Thanksgiving Desserts – Must Try Recipes

This time of year always makes me happy! I love the holidays, especially Thanksgiving. There’s something to be said for a holiday that there are ZERO expectations…no presents…nothing. Simply time with family and friends. As always, I am always thinking about what we are going to be eating at Thanksgiving. If you’re like me, things like side dishes and appetizers are great, but the Thanksgiving desserts are what I’m really thinking about!

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thanksgiving desserts

Thanksgiving Desserts you MUST Try!

When you think of Thanksgiving desserts, the first thing that comes to mind is pumpkin pie…of course! Well, these white chocolate pumpkin pie bars definitely have the pumpkin part down and they sound absolutely delicious! I think Trisha at The Salty Side Dish knocked it out of the park with this delicious recipe! And it sounds so easy too!

thanksgiving desserts

Image via The Salty Side Dish by Trisha

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I can’t eat Oreo’s any longer (stupid gluten allergy), but one thing I used to love were Oreo balls. These Thanksgiving Turkey Oreo Cookie Balls are absolutely adorable and how cute would they look on a platter on the Thanksgiving dessert table?!?

thanksgiving desserts

Image via Mommy Musings by Stefanie

No dessert table would be complete with out cookies. Sugar cookies are great (and should be on every holiday table), but these pumpkin coffee cookies with maple icing are, not only unique, but perfect for someone that wants something small with a cup of coffee!

thanksgiving desserts

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Nothing screams fall like caramel apples. Truth be told, they are one of my favorite splurges. I love apples…so when you add chocolate, caramel and sprinkles, I get very excited! That’s why, when I saw these caramel apple cupcakes, I knew they would be an amazing addition to the Thanksgiving desserts table! Not to mention, the kids will love them too!

thanksgiving desserts

Image via Live Love Texas by Kelly

The ideal dessert recipe to me is a no-bake recipe. That just screams easy to me! And I don’t know about you, but I need easy once in awhile! That’s why this no bake pumpkin cheesecake is perfect! My son loves cheesecake and he loves pumpkin everything, so I am sure he would love it if  made this for him this year!

thanksgiving desserts

Image via Bake Me Some Sugar

I’m all about cute and kid friendly. When you have a dessert table filled with various pies, it could seem rather disappointing to kids. Add something super cute and kid friendly like these adorable turkey cupcakes and I guarantee you, kids (and probably adults too) will be super happy and want one of these cupcakes!

thanksgiving desserts

 

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Do you have an Instant Pot? If you do or you are thinking about getting one, you need to try this Instant Pot pumpkin pie recipe! Not only does it look absolutely mouthwatering, but so easy to make too!! Anything that is either no-bake or something you can make in something that is NOT your oven, is a recipe for me. Especially when you only have one oven and you need it for other Thanksgiving goodies!

Thanksgiving desserts

Image via A Moms Impression by Kathy

Brownies are my weakness. Like I mentioned above, when you think of Thanksgiving desserts, the first thing that come to mind is pumpkin pie. Shake things up a bit this year and make these pumpkin cheesecake brownies. You get the best of three desserts, all rolled into one!

thanksgiving desserts

Image via Live Love Texas by Kelly

So tell me, what is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Will you be making one of these delicious desserts this holiday seasons?


25 Pieces of Advice for my Younger Self

Getting older has never bothered me at all. In fact, I embrace it and enjoy each year older I get. Now that I have a son in high school (9th grade) and a daughter in middle school (6th grade), I’ve started thinking about all the things I wish I would have known then that I know now. Since I can’t go back in time, nor would I want to, what I can do is compile this list of 30 pieces of advice for my younger self and make sure I teach these things to my kids.

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advice for my younger self

Image via Pexels by Bich Tran

If you have kids, you know what it’s like to try and give them advice and have them basically (or literally) tell you that you don’t know what you are talking about. We can’t make them listen and take our advice. All we can do is continue to be open and honest with them and hope that someday they will remember the things we tell them and it will finally sink it. So, for that reason, I have compiled this list of 30 pieces of advice for my younger self that I would like my kids to know.

