peel that I had tossed out of my kitchen, and, just as I had mentioned, asked if I could make use of any of it.

    Turkey Menu Chalkboard by The Shady Porch
    Turkey Chalkboard for menus, messages,  countdowns, or things you're thankful for! 
    One thing, then another ran through my mind looking at those discards. At first some of the scrap shapes seemed to resemble rays of light, then, other times, flames. I had almost committed to another project that would have worked, but, today, as I was on Pinterest, I saw a framed menu board and the thought popped into my head “I need one for Thanksgiving.” My internal light bulb went off ... the scrap wood looked like tail feathers, too! The vision of the turkey menu chalkboard was born. ha ha!

    I painted the pizza board with chalkboard paint to make his body and then attached wooden spools and stars to make his legs and feet. Since he would not stand (or sit!) on his own, I had to glue a block of wood on the back to allow it to sit upright. I added another chunk of wood to create his head and a scrap wood triangle for his beak. Then I made his hat out of an empty ribbon spool and a toilet paper roll and added a square white button for the "buckle." To add to the "pilgrim turkey" idea, I took 1/2 of a wood craft stick and painted it white and added 3 black buttons for his "shirt."

    supplies for the Turkeu Mneu Chalkboard by The Shady Porch
    Project supplies I started with...scrap wood,
     pizza peel, chalkboard paint

    Finally, I found a red balloon and added it to his beak as his snood. (I had to look this part up…I always heard it called the wattle, but when it is above the beak, it is a snood! Learn something new every day!) The only chalk I had on hand was the big fat sidewalk chalk which does not lend itself to nice penmanship, but I think it's still legible. I think he is really playful and will be a great conversation starter, and cooking companion, during the Thanksgiving season.

    Reflecting on this project, I realize how truly blessed I am, the simple fact that we have refuse to discard is a sign of prosperity!

    Here are some other projects using wood...check 'em out!


    I'm sharing this post at these great parties...join me!
    Sweet Pea Throwback Thursday,Crafty Allie,

    11.02.2011

    Rock 'N Share Blog Party #1

    Welcome to the 1st Shady Porch Rock 'n Share Blog Party!


    I'm so glad you stopped by! I hope that you will join me and link up! I would love to see your Most Popular posts or your Personal Favorites! However, you may link any Art, Recipe, Craft, DIY, Home Decor, Photos or Thrifty Finds you like.  It would also be nice to keep things seasonally relevant too. 

    I just ask ...

    Everything be family friendly and NO giveaways, Etsy shop's or other businesses!
    There is no requirement to join my blog or Face book page although it would be greatly appreciated.  *Just leave me a comment and I always follow back!*

    Mingle! Introduce yourself (comment) on other partiers! Be kind and make friends!

    The only requirement is a link back! --- a text link at the bottom of your post, or a Rock N Share button (see code below)! 

    Party will be open Wednesday to Monday, November 7th.
    Each Wednesday, I will have a Rock 'N Share Gallery, featuring some of the previous week's posts. Be sure to check back to see if you've been featured!


    11.01.2011

    Lasagna Soup

    There have always been certain recipes that I've filed away in my  mind as "only for special occasions"...which means I rarely make them, and, unfortunately they are very often dishes that would make most folks' favorites list. Odd, isn't it? These "special occasion" dishes are usually time-consuming, expensive to make, labor- intensive, or some combination of all of these! One such meal that I rarely make, although we love it, is lasagna. 


    Lasagna Soup  #soup #pasta #lasagna #dinner #Italian
    Lasagna Soup and Garlic Bread