Thursday, September 21, 2023

Southwest Style with Ageless Style

Ageless Style is a monthly style challenge and link up for women of all ages.   Each month we pick a different theme and style an outfit based on that theme.  This month's theme is "Southwest Style" and was picked by Leslie.

I was so excited to do the "Ageless Style"  challenge this month because even though I live in rural Wisconsin, I am a southwest girl in my heart.  My husband and I love to travel out west.  Some of my favorite vacations memories have been in the west.  I just love the landscape, the colors, and the decor.

As I perused my closet I couldn't believe how many items I owned that were already southwest style.  My collection showed how much I loved this style.  I had a hard time choosing what to showcase as I couldn't wear it all in one outfit.  I think I bought a lot of these items on all our vacations out west too!

I ultimately chose to take a burgundy prairie style dress to use as a base, then I built a southwest look through accessories.



I did buy one new item;  this pretty Southwest print shacket.  I needed another shacket like I need a hole in the head, but I fell in love with this one so it came home with me.  Plus, I supported a local, new small faith-based business so I felt I was helping the owner and our local economy.


To create my southwest look I added a western brown felt hat, the shacket with the southwest print, a saddle bag, and leather shoes with fringes on the heel.


The southwest trend is super hot this season, but you don't need to dress like you're heading to a rodeo to participate in this trend this fall.  You could just choose southwest colors, which are typical fall colors anyway:  burgundy, browns, blues, and teals.  Or, you could just pick one southwest element like a saddle bag, anything with a fringe, turquoise jewelry, belts with large buckles, etc.  Etsy recently had an excellent article you can find HERE which had so many great tips on how to style western clothing.


Here are a couple of closeups of the southwest print on my shacket, my saddle bag, and my suede, fringe booties.  I absolutely love the colors on my shacket.  



I've actually shown you this same dress twice before on this blog.  You really need to check it out HERE and HERE to see how just changing a few accessories completely changes the look of the dress.

 

So what about you?  Do you like the Southwest trend?  How do you think you will incorporate it into your wardrobe this fall?  I'd love to hear from you.

Now, be sure and link up your looks with us below and check out what the other ladies in the group are wearing too.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!


Amy ~ Amy’s Creative Pursuits

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Joanna ~ My Slice of Life

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Jodie ~ Jodie’s Touch of Style

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Leslie ~ Once Upon a Time and Happily Ever After

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Marsha~ Marsha in the Middle

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Mireille ~ Chez Mireille Fashion Travel Mom

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Rosemary ~ Distinctly Southern Style

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Saturday, September 16, 2023

Harvest Recipes

Now that the garden season is almost over, it's time to share some of my favorite dishes I made with all the bountiful harvest.  All that is left in my garden is a few green tomatoes still waiting to ripen ( I'm not sure they'll make it before frost),  and A LOT of squash.  I could pick the squash today, but then I'd have to store it longer.  So I'm gonna just leave it on the vine till the first frost, because I still have squash in the freezer from last year I need to eat up.  Hubby and I plan to dig up the last of the potatoes today.

2023 was the year of abundant zucchini for me.  I planted four zucchini plants:  2 regular zucchini and 2 summer squash.   I normally only plant one of each, but last year I had a couple die, so this year I doubled it, and guess what?  All the plants lived and produced like crazy!  I was making every dish that had zucchini in it that I could find and I froze a ton of zucchini too!

So other than the usual zucchini recipes, like zucchini bread, here are some news ones I tried.  Hands down my families favorite zucchini recipe was this one:

Zucchini Pizza Casserole


Oh my gosh, this recipe is so good!  It really taste like pizza and your loved ones will have no idea they are even eating zucchini even though it contains four full cups of the stuff!  It is gluten free for people that love pizza but can't handle the crust.


Now, I must admit, I did change the recipe.  It's suppose to be a "healthy" recipe made with ground turkey, but to make it really taste like pizza I used Italian Sausage and pepperoni.  I know,  I'm so naughty.

