Witches’ Potion Table


I’m calling all witches, there’s a potion brewing for you,

Bubbling with polka-dotted pumpkins and mercury glass too!


 A dutch oven in cast iron serves as a cauldron for the table,

While plates are dressed for potion-making, with an ingredient label.


Add the aging blood of the black cat to your witchy brew,

For best results, stir counter-clockwise, not one time, but two.


Incredibly potent, very small doses of Cyanide you will need,

Unless it’s toxic witches’ potion you’re blending, don’t exceed.


Frog Syrup is a swampy addition to your witches’ brew and meal,

Beware of imitation toad syrup, use only genuine frog that’s real!


Add a dash of Eye of Newt and a pinch of Spider Blend,

Under the light of the full moon, your potion you must tend.


Target, a favorite haunt, is a short broom ride away,

Where I fell head over heels with witchy legs, flying home to play.


 A witchy spider web was spun for our potion’s tablecloth,

Spelled at HomeGoods, safe for catching our brew’s bubbly froth.


Drink up Witches Cups were conjured straight from Pier 1,

Add a candlestick from Dollar Tree to elevate the fun!


Apply silicone adhesive and allow 24 hours to cure,

Gather ribbon and some straws and thirsty witches they will lure!



Ravens have flown in, perched by the cauldron at the table,

Conjure raven snacks up here, inspired by a Halloween label!


It’s not too late to Eat, Drink & Be Witchy this Halloween,

Throw your name into the cauldron, here, where your comment will be seen!


October 3rd is the date, three winners we will choose,

So enter today, don’t delay, you have nothing to lose.


Witches’ Potion Table Details:

Tablecloth & Chargers / HomeGoods

Flatware & Straws / World Market

Polka-dotted Pumpkins & Witch Legs / Target

Drink Up Witches Cups & Napkin Rings / Pier 1

Potion Ingredient Labels, Ribbon & Ravens / Michaels

Drink Up Witches DIY Cup

Wishing you a Happy Halloween and a little Scary Fun,

 Happy Haunting to All~

Aren’t you glad my rhyming’s done? :)


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At the Table: Pumpkins, Leaves and Mikasa Autumn Nights


I’m at the table with pumpkins, leaves and

Autumn Nights by Mikasa Gourmet Basics.


Inspired by the deepest shade of night, Mikasa Autumn Nights

offers a modern interpretation for fall dining.


Bold patterned leaves drift across square plates

in a contrasting palette of autumnal colors.


Lanterns are filled with a seasonal display of

small pumpkins and gourds as a centerpiece.


And square shape bowls are a

convenient size for serving up soup, cereal

or Jack Be Little pumpkins :)


Woven chargers add a rustic texture and contrast

with the smooth satin finish of the flatware

and glossy glaze of the stoneware.



A twig candleholder with glass leaf accents by Mikasa provides

a little glow for the table from the crackle glass candleholders.






Autumn Nights Table Details:

*Dinnerware / Gourmet Basics by Mikasa Autumn Nights

*Flatware / Mikasa Satin Loft

*Candle holder / Mikasa Glass Leaf 3 Pillar Linear

Chargers / World Market, several years ago

Lanterns / Pottery Barn, several years ago

Leaf Napkin Rings / Bed, Bath & Beyond, several years ago

Tablecloth & Napkins / Kohl’s, several years ago


Enjoy 20% off one Autumn Nights item through October 6th with the link below:


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Pumpkins, Leaves and Mikasa Autumn Nights

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Eat, Drink, and Be Witchy Giveaway!


With Halloween on the horizon, are you feeling Witchy?


Are you dusting off your broom? . . .



Brushing up on your spells. . .


Preparing to shake up a sinister Skeletini Cocktail. . .


Or custom blending your potion stirring spoons?


Ready to fuel up with some sweet treats for a long midnight ride. . .

Halloween Oreos

Maybe some Halloween Oreo Brownies. . .

Halloween Dipped & Sprinkled Apples

Or Halloween Dipped and Sprinkled Apples. . .


Or Witch Hat Cupcakes


Ravenous Witches may need to pack some Finger Sand-Witches. . .

Witches' Brew Stew and Finger Sand-Witches

Along with a cauldron of Witches’ Brew Stew. . .

