Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Man Cave Magnets

Add your own personal touch to your man's 'Man Cave' the next time he brings home his favorite beer.

Miller Lite seems to always be in our refrigerator, taking up space. After a night of arranging and rearranging the beer, so I could fit my casserole in bottom the fridge, I couldn't help but think-I can't wait until he gets his man cave.

The bottle caps must have spoken to me or something, because I started thinking what I could do to turn them into something useful for his future man cave. And that's how Man Cave Magnets came to be. 

Hubby only has one favorite beer (I think?), so I couldn't get too creative with these. The next time he brings home a specialty beer, I'll have to steal more bottle caps from him.  

Happy crafting ladies! I hope your men enjoy their new magnets for their fridge full of beer! 


Supplies you'll need:
Bottle Caps
Circular Magnets
Strong Glue 

I love using Glass Bond Glue when I need a super
strong hold! Works better than super glue.


Flip the bottle cap over and place a dime size amount
of glue in the center of each bottle cap.

Once you have applied all the glue, carefully place a
magnet in the center of each bottle cap. Allow to dry
for up to 2 hours before placing them on the refrigerator. 

Finished


Monday, April 28, 2014

Dr. Pepper Glazed Ham

This recipe has been made twice this past week, it is that good! It will leave you wanting more.  Trust me!!


Ingredients 
8lb semi-boneless, fully cooked ham
6 oz Dr. Pepper
1/4 cup spicy brown mustard
1-1/2 cup brown sugar
1-1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Directions
Place ham into a 6 quart crock pot.  Take a knife and gently slice a diamond pattern into the top of the ham. Don't press down too hard, you don't want to slice through the entire ham.  

Next, pour 1 cup of water over the ham, and place the lid on. Turn the crock pot on for 6-8 hours. 

In the meantime, place all of the ingredients for the glaze into a small saucepan and whisk together. Turn on medium-high heat until it boils.  Once it boils turn it down to a simmer for 15-20 minutes until it darkens and thickens slightly.  

Next, use a basting brush and start brushing the glaze over the ham every 2 hours or so, until the ham has reached 140 degrees.  

Slice ham and drizzle the rest of the glaze over the ham slices, before serving.  

Lemon Sugar Cookies with Homemade Colored Sugar

Homemade Colored Sugar
Ingredients 
1/4 cup sugar-per color
4-6 drops food coloring

Directions 
Place each 1/4 cup of sugar into separate zip-lock bags. Add the food coloring of your choice. Close the bag shut, and use your hands to massage the coloring into sugar until it is evenly distributed throughout. 
Sugar will keep up to 6 months in a sealed container or bag. 

Lemon Sugar Cookies 

Ingredients
1 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar
zest of 1 lemon
Juice of half a lemon
1-3/4 flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together butter and sugar until combined.

Zest lemon over the butter mixture and add the juice of half the lemon.  Mix until combined.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt.  Slowly mix into the butter and sugar mixture, until combined.

Spoon the sugar cookie mixture onto a large sheet of parchment paper. Roll the parchment paper around the dough to form into a log that is roughly 12-15 inches long.  Twist the ends of the parchment paper and place into the refrigerator for 2 hours.

Slice into 1 to 1-1/2 inch discs, and dip one side into the colored sugars. Place onto a non-stick cookie sheet, sugar side up.

Bake for 10-12 minutes until edges are slightly golden.







Sunday, April 27, 2014

Egg Salad Boats


Ingredients
1 cucumber
6 hard boiled eggs, peeled
4 tablespoon miracle whip
2 teaspoon dijon mustard
pepper to taste
2 teaspoons freeze dried chives, plus some for garnish

Directions 
Roughly chop the peeled hard boiled eggs and place into a bowl.

In a separate bowl combine miracle whip, dijon mustard, pepper and freeze dried chives.

Pour the miracle whip mixture over the eggs and gently combine until all the eggs are coated.

Peel the cucumber, slice lengthwise, then down the center of each half.  Take a spoon and scrap out the center (seeds), of each slice to make a well. Pat dry with a paper towel.

Gently spoon the egg salad into each slice.

Garnish with extra chives.

Cover, and keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

(If you have left over egg salad, save for a sandwich for later.)





