Archive for November, 2010

The Great Pumpkin

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

“The way I see it, it doesn’t matter what you believe, just so you’re sincere!” In “The Great Pumpkin” Linus waits in a pumpkin patch for the Mighty Orange One to arrive.  The Charles M.  Schulz comic strip, Peanuts, had a timeless and philosophical appeal;  commenting on the human condition.  According to Schult and Peanuts: A Biography by David Michaelis, he was a barber’s son, learned to draw from a correspondence course, then went on to be the most successful,  richest and best-loved cartoonist of our time.  Some of us grew up on Peanuts – it gave us faith to believe in strange things.

It was our pleasure to participate in the Women at Work  Holiday Arts and Fashion Boutique in Pasadena, California last week; we enjoyed meeting other vendors who have chosen to  start small businesses and work from home. We will be at the Ginbergread Gift and Craft Festival November 26, 27 and 28 in Arcadia, California.  Visit us and try some of Watkins Natural and Organic products.

Help us celebrate Small Business Saturday, November 27. You can find out more at   A small business is someone’s dream, buying local keeps that dream alive. Entrepreneurs are fueled by passion more than profit. By supporting small business, you are allowing someone to live their dream. A Watkins Home Business furthers integrity and free enterprise.  Email me, or click here to  start a home business for just $39.95.

Below are some easy Pumpkin recipes for your holiday gift giving and entertaining;

Frosted Pumpkin Bars, from A Taste of the Country recipe book

4 eggs

1 2/3 cups sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

1 16 ounce can pumpkin

2 cups flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

In mixing bowl combine eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin until light and fluffy.  Stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda.  Add to pumpkin mixture, blending thoroughly.  spread batter in ungreased, 15 – 10 – 1 inch baking pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.  Cool.


1 3 ounce package cream cheese, soften

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 tsp Watkins vanilla

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Cream together cream cheese and butter.  Stir in vanilla. Gradually add confectioner’s sugar, beating until mixture is smooth.  Frost cooled bars.  Yields 2 dozen.

Pumpkin Muffins from Betty Crocker’s Cookbook

1 1/2 cups flour

1 2 cups sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup canned pumpkin

1/4 cup butter, melted

1 egg

1/2 cup raisins

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Grease bottom of 12 medium muffin cups (2 3/4 in in diameter).  Mix all ingredients just until flour is moistened.  Batter should be lumpy.  Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.  Sprinkle 1/4 tsp sugar over batter in each cup.  Bake 18 to 20 minutes.  Immediately remove from pan.  Makes 12 muffins.

Have a thankful day!


Punkin Chunkin

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

Did you know that  people all over the world attend  Punkin Chunkin contests?  They use slingshots, catapults, trebuchets, and pneumatic air canons; and the current World Champion team threw their pumpkin a distance of 4483.51 feet!  This year’s results can be found at  That’s almost as funny as the  “Great Fruitcake Toss” held in January in Colorado! There’s even a Spatula Relay Race.  I prefer to carve faces out of my pumpkins and cook with them.

Below are some facts from, my source for unusual pumpkin facts:

pumpkins can be grown on every continent except Antarctica,

the largest pumpkin ever grown was 1140 pounds,

Morton, Illinois is the pumpkin capital of the world and the home of Libby’s pumpkin industry,

pumpkins contain potassium and Vitamin A,

and pumpkins are 90 percent water

Watkins Seasonal Favorite, all natural Pumpkin Butter,  is available this month.  It has a homemade taste like Grandma’s (or somebody’s Grandma).  Pumpkin Butter is delicious on toast, cookies, ice cream, in recipes, or anywhere you would use canned pumpkin.  Click here to purchase a jar for $5.99.

There are so many recipes for pumpkin, where should I start?  Cookies, of course!  This is one of my favorite’s from Mrs. Field’s Best Cookie Book Ever:

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 cup packed dark brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup salted butter, softened

1 large egg

1 cup canned or freshly cooked pumpkin

1 tsp Watkins Vanilla

1 cup raisins

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  In a medium bowl, combine flour, soda, salt and pumpkin pie spice.  Mix well with a wire whisk and set aside.  In a large bowl, blend sugars with an electric mixer set at medium speed.  Add the butter and beat to form a grainy paste.  Scrape sides of bowl, then add egg, pumpkin and vanilla.  Beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add the flour mixture, raisins and walnuts.  Blend at low speed just until combined.  Do not overmix.  Drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheets, 1 1/2 inches apart.  Bake 22 to 24 minutes until cookies are slightly brown along edges.  Immediately transfer cookies with a spatula to a cool, flat surface.  Makes about 3 dozen cookies.