 Hearty, satisfying, and tasty after a long flight!

Bread Dough Witch Fingers

Or Conjure Witch Fingers from Bread Dough


In Celebration of Halloween,

I visited some of my favorite haunts to scare up some witchy treats!

Eat, Drink, and Be Witchy Giveaway

To help you Eat, Drink & Be Witchy this Halloween. . .

 One witch will receive a Cauldron,

a Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron 5-Quart Dutch Oven.


A second witch will receive Drink Up Witches Cups, Cocktail Napkins & Picks, Straws, Bar Towel, and Labels for your Bubbling Brew.


And a third witch will receive Baking Cups, Halloween Decorating or Potion Sprinkles, Cookie Cutters, Potion Stirring Spatulas, and some Eye of Newt, or Candy Eye Treat Toppers.


To enter this giveaway and throw your name into the cauldron,

leave a comment telling me your favorite halloween candy or treat!


Subscribers/followers automatically get a second entry.

Subscribe by email or follow on Facebook

and let me know by comment.


For a third entry, share this giveaway on Facebook

and leave an additional comment telling me so.

Brains of Cawing Ravens

Giveaway is open to those witches :) living in the continental US only. 

 The winners will be chosen October 3rd,

in time for you to Eat, Drink and Be Witchy!

Eat, Drink and Be Witchy Tricks & Treats!

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From Summer to Fall: Pfaltzgraff Rooster Meadow


I’m transitioning from summer to fall, at the table

with Pfaltzgraff Rooster Meadow Dinnerware.


  Sunflowers, poppies and black-eyed Susans, along with

a strutting rooster and chick, border the plates in a cheery

pattern and vivid palette of russet, gold, and greens!


While a vibrant foundation of blooming flowers and

leaves in bright fall colors, trail along the tablecloth.


Goldenrod is blooming free for the picking, joining

 sunflowers and mums for a blooming centerpiece for the table.


 Mason jar drinking glasses with handles are embellished with roosters

and flowers, ready to be filled with your favorite beverage.


 And sculpted rooster accents in a cookie jar and

 salt and pepper set are decorative as well as functional.


Plates are embossed with sunflowers for a blooming option for appetizers. . .


Or serve as a flowering coaster under a mug.


Mugs and soup/cereal bowls have a baby chick and flower detail inside. . .




 A 12-1/2 inch sculpted sunflower platter also functions

as a decorative charger for 10-1/2 inch dinner plates.



I filled some mugs for a blooming vase at each place setting. . .


And filled a Mason Jar Beverage Dispenser with fruit-infused water. . .


A decorative and functional way to serve lemonade, tea,

punch, or your favorite party beverage for a crowd.




Rooster topped canisters provide functional storage for baking staples, treats or

as decorative storage, filled with dried pasta for your kitchen counter top.


Rooster Meadow Table Details:

*Dinnerware, Rooster Cookie Jar & Canisters / Rooster Meadow by Pfaltzgraff

*Rooster Mason Jars & Beverage Dispenser / Pfaltzgraff

*Sculpted Sunflower Appetizer Plates/ Pfaltzgraff

*Flatware / Pfaltzgraff Linden

Chargers / World Market, several years ago

Wire Cake Pedestal / World Market, last year

Rooster Napkin Rings / Dutchman’s, last year

Tablecloth & Napkins / Food Network™ Winding Marigold, Kohl’s


You can find all the Rooster Meadow Dinnerware with the link below:


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Pfaltzgraff Rooster Meadow Dinnerware

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At the Table: A Fall Transition with Mikasa Ventosa


I’m making the transition to fall at the table with

Ventosa Dinnerware by Mikasa Gourmet Basics.


Organic in design, Mikasa’s Gourmet Basics’ Ventosa Dinnerware is a

handcrafted collection that offers a modern option for dining.


 A reactive glaze provides a natural variation in color, while the starburst and linear design adds a feeling of movement, adding to the handcrafted appeal.


Stoneware square plates are framed and accented in shape with woven chargers at the table, along with a checked tablecloth and napkins, providing a foundation of autumn colors.


Mikasa’s Ryland collection of stemware offers a coordinating square shape in goblets as well as highball glasses. A maple leaf is tucked inside the glass, showing the first hint of fall color that I was thrilled to discover, since we don’t normally see the leaves change in our part of North Carolina until October.


