10 DIY Thanksgiving Placeholder Ideas

Mrs. Fields Secrets Thanksgiving Placeholders 1 Mrs. Fields Secrets Thanksgiving Placeholders 2

A little personal touch on your Thanksgiving table goes a long way. I’ve gathered some charming ideas for placeholders to welcome your guests to your feast. These ideas are so simple to execute, but will add so much to your table. Give them a try!

1. Pinecone placeholder – The natural grooves in a pinecone will easily hold a piece of cardstock.
2. Artisan loaf placeholder – Who wouldn’t want a personal loaf of bread as they sit down for dinner?
3. Wood chip placeholder (instructions here) – Simple, rustic and (bonus!) reusable.
4. River rock placeholders (instructions here) – Painted rocks wrapped in twine are beautiful. (Without paint too!)
5. Photo and pumpkin placeholders (instructions here) – I love the idea of writing what you love about each person on the back of their photo.
6. Fall leaves placeholders – Send the kids out to gather gorgeous, colorful leaves and write names in metallic pen.
7. Clove initial placeholders – Trace initials on a tangerine or orange and poke whole cloves along the trace lines. (Smells great too.)
8. Golden apple placeholders (instructions here) – Faux apples from the craft store get transformed. Simple and beautiful.
9. Gold gilded pumpkin placeholders (instructions here) – So fancy and yet so easy, a bit of painter’s tape and spray paint goes a long way.
10. Wine cork placeholder (instructions here) – All those saved corks can be put to good use.

Which is your favorite?

Get Ready for the Holiday Squeeze

Twenty-six. That’s the number of days between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. (Take a moment to catch your breath.) Twenty-six days is literally the shortest amount of time possible on the calendar, which is why we are ready to help you avoid gifting panic and enjoy a fun-filled season with some great gift ideas and early bird incentives!

Grasshopper Holiday Bark

One of my favorite gifts for 2013 is our unbelievably delicious Grasshopper Holiday Bark. If you already love our Peppermint Bark, prepare yourself to fall in love all over again. This delicious treat is perfect as an individual gift for virtually anyone on your list.

“JOY” FUL Tin

Not only is our new “JOY” FUL Tin fabulous looking, it comes with so many varieties to fit almost any gifting need! Whether it’s what’s inside the tin (your choice of cookies, brownies, frosted cookies and candy), or what’s on the outside (your choice of customized messages or greetings), you have nearly endless possibilities to treat your friends and family.

Ultimate Snowman Bundle

Sometimes you need a holiday show-stopper, a gift that will please an entire crowd and make a grand entrance, and that’s exactly what our Ultimate Snowman Bundle is designed to do. Each stackable layer of this frosty friend is loaded with a collection of crowd pleasing delights: cookies, brownies, popcorn, chocolate covered graham crackers, nuts, candy, and our special peppermint and grasshopper bark. That’s a mouthful! A delicious, delicious mouthful.

Case of 24 Shimmering Silver Personal Boxes

Finally, one of my favorite beat-the-holiday-squeeze ideas is bulk buying. We introduced our bulk gifts a few years ago and they quickly became go-to bestsellers for so many. Buying in bulk not only saves money, but allows you to have fabulous gifts on hand for any last-minute or unexpected gifting needs (and we all have those). Check out the entire line of bulk gifts to find the one right for your needs.

And did you know that at Mrs. Fields, you can shop early and choose exactly when you want your gift delivered during the season! That’s right, ordering early doesn’t have to mean an early delivery. It’s all up to you!

To ensure that you don’t get crushed by the holiday squeeze, we’ve got a great early bird offer for you: use code 13UEZ to get $15 off a purchase of $100 or more through November 22, 2013 and $10 off $100 through December 4, 2013.

Fall Wreath Ideas

Mrs. Fields Secrets Fall Wreath Ideas
Looking for ideas to dress up the front door for fall? Check out these inspiring autumnal decorations filled with bright colors and textures. (Left to right)

Rich mums line the stairway / Pinecone wreath with golden ribbon / Wreath with green bow / Bright yellow flowers and brown ribbon / Leopard print ribbon wreath / Mossy wreath with mini pumpkins / Upcycled aluminum can wreath / Twig wreath

What Do You Do With Your Halloween Candy?

