Sunday, November 10, 2013

My "HP Warm Up Your Walls" Party & a Pumpkin Gingerbread Recipe

Yesterday I hosted a "HP Warm Up Your Walls" party. I had this opportunity through . It was similar to my Shutterfly party last year. It was fun and I am thankful for the opportunity to host parties. HP recently teamed up with Walmart to offer an awesome array of photo gifts. Before this hosting opportunity I had no idea that Walmart even had a photocenter.
As part of being a hostess, I was given certificates to receive some free photo decor items. It was fun and a bit hard to pick the photos I would use. The most challenging was the 8" x 20", but in the end I found it to be the most exciting option. They are mounted on very light pieces of wood with silver edges. You can be sure that I will be making more of those! I like how they are kind of unusual. I also loved the faux canvas print. We do not have any other images that are printed in such a large format. Along with the coupons, I also received Command Hooks to hand up the photos and tons of stuff for goodie bags including great coupons for free gifts for my guests, awesome coupons for them and some for them to give away. They also received flavored chapstick, clothes pins to decorate to hang their holiday cards, binder clips, etc. I augmented those goodies with stuff I picked up on a great sale at Bath and Bodyworks so that everyone went home with a gift.
As you can see in the photo above, they also sent me sample photo holiday cards and garland. I had some lovely wired ribbon that I used to make bows to pull the look together. One of the surprises was how much fun we had with the photobooth items that were included in my party box.
We also made a few fun crafts. Some of us decorated canning jars with puff paint and glitter. They will be used to house candles for the holiday season. Others made snowflake photo ornaments. And of course we had lots of great food. I have included the recipe for the Pumpkin Gingerbread that I made below.
It was a small party. Several of the people who had expected to join us were not able to attend. That is okay. We had a great time visiting, creating and feasting together.

Here's the recipe that I promised:

Pumpkin Gingerbread

via: The American County Inn and Bed & Breakfast Cookbook (recipe slightly mod.)

2 - 2.5 cups Sugar
1 cup Veg. Oil (Canola)
4 eggs
1 pound canned pumpkin (1 smallish can, pureed pumpkin, not the pumpkin pie mix))
3 1/2 cups Flour
2 tea. Baking Soda
1 tea. Salt ( you can leave this out, if you like)
1/2 tea. Baking Powder
2 tea. Ginger (dried, ground)
1 tea. Cinnamon (ground)
1 tea. Nutmeg (ground)
1 tea. Cloves (ground)
1 tea. Allspice (ground)
2/3 cup Water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter 2 loaf pans. You could also make these into muffins, if you prefer to.

In a large mixer blend together the sugar, oil, eggs and pumpkin puree.

In an other bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and allspice. Add this mix into the wet mix slowly, stirring or mixing in between the bits of dry ingredients. Add the water and mix well.

Pour into the prepared loaf pans and bake for 1 hour, or until done.

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