Pumpkin Decorating Ideas: Faces from Duct Tape

 

How many of you like pumpkins?  Yeah, me too.

Carving them?  Some of you?  Not my thing.

Do you like messes?  Yeah, I don’t either.

Do you like to do fall decorating projects with your kids?  Totally!

That’s why you’re reading this, right?

So, basically I created this project to be a fall activity, to do with your kids, which is not messy, still involving a pumpkin (although it is not being carved), and can still be used as a decoration.

***SPECIAL BONUS: YOU CAN STILL EAT THE PUMPKINS AFTER!  YAY!***

To start, become familiar with what will be your new friend….DUCT TAPE.  We all love it and use it regularly.  I recently repaired my central vac hose with it,  “fixed” the bottom of my computer so it wouldn’t fall off, and put board game boxes back together with it.  It is an amazing invention and I am so very grateful to Johnson & Johnson for creating cloth backed tape in WWII days (yes, I totally googled that).

The brand Duck has since turn this remarkable product into something beautiful as well.  There are so many designs and colors to pick from so run out and grab some so you can start some projects, including these pumpkins.  While you are on their site, check out the amazing contest they are having right now.  You could design the next Duct Tape!

No-Carve pumpkin decorating with Duct tape:

I based my designs on a template I printed from Merrilee over at the always lovely Mer Mag blog (best wishes with the new bebe!).  She has a post on creating felt pumpkins with interchangeable faces and pieces.  You can find her template here, which can be used as a starting point for this project and you can also use to make her felt pumpkins.

I placed strips of duct tape on parchment paper so they would be easier to cut.  I just learned you can also buy duct tape sheets which would save this step.  Then, I drew the shapes from the template plus my own.  You could also cut out the template pieces and then place them on top of the tape so you can trace them if that’s easier. I added a few bird pieces (for Jack who requested it), a pearl necklace, some girl hair, a mustache, and some curly hair for Dean (also, by request).  Cut the shapes out and remove the parchment paper backing.

The faces are very easy to take off and move around as you please!

If you are new to this space and have enjoyed your time, stick around and find me on:

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Snapshots

(all photos above are with my iPhone 4s)

September brought:

a  lovely photo shoot with a friend

Nutcracker Auditions (She made it!)

the season of brussel sprouts

turning in our leased car (bye bye Mercedes) means driving my husband to and from his work this week

birthday donuts for the 4 year-old

birthday cupcakes…the dark ones, of course (chocolate)

meerkat birthday celebration with friends

putting our house on the market and cleaning like crazy people every day for house showings

first days of fall mean gingersnaps

local Bonitafest and supporting our congressional candidate

tailgating for the Jason Mraz concert and then getting to see Florence + the machine for $20 the next week

reading with guinea pigs

trying a new evening church service so we could enjoy some good family time in the morning

Happy Fall, friends!

What are you looking forward to?

(comment below)

Linking with Rebecca from Simple as That

How to watch Downton Abbey Season three in the U.S.!

Have you been watching?

No, I’m not talking about a show about dancing celebrities or some other kind of show where you watch celebrities apparently live “reality” as a housewife in the Orange County region of Los Angeles.  What could it be then?  Well, if you haven’t heard, a few of us Americans have transported ourselves into the early 20th century.  We have started drinking tea regularly,  added the words “quite” and “indeed” to our every day conversations x 2, become consumed with what Anna and Mr. Bate’s lives are going to look like with the recent changes in their lives, wondered if Lady Mary is EVER EVER EVER going to get married, and anticipated the next curious and hilarious thing the Dowager Countess is going to say.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about and consider yourself a lover of all period dramas, keep reading.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about and are looking for a new series to watch, keep reading.

If you have been an AVID follower of Downton Abbey until the end of season 2 and are eagerly anticipating season 3, keep reading.

Well, everyone…

Season 3 is here!

That is, season 3 is happening right now in the UK and all of us in America have to wait for the premiere in January 2013.

What?

You want me to wait until 2013?

No, you don’t really have to wait.

I’m thankful to have found such a wonderful source for watching in the U.S.!

Go to my A Golden Afternoon facebook page to get updates for new episodes.  Thanks to watch-TVseries.net, we have choices!

