SIMPLISTIC THANKSGIVING TABLESCAPE

Halloween has come and gone, so now it’s time to start thinking about the BIG winter holidays and I’m totally here for it!  I plan on sharing a bunch of fun holiday content from now until Christmas, and I thought it would be fun to start off this festive season by sharing my Simplistic Thanksgiving Tablescape.  

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If you’re new around here, Nathan and I just got married this year so we haven’t had the opportunity to host our own Thanksgiving….yet!  But trust me, the holidays are HUGE in my family, so hosting and entertaining has kind of been naturally engrained in my DNA.  And even though we will be traveling to spend Thanksgiving with Nathan’s family this year, I still thought it would be fun to share a tablescape inspiration with you guys!  Plus, this table is SO simple to put together!  I think it literally took me 10 minutes to pull it all together.  After all, this time of year is about focusing on time with family and friends, and no hostess wants to spend hours upon hours putting a table together.  If you are like me, and will be traveling for the holidays this year as well, you can still use this tables cape as an inspiration for a Friendsgiving, or hey, even a festive romantic dinner with your other half!   

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Whenever I am entertaining, I like to start with a theme, and this can be as simple as what colors you want to use.  I knew I wanted to keep things simple, and try to incorporate items I already had on hand.  Since my fall decor was based on my love of all things white, it was easy to create a tablescape based on the same color.  So of course I went with cream pumpkins on a cream table runner. I bought this table runner back when we first purchased our dining room table, and it is exactly what I was looking for!  It transitions well from season to season, and you can really dress it up or down depending on the occasion. You could use real or faux pumpkins for the table, and if you want to glam up your pumpkins, you could even paint the stems gold!  I incorporated varying sizes of pumpkins, and used these two larger faux pumpkins as a centerpiece of sorts.  I think it works really well to keep your centerpieces horizontal rather than a vertical arrangement.  This allows conversation to flow better, and you don’t have to worry about people trying to look around a tall flower arrangement to look at each other.  I bought this table runner back when we first purchased our dining room table, and it is exactly what I was looking for!  After adding the pumpkins,  I  added a simple glass vase with a pillar candle as the centerpiece. I thought the large candle would add a nice warm glow to the table.  And then I added tea lights to create some more ambience for the table. 

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Like I mentioned before, I don’t like using tall floral arrangements as a centerpiece when entertaining, but I do like to incorporate greenery.  It gives a nice natural element and color to your table.  So once I had the pumpkins and glass vase set, I added some fresh magnolia brances in place.  We have some beautiful magnolia trees in our neighborhood, and I love using these because of their perfect fall color with the bright green and rust.  It also adds a little southern flair to the table.  Plus magnolia branches take awhile to dry out, so you can create this table ahead of time and it will still look beautiful!  If you don’t have access to magnolia trees, don’t worry!  You can use faux magnolia branches as well!  I also love silver dollar eucalyptus as well!  You can find this at most local grocery stores and it not only looks really pretty its also inexpensive!


Next up, the place settings!  Since I was going with a simple table, I decided to use our everyday white dishes (another perk of having classic dishes: they go with EVERYTHING!). I started with these really pretty round rattan place mats.  I love the texture they bring to the table!  Next, I added our white dishes!  We received these for our wedding, and I absolutely LOVE them!  They are such great quality and great not only for everyday, but for occasions such as this!  I topped each plate with really simple ivory napkins that I tied a faux greenery sprig to with twine.  This adds a touch of simple elegance to the place setting.  Speaking of elegance, this gorgeous gold flatware really takes the place setting up a notch, I’m officially obsessed with gold flatware…especially at the holidays! The metal adds a warm tone to the table, and it really pops agains the whitewash of the table….so pretty!!

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There you have it!  A simple and affordable Thanksgiving tablescape.  Scroll through to see some more detail shots of the entire table, and head to the end of the post to see all the specific items I used to put this Simplistic Thanksgiving Tablescape together! 

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DIY FALL PUMPKIN TOPIARY

A couple weeks ago I shared my Fall Front Porch Decor which included this fun pumpkin topiary.  This DIY project has to be one of the easiest decor items I’ve ever made, and with Thanksgiving fast approaching, I thought today would be a great time to share this festive DIY project.  I think it really adds a gorgeous visual element to front porch, plus goes great with the simple and classic fall theme.  We have a smaller front porch space, so I only created one topiary to stand next to the door but I also think it would be really pretty to create a pair for a front door entryway or even flanking your garage door. 

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TO CREATE THIS EASY DIY FALL PUMPKIN TOPIARY, YOU WILL NEED:

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WHAT TO DO:

STEP 1: ADD THE GRAPEVINE WREATH

The first thing I did was place my grapevine wreath on top of the urn opening.  The wreath will help secure the eucalyptus and give the pumpkins a good foundation to sit on.  I love the look of the grapevine peeking out next to the eucalyptus.  It gives the topiary a nice natural texture, so pretty!