Thursday, April 24, 2014

Peepcorn

Tonight is the night to "borrow" from your kids Easter baskets when they're not looking. Use your favorite color Peeps to make yourself a delectable treat!



Ingredients 
1 bag of your favorite popcorn (kettle corn works great!)
1 tablespoon butter
4 Peeps of your favorite color

Directions 
Prepare the popcorn according to package directions and place into a bowl.

In a saucepan, melt together the butter and Peeps.  While the marshmallow mixture is still hot, take a spoon and drizzle it over the popcorn. Allow the marshmallow mixture to set for 2-3 minutes before taking a bite.

Enjoy!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

#Homemade 3-Cheese #Pizza with Yeast Free Pizza Crust


Yeast Free Pizza Crust 
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup water
olive oil


Pizza
Your Favorite Pizza Sauce
1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 Cheddar Cheese
1/4 Monterey Jack Cheese 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Mix flour, salt, baking powder and water.  Knead on floured surface until its workable, about 2 minutes. Use a floured rolling pin or your hands to stretch it out onto a pizza pan.  A baking sheet works great also. 

With a basting brush spread olive oil onto crust. Doing this prevents the pizza sauce from soaking into the crust.  

Combine all the cheese into one bowl. 

Spread the pizza sauce onto the dough and top with cheese, or your favorite pizza toppings.

Bake for 20-25 minutes. Let stand 3-5 minutes before cutting.


From the Archives--Breaded Chicken Parmesan

Last week I made cheese tortellini with a basic tomato sauce and ended up freezing most of the sauce because I made so much of it.  So, tonight I thawed some chicken breasts and the extra sauce for chicken parmesan.  Chicken parmesan isn't something I make often. Actually, I think I've only made it one other time for Hubby before we got married. After tonight, we will definitely be having it more often.

Breaded Chicken Parmesan

Ingredients
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
1/4-1/2 cup Italian-style bread crumbs
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
crushed red pepper, if desired
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 package of your favorite pasta
mozzarella or parmesan cheese for topping

For the sauce...
1 large can tradition flavor spaghetti sauce (I use Hunt's)
1 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes (liquid included)
1 small can of mushrooms (drained)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil

Place the ingredients for the sauce into a saucepan and heat over low-medium heat until bubbling.

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Line a baking sheet with tin foil and lightly spray with cooking spray.  This will prevent the chicken from sticking when it is in the oven. 

Cook pasta according to package directions.

Use a mallet, or a rolling pin to even out the thickness of the chicken breasts.  This will help for an easier, and quicker cooking time.  Or, if they are really thick, you can filet them in half (horizontally) to make 4 breasts.

Mix together all the dry ingredients into a shallow bowl

Coat the chicken breasts in olive oil, then dredge the chicken into the dry mixture, evenly coating.
Lay both chicken breasts onto the prepared baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. 

Spoon some of the sauce over the chicken breasts and sprinkle with mozzarella or parmesan cheese. 
(If you are using mozzarella cheese, place the pan back in the oven for a few minutes to allow the cheese to melt.)

Drain the pasta and mix with the remaining sauce. 

Friday, April 18, 2014

35 Things to Hide in Their Easter Eggs

Growing up my grandmother made Easter so special for my cousins and I. Every Easter we had hidden Easter Eggs in the backyard and hidden Easter baskets inside - after we had found all our eggs of course. She was such an incredible woman and made every holiday very special. I hope to carry on the same traditions in my family someday.
Today, there are so many different items that can fit inside Easter Eggs, you just have to be creative.
  • Stickers
  • Character band-aids
  • Magnetic Letters spelling out their name
  • Puzzle pieces
  • Finger puppets
  • Lip gloss
  • Bouncy Balls
  • Marbles
  • Legos
  • Glitter shakers
  • Glitter glue
  • Wind up toys
  • Army men
  • Toy cars
  • Hair ties
  • Necklaces
  • Slime
  • Play-Doh
  • Silly putty
  • Temporary tattoos
  • Dollar bills
  • Coins
  • Mini water gun
  • Tiny Bubbles
  • A yo-yo
  • A whistle
  • Balloons
  • Fruit snacks
  • Nail polish
  • Clues to find their Easter Basket
  • Mini slinkies
  • Silly-bandz
  • Chuck-E Cheese tokens
  • Goldfish crackers
  • Teddy Grahams 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

