Six Ways to Bring Natural Elements Indoors: Home Decor Trends

Bringing Nature indoors to create a warm and inviting space is a Home Decor Trend that seems to be gaining momentum. This trend is no longer considered Rustic, or Shabby Chic, it has become, dare I say main stream.    See how to get this look by incorporating these easy to find elements.

Acorns:  

Paint them.  Throw them in a vase. Add some sparkle.  Turn them into napkin rings. You can throw these things around like confetti!!

Decorating with Natural Elements Acorns

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Pine Cones:

Bleach them.  Paint them.  Add a Secent to them.  Wherever you place them … they are bound to shine.

Decorating with Natural Elements Pine Cones

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Pumpkins & Gourds:

Table Settings, Mantels, or Even the Front Door… There’s no doubt that fall is near, when the Pumpkins and Gourds start to appear.

Decorating with Natural Elements - Pumpkins Gourds

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Fresh Fruits: 

You don’t need a season to incorporate fresh fruits into the mix.  It’s a simple and thrifty way to add both color, and fragrance.

Decorating with Natural Elements Fresh Fruit

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Wood Elements:

There is something about wood that I feel has calming and spa like properties.    Hence my love for hard wood floors, wood coasters, dough bowls, etc.  Adding wood elements to a space gives it balance.

Decorating with Natural Elements Wood

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Plant Life:

Aside from their ability to improve Indoor Air Quality, these beauties, are just great to look at.  Also, there is something to be said about keeping a plant alive.  It’s a good feeling.

Decorating with Natural Elements Plant Life

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Are you big on having Natural Elements in your Home?  How many of these items are already a part of your home?

Three… Two…. One… A Friday Series No.9

Three... Two.. One... A Friday Series - Three Blogs Two Faves.. One Freebie

We took a week off for the Fall Home Tour.  But, we are back this week with a lot of great stuff!!

Three Blogs:

Three... Two... One... THREE FAVORITE BLOGS & FAVE BLOG POST - A Friday Series

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Here’s My Fun Friday Confession:  This week’s blogs aren’t all blogs.  Some are pretty well known websites, that I frequent and enjoy.

  1. Better Homes and Garden
  2. Wedding Chicks
  3. The Nerd’s Wife (follow Photo Credit 3 to check out her Pie in a Jar Recipe*perfect for the holidays)

Two Favorites:

Three... Two... One... TWO FAVORITES - A Friday Series

Photo Credit: 1 2

  1.  Kate Spade Ornaments – Yes, I know that we have not even gotten past Thanksgiving and I am already thinking Christmas.  But…. how cute are these?  I love her ornaments, even if they are a bit pricey.  They are definitely ones that you can pass on to your little ones, if you take care of them.
  2. V-Tech 3-Handset Cordless Phone Answering System with Video Doorbell – I am soo trying to talk hubby into getting this.  We do not have an Open Door Policy.  I hope that doesn’t sound too awful, but, without an invitation or at the very least a call you probably are not going to get us to come to the door.  I love that this Video Doorbell system, gives you the opportunity to see who is at the door without having to risk being seen.  And, that you can communicate with whoever is at the door, from the comfort of your bed.  This one is definitely on my Christmas List.

One Freebie:

Thanksgiving Place Cards

Three... Two... One... A Friday Series - Freebie Friday Thanksgiving Place Cards - stage-presents.com

Click Here to Download Your Sheet of Six Thanksgiving Place Cards – Print – Personalize and Place.

Three... Two... One... A Friday Series - Freebie Friday Thanksgiving Placecards - stage-presents.com

We Made it to Yet Another Weekend!!  Have A Great One.

Mixing Things Up One Pot at a Time – Sausage Pasta Skillet

I have clearly been on a Sausage Kick, since this is the second recipe in less than two weeks that I have posted where the main ingredient was sausage.  But, in my defense, it’s a break from the norm.  The protein portion of our dinner pretty much always consists of Chicken, Beef, or Fish, and that is it.  It doesn’t hurt to mix things up every once in a while.

Quick and Easy One Pot Meal - Sausage Pasta Skillet

In keeping with my rules for trying a new recipe, this one was once again, Quick and Easy with minimal ingredients that were not already in the pantry.  This actually came about because I bought more sausage for the Sausage and Peppers, than I needed.  So I needed to figure out something to do with what was left, and I found this recipe for the Sausage Pasta Skillet here on HweScott.blogspot.com.  As important as reading through the recipe, for me, is reading the reviews.  And, this one had great reviews that included a lot of awesome tips to make this recipe that much better. (follow the link to read the reviews)

Spicy Sausage Pasta Skillet 
via Plain Chicken

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 14 oz smoked sausage, sliced into 1/4″ rounds
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (10 oz) can rotel (I prefer mild, but if you want more spice use the original)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 8 oz whole grain penne (or whatever noodle you prefer, I’ve also used bowtie)
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • thinly sliced scallions, for garnish

 Heat oil over medium-high heat in an oven safe skillet until hot.  Add the sausage and onion and cook until lightly browned, 4-5 minutes.  Add in the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds.

