Feeling Fall.

A long weekend was spent in a cabin, cozied around a campfire with family in the cool mountain air. With the crackling mesquite and changing canopy, it finally felt like Fall. We bundled up in woolen blankets, roasted marshmallows, and collected a variety of colorful acorns and oak leaves. Elk ate from the palm of our hands, and we even spotted a fox! The kids were covered in dirt from head to toe, but they climbed trees and rocks and made race tracks and hiked and had a great time. We woke up to rain and had coconut banana pancakes and still managed to make some frothy coffee. We ate cupcakes and celebrated the little lady’s birthday! Hopefully some of these snapshots of our adventures leave you feeling inspired!

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog         Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog Fall15 Out of the Thistle® Blog

 

 

 

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Good cookies.

There’s so much to be thankful for during Christmastime. One thing we are certainly in thanks of: cookies. Cookies are good any time of year. Though, they seem to reign supreme during the holidays for parties and gift-giving. Whether you are going to a cookie swap or just whipping up a batch for some of your favorites, we have a few recipes to recommend. These are a few of the cookie collection from our holiday season:

Linzers, by Thread Bears®A returning favorite: the Linzer cookie. Crisp and light cookies, generously dusted with confectioner’s sugar and filled with strawberry jam. This is the recipe we used.

Easy fudge, by Thread Bears®Though fudge is not cookies, we think it deserves a place in the cookie category. This simple fudge with a sprinkling of sea salt is the perfect addition. This is the recipe we used. Best part: it’s made in the slow cooker!

Cherry shortbread cookies, by Thread Bears®These simple and subtly sweet cookies have the perfect white chocolate to cherry ratio. This is the recipe we used.

Speculaas by Thread Bears®These Speculaas (or Speculoos) are beautiful, but do require the molds to shape them in. If you have the time (and patience!) these cookies are a lovely addition to any cookie tin. These biscuits are crisp with just the right amount of spice. You can find the recipe here.

Palmiers, by Thread Bears®These delicious chocolate palmiers are nutty, chewy, and have such a fun appearance! A friend’s daughter has decided to name these ‘the mustache cookies.’ The recipe can be found here.

chewy molasses cookies, by Thread Bears®A traditional in our cookie repertoire: the chewy molasses. These are the perfect texture and flavor combination. A chewy and spicy inside, a sweet and crunchy exterior. This is the recipe we used.

thumbprints cookies, by Thread Bears®The thumbprint cookie. If done correctly, in our opinion, a thick and chewy base with just the right amount of filling to compliment. We found this recipe, which is going in the favorites. The base has the perfect amount of lemon zest and is the perfect amount of chewy and crisp, while the dark chocolate filling is a perfect accent to the lemon and is sprinkled with just a dash of sea salt. Delicious little morsels.

Gingerpread people by Thread Bears®This recipe was a little tricky. The one solid recommendation we have: freeze and freeze and freeze in-between rolling out and cutting. This dough gets very tacky after handling for a short time, however, the end result is worth it. The gingerbread people are slightly firm on the outside with a chewy and delicious interior.

traditional chocolate chip cookies by Thread Bears®The pinnacle of the cookie tin is the good ol’ chocolate chip. We have tried many, many versions. In our belief, you really can’t get it just right without the shortening. We use mostly organic ingredients and try to stick to eating things that can only be found in nature. However, when it comes to this family favorite, there’s no messing with these. Here’s our recipe:

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: 4 dozen cookies

INGREDIENTS

12 ounces Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
2 3/4 – 3 cups unsifted flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening, softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Whisk flour with baking soda and salt; set aside.
In large mixing bowl, beat butter, shortening and sugars on medium speed until creamy.
Add eggs in, one at a time, then add vanilla. Mix on low speed until incorporated.
Gradually add dry ingredients into butter mixture.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Using a 1 1/4″ cookie scoop, or a rounded tablespoon, drop onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown on edges. Let cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes, then remove and let cool on wire rack completely.

We hope your holiday season is full of good times and good cookies!

Merry Christmas!

-The Thread Bears® Family

 

Cocoa and candy.