#Homemade Reese's #Easter Eggs by Cincy Shopper

My dad loves Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. At Halloween time, he'd always hide them from my sister and I. He would tell us that they were for the trick or treater's. We both knew we never, ever, had trick or treater's come to our door (we lived on a very busy street growing up).
Every Easter I remember picking up a pack or two of Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs for him, just because I knew he would appreciate them!
Now there are recipes out there that allow you to make your own. I'm sure they're half the cost, and calories.
I wish he was visiting this Easter, so I could have the perfect excuse to try this recipe!

homemade-reeses-eggs
Pictures and recipe provided by Cincy Shopper
                                               

Ingredients 
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
8 oz Dark Cocoa Melting Chips

Please visit Cincy Shopper for the full instructions and tutorial, (with pictures).

                             Homemade-Reeses-Peanut-Butter-Eggs



For more great recipes, tips, and coupons, please visit Cincy Shopper 

Sidewalk Smoke Bombs by Growing a Jeweled Rose

You read it correctly.  Sidewalk Smoke Bombs. Well, they're actually chalk bombs. Smoke bombs sound so much more interesting.

I stumbled across this activity on Pinterest and have been waiting anxiously to share it with you!  This activity seems fairly easy to make.  And, if you have children already, you're almost guaranteed to have all the ingredients to make them a few days before. Have fun!                              


Sidewalk Smoke Bombs- Fill eggshells with an easy to make chalk powder mixture and let kids delight in tossing them at the pavement to make beautiful clouds of smoke art in the air and neat art effects on the pavement! These are SO COOL! (A great way to use eggshells after eating the eggs)
Pictures and activity come from Growing a Jeweled Rose
Supplies you'll need...
Empty egg shells 
Crushed sidewalk chalk
Baby powder
Glue stick
Tissue paper

For the full instructions and tutorial please visit Growing a Jeweled Rose


                              Sidewalk smoke eggs





For more great activities and how-to's, to do with the little ones please visit Growing a Jeweled Rose 
                                   


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

How to Make Your Own Wax Melts

As I was cleaning our spare bedroom yesterday, I came across candles that still had a little wax in them from when I did my post on DIY Candles.  I didn't want to throw away perfectly good candles that still had a wonderful fragrance. Our wax melt in the bathroom has been in need for new wax and I've been so tired of smelling the same scents. This was the perfect time to save money, and try creating my own. They turned out great! 



Supplies you'll need...
Old candles-- make sure they still have a great fragrance left in them
Butterknife that you don't care about

Directions
Take the entire candle and place it inside of the freezer, for about 10 minutes.

Once the 10 minutes are up, take your butterknife and press it down against the side of the glass to loosen the wax, just like the picture below. 

When you have inserted the knife-all around the glass, carefully insert it into the wax again-against the glass, bend the knife into the wax, and it should pop right out. 


Use the same butterknife and cut the wax into chunks that will fit into your wax melt. Be sure to avoid the wick.


Once you are finished making your wax melts, store them separately in zip-lock baggies, labeled with the fragrance. 

Tips: 
I have found that Glade and Febreze candles worked best when doing this project.  Other brands did work, but it took me a little while longer to get the wax out of the glass jar. 

Cut the wax on a paper plate, or paper towel to avoid getting wax all over your counter. 






Sunday, April 13, 2014

#Free Kindle Books for 4/13

I love curling up with a good book. Especially on a lazy Sunday! Here are a few great Kindle books that you can download today for FREE from Amazon. Nothing gets better than free. Amazon has something for everyone in the family to enjoy!

Lovers at Heart by Melissa Foster 

The Last Call by George Wier 

The Descent Series by SM Reine  - Books 1-3

The One You Love by Paul Pilkington- I'm currently reading this. It is excellent!!

