Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1

Yes, Spring is here and it’s time for the Spring Idea House 2016. I’m excited to bring this to you as there are so many beautiful and fun ideas shared along with lots of repurposed vintage pieces . Several decorators work together on this project three times a year and each time I think it can’t be better than the last, but it is!

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

The new trends in this house include grey being the new neutral, lots of floral patterns, terrariums, and an energetic pop of coral color.

Because there are so many ideas, this idea house will be covered in four parts. This first part will cover the outside and front porch.

Now, on to the Spring ideas!  The outside container gardens and flower boxes are done in the colors of white, pink and lavender. Pussy willows and birch logs accent the floral creations and give them height and drama.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

….just a bit more whimsical

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

Tall grasses, pink flowers, and trailing vines in this container, make the outside fireplace a focal point.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

This front porch is set for a Spring Garden Luncheon. Small terracotta pots hold the napkins which are rolled up to look like red roses! They are so cute and certainly fit it with theme of the table. Go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWuRhm99LIg to watch the video on how to make these roses.

The terra-cotta saucers make nice coasters for the cups while the silverware is decorated with ribbon, an artificial flower, and placed in the wooden tool boxes. They look like flowers just blooming.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

The table linens are colorful table runners on top of a roll of moss used lengthwise on the table.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

A variety of colorful dishtowels and ribbon decorate each chair. These same ideas are easy to do with your own decor for a garden party!

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

Here’s a closeup of the silverware in the wooden tool box.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

An interesting and one-of-a-kind chandelier is made from upside down birdbaths, chargers, and an a silk wreath. Even doing a smaller version would look spectacular!

In the background, the same table runner makes a lovely valance for the window and the napkins become an accent on each end!

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

 

An easy- to-do arrangement idea…….  just tall grasses and small pinwheels.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

A primitive chest without doors works for displaying colorful Spring items.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

 

Who said solar lights are just for the outdoors? Stick them in foam in a planter and placed where it gets lots of sunlight. In the evening they light up the porch window.

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

 

Over on the other side of the porch is another arrangement of red roses in a small metal wheelbarrow! So simple to do!

Spring Idea House 2016 Part 1 grandparentsplus.com

 

This is just the start! You’ll find so many new ideas that can be incorporated in your own decor. Hope you stay tuned for Spring Idea House Part 2 coming up soon!

Fun, inspiring, Spring ideas for your home decor. Part 1

Fun, inspiring, Spring ideas for your home decor. Part 1

Phyllis

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Amazing Stuffed Jalapanos Recipe

While visiting in Arizona, we had an extended family get-together which grew to over 70 people! One of the relatives brought these Amazing Stuffed Jalapanos! Now, I’m from the midwest and don’t like really hot spicy food, but these were absolutely delicious! My second-cousin, Beth, graciously shared this recipe.

Amazing Stuffed Jalapanos grandparentsplus.com

The recipe makes a generous amount of appetizers, but people absolutely love them and they really go fast. So, plan accordingly. They’re stuffed with a combination of sausage, cream cheese and parmesan cheese. Then, they’re wrapped with bacon. Ooh, my mouth just waters thinking of them. Please don’t shy away from this recipe because you might think of it as way too spicy. You can control the amount of heat. If you want it spicier, just leave some pulp, seeds, or use a spicy sausage for the stuffing. Make one batch spicy and another fairly mild, just to please everyone.

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Amazing Stuffed Jalapenos

Ingredients

  • 15-20 jalapenos
  • 1 lb. breakfast sausage (I used Jimmy Dean)
  • 1 pkg. of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 pkg. bacon

Instructions

  1. Brown and crumble sausage.
  2. Melt cream cheese in with sausage and add parmesan cheese.
  3. WEAR GLOVES
  4. Halve jalapenos, lengthwise
  5. Remove stem and remove seeds and pulp
  6. Fill with sausage mixture
  7. Wrap with 1/2 slice of uncooked bacon
  8. Bake at 425 degrees for 25-30 min.
  9. If you want bacon really crisp, broil on high for 2-3 minutes.
  10. Serve immediately.
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I wanted my family to taste these and give me their opinion. I didn’t want to make the entire recipe for just a couple of people, so  I made half and refrigerated the sausage-cream cheese combination and made the rest two days later. It was nice to have them fresh-made two times in a week.  By the way, the family opinion was that they were AMAZING!

These are ready for the oven…..   I baked these Stuffed Jalapanos on foil for an easy clean up.

Amazing Stuffed Jalapanos grandparentsplus.com

 

Baked at 425 degrees and ready to eat!

