Homemade Applesauce

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So, this past weekend my friend and I went to an apple orchard. The experience was less than desirable. The orchard was crowded, most of the apples had been picked over or weren’t ripe yet, and (at this particular place) the price of the smallest bag was $20! But in spite of all of that, I did get some apples!

I decided I really wanted to make applesauce, but I didn’t want to use all the apples I had just got! So I used 4 medium apples which made 1 ball jar’s worth. I don’t eat too much applesauce anyway, so it’s perfect. If you want to make a bigger batch and store them over a long period of time, you can can them. But that’s a post for another time.

Homemade Applesauce

 

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Start with 4 medium apples. Peel them and cut them each into 8 sections, or use an apple corer and it does this for you automatically. After I cut them into 8 sections, I actually cut them once further, so they were smaller chunks. But this is optional and totally up to you.

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Put the apples in a big pot and cover the bottom of the pot with water or apple juice. We don’t want to boil the apples, we just want to soften them up, so be careful not to put in too much water. Then, I put in 2 teaspoons of lemon juice (to help slow down the oxidation process or browning of the apples) and a pinch of salt to help them soften up faster. Now this is the part you can kinda play around with. For the spices I used 1/4 cup brown sugar and a teaspoon cinnamon. But you can just add sugar instead of brown sugar, or add more spices like nutmeg, cardamom, etc. I chose brown sugar and cinnamon, in part because it’s what I had in my pantry, but also because I wanted that darker, spicier flavor. So again, it’s up to you!

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Heat the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes, covered. I kept mine on medium-low and it took 25 minutes. After it’s done simmering, you can do one of two things: Mash the apples with a fork or potato masher, or throw it in the blender. I chose to use the blender. It was way quicker and gave it the smooth consistency I was going for. I don’t like chunks in my applesauce. But you can blend it to whatever consistency you like!

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And that’s it! Pretty easy right? I was surprised how well it turned out for my first time making applesauce! Feel free to try my recipe, or play around with it to see what you like. I would think it would be pretty hard to mess up applesauce (but you never know).

Feel free to share your recipes and experiences with making applesauce!

Until next time,

Adele

Recipe:

4 medium apples
Water or apple juice
2 tsp. lemon juice
A pinch of salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

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Fall Decor – Keeping it simple

Good morning! I hope you all are enjoying this lovely fall weather we are having! (That is, if you’re in the eastern half of the U.S.). I’m sitting on the couch wrapped up in a blanket, drinking coffee. The windows are open and the crisp, fall air is just pouring in. Okay, I know the leaves aren’t turning yet, but I don’t care. I am so excited for fall!

As I sit at home enjoying this fall morning, I thought I would share my ideas on fall decor with you all. It’s super easy and you don’t need to spend a lot of money to do it!

Bring the outdoors in

There is a house on my street and every year they sell pumpkins, mums, bails of hay, dried corn…etc. No need to buy expensive fall decor items. Natural decorative touches go a long way without looking overdone and fake. You can also create a display on your porch with pumpkins and bails of hay. Just play around with it and see what looks good!

If you like to have flowers in the house, consider some bittersweet or wheatgrass. These are gorgeous and add some fall color to your home. Again, you can create a display that you like! I chose some dried wildflowers with fake pumpkins that I picked up at a local antique store!

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Layer it up

Along with the joys of fall comes cooler weather. If you have hardwood floors like I do, it can be a challenge to make your home feel cozy without carpet. Layering with rugs and throws is one way to do that. Another way to achieve a cozy home is by adding texture and depth to your decor.

Make your house smell like fall

I am really into those scented wax cubes right now! I just picked up a bunch of fall ones (including a hazelnut latte one, which I’m pretty sure is what heaven smells like). The candle warmers themselves aren’t so cheap but I bet you can find a good deal somewhere! The wax cubes are about $2 each which I don’t think is that bad! If you want a more natural way to go, there are tons of recipes where you can use natural ingredients and boil them on the stove or in the crock pot to create that fall aroma. Check out Apartment Therapy’s 5 Simmer Pot Recipes To Make Your Home Smell Like Fall.

 

I hope I gave you some ideas on how to decorate your home simply and on a budget this fall! If you have other ways you like to decorate, please share your ideas!

If you’re still excited for fall, read on where I share my recent apple picking trip and the fruits of our labor!

How-To Home Decor: Antiquing & Thrift Store Shopping

This past weekend I went antiquing for the first time in a long time! It’s so different when you have your own home to decorate. The possibilities really start to open up. I think bargain shopping is one of those things where if you can tap into it, you can save a lot of money and create a unique style in your home in the process. But it’s also very difficult! You have to have an open mind and be willing to put some work into it. Here are some tips I would give you for when you go antiquing:

Have an open mind

There is a reason these items are at the antique store – someone didn’t like something or everything about it, and chances are you will find something wrong with it too. You can always paint if you don’t like the color or switch around hardware. Maybe you like a lamp but you don’t like the shade. So, just buy the lamp as is but replace it with a shade you do like.

Decide¬†whether it’s worth it or not

Just because most of these items are cheap, doesn’t mean you don’t have to weigh out the options. You should ask yourself questions such as: Do I have a use or place for this item? Is it practical and can I make it fit the style of my home? Is the project at hand manageable or would it take more skill that I don’t possess? Because while you may like owls, it may not be attractive to have 20 of them in your home. So weigh out the options.

Decide if you want a friend to go

Growing up, antiquing was always a fun activity to do with a friend. Now that I’m older with a house, that’s not the case! I definitely prefer to go alone. If you are out on a mission to find stuff for your house, other people will put a damper on that dresser you really love but needs some work. Even if they don’t say it, you will feel it internally and you probably won’t buy it. Shopping with friends influences you more than you know!

I hope you enjoyed these tips and are ready to brave the world of antiquing! If you have any tips and tricks you use feel free to comment below!