{Insert a *cheer* for an early fall if you’re below the Mason-Dixon line, or *groan* if you’re above :)}


Square shaped soup/cereal bowls with a matte black glazed exterior

top the stack of salad and dinner plates. . .


. . .and amber glass vases are filled with an assortment of foliage clipped from shrubs

for a variety of texture and color for a simple & easy centerpiece.


Crimson Queen Japanese Maple, burgundy tipped Loropetalum, Kaleidoscope Abelia, and flowering dill.



Mugs offer a ready-made and handy napkin ring for easy and casual dining.


Enjoy 20% off one Ventosa item through September 28th,
with the link below (some exclusions apply):


 Table Details:

*Dinnerware / Ventosa, Gourmet Basics by Mikasa

*Flatware / Mikasa Harmony

*Stemware / Mikasa Ryland Highball Glass

Rattan Chargers / Kohl’s

Napkin Rings / Pottery Barn (several years ago)

Tablecloth & Napkins / HomeGoods

Vases / Target


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.


Are you cheering on an early fall or groaning in anticipation?

Gourmet Basics by Mikasa Ventosa Dinnerware

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{Less} Labor Day Picnic

 {Less} Labor Day Picnic

As we sail into Labor Day weekend, I’m wrapping up a few projects and feeling a little lethargic, so here’s a labor-free post from me of our {Less} Labor Day Picnic. Pottery Barn shared my picnic on their blog last year, so here’s a timely & tasty repeat if you’re in need some inspiration for your end-of-summer celebration!

Wishing you a Safe & Happy {Less} Labor Day Weekend!


We’re enjoying a lakeside picnic over the holiday weekend.

I’m testing the theory that everything tastes better out of a jar~ it certainly is convenient & more fun :)

A layered salad made in advance~ a minimum of 8 hours or up to 24~ chilling for the flavors to meld.

You can enjoy the fruits of your labor later,  since that’s  the point of this summer holiday.

Tasty & satisfying, and a salad that my husband enjoys.

You can make individual salad jars, so serving is less problematic & less labor is required.

Layered Cornbread-and-Turkey Salad, recipe courtesy of Southern Living, here


1 (6-ounce) package buttermilk cornbread mix (I used a box of Jiffy corn muffin mix)

1 (12-ounce) bottle Parmesan-peppercorn dressing

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup buttermilk

1 (9-ounce) package romaine lettuce, shredded

2 1/2 cups chopped smoked turkey (about 3/4 pound)

*2 large yellow bell peppers, chopped

2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped (I used cherry tomatoes)

1 red onion, chopped

1 cup diced celery (about 3 celery ribs)

*2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Swiss cheese

10 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled

2 green onions, sliced


Prepare cornbread according to package directions; cool and crumble. Set aside.

Stir together dressing, mayonnaise, and buttermilk until blended.

To make 1 large salad: Layer half each of crumbled cornbread, shredded lettuce, and next 7 ingredients in a large glass bowl; spoon half of dressing mixture evenly over top. Repeat layers ending with dressing mixture. Cover and chill at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours. Sprinkle top with green onions just before serving. Prep: 45 min., Chill: 8 hrs.


*I substituted some chickpeas for yellow bell peppers and used a blend of Monterey Jack & Cheddar cheese instead of Swiss since that’s what I had on hand.

You can bake your cornbread the night before and assemble your salad in bowl or jar in the morning so it’s ready for dinner. It’s great to take to a pot luck, barbeque, or reunion and a crowd pleaser!

Skewers of cherry tomatoes, artichoke hearts, prosciutto, cheese, olives, & cheese tortellini~

Citrus infused water with lemon & orange slices,

easy, refreshing & thirst quenching!

 Dessert in a jar with very little labor using fruits in season~ plums, peaches, berries of any kind or combination.

 Peach-and-Blueberry Parfait, recipe & inspiration courtesy Southern Living here.

Instead of making a custard, I mixed a jar of lemon curd with 8 ounces of  1/3 less fat cream cheese~ (less labor :)

Layer custard or lemon curd mixture with ready-made angel food cake or pound cake from the grocery store, peaches & blueberries.