Season 3 is here!

Links are below…

christmasspecial2012

Click on the above image  to like my FACEBOOK PAGE so you can get the updates for NEW episodes!!

Also, check out my other Downton Abbey related  posts:

Tiny Dancer

I cannot dance upon my Toes —
No Man instructed me —
But oftentimes, among my mind,
A Glee possesseth me,That had I Ballet knowledge —
Would put itself abroad
In Pirouette to blanch a Troupe —
Or lay a Prima, mad,

And though I had no Gown of Gauze —
No Ringlet, to my Hair,
Nor hopped to Audiences — like Birds,
One Claw upon the Air,

Nor tossed my shape in Eider Balls,
Nor rolled on wheels of snow
Till I was out of sight, in sound,
The House encore me so —

Nor any know I know the Art
I mention — easy — Here —
Nor any Placard boast me —
It’s full as Opera —

:: Emily Dickinson ::

Tomato Gazpacho with Pickled Onions and Parsley Oil

Isn’t it great how some of the most enjoyable foods are the simplest?  A scrumptious garden tomato with a simple sprinkling of salt is a delicious gift.

So simple.

I made my case for peaches being one of the greatest foods of summer, but tomatoes are right up there too.  The kids and I had an opportunity this past weekend to pick at a local farm here in San Diego, Suzie’s Farm.  We’ve done many farm tours there for school and we love being able to pick baskets and baskets of produce goodness.  The Best.  When summer fruits and veggies are at their peak, very little needs to be done to improve upon them.  God created a tomato or a pepper to go from incredibly sour and inedible, to juicy and sweet in just a few days, thanks to that glorious summer sun.

What a fantastic overseer and gardener God is.

Thank you, God, for tomatoes.

I think gazpacho is a such an amazing soup. It actually existed way way back in the deep dark corners of the history books.  Maybe it’s just my love of history, but I think it’s pretty cool to eat something like they did in Rome long ago, don’t you think?  It was created to both enjoy the produce of summer but also to eat on a hot day.  Quite simply, it is a tomato-based soup served chilled.  All of the ingredients are thrown into the blender, so no cooking over the stove or turning on the oven for this recipe!  The pickled onions add a little tang and the parsley oil adds some fun flavor and color.

Ok, let’s blend…

Toss all of the gazpacho ingredients in the blender.  Puree for a few minutes or until completely smooth.  Season to your liking.

Pour into bowls.

Done.

I find arranging buffet style toppings for meals encourages kids to create their own meals and eventually try things which  would normally cause them to freak out.  Having a small level of control even helps mine to branch out and try new things.

Above, I have hard-boiled eggs, pickled red onions, parsley oil (see below), bruschetta, goat cheese, cucumber, and avocado.  If you had shrimp or crab available, that would be fantastic too!

I also served ours with bread since it is an automatic comfort to my kids when they are eating something with a texture like a soup.  Gazpacho or even tomato soup are delicious with torn pieces of bread in them.

Enjoy!

Tomato Gazpacho with Pickled Onions and Parsley Oil

For the gazpacho:

6 regular size tomatoes, preferably heirloom

1  large avocado

1 sweet pepper, any color

1 regular size cucumber, peeled and diced

1/2 red onion, chopped

1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil

2 T. apple cider vinegar

1/2 tsp. paprika

1-2 cloves of garlic

salt and pepper, to taste

For the toppings:

pickled onions

avocado, chopped

hard-boiled egg, chopped

fresh bruschetta (chopped tomatoes, dash of olive oil, garlic, salt)

goat cheese, crumbled

cucumber, peeled and chopped

Parsley Oil:

1 c. of fresh parsley

1/3 c. extra virgin olive oil

salt, to taste

Blanch the parsley for 1 minute in boiling water.  Strain and blend with the olive oil in a blender.  Serve, salt, and refrigerate.

Add all of the gazpacho ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.  Season to your liking.  Add the toppings and enjoy!

Stick around and find us on:

F a c e b o o k  //  T w i t t e r  //  P i n t e r e s t  //  I n s t a g r a m  //  E m a i l

 

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