Mountain Angels by Suzie O'Connell 

Season of the Moon by SM Reine - Books 1-4

Kissed by a Cowboy by Lacy Williams 

8 Different Crochet Stitches by All Free Crochet 

For the full list of FREE Kindle Books to download please visit Amazon 







Saturday, April 12, 2014

10 Things Every Woman Should Know How to Do

While living with my dad over the years, then living with Hubby, certain scenarios have come up that have made me say, "What the heck do I do?!" or "How the bleep am I going to fix that?!" Thankfully, I have always had a man around to help me in a sticky situation.
I'll be the first to admit it, I've always depended on a man. Mainly, because they have always been there for me. But someday I don't want to have to rely on one to be there whenever I need help. I want to be able to say, "I fixed that!" Even if it took me over an hour or two to do.

So, as I was sitting here thinking about what I thought every woman should know how to do, I started thinking about what has happened to me personally over the years.  Whether I relied on a man to help, had to suck it up and do it myself, or that I'm still curious about. The list instantly popped into my head.

1. Patch a hole in the wall
My dad has always been the handy-man-fix-it, type of guy.  But, now that he is 2,000 miles away, I, wait I mean (we), may just need to know how to do this in our future home. Especially when I get the sudden urge to do some remodeling!
Here is a great how-to, to help get you started: How to Patch and Repair Drywall by Lowe's

2. Know what to do if there is a gas leak
Thankfully, this has never happened to any home I have lived in. However, it did happen at a company I was working for, during my shift. Your first instinct might be to call 911 but in this situation...
  • Call your energy company's EMERGENCY Line and follow their instructions.

3. Fix the basics around the house, faucet, sink, toilet, etc. 
Another situation where I've always had a man around to fix it. If it's a minor fix, save your money and follow these simple guidelines from DIY Network.

4. Flip your own breaker
This of course had to happen the one time I was home alone when we first moved here. I had no idea what any of the breakers meant, or how to flip them. Thankfully Hubby was just a phone call away and he walked me through it.
Take the time to learn your breakers, and properly label them if they aren't already labeled.

5. Put new furniture together
Is it just me who thinks men love putting things together? When I was living with my dad, I bought a new bookcase for my bedroom from Bed Bath and Beyond. I brought it home, expecting my dad to put it together for me, but he refused and told me to do it myself.  So, I dug through his tool box and found the screw drivers. After what seemed like forever, I found the right ones. With my dad watching me, and itching to take over, I put that bookcase together and hauled it up the stairs.  It was liberating! After that, I wanted to go out and buy more things to put together.  Now, I buy things and Hubby does it all for me. Lucky guy.

6. Self defense
Thankfully, I have never had to defend myself in a dangerous situation.
Here are Self-dense moves every woman should know

7. Jump a car battery
Back in high school my friend and I were about to leave the Target parking lot when we seen a woman trying to get her car started.  She looked so panicked, and had two crying kids in the back seat.  I felt so bad for her and looked at him.  He got out and asked her if she needed help.  Thankfully it was just a dead battery, and he was able to help her. After that I vowed that I would learn how to jump a car battery.  I have yet to learn, but I do have jumper cables in the back of my car!
A step by step guide on How to Jump Start a Car by WikiHow

8. Change a tire
Never in my life have I had to change a tire. That's why I have AAA to help me if I ever get stuck with a flat tire. But, I know there will come a time, where I will need to learn and AAA will not be there to assist me.
A step by step guide on How to Change a Tire by WikiHow

9. Light a charcoal grill...safely
Luckily, I learned this one from experience when I was the Food Director at a Assisted Living facility. It is so much fun! Though, this is one I leave to Hubby since he enjoys it more than I do.
Step by step guide on How to Light a Charcoal Grill by WikiHow 

10. Perform First Aid and CPR
I've known this one for a few years now. I however do need to go back and renew my certificate.
To find where you can take your first First Aid and CPR class and earn your own certificate please visit American Red Cross

Top 10 Easiest Three-Ingredient #Recipes



For the full recipe please visit
Eat Live Run

For the full recipe please visit
The Girl Who Ate Everything
For the full recipe please visit
The Yummy Life

For the full recipe please visit
Cooking with Cakes

For the full recipe please visit
Our Life Tastes Good

For the full recipe please visit
The Kitchn

For the full recipe please visit
Bare Feet in the Kitchen

For the full recipe please visit
She Makes and Bakes

For the full recipe please visit
Kirbie Cravings

For the full recipe please visit
Food 52











Friday, April 11, 2014

Pizza Pasta Bake




Ingredients
1 pound ground turkey (or beef)
1 small onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1 jar of traditional style pasta sauce
3 cups rotini pasta, measure before cooking
2 cups mozzarella cheese, divided
pepperoni

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cook pasta according to package directions, but drain right before they reach al dente. (They will finish cooking in the oven.)