Mrs. Fields Secrets Leftover Candy
Halloween is over and now you have a houseful of candy. What do you do with your stash? (Or, more appropriately, your kids’ stash?) Do you ration it for days or let them gorge all at once? Do you organize it in categories, arrange trades, or locate secret hiding places around the house? If you’re looking for ideas or a few laughs, I’ve got some suggestions for you:

Leftover Candy Luckies are an absolute favorite cookie at my house.  All your favorite Halloween chocolate candy flavors blend in these ooey-gooey treasures that everyone will love.

If you didn’t see this Halloween candy prank last year (or even if you did), it’s worth watching . My favorite line: “You sneaky mom!”

Have you heard about the Switch Witch? Like the Tooth Fairy, kids hand offer up their excess candy and end up with a toy or prize instead.

You can share some of your surplus with military troops overseas through Operation Gratitude.

Consider diluting the candy with some healthier items (peanuts, popcorn, raisins, pretzels) to create a post-Halloween trail mix.

Get out the glue and craft supplies and let the kids build candy houses or  cities. The sizes and shapes of Halloween candy lend themselves perfectly to building materials!

There’s no rush. Candy has an amazing shelf life, especially in a dry, air-tight container.

Have you checked out the Top 20 Halloween Candy List for 2013? (I’m not sure if I agree about the flavored Tootsie Rolls.)

Sure, you’re familiar with U.S. candy favorites, but check out The 50 Best Candies from Around the World. Some of them are pretty crazy!

So, what’s your favorite way to use of the Halloween candy? Share your ideas in the comments section!

Great Ideas for a Bushel of Apples

You stopped by a roadside stand and picked up a fresh bushel of apples, now what do you do? Here are some fun ideas to use up every last delicious bite!

  1. Make a Brown Bag Apple Pie (my favorite).
  2. Turn some into enchanting tea lights for a fall party.
  3. Bake mini individual apple pies in their own shell.
  4. Make easy, delicious Peanut Butter Apple Crisp.
  5. Baked apple chips are a healthy snack for lunches.
  6. Make Shrunken Apple Head decorations for Halloween.
  7. Bake up a batch of Apple Cheesecake Crumble Bars.
  8. Make some Crockpot Apple Butter and spread it on toast.
  9. Caramel Apple Cinnamon Bread makes a perfect breakfast.
  10. Make your own applesauce and can it to enjoy all winter.
  11. Make Apple, Baby Kale and Turkey Quesadillas.
  12. Apple Cheddar Scones are delicious with a cup of soup or tea.
  13. Spiced Apple Cider Sangria is the perfect drink for your autumn get togethers.
  14. Baked Apple Cider Donuts are delicious and, did I mention, baked!
  15. You’ll never be the same after making Apple Brownies.
  16. Start the morning with a Baked Apple Smoothie.
  17. Two words: Apple Fritters. Enough said.
  18. Apple Pie Snickerdoodle Cookie Bars – that’s a mouthful! And I want one!
  19. How about some Apple Walnut Pull-Apart Bread on a crisp fall afternoon?
  20. A healthy side dish of Baked Sweet Potatoes and Apples is perfect with dinner.
  21. Enjoy a savory dinner of Roast Pork with Apples.
  22. Is there anything more festive than a homemade caramel apple in the fall?
  23. I can’t stop thinking about Seared Salmon with Caramelized Apples.
  24. Apple Coconut Pudding is a healthy and delicious treat.
  25. Apple Pie Fries give regular fries a run for their money.

What are your favorite apple ideas?

Mrs. Fields Bakeware: Cool Bake Pan

Mrs. Fields Secrets Cool Bake Pan

The last in our line of new Mrs. Fields Bakeware is our Cool Bake Pan, and let me tell you, this is one of my favorite products of all time. It’s a two-piece tray that bakes cookies perfectly (allowing air flow underneath) and then also serves as a cooling rack as soon as the cookies come out of the oven! It’s genius, I tell you, and every baker on your list needs one. Plus one more for you.

The Cool Bake Pan is available with or without accompanying cookies on our website, along with our other great bakeware gifts:

The Brookie Pan - See my review here.

The Half-N-Half Muffin Tin – See my review here.

The Sto-N-Go Carrier – See my review here.

Have you tried the Mrs. Fields Bakeware line? What do you think?

Mrs. Fields Bakeware: Half N Half Cupcake Pan

Mrs. Fields Secrets Half N Half Pan

Ever met a cupcake with a split personality? Say hello to another  new item from our new Mrs. Fields Bakeware series, the Half N Half Cupcake Pan, available now online! The plastic divider allows you to use two different batters in the same cupcake or muffin tin for the most delicious yin-yang ever. We paired chocolate with orange cake for a Halloween theme (so delicious), but you can pair anything you like, mixing any number of colors and flavors.

