January 30, 2016

Grandma Flo's Lasagna

This is my mother-in-law's recipe for lasagna. And I love it. Steve's mom Flo is a wonderful woman. She raised seven amazing children who grew to be wonderful adults. Steve is her baby, and I thank her often for having just one more!!! She was a good cook too. She made dinner for her family every night...home cooked, hearty, simple meals. Her meatloaf is legendary. Seriously. And this is her lasagna. It isn't fancy. It doesn't contain several different kinds of fancy cheeses or spices. I imagine she came up with this recipe one day using what she had handy in her kitchen. When I made this last week, Steve took one bite and said I had taken him back to his childhood. This was his birthday meal every year. It is good. It is sentimental too. We took a piece to Mum in the nursing home. She ate every single bite. Every time I make it from now on, I will imagine her as a young mother, in her kitchen, preparing dinner for her family. And she probably made garlic bread from leftover hotdog buns to go with it. : )

Grandma Flo's Lasagna

  1. One pound of ground beef
  2. One onion, chopped
  3. Salt and Pepper
  4. One large jar of your favorite Pasta Sauce 
  5. One box lasagna noodles
  6. One package WHITE American Cheese slices
  7. Grated Parmesan Cheese
  1. Brown ground beef with salt, pepper, and onion.
  2. Drain all fat.
  3. Add pasta sauce and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain.
  5. Spray bottom of 13x9 inch baking dish.
  6. Cover bottom with a thin layer of meat sauce.
  7. Layer noodles and cheese slices followed by meat sauce.
  8. Cut each cheese slice into 3 strips and put one on each piece of noodle.
  9. Layer until pan is full.
  10. Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese.
  11. Bake according to directions on lasagna noodle box.
  12. Enjoy!

Here she is enjoying her own lasagna. : )

January 29, 2016

Random Photo Friday

My little Mocha got her stitches out last week, so we ventured out to celebrate.

We drove to the nearby city to visit Steve's mom in the nursing home.
I had made her delicious recipe for Lasagna the night before, and we took her a piece. She was so happy and enjoyed every bite! She remembered it too...and with that dreadful disease of Dementia, every memory is a gift. Flynn was so good...helping Mum with her dinner and sitting right next to her bed.

Of course a visit to the city is not complete without a stop at Eat 'n Park for Flynn's favorite cookies.

Meanwhile, my oldest was having a hard time selecting a treat from this gorgeous display in downtown Copenhagen. Nicolas snapped this picture for me of my Madison. : )

I've been missing my girl, so I've taken to having my latte in her favorite mug.
Seems to help. : )

And this. This you must try.

We missed the storm...but lit a fire anyway.

And my little Flynn was on dog sitting duty Saturday night!
She loves Steve's sister's dog Roscoe, and was thrilled when Sally and her husband asked if Flynn could keep him overnight. She did a great job...with only the tiniest bit of help from Daddy.

This Saturday, my dear, sweet mother turns 79!
This is a picture of her and her little brother...who is three days shy of being exactly one year younger than she is. Here is my mom on her birthday all those years ago. : )

And finally, this was our cake for National Chocolate Cake Day. And it was good.
Peyton will be duplicating it this weekend for my mother's birthday. This time...with homemade peanut butter frosting. : )

Have a wonderful last weekend of January, my friends!
Stay warm and cozy.

January 26, 2016

National Chocolate Cake Day! Don't Forget!

If you need an excuse to bake a delicious chocolate cake...

I've got one for you!

Wednesday, January 27 is National Chocolate Cake Day!
(I don't make these things up. I just report them.)
So put on your apron, gather the kids and whip up something yummy!

This was our contribution last year...

and it was so good, we are doing a redo this year!
If you do choose to celebrate, why not post a picture?
I'd love to see!

Happy National Chocolate Cake Day, my friends!

Thanks to Pinterest for the retro images. : )

January 25, 2016

A Peek Inside...Our January Schoolroom

A new year means a fresh start. So our schoolroom got a good cleaning and a fresh look for January. We spend our days here, learning and laughing together, cozy and warm and safe inside away from the bitter winter cold. And that makes me both happy and content.

My little one has suddenly gone from letters and colors and shapes to learning sight words and reading booklets and counting coins!

But finger-painting will always be part of the curriculum...

as will story time. : )

This is our favorite January book. If you haven't read it to your littles, please do. : )

Happy January, my friends!

January 24, 2016

Cozy Sunday Morning

A mug of tea...

and a nice warm fire...
That is what is happening right now in our country home.
We saw not a flake from the big winter storm...
but we are pretending we did. ;)
If you were in the path, we hope your are safe and warm and cozy too.
Happy Sunday, my friends!

January 22, 2016

Random Photo Friday

Frost...but not much snow...

We wear winter coats anyway. : )

Look at me...eating all healthy for lunch...

And then having this for dessert. : )
That would be a brownie with coffee ice cream and chocolate sauce topped with whipped cream.
Yes. You should make one. At Once.

Winter mornings are for snuggling in bed...

And watching Matchgame '78 on TV.

Pictures from my Madison enjoying her time in Denmark always make me happy. : )

Have a cozy weekend, my friends!
And stay safe and warm. : )

January 21, 2016

A Super Simple Supper And National Pie Day This Saturday!