Amazing Stuffed Jalapanos grandparentsplus.com

Just wait until you taste one…..you’ll be amazed at how delicious they taste! These are perfect for Cinco de Mayo, too, when you’re looking for something Mexican to serve.

Amazing Stuffed jalapanos grandparentsplus.com

I hope I’ve convinced you how delicious these appetizers taste. They were a big hit at the family get-together!

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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Zucchini Orange Bread Recipe

Zucchini Orange Bread

A zucchini bread with a hint of orange? Yes, it’s a delightful addition to zucchini bread! Zucchini Orange Bread is a tasty change from the usual zucchini breads. The light orange flavor comes from orange juice and orange peel.

Zucchini Orange Bread grandparentsplus.com

Perhaps you have some zucchini frozen. If not, buy some fresh from the grocery store. Don’t wait for your crop of zucchini to come in the fall to make this bread. Bake some this week!

 

Zucchini Orange Bread Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 2/3 cup orange juice
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3 tbsp. grated orange peel

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8 x 4 loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, beat eggs until thick and lemon colored.
  3. Gradually beat in sugar
  4. Stir in oil, orange juice, shredded zucchini, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves and orange peel.
  5. Mix until well blended.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pans,
  7. Bake for 45-55 minutes.
  8. Let cool for 10 minutes and remove from pans.
  9. Cool on wire racks.
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This recipe goes together quickly and produces two nicely shaped loaves. This is a wonderful alternative to chocolate zucchini bread, too. It’s a vegetable, right? 

Zucchini Orange Bread grandparentsplus.com

I know your family or guests will enjoy this bread! I like having quick breads in the freezer ready to use.  I pre-slice them before freezing so I can take out only what I’ll use.

Zucchini Orange Bread grandparentsplus.com

 

Zucchini Orange Bread! Vegetable and fruit together! Do you agree?

Phyllis

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Oma and Opa Camp 2015

Oma & Opa Camp - Having a Blast with Science grandparentsplus.com

Oma and Opa Camp ( Grandma and Grandpa Camp or Cousin Camp) was held late in the summer last year. In fact, it was the week before school started. We always try to find a date where the three families’ kids can come, but so much was going on that we were lucky to get a time that worked. That is why this post never got done before the summer ended.

The kids were excited about the theme. When I announced the theme, “Having a Blast with Science”, I asked the kids to come ready to do an experiment of their choice, bring what they needed, and be able to explain what happened and why.  I gave the parents several sites to check out. When someone decided on an experiment, no one else could do the same one. These are some of the sites I suggested…

www.sciencekids

www.sciencebuddies 

www.pbskids

www.scifun

www.hunkins

www.green-planet-solar-energy

www.teacherstryscience

I was able to find a lab coat (a little big) and put the label on the pocket “Kid Scientist”. On the other side I put the theme, “Having a Blast”. They, also, wore goggles. 

The first morning, I asked the 3 youngest to do their experiments. They took it very seriously. Carefully, they did their experiment and then explained what happened and why. After the first grandchild did theirs, the rest broke out in clapping and shouting “good job” spontaneously. When the three youngest had finished, they all wanted to continue, so we spent that morning with each one doing theirs. It was so much fun and they did an excellent job.

Oma & Opa Camp Having a Blast with Science grandparentsplus.com

 

Oma & Opa Camp 2015 Having a Blast with Science grandparentsplus.com

 

 

Oma & Opa Camp Having a Blast with Science grandparentsplus.com

I took a picture of each one holding their experiment and framed them for a take home surprise.

Oma and Opa Camp Crafts:

The crafts had to do with experiments, too.

1. Art Experiment:

This showed what happens when water and oil are mixed.

Before they came, I outlined their name in bubble letters with a glue gun on a plain piece of water-color paper. They were to use water colors and paint their name. On the background around their name, they used a variety of water colors and then dropped cooking oil on the wet water-color paints and watched the reaction on their paper. The paints need to be very wet when you drop the oil for it to work. they all liked watching how the paint colors reacted. For complete directions, go to Watercolor and Oil Art.

 

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

 

2. Catapult:

This  device is a simple machine. By pushing down on a flexed piece of wood, the energy is transferred to the object when released sends it flying off.

I must say, I tried several styles of catapults. All were too difficult for kids to actually put together and they threw the object into the ground and not in the air. (like the Kleenex box ones) I finally found one design that was simple to do and worked for a game, too. Go to How to make an Easy Catapult.