 Assemble, chill & enjoy!

The Novel Bakers return September 8th for Picnic Week

with themed picnics, recipes, inspiration and guest bakers!

Wishing you some food and fun in your weekend~

Have a Safe & Labor-Free Holiday :)

 Plates/ Kohl’s

Flatware/ HomeGoods

Napkins/ World Market

Mason Jar Drink Dispenser/ Pottery Barn

Galvanized Bottle Caddy/ Pottery Barn

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A Farmers Market Table


I’m taking a trip to the Farmers Market via the table for

Cuisine Kathleen’s Farewell to Summer Table Challenge!


I had a little tabletop inspiration with a trip to one of our local Farmers Markets to enjoy some farm fresh summer veggies and peaches while they last, soon to be replaced by fall’s bounty of apples, pumpkins and winter squash.

Davidson Farmers Market


I also had some inspiration from a Farmers Market tray,

fresh for the picking from World Market. . .


. . . and some vintage-inspired Farmers Market seed cards to plant on the table.


A berry basket holds a medley of vine-ripened tomatoes, okra and South Carolina peaches, topped with some flowering basil.


And a zinc seed tray from my Potting Shed is offering this week’s Farmers Market harvest of zucchini, cukes, heirloom tomatoes, peppers, and fresh local eggs.


Rooster glasses are AWA certified and pastured, found foraging at Tuesday Morning.



And ears of fresh summer corn are *weighting* to be shucked ;)




Help yourself to a Farmers Market Bloody Mary!

Puree some summer heirloom tomatoes in a blender, strain the seeds and pulp to make fresh-from-the-garden tomato juice. Season your tomato juice with celery seed or salt, horseradish and tabasco to taste, a squeeze of lemon or lime, Worcestershire sauce and add your vodka.


Garnish and top with some garden fresh veggies: pickled okra, cucumber, heirloom cherry tomatoes, a sprig of parsley and basil and a celery stalk! You can find a recipe for Spicy Pickled Okra (which would also work for green beans) for a Bloody Mary garnish from Cottage at the Crossroads.

Farmers Market Pasta Salad

To savor the flavors of summer, help yourself to Farmers Market Pasta Salada bumper crop of delicious flavors in a pasta salad! Add some rotisserie chicken from the grocery store for a time saver and complete meal.

The Flavors of Summer Pizza

Corn, Tomato and Basil Pesto Pizza, a trio of summer flavors in every slice!


And infuse the flavor of summer in your salt for your tomato recipes this winter with an easy recipe for Basil Salt.


Farmers Market Table Details:

Chargers & Baskets / HomeGoods

Red Marble Enamelware, Crow Canyon Home/ Mast General Store

Flatware & Quilt / Pottery Barn

Rooster Glasses / Tuesday Morning

Plates / Mikasa French Countryside

  Rooster / Hobby Lobby

Farmers Market Tray / World Market

Berry Baskets & Napkins / Kohl’s


Hope you’re savoring the flavors of summer!

Here’s a handy seasonal produce chart for North Carolina, courtesy of Davidson Farmers Market. When you eat ‘in season’ you’re enjoying the most fresh, flavorful and nutritious foods, while also helping support local agriculture and preserve regional farm land.

NC Seasonal Produce

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Crowing in Delight: Sunflowers and Pfaltzgraff Evening Sun


Sunflowers make me crow in delight, their cheery faces symbolizing the

the sun and conveying warmth, happiness, adoration and longevity!


 Pfaltzgraff’s Evening Sun is blooming with sunflowers,

the speckled glaze surface of the dinnerware

saturated in a color palette of rich oranges, fiery reds,

sunny yellows and sage green.


Goldenrod and the burgundy foliage of Loropetalum

are sprinkled in with sunflowers in a watering can,

 joining a rooster for a centerpiece for the table.


Goldenrod has been blooming for a couple of weeks now, earlier than normal

 and hopefully a sign the fall will arrive here in the South

sooner rather than later, something else to crow about!


Placemats and napkin rings provide more flowers for the table,

framing the plates with a woven ring of petals and

providing a burlap bloom on plaid and solid napkins.