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  1. Be yourself. Know that who you are is enough. If someone doesn’t like you for who you are, then they are not worth your time.
  2. Set goals for yourself and work to achieve that goal. If it seems like you will never meet that goal, it’s OK to reevaluate and change your goals a bit.
  3. Don’t make up excuses. Own your mistakes; learn from your mistakes; and move on from your mistakes.
  4. Surround yourself with people that boost you up. Don’t be afraid to cut ties with those that cut you down.
  5. You are responsible for YOU. Choose to be happy.
  6. Be kind to others. Especially that person others don’t seem to be kind to. People may not remember all of the mean things said to them, but they will aways remember when someone was nice to them.
  7. You will ALWAYS learn more from listening than from talking. So listen more.
  8. Don’t let failure hold you back. Pick yourself back up and try again.
  9. Always be grateful. Be grateful for what you have; focus on the good; let go of the bad.
  10. Try really really hard not to be so gullible. It’s OK to trust, but you need to learn to verify things. You do not want to be known as a gossip that spreads lies.
  11. Step out of your comfort zone. Try new things. Be curious.
  12. Learn to forgive. You may not ever forget, but forgiveness is good for the heart.
  13. Stop thinking you’re fat. Eat healthy, get exercise and you will be just fine. The number on the scale and the number on the tags is just that…a number.
  14. Change is good. Embrace change. Don’t fear change.
  15. Pay attention in school. School is your job. Treat it like a job.
  16. Respect others. There is nothing worse than a disrespectful person.
  17. Respect yourself. If you want others to respect you, you need to respect YOU.
  18. Write things down in a panner for school. Trust me. Your brain may be capable of remembering your reading assignment now, but things won’t always be that way. Train yourself to write things down NOW!
  19. Friends will come and go. The one thing you will always have is your sibling(s). Remember that.
  20. It’s fun to have boyfriends and girlfriends, but those relationships don’t always last. Everything will be OK if and when they don’t last.
  21. Curfews are there for a reason. Follow it. Know that it is not easy for your parents to let you go out, especially at night, alone. Save them headaches and worry by coming home on time.
  22. Learn to take compliments and say thank you. Don’t feel like you need to cut yourself down because someone paid you a compliment. Just say thanks!
  23. When it comes time for college, pursue your interests. Don’t let anyone talk you out of it.
  24. Being “cool” is just a matter of opinion.
  25. Saying “no” is fine. Learn the word. Don’t let others pressure you into saying yes for something you don’t want to say yes to.

What are pieces of advice would you give your younger self? I’m curious. Leave me a comment and let me know. There are so many times I hear myself tell my own teenager things that I then sit back and think, “wow. I wish someone would have told me that when I was his age”. So as you can imagine, when I was writing this list of advice for my younger self, I did so with my own kids in mind. Everything on this list is something I have said to them or will say to them at some point.


Knee Surgery Recovery Tips

On October 10th, I had knee surgery. I have been dealing with this bad knee since I was 12 years old. I’ve dislocated it a few times over the years and really did a doozy in July of this year. It finally became apparent that I need to do something about the knee. In talking over things with my surgeon, he came up with a very good surgical plan. Despite all of that, my nerves were shot the day of surgery. I was nervous as all get out! Hopefully these knee surgery recovery tips help you!

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knee surgery recovery

About the Knee Surgery

Like I mentioned, the surgeon had a good plan for my surgery. Since I deal with very little cartilage, the first thing he wanted to do was clean up my kneecap and take a biopsy of the cartilage. That biopsy will then be sent to a lab so they can grow more of my own cartilage! Unfortunately, in doing that procedure, it means that I need to have a second surgery. During that second surgery, I will have the new cartilage implanted and then the surgeon will use donor tendons to reconstruct all of my tendons so my knee is more stabilized.

Since I had my gallbladder removed in January of this year, my deductible was gone and my out of pocket was nearly gone. In working with me, my surgeon made sure that my surgery was the last of his day so that in case I was not a candidate for the Maci procedure (the biopsy), then he could go ahead and do the tendon reconstruction at that time.

 

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The Knee Surgery

Everything went well. I woke up very weepy and freezing, but the nurse told me that is very common. The pain I had was a bit much more than I thought it would be at that time, but they gave me something and covered me with some sort of heater thing. I warmed up quickly and thankfully, the tears stopped! Other than that, I felt amazing. I had no anesthesia “hang-over” feeling like I did with my gallbladder surgery. The nurses kept remarking how good I looked. I take it I had a good anesthesiologist! I ended up being a great candidate for the Maci procedure so I will be having a second surgery some time in 2019.

Knee Surgery Recovery

Knee surgery recovery has not been that bad. I have to say, I am pleasantly surprised. Friday (two days after surgery) was the worst day. I could not get comfortable to save my life and I took the most pain pills that day. Other than that, I haven’t really needed the pain medication.

So…What have I been doing?

I am, by no means, an expert, but here are the knee surgery recovery things I’ve been doing that has helped me tremendously over the course of the last for days.

  1. One of the things my surgeon told me to do, was take Tylenol three times a day. If I need a pain pill in between taking the Tylenol, then take it. So that’s what I did from day one. Total, since surgery, I’ve only taken four pain pills.
  2. Another thing the surgeon recommended is that I take magnesium. Apparently there are studies that taking magnesium with the Oxycodone will help prevent the patient from needing to up their pain pill dose due to tolerance.
  3. If you are having surgery and your hospital does not send you home with an ice machine, ASK for one or BUY one. I have the DonJoy Iceman Clear3knee surgery recovery and it is amazing. For the first four days after surgery, I was able to continuously ice my knee. It really helped with pain and swelling.
  4. Do your exercises. My surgeon gave me a list of four exercises that he wanted me to start the very next day. Do them. Even if they hurt…do them. It will get better, but it will help the recovery process.
  5. Take Colace. Trust me on that one. Take it. The last thing you want is to be laid up and constipated. Pain medication will constipate you.