You can find the recipe HERE.  I don't put the recipes I tried on my own posts, because they are not my recipes.  So I will only provide the links.


Yellow Squash Tots



Did you know you can make tater tots without taters?  These are ABSOLUTELY AMAZING and a great way to get veggies into your children.  They seriously taste so good.  I made a bunch to eat right away and I froze some to eat later.  I made one mistake in that I was in too much of a hurry to dice the onions small enough.  They were hard to shape because the onion pieces were too big.  Next time I make them I will use a food processor.

You can find the recipe HERE

Chicken Zucchini Bake


This high protein low carb meal was good, but a little tasteless.  You would think it would have been loaded with flavor with all the cheeses and sour cream, but it was a bit bland for us.  If I were to make it again, I'd probably try to jazz it up a bit somehow.  

You can find the recipe HERE

Zucchini Patties


Ok, I know everyone makes fritters with their zucchini, but I've never had much luck with them.  They always ended up burnt before they cooked through.  But then I tried this recipe and they turned out great!

You can find the recipe HERE

Zucchini with Feta, Egg, and Tomatoes


Say goodbye to Avocado Toast and hello to Zucchini Feta & Eggs!  This is my new favorite breakfast that I ate almost everyday this summer.  It's a Weight Watchers recipe so I can't link it unless you have an account, but it's so easy to make you really don't need the recipe.  Just spiral a zucchini and slice cherry tomatoes and sauté in olive oil with some onion and garlic.  Next, make a well, drop an egg with some feta chunks and your favorite seasonings like Italian Seasoning, cover and cook until the egg is done to your liking.  YUM!

I also loved doing the Feta Zucchini Eggs that's raging all over the Internet right now.  It's another simple recipe where you just shred 1/2 cup of zucchini, add some diced onion, and sauté it a bit in a pan with some olive oil.  Pop on some feta and an egg and cook till the egg is done.


Zucchini Frittata Recipe with Ricotta


Another great way to use up zucchini is in baked egg dishes like frittatas!  This one used 3/4 pound of zucchini!

Find the recipe HERE!

I made a couple of different zucchini soups that we really enjoyed but I didn't take photos.  


and


We loved both of the soup recipes, but I must admit, I added Italian Sausage to the Zucchini Soup recipe.  It was so much better with some meat in it!

Well I think that does it for NEW recipes with zucchini in it.  I made a lot more zucchini recipes but I've shared those with you in previous posts HERE and HERE

I tried


But I didn't particularly care for this cookie recipe.  It tasted more like a bar or cake than a cookie, but I could have done something wrong.  It says in the instructions to add the zucchini just until combined and not to over stir, but it's impossible not to!  I couldn't get the zucchini to mix with the batter uniformly if I didn't over stir it.



I tried a couple of other new things in my kitchen this year, like scones!  Would you believe I never made scones before?  I absolutely love scones, but I always considered them a special treat I'd have out on a girl's date, and not something I would want having something around the house to tempt me, that's why I never made them.  But we went blueberry picking this year as always, and before freezing all my blueberries like I usually do, I decided to make a couple of treats for myself first...like blueberry waffles and scones.  So here is my first scone attempt!

Master Scones Recipe (Any Flavor!)


They turned out yummy and were a lot easier to make than I thought they would be.  I ate one, and froze the rest, so they wouldn't be a temptation to me lying around on the countertop.

You can find the recipe HERE

And lastly, I found a great way to preserve cherry tomatoes other than to freeze them.  I had so many cherry tomatoes this year I couldn't eat them fast enough.  I don't like to freeze them.  I tried that last year and didn't like them.  I didn't know what to do with all my excess cherry tomatoes until I saw this recipe:

Cherry Tomatoes Roasted in Oil and Herbs


According to the creator of this recipe, these tomatoes should keep in your refrigerator up to six months.  I will believe it when I see it, but since my cherry tomato plants are just about done now, I will probably start using these roasted ones soon.

