Thanksgiving was my first holiday as a married woman. It was my first Thanksgiving without my mom/grandma/sisters right there to help me. We had a couple (also newlyweds) over to celebrate with us, so I wanted it to be really special. For me, part of making it special is "setting the scene" with pretty decor and ambiance.
First up on the list, music. Check. The right music always makes the mood better.
Secondly, amazing smells emanating from the kitchen. Check. One can't help but have a tasty smelling house when preparing Thanksgiving dinner.
Thirdly, table decor. This is where a little bit of effort goes a long way. I started with some fake fall leaves and berries leftover from the fall wreath I made, seen here:
My centerpiece was a small white serving tray, given to us as a wedding present. On top of it, I put 3 really old orange candles that were given to me by my generous sister many years ago. Sprinkle a few nuts around the base of the candles to add dimension.
Then I bought a few different kinds of shelled nuts from the bulk section of our grocery store. Whatever kinds of nuts you like to eat will work perfectly. I chose a combination of hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds and pecans.
I took 4 brown tea light candles from my spiral wall sconce, and set two on either side of the centerpiece. Around that, scatter the leaves, berries and nuts down the length of the table. Light, and voila! Your table is decorated. :)
But I didn't want to just stop there. Since we registered for plain white dishes, I wanted something to make them look a little more festive. I decided on cute little name place cards inspired by a picture I saw on Pinterest.
With only a picture and no instructions, I just went to it with determination and hope.
For the initial tag, I used my Cricut Expression, Accent4 on page 35 of the Accent Essentials cartridge, and Shadow letters from the Plantin Schoolbook cartridge. My paper choices came from the Ultimate Premium Stack. The orange is from the "fall" section, and the brown is from the "natural" section.
Here are the supplies I used for the turkey: Double Stuf Oreos, Whoppers, powerdered sugar, mini Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, Candy Corn, Meringue Powder, food colouring (yellow, red, and blue), water, and toothpicks. You won't need nearly the amount of ingredients shown here, unless of course you are making candy turkeys for an army. But I knew my husband would be more than happy to consume any leftovers. :)
First, make the royal icing recipe as directed on the back of the Meringue Powder. I reduced the recipe considerably, since I was only making 5 turkey place holders. So, instead of 4 cups of powdered sugar, I only used one cup, and reduced the rest of the ingredients accordingly.
Once you have the icing, aka "glue", made, you are ready to begin assembly. Start by gluing two Oreos together, one perpendicular and on top of the edge of the other. Then cut a small amount off the side of a Reeses peanut butter cup in order to get a flat surface, and glue that flat against the two Oreos, further solidifying the hold of the Oreos to each other. Then glue one whopper on top of the peanut butter cup. You now have the body of the turkey done.
Then glue 5 candy corns into the center cream of the back Oreo. Be careful as you push the candy corn in, as you don't want to crack the Oreo. Then cut a tip off of another candy cane and glue it to the front of the whopper to make the turkey beak. This next step is important so don't forget it: eat the rest of the candy corn. You certainly don't want to have any waste, after all. :)
After you have everything assembled, it's time for the little details of the eyes, feet and wattle (throat). Separate a little into two small containers. Add some red food colouring to one, and yellow food colouring to the other.
Pipe (I just used a spoon, but it would look a lot better if you actually piped it in) some red icing under the candy corn nose, to be the turkey wattle. Then pipe two dots of the yellow icing onto the whopper side-by-side above the candy corn nose, to be the eyes. Then pipe feet on the Oreo coming out of the peanut butter cup.
The blue food colouring is used just for the eye detail. I opened mine up, stuck a toothpick tip into the top, and then dabbed it onto the middle of the yellow icing eyes.
To finish it off, just tape a toothpick to the back of the initial tag, and stick it (carefully!) in the middle candy corn feather. And there you have it!