Brown ground turkey with onion, green pepper, garlic and Italian seasoning. (Drain off any excess grease if you are using ground beef)

Pour the pasta sauce into a large bowl. Next add in the cooked pasta, 1-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, ground meat mixture and pepperoni. (I used roughly 15 slices that were sliced in half.)

Stir everything together.

Spray a 8x8 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and pour in the pasta mixture.

Sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese.

Top it off with pepperoni slices if you choose.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 15-20 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes or until cheese has fully melted.

Enjoy!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Last Month on the #Blog - #Recycled Magazine Coasters

Recycled Magazine Coasters
Supplies
Magazines
Scissors
Patience ;)
Tear out 6 pages (per coaster). Cut off the ragged edge on each page.
Fold each page in half lengthwise. 
Cut each page on the fold you just made, shown in picture one.
Fold each strip in half, as shown in picture two.
Then, fold into thirds, folding the cut edge inward, so they're hidden inside.
Fold the long strip in half, at the center. 
Repeat with each magazine sheet. 
To start weaving, interlock two strips, shown in picture two. 
Add another strip that wraps around the outside of the horizontal bottom strip. 
Repeat, on the vertical side.
Continue weaving and frequently check the other side 
to make sure it looks like the front. 
When you have finished weaving, weave in the ends of the strips,
so they do not emerge.
Trimming them with scissors will also work.

**If you want to prevent your new coasters from getting wet from cold drinks, spray with an acrylic sealer. **

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

From the Archives- DIY Canisters

Our bathroom is small! We have absolutely no storage. All we have is a vanity and no linen closet.  Back in Wisconsin when I was a cosmetologist, I collected A LOT of hair products and samples. Half of them are still in a tote stored away in the spare bedroom closet. 
When Hubby and I finally settled in, we went out and bought one of those storage shelves that go over the toilet.  It didn't help much. All it could hold were a few towels and washcloths.  I knew I had to get creative, because bending over to search for the cotton balls, q-tips and everything else we use on a daily basis was getting old..fast. Keeping them out in the open, in their original packages was NOT an option. I have issues with clutter..Hubby calls it OCD..I call it picky. =) 
So, I saved a few salsa and spaghetti jars and turned them into cute canisters for the master and guest bathrooms. 

                                                    

Supplies you will need...
Empty and clean jars (choose different sizes, shapes and designs)
Spray paint (any color)
Decorative Knobs
Nail
Hammer

Directions
In a well ventilated area, spray paint the lid of the jar until it is fully coated.  Don't worry if the lid has a design or lettering on it, the paint will cover it. Let the paint dry overnight.  Once the paint has dried, use the hammer and nail to puncture a hole into the middle of the lid.  Take the knob and slide it through; attach the washer and nut for a secure hold. Fill the jar with whatever you will be using it for and screw the lid back on. 

Tips and tricks: I picked up my knobs from the local Hobby Lobby. They were originally $4, but I got them on sale for 50% off.  If you can't wait for a sale, HobbyLobby.com always, always, always, has a coupon for 40% off one regular priced item.
These canisters are great for craft rooms! They easily hold paint brushes, small spools of ribbon, buttons, etc. 

Friday, April 4, 2014

Cucumber Stacks

Today, I created Cucumber Stacks.  Last night at the grocery store I stocked up on cucumbers and other veggies. I'm the type of person that can't just sit down and eat plain vegetables.  I need to dress them up and have fun with them. You could say I technically created an appetizer, but these little stacks were very tasty as a mid-afternoon snack. 

You don't need to make a bunch at one time- leaving you to forget about them in the back of the refrigerator. I hate when that happens.  Since this was just a snack, I only made three, and easily put away the rest of the ingredients for later.  