Oma and Opa Camp 2015 grandparentsplus.com


3. Tie-Dye Shirts:

The experiment on shirts was two-fold. First, we soaked the shirts in soda ash. Each year, the tie-dye shirts would fade after each wash. The soda ash is supposed to keep the bright colors so we’ll see if the experiment works. Secondly, we folded the shirts accordion way and added rubber bands at different places to see if it would result in stripes. It did! The soda ash worked, too! The shirts retained their color much better!
Oma and Opa Camp 2015 grandparentsplus.com

4. Making Plastic:

We made plastic from milk and vinegar! Crazy, but it worked. You could mold it, too. After a couple days of drying, it was hard plastic! Go to: Valentine Heart made with Milk and Vinegar

 

5. Balloon Launch:

At the Dollar Tree, I found long rocket balloons. We pumped air into them and let them go from the upper deck and watched how far they would fly. It was an experiment in jet propulsion! They had a blast watching them shoot up and all around.

Oma and Opa Camp 2015 grandparentsplus.com

Field Trips:

Science Museum:

With the science theme for our camp, this was a natural field trip. The museum, also, had different programs going on that kids participated in. They loved it.

Oma and Opa Camp 2015 grandparentsplus.com

Circus Juventas:

There is a program in our area where young people are trained in the circus arts and put on a fantastic show in the summer. It might have been a stretch with a science theme, but they used catapults and jumped through the air in all sorts of ways. The grandchildren absolutely loved it!

Water Park:

It was so hot last year for our Oma and Opa camp so we spent an afternoon at a water park pool. It was a nice way to cool off and have lots of fun! It fit with science as the slides were a simple machine called an incline plane. So were the stairs! HA! 

Devotions:

The verse for the week was James 1:17  Every good action and every perfect gift is from God.   At God-time together we talked about different ways that we know God is real. In the Old Testament, Elisha conducted an experiment to prove God was the one true God. Also, through nature we can see God’s handiwork. God’s gift to us, Jesus, is really the perfect gift in that we all can receive forgiveness for our sins through Him! We don’t have to experiment to know that Jesus died for us so that we could have eternal life in heaven with Him!

At the end, it was hard to say good-bye, but Oma and Opa needed a rest! HA! We had a BLAST!

Oma and Opa Camp 2015 grandparentsplus.com

I took lots of pictures of the fun times and made a photo book for each child at ArtsCow. If you register with them, they often send coupons for free books and other photo items.

Hope this gives you some ideas of things to do with your grandchildren or children during the upcoming summer.

Have fun and make memories!

Phyllis

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Canadian Bacon Quiche Recipe

You may think of this Canadian Bacon Quiche Recipe as a breakfast entree, but this is delicious as a brunch or lunch, too. In fact, a breakfast quiche works for a light dinner! Anytime is good for this quiche. This recipe is served at A Spot for Tea in Oklahoma City, OK, where it is a favorite.

Canadian Bacon Quiche grandparentsplus.com

You may have noticed that I’m on a “Gouda Cheese kick” as I have included it in a few of the last recipes posted. It has a wonderful flavor and it’s a nice change from cheddar. In my grocery store, it is included with the regular cheeses and you can buy it already shredded. If you can’t find it there, look in the specialty cheese section of your grocery store. 

To save this recipe in your Yummly box, just click on the YUM button.

Canadian Bacon Quiche

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup diced Canadian Bacon
  • 1/2 cup shredded Gouda cheese
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 9" unbaked pie crust

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine eggs, half n' half, chopped tomatoes,diced Canadian Bacon, Gouda cheese, garlic salt, pepper, and dried basil.
  2. Mix well and pour mixture into unbaked pie crust.
  3. Bake for 50-60 minutes.
  4. Knife inserted should come out clean when done.
  5. Let quiche rest for 10 minutes.
  6. Cut and serve with fruit.
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The Canadian Bacon Quiche is ready for the oven.

Canadian Bacon Quiche grandparentsplus.com

 

Done when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Canadian Bacon Quiche grandparentsplus.com

 

What makes this Canadian Bacon Quiche so easy is there is no frying of bacon ahead of time and all the ingredients go together quickly. Canadian bacon is a nice change from bacon and the Gouda cheese is delicious in this quiche!

Canadian Bacon Quiche grandparentsplus.com

Try it and I know you’ll like it!

Enjoy! 

Phyllis

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Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake

 

Add a bit of Italian flavor to your morning with this Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake Recipe.  This is a very different type of egg bake from the soggy bread recipes. The eggs are scrambled with green pepper, mushrooms, onions, and bacon with an Alfredo sauce added. The delicious combination is topped with dollops of an Italian flavored crust. Keep this recipe on hand as it is a delicious one. By eliminating the crust, it becomes gluten-free and still is wonderful!

Add this recipe to your Yummly box by clicking on the YUM button.

