Autumn Bucket List · Party

Autumn Bucket List: Hobo Stew Party

Every fall, my grandparents host a Hobo Stew Party at their lovely home up north. If you don’t know what a Hobo Stew Party is, you’re about to be introduced to a simple, fun gathering in which everyone participates in the main event: the stew!IMG_1173This year’s party took place a couple of weeks ago, and the main idea (as always!) was this: each person attending the party brought their own additions to add to the stew, and after the flavors had a chance to meld together and everything had been cooked through, it was time to eat!IMG_1176Chad and I brought tomatoes from our garden, kidney beans, and a light dessert. Yum!IMG_1172Above is the dessert I made: Mini Santa Maria’s (little cream puffs with shortbread bottoms). They turned out a little eggier than I would have liked, but they looked pretty at the very least!IMG_1195                                         I love this picture of my brother and Ariel at the party.

IMG_1180After eating, a walk was definitely in order, and it was a gorgeous fall day. IMG_1185IMG_1179I finally got to cross blowing dandelion seeds off my list 🙂
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We had a really nice time at the Hobo Stew Party. What is your favorite dish or addition to bring to a party?

xx Caitlyn

 

Autumn Bucket List

Sleeping Bear Dunes & Leelanau State Park in pictures

Chad and I went up north a couple weekends ago and were able to enjoy a very beautiful weekend (and a check off my autumn bucket list!). I hope you enjoy these pictures from our mini getaway 🙂

IMG_1123Sleeping Bear Dunes, MIIMG_1124IMG_1125Stacked stonesIMG_1129Incredibly clear waterIMG_1130IMG_1134IMG_1137Chad was crazy and jumped in the super cold water!IMG_1140Here we are after finishing the hike.IMG_1148Leelanau State ParkIMG_1149Couldn’t ask for a better camping weekend!IMG_1153I thought this was such a neat idea!IMG_1155IMG_1156IMG_1158We tried a new brewing company.IMG_1166We also went to a couple of wineries. (Click for a larger image.) I could relate to the last two haha

IMG_1171 This wall in Traverse City was part of a poetry project. IMG_1168

We had such a nice time 🙂 Enjoy your day, lovelies!
xx Caitlyn

Autumn Bucket List · Party

Oktoberfest Party

Over the weekend we had an Oktoberfest Party at our house, and it was full of amazing food, good beer, and lots of laughter. It was a smaller sized party, but I loved how relaxed it was. We were even able to hang out outside by a fire in our new fire pit!

IMG_1267IMG_1264As always, I had a lot of fun decorating for the party. I bought the glass jars above from the dollar store, filled them with raffia, and then used glue dots to attach the ribbon and bottle caps. Then, I used the completed jars for utensils.

IMG_1269For good measure, I also tied a ribbon around my mums. Amanda came through with a few pretty pumpkins and some gold beads to add some charm, too.

IMG_1274The most memorable part of the evening was the food. Let me tell you, I could. not. stop. eating. Above you can see some homemade bread, a veggie platter, and a German Stir Fry that my coworker Jake made.

IMG_1270Next up: yummy guacamole made by Chad’s mom, potato salad made by the lovely Ariel, some chex mix, sour kraut and other condiments, and the best brats I have ever had in my life.

IMG_1273I couldn’t get enough of this Oktoberfest Stew Amanda made either!

IMG_1266For dessert I made these fun Beer Mug Pretzels (I’ll have a brief and simple tutorial on how to make them soon!).

IMG_20141011_203453_169Chad’s mom also made this yummy Black Forest Cake for dessert. (I almost forgot to take a picture, and by the time I remembered I may or may not have had a couple of beers, so I apologize for the poor photo.)

IMG_20141011_204555_682Michael was a classic photo bomber.

IMG_20141011_204538_920Amanda was good at it too… 😉

IMG_20141011_204402_579IMG_20141011_202600_493Jake, Amanda and I toward the end of the party

I had a lot of fun preparing for and attending our Oktoberfest Party. I found out that the following day (Sunday, October 12th) was actually the anniversary of the very first ever Oktoberfest. We had great timing!

xx Caitlyn

Autumn Bucket List · Food & Cooking

Autumn Bucket List: Apple Roll Cake

I am so excited to share a new recipe with you: Apple Roll Cake! To make this uh-mazing cake, you will need to use this cake recipe, apple butter (I used the apple butter I made and it was fantastic, if I do say so myself!), and whipped frosting (recipe follows).

IMG_1217To start, you’re going to beat eggs with an electric mixer for about 5 minutes until nice and frothy and lemon-colored. Then you beat in sugar before turning the mixer on low and gradually adding water, vanilla, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, all spice, ground cloves, salt and powdered sugar. IMG_1224Once you’ve got your batter ready, pour it into a pan lined with parchment paper and spread into the corners. I carefully dropped the pan a few times on the counter to get out some of the air bubbles, too.IMG_1227Bake the cake for 12-15 minutes, preparing a powdered sugar-dusted towel in the meantime. IMG_1228Invert the cake onto the prepared towel and carefully peel off the parchment paper…

IMG_1229…then slowly roll up the cake and let it rest for 30 minutes before topping.

IMG_1233After the resting period, it’s time to add your yummy apple butter. I used about a cup and a half (nearly a pint jar full).

IMG_1234Because of the strong spices in the cake and the apple butter, I decided to compliment the flavors already present with a nice fluffy frosting.

IMG_1226To make the frosting, I whipped together the following ingredients in a small bowl over another bowl filled with ice water:

1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 c. heavy whipping cream

IMG_1235After spreading a layer of the whipped frosting over the apple butter layer, it is time to roll up the cake.IMG_1238I frosted the outside of the cake and dusted a little cinnamon along the top to make it look pretty.IMG_1244Finally, your cake will be done! Make sure to store your cake in the refrigerator–it tastes even better cold and served with a complimentary coffee.  IMG_1241I brought some of the cake to work and we paired it with Starbuck’s Anniversary Blend. The cake was really good; one of my coworkers described it as an apple version of pumpkin pie. Once you try it, you’ll understand: the apple roll cake has lovely fall flavors, and the texture is moist yet light. Let me know if you try this recipe, and what your favorite cake recipe is in the comments below! Also, don’t forget to check out my Maple Roll Cake recipe if you’re looking to have more roll cakes in your future 🙂

xx Caitlyn

Autumn Bucket List

Autumn 2014 Bucket List

I can’t believe fall is already here. Time is passing so quickly that I’ve already gotten a start on my autumn bucket list. I am really looking forward to sharing some of the items I’ve been ticking off the list with you, but first: the list!
Autumn Bucket List1. Go apple picking
2. Make monte cristos
3. Go to Crane’s in the City for lunch
4. Make amazing apple pie
5. Make apple rose tartlets
6. Make sweet potato bread
7. Make apple butter
8. Make an apple roll cake
9. Make acorn crafts
10. Carve pumpkins
11. Have a ramen party
12. Have a wine & cheese night
13. Have a chocolate tasting party
14. Eat caramel apples
15. Make homemade ice cream
16. Have an Oktoberfest party
17. Go to the Detroit Beer Festival
18. Go to Traverse City & Sleeping Bear Dunes
19. Make name silhouette art
20. Thirty Days of Zentangle
21. Writing challenges 1/week
22. Restart book club
23. Try Ethiopian food
24. Catch up on art journaling
25. Get officially certified as a coffee master
26. Make Jack-O-Lantern tartlets
27. Hobo Stew Party
28. Dandelion blowing
30. Make a fairy garden
31. Go mushroom hunting
What’s on your bucket list for the fall?