Bold in design, Pfaltzgraff Evening Sun is also

 generously sized, with a 12 inch dinner plate, 9 inch salad plate,

24 ounce soup/ cereal bowl and 18 ounce coffee mug,

microwave and dishwasher safe.


I added a sunflower cloche to the table,

attracting bees and butterflies. . .


Sunflower Appetizer Plates are decorative as well as functional

and also microwave and dishwasher safe.




Hard Cider Glasses from Mikasa Brewmasters Collection

 feature a tapered base that also helps to hold the carbonation

and prevent overwarming of the glass when held.


They’re filled with orange juice but would work equally well

for serving a mimosa and sunny start to the day!


And a small sunflower plate provides an embossed bloom

for a sunny addition to the table.



Enjoy 20% off one Evening Sun item through September 14th,
with the link below (some exclusions apply):


Sunflower & Evening Sun Table Details:

*Dinnerware / Evening Sun by Pfaltzgraff

*Pfaltzgraff Sunflower Appetizer Plates

*Flatware / International Home Rockport

*Stemware / Hard Cider Glasses, Mikasa BrewMaster’s

Water Hyacinth Placemats/ Pier 1 imports

 Napkin Rings & Rooster / Hobby Lobby (several years ago)

Sunflower Cloche / HomeGoods (several years ago), used here

Placemats & Napkins / Kohl’s

Burlap Tablecloth /  Couleur Nature, Amazon, used here


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Sunflowers and Pfaltzgraff Evening Sun

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At the Table: Mikasa Belmont Green Stalks




I’m at the table with green stalks of bamboo and Belmont Green Stalks,

Mikasa Gourmet Basics Dinnerware.



 Organic in design, Belmont Green Stalks Dinnerware

is a handcrafted collection, with

 the reactive glaze providing a natural variation

in color, adding to the handcrafted appeal.


Leafy stalks provide pattern and color on

the salad plates of the stoneware.



Lucky Bamboo was growing in stalks at Lowe’s,

making for a quick and easy centerpiece

in a green vase, filled with an assortment

of dried beans and lentils for texture and color.



A floral patterned cloth with green and blue leafy blooms

is layered with striated placemats,

providing a little texture and contrast

 for the round stoneware plates.



Enjoy 20% off one Belmont item through August 31st,
with the link below (some exclusions apply):


Table Details:

*Dinnerware/ Belmont Round Green Stalks by Mikasa Gourmet Basics

*Flatware/ Mikasa Natasha

*Stemware/ Ridgefield All Purpose Glass, Mikasa

Green Vase & Napkin Rings/ Pottery Barn, several years ago

Placemats/  Kohl’s

Tablecloth & Napkins, Threshold / Target


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Mikasa Gourmet Basics Belmont Green Stalks

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Waterside Dining: Pfaltzgraff Cayman


I’m at the table with some waterside dining

and Pfaltzgraff Cayman Dinnerware.


Pfaltzgraff’s Cayman brings sun-muted shades of

 turquoise and browns, sea and sand, to the table.


An island of crushed shells adds a little

Caribbean touch for a centerpiece . . .


Along with jute knotted bottles,

washed ashore from World Market,

and a candelabra insert for

 island ambiance for dining.


Shell napkin rings were found

beachcombing the aisles at Kohl’s

a couple of years ago. . .


The square shells resembling the chiseled stones

that border the edges of the stoneware.


Water hyacinth placemats

provide some coastal texture and

contrast to the stoneware.


And jute bottles are filled with

white powdered sand and shells.


 Cayman accent plates provide flowers for the table,

a welcome and pleasant surprise as spying

Beach Morning Glory growing in the sand.


Providing blooms and

 pattern to the table.





Enjoy 20% off one Cayman item through August 17th,
with the link below (some exclusions apply):


Cayman Table Details:

*Dinnerware/ Cayman by Pfaltzgraff

*Flatware/ International Silver Forte

*Stemware/  Barmaster’s All Purpose Wine Wine, Mikasa

Knotted Jute Vases, Bottles/ World Market

Glass floats/ Pottery Barn, several years ago

Candelabra bottle insert/ Amazon

Crushed Shells/ Michaels

Napkins / Target

Napkin Rings/ Kohl’s, several years ago

Water hyacinth placemats/ HomeGoods


*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Pfaltzgraff Cayman Dinnerware

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