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Oct 27

Fall Baking Ins-pie-ration!

From the time the first leaf of autumn falls to the very end of January, you can bet that there will be pie. So much pie. This year, think outside of Grandma’s recipe box with these fun spins on classic holiday flavors.

Some Seasonal Spice

Pumpkin pie? Been there, done that. Delight your guests with a modern take on a classic flavor with this Spiced Eggnog Pumpkin Pie recipe. The prep time is only 10 minutes, and the flair in flavor will bring a new edge to your holiday event!  

An American Classic

Apple pie is a quintessential American flavor, and we can probably bet that someone in your family is protective over their recipe. Regardless, consider bringing something new to the table. Check out this totally unexpected Snickerdoodle Cream Cheese Apple Pie recipe. Cheesecake, cookies and apple pie… what’s not to love?

If you’ve got little ones at the kids’ table this year, try making Iced Apple Pie Bars instead. The grab-and-go style of these delicious treats provides the classic comfort of apple pie with none of the flaky mess!

A Savory Spin

Try something totally new this holiday season and incorporate a few savory pies. Check out this Ham and Pea Hand Pie that incorporates winter flavors and buttery puff pastry. Maybe even experiment with yummy Mushroom and Thyme or Ina Garten’s famous Chicken Pot Pie. The possibilities are endless!   

Oct 20


With Halloween rapidly approaching, you’ve likely already begun the process of buying or making your family’s costumes, decorating your front yard with creepy creatures and stocked up on bite-sized candy. But have you starting planning your kids’ trick-or-treat outing?  Read on for our tips to ensure that your family’s candy-gathering excursion is all treats and no tricks.

It’s All in the Neighborhood

You’re already planning to visit your neighbors’ doorsteps, but have you considered asking them to join in on the fun? Invite neighborhood families to join you for a progressive Halloween party. Make DIY candy bags at one home, and play spooky games at the next. Make a pit stop at a third home for Halloween-themed cupcakes, and pause at a fourth home for a monster mash dance party. The opportunities are endless! Your kids will love the more active and interactive trick-or-treating experience, and you’ll likely have a blast as well.

While you’re away from your home trick-or-treating, be sure to place a cauldron or bucket of goodies outside your door that traveling treaters can enjoy!

Costume Considerations

Of course, as fun as trick-or-treating is for kids, it can cause safety worries for parents. Follow these simple guidelines to ensure that your Halloween is secure and enjoyable for everyone.

  • Select your kids’ costumes with care. Neon or bright reflective colors are ideal for city trick or treaters. Check out these reflective firefighter costumes for little boys and this awesome LED fairy outfit for girls.
  • Bring flashlights for both you and the kids.
  • Trick-or-treat with a group if possible, and make sure that there are plenty of chaperones for the children.
  • Stick to the sidewalk, and hold hands when crossing the street.
  • Don’t forget comfortable walking shoes and a jacket for later!
  • Inspect candy before giving it to your children. Make sure that it is unopened and the wrapping is not damaged.
  • Have fun!
Oct 13

Fall Activities Round Up!

What is it about fall that gets us so excited for seasonal activities? Is it the chill in the air? The pumpkin spice in our lattes? Maybe it’s the outpour of community events to celebrate the season. Whatever gets you jazzed about Fall, check out some of our favorite seasonal celebrations near Trumark Homes communities.


6th Annual Fall Harvest Day on October 12th

Featuring: an old-fashioned hayride, arts and crafts projects, fun fall photos for the kids and pumpkin carving from the pumpkin patch

Price: $10 per person, free for kiddos under 3

Fall Flicks Under the Stars on October 7th, 14th, and 21st

Featuring: Rio, Mars Needs Moms, Rango (respectively)

Price: Free admission

Trick-or-Treating at The Shoppes October 31st

Featuring: craft projects, face painting and a costume contest for children 12 years old and younger

Price: Free admission


Community Fall Festival October 29th

Featuring: Free food, photos, music, video games, a lip-sync contest and treats

Price: Free admission

Orange County Fall Fitness Festival October 28th

Featuring: Meet and greets with fitness celebrities, live music and performances, nutrition and fitness seminars, vendors and food

Price: Free admission


Wallis Ranch Fall Festival October 14th

Featuring: Free pumpkin patch, a live DJ, light bites and kettle corn, kids’ activities and face painting

Price: Free admission

Oct 06
Autumn drinks

Sippin’ on Spice: Seasonal Autumn Beverages

Sippin’ on Spice: Seasonal (and Speedy!) Autumn Beverages

Crisp air, crunchy fallen leaves and a new harvest of flavors to complement the season are just a few reasons why we love autumn. Dive into this nostalgic time of year with bountiful new spices and produce — this time, in your drink! You don’t have to be a culinary master to whip up these fast and simple beverage recipes; instead, these recipes will make you look like the most put-together autumnal host, with minimal stress and effort on your part. You may even find yourself making them all year!

A Taste of Transition  

While rummaging through the pantry at home, you may realize that you still have leftover margarita  ingredients from your backyard summer BBQ. However, with autumn upon us (and wafts of heavenly apple pie baking in the oven), a traditional margarita crashes the party.

If you’ve ever found yourself in this situation or are looking for the ideal “transitional” fall drink, explore these cranberry margaritas. An autumnal spin on the classically cold summer beverage, these margaritas are as efficient as they are refreshing. It is a thoughtful touch that subtly complements fall while still paying homage to warmer weather and seasons past.

Autumnal Options

If you’ve ever made hot apple cider for your children and caught yourself wondering how to take the fall beverage to the next level… it is definitely easier than you think.

This Spiked Warm Caramel Apple Cider contains only three ingredients and is definitely not something you can pick up at your local Starbucks! Hold the caramel apple vodka when serving the kiddos, and add it after taking the cider off the stove (not during, as the alcohol will evaporate). Easiest nightcap ever!

The New Pumpkin Spice

Ah… would it really be fall without the infamous PSL? Few drinks have taken over social media as widely as the Pumpkin Spice Latte, but health advocates and coffee drinkers alike are over the hype. So what’s the “cooler” hot drink?  

Turmeric Lattes. Scratch that — dairy free turmeric lattes. Now we know what you’re thinking, that sounds too health-conscious to be an autumnal treat. Yet with ground cinnamon, rich almond milk and a little bit of ginger, turmeric lattes are the hottest new warm beverage. As good tasting as they are for you, skip the overpriced local health cafe and learn to make your own. Save the pumpkin spice for Grandma’s homemade pumpkin pie.