Add the broth, rotel, heavy cream, uncooked pasta, and pepper.  Stir well.  Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low.  Simmer until the pasta is tender, 15 minutes.  Stir once or twice while cooking.  Preheat the broiler while pasta is cooking.

Remove the skillet from the heat, stir in 1 cup of the cheese. Taste, and add salt as needed. Top with the scallions and remaining cheese.  Broil until the cheese is melted and lightly browned – about 3 minutes.

Tastes great as leftovers the next day, too.. if you have any.  😉

Here are my Notes on this Recipe:  Make sure that you use the recommended amount of Chicken Broth. It may seem like it is a lot but, in order to get your pasta to the desired consistency this is a must.  I used the original Rotel.  I thought it was fine but the kids thought it was too spicy.  They ate it, but with a lot of… drama.  (“We need water, lol”.)  Heavy Cream is the same as Heavy Whipping Cream who knew.  I used the recommended 1/2 a cup of heavy cream, but I could have used some more just to make it creamier.  I used one package of Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage and I would recommend using 2 packages. I used a whole box of penne pasta, and there were a lot of left overs, after my family of four was done.  Over all it was a very tasty dish, maybe more suited for an adult meal, but I feel like with the small changes I listed above the kids would enjoy it as well.   I plan to try this again, and will share the results from the second time around.

What are your favorite go to recipes this time of year?  If you add this one into the rotation, please share your thoughts.

Three… Two… One… A Friday Series No.7

Three.. Two... One...Three Blogs We Love, Two Faves We Like And A Freebie - A Friday Series

For those of you who follow me on Facebook, you know that this week was a hectic one for me.  So this Friday Series post is actually being posted on Saturday.  Please forgive me.  Migraines and Blogging don’t mix.  I am just coming out on the other side.  This is my favorite time of year, so I know that I have been immersed in all things Fall.  But, trust me, it’s GOOD EYE CANDY.  Our 2015 Fall Tour is going to hit the blog sometime this week, so stay tuned.  In the meantime, enjoy our Three.. Two… One… Friday Series Post.

 

Three Blogs:

Driven by Decor

Love Grows Wild

Dreamy Wedding Ideas

 

Three.. Two... One...THREE BLOGS We Love, Two Faves We Like And A Freebie

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Two Faves:

Blue Lounge Mini Dock

Spoon Pot Clip

Three.. Two... One...Three Blogs We Love, TWO FAVES We Like And A Freebie

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One Freebie:

Three.. Two... One...Freebie Friday - Fall Printable - White and Gold Leaves

Golden Leaves –  Click the Link to Download Save and Print.

If you use this printable to decorate your home from fall tag us on Instagram with the hashtag #stagepresents.  So we can see where it landed.

Enjoy your Freebie and Have An Awesome Weekend.

And …. We’re Live!! – Restricted Members Only Content

under_construction

Many of you have noticed that there were some Cosmetic Changes happening on the Site, yesterday.  That is because we were going through the process of creating a Members Only Section.  If you sign up to become a member of our Blog, you will have access to Exclusive Content.  I believe that everything is working as it should.  However,  please excuse the changes, as we work out all kinks.

We Appreciate your Understanding and Your Patience.

In the meantime and in between time,  Register for your FREE Membership and take Advantage of our Exclusive Fall Printables!!

freefallprintablesubanddisplay

Jumping Head First into Fall – Our Fall Home Tour

Fall Tour 2014 Hero Image

Fall has always been one of my favorite seasons.  After particularly hot summers here in Georgia, when the seasons start to change, I feel the need to bring as much warmth in doors as possible, enter my Fall Décor.

I feel that the Entry to Your Home Sets the Tone for the Entire House.  So, I normally start with my Front Door and Work My way All the Back to the Kitchen.  But, this year, I was literally chomping at the bit, to pull out the Fall Decorations.  So I started indoors, that way the neighbors wouldn’t  know how crazy I am , lol.  I had also promised my hubby, I would wait at least until September 1st, to start decorating for Fall, and that is literally how long I waited.

I started with the hardest part, the Fall Tablescape.  To me, that is the make or break it point.  All other décor  gets married to this room.  I was pretty sure that I could use most of the items that I purchased last year, but still create a different look than last years.

Here is a glimpse of last year’s décor.