STEP 2: TOP WITH EUCALYPTUS

One I had the grapevine wreath in place, I added the eucalyptus branches.  Before placing them, I sort of bent and fanned out  the sections of each branch to give them a more natural appearance.  When placing the branches, I secured them in the backside of the grapevine wreath.  This will help hold them in place, and also give the pumpkins a stronger foundation to rest on.  I also only placed the branches toward the front half of the planter.  I figured the back half of the topiary will be up against the house, so no one will see it.  However, if your urn will be in a more open area, feel free to place the eucalyptus branches around all sides of the urn. 

STEP 3: STACK WITH PUMPKINS

For this last step, you can use real or faux pumpkins.  If you’re using real pumpkins, here’s a pro tip: put your stack of pumpkins together at the farmer’s market before taking them home!  This way, you can play with color, size, shape and create a perfect stack BEFORE you get home.  So, starting with the largest pumpkin first, I placed it directly on top of the grapevine wreath and eucalyptus branches. Then I continued to place the other 2 pumpkins on top until all 3 pumpkins are stacked.


There you have it!  This Easy DIY Fall Pumpkin Topiary can literally be put together in less than 10 minutes, and is the perfect classic fall decoration!  I placed the final product next to my front porch door, along with my favorite buffalo plaid rug and welcome doormat.  I think it helps bring the whole look together and brings a fun visual element to our outdoor space. All the links are provided at the end of the post so you can easily create your own Fall Pumpkin Topiary! 

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EASY APPLE COBBLER

If you want the decadent taste of an apple pie, but with half the amount of work, then this recipe is for you! I’ve made this recipe a couple times now, to get all the ingredients perfect (or because it really is THAT good) and I think you will agree with me when I say this cobbler should definitely be in your fall recipe book! From the sweet cinnamon apple filling to the fluffy, buttery topping this apple cobbler may just be your new favorite fall treat. As far as the preferred type of apple to use for this recipe, I’m not an expert to be honest. Actually, all the times I have made it I just use a variety of different apples and it has turned out great! Feel free to use whatever apple variety is your favorite! No matter the apple used, this homemade apple cobbler is sure to be a hit! Its perfect eaten alone at room temperature (most of the time I’m sneaking bites right out of the dish) , but it’s extra delicious served warm with a side of vanilla ice cream!

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WHAT YOU NEED

FOR FILLING:

  • 4 C. Apples-peeled, cored, and sliced (about 4 medium size apples)

  • 1 C. Brown Sugar

  • 1 Tsp. Cinnamon

  • 1/4 Tsp. Nutmeg

  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon

FOR BATTER/TOPPING:

  • 1 C. All Purpose Flour

  • 1 C Sugar

  • 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder

  • 1/4 Tsp. Salt

  • 1 C. Milk

  • 1 Tsp. Vanilla

  • dash of Cinnamon

WHAT TO DO

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

  2. Add stick of butter to baking dish ( I like using a 9x9), and place in oven while preheating to fully melt butter

  3. Add apples, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon juice to pan, stir to mix ingredients

  4. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally

  5. While apple mixture is cooking, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and milk

  6. When butter is fully melted, take dish out of oven

  7. Pour batter into the baking dish (do not mix with the butter)

  8. Next, pour apple filling on top (again do not mix with batter or the melted butter)

  9. Bake for 40 minutes, or until golden brown

FALL FRONT PORCH DECOR

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After what has seemed like the longest summer ever, FALL has officially arrived in the south and I couldn’t be happier!  Hello, open windows and crisp morning breezes!  Nathan and I both love spending time out on the front porch, even if it’s just to enjoy a hot cup of coffee in the morning or a cocktail together at night.  Since we are currently renting, our porch is relatively small, but it has still been SO much fun to decorate!  Even if you are like us, and have a small outdoor space, you can still incorporate a few festive pieces to welcome the new cooler season.  So today I want to share my outdoor fall decor with you!


I always start my decorating with an overall color scheme, and as I have mentioned before, I like to decorate seasonally for fall verses decorating for the specific holidays like Halloween or Thanksgiving.  It’s less work in the long run because I create my outdoor fall decor in early October, and because of the classic design, it lasts all the way through until Christmas.  Plus, if we are being honest, I’m just not a huge fan of overly thematic decorations.  I much prefer simple + clean fall decor that brings about the colder season in a beautiful way.  


For this years outdoor fall decor I wanted to go with a modern farmhouse theme.  Its neutral and classic, and easily flows with my indoor decor. So I stuck with white, black and a hint of green as the color scheme and went from there!