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 6-8

Ingredients

  • 1 c. Bisquick baking mix
  • 1/4 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 6 tbsp. butter, divided
  • 13 eggs, divided
  • 1/4 chopped onion
  • 1/4 c. chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup crumbled, cooked bacon
  • 3/4 cup Alfredo pasta sauce

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 400 degrees
  2. Grease 8x8 baking dish
  3. In a small bowl, add Bisquick, 4 Tbsp butter and Italian seasoning. Blend with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Add 1 egg and stir in gently. Set aside.
  4. In a skillet, over med. heat, saute' onions, peppers, and mushrooms in 2 tbsp. butter, until veggies are tender, but crisp.
  5. Mix 12 eggs together in a bowl.
  6. Add eggs to skillet with the veggies.
  7. Stir occasionally until eggs are set.
  8. Remove from heat and stir in bacon and Alfredo sauce
  9. Spread egg mixture in the prepared 8x8 baking dish.
  10. Plop small dollops of Bisquick mixture over eggs.
  11. Bake for 15 minutes until the topping is light brown.
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Scrambled Egg Mixture in Baking Dish……

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake grandparentsplus.com

Dollop the Bisquick mixture on top of the eggs.

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake grandparentsplus.com

Remove when topping is lightly browned.

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake grandparentsplus.com

If desired, offer remaining warmed Alfredo sauce on the side. Serve with fresh fruit for an outstanding breakfast or brunch.

To shorten the prep time for the morning, cut the veggies and prepare the bacon the evening before. Cover and place in refrigerator. Now, it is so quick and easy to put together in the morning.

This recipe makes a nice option for a holiday brunch. Also, if you like breakfast for dinner, make it in the evening. Anytime is good for this Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake.

Scrambled Eggs Alfredo Bake grandparentsplus.com

Without a doubt, I know you’ll enjoy this “out of the ordinary” egg bake.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by….

Phyllis

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Strawberry Bread Recipe

This Strawberry Bread Recipe comes from the Rose Mountain Manor Tea Room in California. I’ve change it just a bit so it has enhanced strawberry flavor using a bit of strawberry jello. The recipe makes one 5 x 9 loaf. It may not be strawberry season, but don’t worry as this recipe uses frozen strawberries which are easily available at your grocery store.

Strawberry Bread Recipe grandparentsplus.com

 

Strawberry Bread Recipe

Strawberry Bread Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar less 2 Tbsp.
  • 2 Tbsp. strawberry jello (my addition)
  • 1 tsp. almond extract or imitation strawberry extract (my addition)
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen strawberries, thawed

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, jello and extract. Add egg yolks to butter mixture, one at a time, until light and fluffy. Sift in flour, baking powder and baking soda and mix well.
  2. Drain juice from strawberries saving 1/4 cup juice. Add the juice to mixture and fold in drained strawberries. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold egg whites into mixture and spoon mixture into a greased 5 x 9 loaf pan. Lightly drop pan to release any air bubbles.
  3. Bake 50-60 minutes at 350 degrees. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove bread from pan after 20 minutes.
  4. Let bread cool completely before slicing.
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Strawberry Bread Recipe grandparentsplus.com

This recipe freezes well. It’s great to have on hand for a quick addition to breakfast, afternoon tea, brunch, or snack. Add a cup of coffee or tea and you have a wonderful, tasty afternoon break!

 

Strawberry Bread Recipe grandparentsplus.com

If this bread is good enough to serve at a bed and breakfast, you know it will be a great recipe to try. 

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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Chicken-Pear Salad with Pear Dressing

What a refreshing, delicious, lo-cal salad to serve! The Chicken-Pear Salad with Pear Dressing is a wonderful tasting combination of flavors with an easy homemade pear dressing. It looks delightful and tastes the amazing!

This is a close-up of the ingredients before adding the dressing. It’s such a pretty combination, don’t you think?

Chicken-Pear Salad with Pear Dressing grandparentsplus.com

You can save this recipe to your Yummly account by just clicking on the “YUM” button! So easy!