Plus, all the ingredients are easy enough for you to take to work with you, to make on your lunch break. Slice it all up the night before and place into little baggies, or tupperware. This recipe didn't even take me 5 minutes to make, and that includes, taking all the ingredients out of the refrigerator.  

Enjoy!

Ingredients 
Cucumber, sliced
Light Ranch Dressing
Spinach
Turkey, sliced from the deli
Grape Tomatoes, halved

Directions
Place a dollop of ranch dressing onto each cucumber slice.  Next, place a spinach leaf on top of the ranch dressing, along with the sliced turkey-rolled up and sliced into 1 inch pieces.  Top it off with a halved grape tomato. 


P.S. Get the kids involved with making this snack and have fun doing it. It will allow you to have extra time with them before they have to run off to all their after school activities.  



Cinnamon Roll Bread

Here I go again with the cinnamon kick I've been on. Cinnamon Rolls have always been a pain in the butt for me to make, so I've decided to make a bread version.


The sugary cinnamon center gives the top of the bread a very nice crystallized crust, which literally melts in your mouth once you pour the glaze over the top.  I highly recommend making this the night before, so you can enjoy it for breakfast the next day.  Warmed up of course. :) Enjoy!

Ingredients 

Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg-lightly beaten
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt

Cinnamon Swirl
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 tablespoon water

Glaze
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large bowl combine four, baking powder, salt, and sugar.

In a small bowl combine egg, milk, vanilla extract, and yogurt or sour cream.

Add the dry ingredients into the wet and stir to combine.

Transfer batter to the prepared loaf pan.

Combine the swirl ingredients into a small bowl.  Drop spoonfuls of this mixture over the bread, then use a knife to make a swirl design in the bread.

Bake for 45-50 minutes or until you insert a toothpick and it comes out clean.

Remove the bread from the oven and transfer it to a cooling rack to cool for 15 minutes before taking it out of the pan.

Meanwhile, make the glaze.

When the bread has completely cooled, pour the glaze over the top, and serve.



For more great recipes like this one please visit Center Cut Cook

Ultimate Blog Party 2014

Ultimate Blog Party 2014

This is my first time participating in Ultimate Blog Party by 5 Minutes for Mom. I'm very excited for the opportunity to meet other bloggers with the same interests.

I'm originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where I was hair stylist for Cost Cutters.  During the last semester of beauty school, I met the man that swept me off my feet.  Within that same year, we planned our wedding and our future. Two months after our wedding, we moved to Naples, Florida so he could open the first Culver's restaurant in Florida with his two business partners.
Now, I'm a housewife and have recently ventured out into the blogging world.  Everyday Essentials is where I share my own and my favorite blogs, recipes, crafts, DIY's, and money saving tips. Within the past 3 months Everyday Essentials has taken off to somewhere I didn't believe it could have gone.  I'm so happy with the success it is having around the world.

If you'd like to join me on the blog, you can follow me on Twitter and Pinterest, or contact me by email on Google+


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Broccoli Salad

Back when I was the Food Director for an assisted living facility, I had a recipe for a broccoli salad very similar to this one. Extremely similar- I made the dressing exactly the same. The only difference is, I added golden raisins to the mix.
I'm so happy I found this recipe on Pinterest, because I have been looking for that recipe for years. It was always a big hit, and I can't wait to make it a hit again this summer!

Recipe and photo provided by Key Ingredient


Ingredients
1.5 bunch broccoli, cut into small pieces 
1/2 lb bacon, cooked and cubed
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

Dressing
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoon vinegar 
1/4 cup sugar

Directions 
Mix all the salad ingredients together in a large bowl.

In a small bowl, combine the dressing and pour over the salad and stir. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to over night for best results.


For more great recipes like this one please visit Key Ingredient     


Cheesy Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole

Breakfast this morning was delicious! Hubby had off work (finally), so I got up early to make something him and I could both enjoy. This is the first time, I have ever made a casserole for breakfast for us.  It's always the usual, chocolate chip pancakes he loves, and an egg bagel for me.

We are both very happy we have stepped out of our breakfast comfort zone. His only request was less onions, and more bacon. He also requested breakfast sausage to be in the mix for next time, which is not a bad suggestion at all.

