Stocking Your Refrigerator For The Holiday Season

The holidays are the time of year when family and friends gather. If you’re hosting guests, you’ll want to have a stocked refrigerator to keep everyone going. In addition to your Thanksgiving meal ingredients, here are a dozen things you should put on your grocery list:

1.     Cheese, such as parmesan or cheddar

2.     Eggs

3.     Butter

4.     Vegetables, such as carrots and broccoli

5.     Hummus (for a quick snack)

6.     Chicken broth

7.     Yogurt

8.     Milk

9.     Orange juice

10.  Mayonnaise

11.  Lettuces and salad extras

12.  Lean protein, such as chicken or fish

Easy Apple Crumble Pie

Fill your home with the mouth-watering scent of apple pie this weekend. Here’s an easy apple crumble pie recipe:



1 (6 oz.) graham cracker crust

Vegetable cooking spray

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 cup cold butter, cut into pieces

1/2 cup toasted chopped almonds

2 pounds sliced apples, such as Honeycrisp or Granny Smith


Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom and sides of graham crust with vegetable cooking spray. Bake 5 minutes; cool on wire rack.

Meanwhile, combine flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in almonds.

Place cooled crust on baking sheet. Spoon pie filling into crust. Sprinkle crumb mixture evenly over apple filling. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until crumb topping is golden. Serve warm.



The Dining Room Makes a Comeback


For the past two decades, people have designed their homes to be casual and inviting. Formal dining rooms have been converted into home offices or media rooms, and builders focused on designing open floor plans that combined living and dining.

Well, formal dining is back and so is the formal dining room. This return to elegance and entertaining has brought a renewed emphasis on dining room furnishings. One of the best things about the dining room is that it is meant to be special, and that gives you permission to choose dramatic designs that show off your style.

Here are some ideas for creating a place where you need no reservations:

Sideboard Light

Choose a focal wall. The focal wall sets the tone for the room, so take your time choosing your impact piece. An important piece of art or an ornate mirror would make a beautiful choice.


Use dimmable lighting. Lowering the lights can help set the mood, but sometimes you want to have a bright setting. Put your lights on a dimmer so you can create the right atmosphere. We love using a statement chandelier or set of pendant lamps.


Pay attention to the flooring. Choose furnishings that complement instead of matching your floor. If your flooring is light-colored wood, for example, choose a darker wood table. Or use an oversized rug to set your furniture apart.

Sideboard Bold

Go for balance. Design the space symmetrically to add to the formal, finished feel. You can also achieve balance by adding pops of color evenly around the room, such as in accessories, artwork or a rug.

It’s (Baked) Apple Season

You experience your home with all of your senses, and smell can be one of the most powerful. Welcome in fall and apple season with the scent of baking apples with cinnamon. Here’s a recipe from Trisha Yearwood’s cookbook, Trisha’s Table: My Feel-Good Favorites for a Balanced Life. Be sure to check out her Dining Collection available at Art Van Furniture, while you’re in your kitchen.


  • 4 large baking apples, such as Honeycrisp
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Wash and core apples, leaving enough of the core at the base of the apple to contain the filling.

Combine the butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and chopped pecans in a small bowl. Roll log shapes of the mixture and press enough into each apple to fill the core.

Fill a 2-quart baking dish with about 3/4 cup water, or enough to cover the bottom. Place the apples upright in the dish. Bake one hour or until the apples are soft and the filling is browned.

In-Season Produce For September

The fall harvest brings lots of great fruits and vegetables to the produce section of your store or your favorite farmer’s market. It’s always best to eat what’s in season, and here’s a list of what you should load into your cart in September:










Valencia Oranges

Asian Pears