You can find the recipe HERE



Well, that's all the new garden harvest recipes I can think of.  I'm sure I'll have more, once I harvest my squash, so I may be back with more.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!





 

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Handmade Birthday Cards for Little Girls and Boys

My daughter and her family came up to visit us for a week this summer.  We had so much fun, like we always do, and I promise someday soon I will blog about it.  I've been saying that a lot lately.  I don't know why it's been so hard for me this year to find the time to blog, but it has.  Anyway, while they were here we celebrated Atlethea's and Atticus' birthdays because they are both summer babies.  Here are the cards I made for them:


Atticus' card was made using the retired Stampin' Up! set "Ahoy, Matey".  I have always loved this set.  It is so cute!


To make this card, I created a little pirate scene.  I used a stencil and markers to create a sea and sky.  The clouds were cut using an MFT die.  Everything else was in the set.  I simply stamped the images, colored them in, and cut them out.  I popped the pirate on dimensionals but glued the chest and ship onto the card.  I stamped the sentiment onto the cloud.



For Alethea's card I used a Pure Innocence image from MFT.  I also created a background using markers.  The grass is a stamp.  The clouds are the same MFT die used in the pirate card above.  The butterfly and flowers are Cuttlebug dies.



For this card, I didn't use any dimensionals.  I just glued everything onto the card after coloring it in and cutting it out.  Once again I stamped the sentiment onto the cloud.


And here are the little rugrats proudly displaying their cards.  They are so CUTE!


Here's some snapshots of the kids opening their presents.  They sure had fun!



Alethea has been really getting into painting her fingernails, so her mom bought her some pretty colors of nail polish.  



Atticus was super excited to get this "Action Bible"...perfect for little boys.  It is loaded with comic book style illustrations.  I would love to read this bible myself!




But perhaps Atticus' favorite gift of all was "The Armor of God".  He has been wanting this dress up set for so long!  He has the whole armor of God from Ephesians 6 completely memorized and he's only four years old.  Be sure to watch the second video below.  It's so adorable because he is so excited to put on this costume and he tells the significance of each piece.




And finally, here are some family videos.  Enjoy!



                                                            Alethea Opening Her Gifts:


Atticus Putting On the Armor of God


Singing Happy Birthday to the Grandkids


I hope you liked the cards and enjoyed this brief snapshot into my family.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Thursday, September 7, 2023

How To Wear Linen Pants

Linen pants are a great shorts alternative to wear in the summer when you don't want to wear shorts for personal or occasion reasons.  They are so lightweight and breathable, you barely even feel you have anything on, so they keep you as cool and comfy as a pair of shorts would.  

I found this cute pair of linen pants at my favorite clothing store:  TJMaxx.  I wore this outfit for the occasion:  Sunday in church.  


The pants have a double black stripe and a wide waist band with a tie.  I really wanted to show off the waistband, but I don't have much of a waistline, so I did a half-tuck.


I paired my linen pants with two other TJMaxx finds:  a black Michael Koss short sleeve top and white quilt-top sandals.


The top has pretty chiffon butterfly sleeves.


Here you can see what the outfit looks like from the back, with the top un-tucked.



For jewelry, I chose a simple bohemian style elephant necklace and a black and white bracelet.  This is one of my favorite bracelets and somehow I misplaced it and haven't seen it since this photo shoot.  😡😢 I have no idea what could have happened to it.



Because I wore this outfit to church, I picked a dressier top, but these pants would make a great casual look with a tee too!  I think sandals work best with these pants because they are so short on me but a cute pair of sneakers would also be fun.

Wondering how else to wear linen pants?  Here are some more ideas:


  • denim jacket
  • blazer
  • button down top
  • classic tank
  • chunky or heeled sandals
And when the weather cools down, wear your pants with a chunky, oversized sweater or cardigan.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!