Aside from those five knee surgery recovery tips, I have been keeping myself busy by reading and watching Little House on the Prairie. I have to say, after being as busy as I am on a daily basis, it is rather nice to be able to sit back and taking it a bit easy for a little while!

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Reading Bucket List

Less than a week ago, I had knee surgery. So…right now…I am sitting around with my knee propped up, watching WAY too much Netflix, Little House on the Prairiereading bucket list on the DVR (don’t judge), and reading. Reading is one of my favorite things to do. When I knew I was going to be having knee surgery, I decided to put together a reading bucket list.

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reading bucket list

Image via Pexels by Negative Space

Like I said, reading is one of my favorite things to do. I like it so much, I started a book review blog called A Real Page Turner. Go check it out! I read a wide variety of genres. My favorites are mystery and suspense, thriller, young adult and true crime. I will read cheesy romance novels from time to time, but only when I need a brain cleanser from something totally creepy and scary I just read!

Reading Bucket List

Juror #3Juror #3Juror #3

James Patterson is my favorite author. I have been reading his books FOREVER. This particular book is about a black man in Mississippi that is being accused of murder. His lawyer is a total newbie that has never tried a criminal case. Will she get him off or will he get the death penalty?

Educated: A MemoirEducated: A MemoirEducated: A Memoir

Educated by Tara Westover is a memoir that was recommended to by a friend. It is about a girl that was kept out of school that made the decision to leave her family. She heads out into the world, attends Cambridge University and earns herself a PhD!

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This book was a FREE Amazon First Reads book. Typically I like the Amazon First Reads books. We Were Mothers by Katie Sise caught my attention because the description said this was a novel full of twists and dark secrets. Missing woman; unfaithful husband; I was definitely intrigued!

A Killer's Mind (Zoe Bentley Mystery)A Killer’s Mind (Zoe Bentley Mystery)A Killer's Mind (Zoe Bentley Mystery)

Serial killers, the FBI, missing people…that’s the type of books I like to read (and scare myself with). If it is part of a series, EVEN BETTER! A Killers Mind by Mike Omer is about a serial killer that embalms their victims and poses them as if they are still alive. Not only that, but the FBI agent on the case, starts receiving envelopes that reveals a connection to killings from her childhood!

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This book may be a little difficult to read. It is a true story about a mom that dropped her kids off a bridge into the Willamette River. Miraculously, one child survived. Nancy Rommelmann embarks on a journey to discover what drives a mother to murder her own children.

Other Books Waiting to be Read

Other books on my Kindle Paperwhitereading bucket list are:

  • Matchmaking for Beginners by Maddie Dawson
  • The Thinnest Air by Minka Kent
  • The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • A Shade of Vampire #64 by Bella Forrest

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Have you read any of these books? What’s on your reading bucket list?

Thanksgiving Side Dishes You Must Try

I’ve told you before that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. There is something to be said about just enjoying each others company without any other expectations. One of the things I like most about Thanksgiving are the side dishes! Turkey is good, but the side dishes are the best part! This round-up of Thanksgiving side dishes are definitely something you should consider for this years Thanksgiving meal!

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thanksgiving side dishes

Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Creamed spinach is one of my favorite side dishes. The creamed spinach at Boston Market was my favorite, until I made my own! Not only is my creamed spinach recipe Keto friendly, but it is BETTER than Boston Market’s! Make this as one of your Thanksgiving side dishes this year. Your family will thank you!

thanksgiving side dishes

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Sweet potatoes seem to be a staple at Thanksgiving. This coconut ginger sweet potato casserole is not only healthy, but it is packed with flavor. Not only is this flavorful side dish delicious, but it is relatively inexpensive to make! Gotta love that!

Thanksgiving side dishes

Image via Eating Richly by Diana Johnson

Thanksgiving would not be Thanksgiving without stuffing. This next side dish is not your traditional stuffing recipe, but why not mix things up a bit (or have both traditional and non-traditional). This apple and cranberry sausage stuffing recipe is jam packed with deliciousness, but it contains NO BREAD! I’m super happy about that since I am gluten free!

thanksgiving side dishes

Image via Rocky Mountain Savings by Emily

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When I think of Thanksgiving food, I think of a few things…turkey (duh), stuffing, and cranberries. Rather than have a boring salad, serve this apple cranberry salad. This is super easy to throw together and it is packed full of flavor!

thanksgiving side dishes

Image via Eating Richly by Diana Johnson

If you love sweet potatoes, this next recipe is for you! This is actually a recipe I have bookmarked to make over the holidays. The rosemary roasted sweet potatoes sound heavenly. What do you think?

thanksgiving side dishes

Image via Emily Enchanted by Emily

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All of the previous recipes are perfect for small or large gatherings. However, sometimes you want Thanksgiving side dishes that are for smaller groups. This fall wedge salad with romaine and butternut squash is perfect!

thanksgiving side dishes

Image via Eating Richly by Diana Johnson

Each and every one of these Thanksgiving side dishes are perfect for your holiday get together. Which one will you be making?