We all need that go to recipe that we can throw together quickly, but serve as if we worked all day. This is one of those meals. My family loves it. I love that they do. This was a Pinterest find, originally posted by Amy at Tasty Kitchen. Enjoy!
Baked Ravioli
  1. 1bag Frozen Ravioli (25 oz. and we use Cheese!)
  2. 1 large jar of your favorite Pasta Sauce
  3. Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  4. Grated Parmesan Cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Spray a 13x9 inch baking pan completely.
  3. Spread some pasta sauce in the bottom of the pan.
  4. Arrange half of the FROZEN ravioli in a layer on top.
  5. Pour half of the remaining sauce on top and half of the mozzarella cheese as well.
  6. Repeat this one time.
  7. Sprinkle well with Parmesan Cheese.
  8. Cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes.
  9. Remove foil and bake 10 to 15 minutes more. : )
And every good meal deserves an even better dessert, right? This Saturday, January 23 is National Pie Day. Yes. It is a thing. Celebrate by whipping up this easy but amazing Cherry-Berry Pie!
Cherry-Berry Pie
  1. 1 prepared pie crust
  2. 2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
  3. 1/2 cup sugar
  4. 1 tablespoon flour
  5. 1 can cherry pie filling
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Arrange crust in pie plate.
  3. In a bowl, combine remaining ingredients.
  4. Spoon into pie pan.
  5. Place top crust on, seal and flute edges.
  6. Sprinkle with sugar and bake 40 minutes until crust is golden brown.
I always use Pillsbury Pie Crusts. Always. They are delicious. I promise. In fact, I think this recipe came from a pie crust box years ago. : ) Also, do not thaw frozen berries. Enjoy!

January 19, 2016

Back To Normal

I am a hold out on packing Christmas away. The last thing I always do is put away my Christmas bedding. Although it makes me sad, I am also happy to see my bedroom all back to normal. The cozy quilt with the tear in the corner, cleverly covered by a throw blanket, the matching throw on the chair, a stack of books waiting to be read...This is my normal. And it is good. There is goodness to be found in every season. This I have learned.

Enjoy your normal, my friends.
Stay warm and cozy. : )

January 18, 2016

More Hoildays To Celebrate!

Christmas is over, and that makes me sad. Filling out my new planner, however, makes me happy again. If you want to break up the monotony of the long winter months with some fun, mark these special days in your planner and prepare to celebrate! It can be as elaborate or as simple as you choose. I order decorations from Party City because we live in a very rural area. You may be able to pick some up locally. I make a meal and Peyton makes a dessert to go with each holiday, and I find some cute activities on...where else...Pinterest. So get out your planners and mark these dates down!

Tuesday, February 2
Groundhog Day
This is a fun one. We watch the ceremony on television, do some crafts, and bake Groundhog cookies.
There is much more here, the official site of Punxsutawney Phil.

Sunday, February 7
Super Bowl
Whether you are a football fan or not, you can celebrate this day. With food of course!
We still have hopes of our Steelers being there, but even if not,
we will be watching. And eating.

Monday, February 8
Chinese New Year
Peyton makes the best Chinese food...but there is always take out if you don't have a young chef in the house! And we decorate and read interesting facts about the year in Chinese. We also play Chinese music during dinner, which makes it even more fun.
Etsy has some cute and fun things to add to your celebration. I purchased some dragon crackers to set at each place for the kids. Shhh. : )

Tuesday, February 9
Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras is fun!!!! We decorate with green, gold, and purple, play festive music and games and again...eat! I found a delicious jambalaya recipe on Pinterest last year, and everyone loved it! We also make our version of a King Cake, but I know you can purchase them in many places and online.
Mardi Gras has been a favorite of my littles forever.

Wednesday, February 10
Ash Wednesday
All that celebrating comes the night before Ash Wednesday.
On this solemn day we receive ashes, fast and pray, and have fish for dinner.

Sunday, February 14
Valentine's Day
Of course, we celebrate this day of love.
We decorate in red and pink, share Valentines with each other and have a special meal.
We also eat way too much delicious chocolate.

So there you are.
Some special days to celebrate any way you choose with your family.
And if you do, please share!
I'd love to see it!

Again...a shout out to Pinterest for all the pictures. : )

January 16, 2016

Just Me And My Pup

Just popping in to say Hello and wish you a cozy rest of the weekend. It is snowing here...YaY!!...and after Mass we will snuggle in with homemade pizza and football. Tomorrow I am putting a crockpot meal of beef pepper steak together before hitting the couch with my puppy and my book. Tomorrow afternoon we will be cheering for our beloved Steelers! Whatever you are up to, I hope it is cozy and fun! Happy Saturday evening!

January 15, 2016

Random Photo Friday

Just a place to share the pictures that have no place else to go...

I simply love lunches in my little Flynn's kitchen. : )

Suddenly, these two have become best friends.

A snapchat I sent this week. Because I am mature like that. : )

My poor, sweet Mocha had her female surgery this week. She needs lots of love and snuggles. I am happy to oblige.

Our vet has theses cute little onesies to keep her from biting at her stitches. So much better than those cones!

And finally...most people know about Texas Sheet Cake or Texas Brownies. But did you ever put a thin layer of peanut butter on top before your spread the icing?! You're welcome.

When Nicolas was visiting over Christmas, he and Madison visited with Steve's mother in the nursing home. She is a beautiful, wonderful mother-in-law. She taught me so much about being a good wife and mother. Plus, she raised the most awesome guy. : )

I miss Christmas.

That's it. Have a wonderful, cozy weekend, my friends. We will be waiting to watch our beloved Steelers on Sunday. Go Black and Gold!!!