2013 Fall Centerpiece

 

2013 Fall Tablescape

Fast Forward to this Year:

2014 Fall Tablescape found on www.stage-presents.com

 

2014 Fall Tablesetting found on www.stage-presents.com

 

Side Buffet - Decorating for Fall - www.stage-presents.com

 

The Burnt Orange Bird Cages were something that my hubby picked up last year, when we were trying to figure out how to style the Side Buffet and the Mantle.  Luckily, they were already the perfect color, the only thing I added to them, were some fall leaves to line the cage.  I had a rather large ceramic pumpkin, and I simply put inside my glass cake plate, and added a few fall leaves and floral accents.  Then I decorated the table with other ceramic pumpkins and gourds.  Next,  I set the table with Fall Leaf place mats I bought last year from Bed Bath & Beyond,  in brown and gold.    I used Pier 1  pear and pumpkin salt and pepper shakers from last year and large fall leaves I purchased from Joann’s Fabrics, to make the table settings pop.  And, the scripted napkins were also something that I bought last year.  So I recycled pretty much everything while creating a new and I think a better look than last year.

Next Up, was my Foyer.  It gets a facelift on a constant basis.  I change up the Art Work and Décor based on Season Changes, Birthdays, and Holidays..  After all it’s the first thing you see when you come through my front door.

Past Foyer Looks:

Fall 2013 Foyer Decor

 

Christmas 2013 - Foyer Decor

 

This Year’s Look:

Fall 2014 - Foyer Decor

My Formal Dining Room flows directly into My Formal Living Room.  I didn’t do much in this room, but change out the centerpiece, just to give the whole space a uniform look.

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Fall 2014 – Living Room Centerpiece found on www.stage-presents.com

Then, I carried the decorations over into the Kitchen by adding these Chalkboard Candles to the Window Sill in the Kitchen.

fall6

Fall 2014 Kitchen Window Display

Last Up, was the Front Door Area.  Here are some pics from the last two years.

2013 Fall Door

2012 Fall Door

And, finally this year!!

2014 Fall Door

Thanks for joining us on Our Fall Home Tour.  As always it’s a joy to decorate my home for my family, and to share it, with you.

Fall Into Comfort Food — All Over the Web…

It’s getting chilly out there!!  Here are some great recipes I found all over the web!!

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I have tried the Breakfast Casserole, as well as the Oven Fried Chicken.  Both yummy!!

Breakfast:

Crockpot Breakfast Casserole

Entrees:

Oven Fried Chicken

Eggplant Parmesan

Finger Food:

Parmesan Spinach Bites

Dessert

Easy Apple Crisp

Pumpkin Cheesecake in a Gingersnap Crust – ** I plan to try my hand at this tomorrow.

It’s that time again…

The end of the year always brings out the “Susie Homemaker” in me.  With the crisp weather, out comes the Fall Wreaths, Cinnamon Brooms, and Pumpkins, and this year the owls. It’s as if the change in the temperature deepens my desire to make my house warm and inviting for my family.

I am always looking for new seasonal craft projects to do with the kids, and to do alone(even though my hubby swears that all my alone projects, somehow include him). And, as my own special requirement, I am always try to look for things that I don’t see everyone else doing.

So here’s my bucket list, over the next couple of weeks, I will be sharing the final results.  I should warn you that I almost always put my own spin on the original ideas.

Fall Craft Bucket

Craft ideas found here and here.

Do you have any special projects that you are working feel free to link to your blog in the comments section below?  Anything that you would like to see us try?

Falling Into Comfort Food – Looking for Some Dinner Ideas?

30 Minute Chili

chili

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1/3 cup Chili Seasoning Mix
  • 2 (14.5-oz.) cans diced tomatoes with green pepper, celery, and onion
  • 2 (8-oz.) cans tomato sauce
  • 1 (16-oz.) can black beans, undrained
  • 1 (15.5-oz.) can small red beans, undrained

Preparation

  1. 1. Brown beef in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, stirring often, 4 to 5 minutes or until beef crumbles and is no longer pink; drain well. Return beef to Dutch oven; sprinkle evenly with seasoning mix, and sauté 1 minute over medium-high heat.
  2. 2. Stir in diced tomatoes and remaining ingredients; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes.
  3. Italian-Style Chili: Substitute 1 lb. Italian pork sausage and 1 lb. lean ground beef for 2 lb. lean ground beef. Remove casings from sausage, and discard; brown sausage and ground beef together as directed. Omit beans, and stir in 1 small onion, diced; 1 green bell pepper, diced; 2 small zucchini, diced; and remaining ingredients. Proceed with recipe as directed. Serve chili over hot cooked spaghetti noodles tossed with olive oil and chopped fresh cilantro. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Prep: 10 min., Cook: 25 min.

Southern Living 
JANUARY 2007

Welcome to my World!!

I don’t know why, but there is something about this time of the year that makes me giddy!! I don’t know if its the fact that my two favorite family holidays are right around the corner, or the fact that even at my age, I still get caught up in the magic of the season and all that it means.

That being said, I have been busy preparing and decorating for the holidays!! Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing some great seasonal recipes, and even some ideas for how to make this time with your family even more special.