I think we can all agree, Christmastime is a perfect excuse for indulging. And, what perfect opportunity to let kids get their fair share of sweets than with a party? We had a gingerbread house decorating party this weekend, which turned out to be a huge success. The kids decorated, ate candy, drank cocoa, laughed and had a good time. Here’s a few tips we’d like to share for a successful candy and cocoa party:

Do yourself a favor and lay down kraft paper. You can roll it up when the party is over and catch all of the rogue nonpareils and keep globs of frosting off of your table.

Cocoa and candy party, Thread Bears®

Though we usually opt for homemade, in this case, we didn’t stress out about it. We bought premade gingerbread villages that just needed to be assembled. The village houses were small enough that the kids didn’t lose interest halfway through decorating. They went together quickly, as well.

Candy and cocoa party by Thread Bears®

Buy a lot of candy. You will have many little taste-testers sampling the goods, so get plenty! We found the idea on Pinterest of organizing the candy in muffin tins, which worked out nicely. No spilling bags, no arm wrestling for the peppermints. Everything was easily accessible.

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

We also whipped up a batch of homemade peppermint marshmallows and the ultimate hot cocoa.

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

Most important tip: have fun! We hope this helps to make your next gingerbread house decorating party a breeze!

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

cocoa and candy party by Thread Bears®

And thanks to Childhood Unplugged for sharing our image on your instagram! http://instagram.com/p/w128yWPKq4/?modal=true

 

 

 

 

 

Good things.

This time of year is always sentimental. With Thanksgiving on the horizon, this month reminds us to reflect on the people and things we are most thankful for. However, we do take time everyday to thank God for all of the provisions and blessings that he has bestowed upon us, regardless of the time of year.

Being thankful is something that doesn’t just come easily. I have learned to be thankful for a difficult situation because it’s an opportunity to have faith and learn. I’ve learned to be thankful in the chaos of raising children because I get to see their milestones, their learning, their growing. I’ve learned to be thankful for every person I encounter because it gives me an opportunity to live as an example that would be pleasing to God. If there’s one piece of advice I could give, it would be to just be thankful in all things.

Here’s a few snapshots of some of the good things we are especially thankful for this season: friends and family to bake for, October picnics, quiet moments for praying or creating, bedtime stories, colorful foliage, and crisp, cool air.

We hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving.

Good things Thread Bears® Blog

Recipe for these Apple Pie Pops can be found here: http://www.bhg.com/recipe/pies/apple-pie-pops/ . ALSO! This photo won this week’s Better Homes and Gardens #BHGBaking Contest on Instagram!!

 

Good things Thread Bears® Blog

Good things Thread Bears® Blog

Pattern for this “Rosebud” Hat can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/rosebud-17

Good things Thread Bears® Blog

Good things Thread Bears® Blog

HOMAGE TO AUTUMN.

These are the hot and humid Dog Days of Summer, the days that seem to drag by while we wait for Fall. I can’t wait for the moment that I wake up one morning and feel the cool breeze, or to realize that the days are getting shorter and cozier.

Don’t get me wrong, every season has it’s perks but Autumn is by far my favorite. As Albert Camus said, “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” It’s those inspiring colors that make it such a lovely time of year…the trees sing of God’s Glory in such radiant tones. And the scents– don’t forget those fragrances! The pumpkin-clover-apple-cinnamon-y goodness just seems to fill the air! The stone fruit maple-y sweets! Handmade caramels! As you can tell, we get psyched about this stuff. A LOT.

So, in honor of the soon-coming season, we thought we’d get you psyched for Fall as well with some of our Homage to Autumn snapshots, both new and old favorites.

ALSO: We thought we’d sneak in a little tip… to our followers, keep an eye out for a GIVEAWAY in the next post!!!

Happy Friday!

The Thread Bears® Family

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

 

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

Thread Bears® Homage to Autumn

 

Sand and sun.

We have been soaking up the sun and thoroughly enjoying every minute of it. We have constructed sand castles and indulged in cold and creamy desserts. I managed to snap a few photos of our sun-fun, and these photos are the inspiration for my newest design which is (hopefully) ready to be revealed in a few days.

I hope everyone is enjoying the lovely weather–get outside, soak up some sweet vitamin D, and thank God for these beautiful days!

Rhonda

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog

Sand and sun. Thread Bears® Blog