ENTRYWAY DECOR DETAILS

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One of the first pieces I purchased was this gorgeous wreath for the door!  I thought is was a beautiful and simple design, plus it incorporated all the colors I wanted to use in my design.  Next I layered a 4’x6’ rug under my new “WELCOME” door mat!  I chose to use a simple doormat that can be used year round, but a more seasonal one would also be cute!  I love the look of layering mats, its been a huge trend the past couple of years and I think it really adds a great visual element when walking up to your front door! 

I finished off the entryway by stacking these cute wood crates and filling them with pumpkins!  I like how the raw wood adds a natural element and texture to the front door design, and also easily lends itself toward the modern farmhouse theme. 

If you’ve been following me for awhile you know I’m not a huge fan of color.  That means, WHITE pumpkins all the way!  I like incorporating both real and faux pumpkins into my outdoor decor, plus the faux ones you can use for years to come. I found a couple of great options this year that I am using on the entryway and the front porch, but both are also great options for inside your home too! Now let’s move on to the….

FALL FRONT PORCH DETAILS

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As I stated earlier, Nathan and I are currently renting so we don’t have a huge front porch by any means (although that is definitely a wish of mine for the future!).  But that didn’t stop me from utilizing the space we do have, and I hope you feel the same way!  It can be easy and affordable to add a few seasonal touches that really bring a classic fall theme to your outdoor spaces!  

Just like the pumpkins, I like to keep my flowers white too, so I started the design off by planting these beautiful white mums!  Mums will live in the plastic containers you purchase them in, but planting them in a pot will really allow them to THRIVE!!  Mine are loving life right now, especially with the warm days and cool nights!  I especially love this large wooden apple bushel basket I found to put one of my large mums in!  Again, it adds a nice pop of natural texture to the space!  

If you remember, I found this lantern for a DEAL earlier in the season.  I filled it with different sizes of real and faux white pumpkins and then stacked some additional pumpkins next to it to create a small design vignette and some visual interest on this side of the porch.   I mean…there’s no such thing as too many pumpkins rights?!

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To keep the outdoor spaces cohesive, I also incorporated the buffalo plaid to the front porch.  I found these super affordable pillow covers, and simply used old pillows I wasn’t using at the moment as the inserts.  By the back door, I also utilized a layered rug design with a smaller 2’ x 3' plaid rug.  However I layered this non-slip black rubber mat on top for practicality since this is the door we use most often for coming in and out.


One of my favorite design aspects of my fall front porch, is this DIY pumpkin topiary I created.  A full post on how I created this will be going live next week, so stay tuned!  It was SO easy to put together and it think it is super festive + fun!!


Overall, I love how my fall front porch turned out!  By keeping a neutral and classic color scheme, the outdoor decor will last all the way through to Christmas.  Plus by utilizing pieces you can use for months at a time, and incorporating simple fall elements such as greenery and pumpkins, you can get a beautiful design without spending a fortune!


See below to shop my space, and as always, feel free to leave any questions you many have!  Happy Fall friends!


SHOP FALL FRONT PORCH



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EASY HOMEMADE APPLESAUCE

Nathan’s parents came into town a couple weeks ago, and one activity we did while they visited was go to a local apple orchard. Nathan’s dad was hoping he could score some freshly made apple cider, but I was excited to go for one reason: APPLESAUCE! For some reason I had be craving homemade applesauce, and even though I have never made it myself, I was up for the challenge! Turns out, it’s no challenge at all. In fact, making your own applesauce at home is actually pretty simple. So we left the orchard with a huge 10lb bag of apples in hand and got to work! Nathan’s mom was on apple-peeling duty, Nathan took over coring and chopping, and I put everything together. This recipe is SO easy, and in less than 45 minutes you will have yourself a delicious pot of the best homemade applesauce! I don’t like my applesauce overly sweet, or with too much cinnamon flavor so feel free to add more of each according to your personal taste! Its super yummy served warm or cold, but may I suggest serving hot over some vanilla ice cream for an extra indulgent treat! Enjoy!

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WHAT YOU NEED

  • approx. 6 medium apples- peeled, cored and chopped into smaller pieces

  • 1/2 C. water

  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

  • 1/4 C. white sugar

  • 1/2 Tsp. ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 Tsp. salt

WHAT TO DO

  1. Peel, core and chop your apples. Place in a large pot.

  2. Add the water, lemon juice, sugar, ground cinnamon and salt. Stir well.

  3. Bring mixture to a boil on high heat. Once boiling, turn to low and cover.

  4. Simmer on low for approximately 45 minutes or until the apples are completely soft and cooked through

  5. Remove from heat. For a chunky applesauce, mash the apples in the pot with a potato masher. For a smoother applesauce, add to a food processor or blender and mix until you reach desired consistency

  6. Serve warm or cold