What would you bake in the Half N Half Cupcake Pan?

Check out the entire line of Mrs. Fields Bakeware available online. Perfect gifts for the baker on your upcoming holiday list!
Brookie Pan
Sto N Go
Half N Half Pan
Mrs. Fields Cool Bake Pan

And there’s still time to enter to win a package of Mrs. Fields Bakeware by sharing your worst baking blunder. But hurry, contest ends Sunday at midnight!

Mrs. Fields Bakeware: Baker’s Sto-N-Go

Mrs. Fields Secrets Baker's Sto-N-Go Mrs. Fields Secrets Baker's Sto-N-Go

More fun from the new Mrs. Fields Bakeware line! Our Baker’s Sto-N-Go is my new favorite thing, an adjustable, portable carry all that has once and for all solved the problem of transporting frosted cookies, brownies and cupcakes without smooshing their gorgeousness. Here are a few of the features I love about this smart little contraption:

  • It’s perfect for road trips, bake sales, picnics, parties, boating, school parties and camping. Keeps everything sealed, safe, and looking good!
  • The handle slides off  and stores inside, so this fits easily into your cupboards or drawers. No bulky awkward storage!
  • The three sliding trays inside can be adjusted in eleven different grooves for ultimate versatility.
  • This fits up to 1 pan of brownies, 36 cake balls, 23 cake pops, 32 mini cupcakes, 20 small cupcakes, appetizers or even pizza!
  • The trays have a matte surface that keeps your goodies from sliding around.
  • It’s collapsible and dishwasher safe.

I can’t say enough good about this product! What would you store in it?

Sign up for emails from our Cookie Club and you’ll be the first to know when it’s available.

P.S. Interested in those delicious Spiderweb Pumpkin Cookies? Try this recipe.

Coming Soon: The Brookie Pan by Mrs. Fields Bakeware

Mrs. Fields Secrets Brookie Pan
Cookie or brownie? How about both? Meet the Brookie, a cookie baked inside a brownie. Genius, right? And now meet the Brookie Pan, part of our incredible line of Mrs. Fields Bakeware, available soon at Mrs. Fields online.

This bakeware pan is such high quality and so well designed that it’s bound to become a favorite in your household as it is in mine. The design bakes an already baked cookie inside a luscious brownie for an incredible surprise inside. Plus, I love that it uses an already baked cookie—it’s the perfect way to use up your leftover cookies, slightly stale cookies and baking blunder cookies. (Yes, we all have them!) You can even use your favorite store-bought cookies inside for a completely new reinvention. (I’m looking at you, Oreo.)

The other thing I love about this pan is that the final product is a perfect individual dessert, which can be enjoyed as-is or topped in that cute little dimple on top with ice cream, whip cream and your favorite chocolate or caramel drizzle. It can be as casual or fancy as you like.

Of course, I have all sorts of other grand plans for this pan, moving beyond Brookies and experimenting with other things like:
-cornbread with a spicy cracker inside
-cheesecake with a fruit center middle
-baked scrambled eggs with cheese and herbs inside

What would you bake in the Brookie Pan?

Sign up for emails from our Cookie Club and you’ll be the first to know when it’s available!

DIY Bleach Designs

Mrs. Fields Secrets DIY Bleach Designs
There’s a hot new trend out there on the clothing racks that you can do yourself in your very own home, with supplies you already have on hand. These DIY bleach designs are a fun way to personalize your new fall jeans (and save money while you’re at it). And don’t stop at jeans. You can add your own designs to t-shirts, tablecloths and napkins too! Follow these tips for best results:

  • Practice your method on an old rag or t-shirt and allow it to completely set.
  • Try different tools for different designs, like pencil erasers, toothpicks, Q-tips, sponges, brushes or rags.
  • For jeans, place cardboard in the legs to keep bleach from seeping through the other side.
  • Prepare the surface below your fabric. Cookie sheets, garbage sacks or bathtubs are safe surfaces.
  • Bleach pens are great for freestyle writing and designs.
  • Allow bleach to set for at least an hour before washing and drying to set the design.

Try out these fun ideas featured in the photo with full DIY instructions:

DIY Polka Dot Jeans
Bleached Linen Napkins
Bleached Jeans

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