If I were having guests staying with us this Easter, this would be perfect on the Easter Brunch menu.



Ingredients (serves 12) 
8 frozen hash brown patties
6 eggs
2 cups milk
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon garlic power or shredding garlic on a microplane
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
6 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
2 cups shredded Cheddar Cheese, divided
3 green onions, thinly sliced

Directions
Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Place hash brown patties in a single layer in a 13x9-inch baking dish, sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes or until browned, turning hash brown patties after 10 minutes. Remove from oven.  Let stand 5 minutes.  Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees.

Beat eggs in a large bowl with wire whisk.  Add milk, sour cream, garlic, mustard and pepper. Mix well.  Stir in bacon, 1 1/2 cups of the cheese and onion.  Pour over hash brown patties.  Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese.

Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until center is set and edges are golden brown.




Recipe brought to you by McCormick

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Zucchini Pizza Bites


Ingredients
1-2 large zucchini, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
Nonstick cooking spray
1/4 cup marinara sauce or pizza sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup mini or chopped pepperoni pieces (optional)

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tinfoil.

Spray both sides of zucchini rounds lightly with the nonstick cooking spray.

In a large nonstick skillet, cook the zucchini on medium high, flipping every few minutes until they are slightly tender. Place cooked zucchini rounds on a large lined baking sheet. Top with small amounts of sauce, cheese and pepperoni pieces, if desired. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese has melted and zucchini is tender all the way through.



4 Rainy-Day Science Experiments for #Kids

Spring is in the air, and many rainy days are in our future. Don't let that stop you from having fun with the kids. A rainy day, is the perfect time to teach them the science behind the rain. They can be your own personal meteorologists!

(Adult supervision required)



Experiment 1: Measuring Precipitation
Let them find out exactly how much rain is falling by letting them make their own rain gauge.

Materials needed:

  • Clear 2-liter plastic bottle
  • Serrated knife
  • A heavy bucket or flowerpot
  • Waterproof marker
  • Ruler

Directions:

  1. Using the serrated knife, cut about 4 inches off the top of the bottle.
  2. Flip the piece upside down to create a funnel.
  3. Secure the funnel to the bottle using waterproof tape.
  4. Measure off inches or centimeters on the bottle and mark them with the marker.
  5. Set the bottle inside the bucket or flowerpot and place on a flat, open surface.

Measure the precipitation in their rain gauge at any time. Consider checking it daily, and having the kids chart the daily rainfall-just like meteorologists do!



Experiment 2: Making Rain Indoors
Show the kids what causes water to fall from the sky.

Materials needed:

  • Ice in an ice tray
  • Shallow pot
  • Oven mitts

Directions

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  2. With the oven mitters on, hold tray over the steam.
  3. Watch as "rain" forms and falls from the bottom of the tray.

How does the science behind this work? The surface of the ice cube tray is so cold that it literally cools the steam, turning it back into liquid form.  This is a great opportunity to explain to the kids how water can exist in three different states-solid, liquid and gas-depending on its temperature.



Experiment 3: Creating a Rainbow
If the sun comes out after the rain has ended, don't miss the opportunity to create your own rainbow.

Materials needed:

  • Sheet of white printer paper
  • Glass of water
  • Sunlight

Directions:

  1. Hold the glass of water above the sheet of paper.
  2. Angle the glass so sunlight passes through the water, forming a rainbow of color on your paper.

This is similar to how rainbows form in the sky: light refracts when it passes through raindrops and is separated into the colors, red, orange, yellow, indigo and violet.



Experiment 4: The Doppler Effect
Show the kids how forecasters use radar to predict weather patterns.

Materials needed:

  • An electric razor
  • A microphone or a sound-recording device (a smartphone's voice memo function works)

Directions:

  1. Turn on your recording device.
  2. Turn on the razor either close or far from the microphone.
  3. Bring the razor closer or farther from the microphone.
  4. Listen to the recording.

The change in the frequency of the sound is known as the Doppler Effect.  Measuring these frequency changes, forecasters can use the radar to predict weather patters in the area.


This post is brought to you by P&G Everyday
Picture provided by Photo Bucket