Chicken-Pear Salad with Pear Dressing

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • Chicken-Pear Salad with Pear Dressing
  • Recipe Type: Salad
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Nancy Heishman in Country Woman Magazine with my variations
  • Prep time: 15 mins
  • Total time: 15 mins
  • Serves: 4
  • A delicious, low-cal, colorful salad.
  • Ingredients
  • DRESSING
  • 3 Tbsp. light olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 medium ripe pears, divided
  • SALAD
  • 8 cups fresh arugula or Spring Mix with Spinach greens
  • 2 cups cubed cooked chicken or turkey
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans,
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • I

Instructions

  1. For dressing combine the first five ingredients in a blender or bullet. Take one pear and peel, halve, and core. Add to blender and process until smooth.
  2. Divide greens among four plates and top with chicken or turkey. Add dried cranberries, onions, pecans. Top with sliced pears (peeled or not) and sprinkle with pear dressing.
  3. Serve immediately.
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Another picture without dressing…

Chicken-pear Salad with Pear Dressing grandparentsplus.com

The ingredients for the dressing made a little more than 1 cup.  Since I made only two salads, I had leftover dressing. I used the dressing over fresh fruit and it was delicious!

Salad with pear dressing drizzled over it……

Chicken -Pear Salad with Pear Dressing grandparentsplus.com

Put this recipe on your list of awesome salads.  Besides being colorful and delicious, it is low-cal, too! The salad is around 360 calories. 

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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Amazing Grace Easter Wreath

The Amazing Grace Easter Wreath says what Easter is really about. While I’m not against bunnies and chicks, Easter is really not about them, but about the amazing grace given to us through Jesus Christ, God’s son, by paying our sin debt on the cross. 

I’m thrilled to have found a source for the beautiful wooden crosses. I’ve made my own displays by cutting out paper letters and forming a cross, but this wood cut-out is beautiful to just hang by itself or use in a wreath. It greets your guests with the message of Easter.  They make a wonderful hostess gift if you’re invited out for Easter dinner.

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

I bought 3 Amazing Grace crosses at under $4 each. I thought I would need to paint them, but when they arrived, they looked absolutely fine without painting. That saved a step! Click on Artistic Supply to find them. They were quick on delivery, too! They have several different styles of crosses that would work if you would like a different style.

The first version I tried was working with this gathered green burlap wreath. I had bought it for a couple of dollars on clearance, as it was missing several pieces, and looked awful. For the money, I thought I could change it up into something worthwhile.  So, fixing some of the flaws, I used the cross in the middle and highlighted it with bunches of white lilies.

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

This wreath went from the above picture to the one below!

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

For the next design idea, it was simple, but tedious, to add the two types of ferns to the twig wreath. I had seen something similar and had the ferns at home, so just worked with it to tuck and glue the ends into the twigs.( A boxwood wreath works, too.) I simply added the cross in the middle. I felt it didn’t need any more than the simple greenery elegance to let the cross stand out. If you’re pressed for time, buy one!

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

The third idea was to use palms for the base.

First, I cut a small rectangle from a cardboard box. I tried foam, but it stood out from the wall or door and I wanted it to be flush against the wall. The cardboard worked well.

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

I found a small artificial bush that had eight palm branches on it. It was around $9.00 at Michael’s, but a coupon took that price down. With eight, I could make two of them.

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

 

Using the glue gun, I secured the top and bottom palms on the cardboard.  Continuing  on with the other smaller palms, I glued them on horizontally forming a palm cross. Make sure that the top vertical palm part is slightly smaller than the lower part.

 

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

I twisted some wire to form a hook for hanging, and glued it on the back of the cardboard.

 

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

The last part was to carefully glue the wooden cross cut-out on top of the ferns.

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

The last version turned out to be the easiest. So if you don’t have a wreath that you can use, make the version with the palm leaves. It really goes together fast!

Amazing Grace Easter Wreath grandparentsplus.com

The wooden cross cut-out certainly may be used alone, but it looks outstanding on a wreath. I hops you enjoy your Amazing Grace wreath however you choose to make it!

Happy Easter! 

Phyllis

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Whimsical Spring Arrangements

The cute little bunnies, ducks, and chicks that you see in stores are hard to resist. Well, last year I bought a few on clearance (75% off)  and this year made a couple whimsical spring arrangements with the bunnies and ducks.

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

For the first one, I used a vintage berry carrier. By just placing some artificial grass on the bottom, adding the three different size bunnies, and placing artificial succulents here and there, the arrangement is complete.

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

I used this arrangement as a centerpiece.  Notice those little bunnies on each placesetting….those I got for 12 cents each! I happened to find them at 90% off of sale price! Such a deal!

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

Use those whimsical animals perched on a candle holder and alternate with green moss balls.

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

The little feather chicks in a nest were purchased some years ago in Germany. I just love the detail. They’re cute to use with a place-card.

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

Perhaps this gives you some ideas on how to use those bunnies, chicks, and ducks in a whimsical spring arrangement of your own.

Whimsical Spring Arrangements grandparentsplus.com

Now, watch those sales and take advantage of them for next year!

Phyllis

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Irish for a Day!

We’re not Irish, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t be Irish for a Day! You can have fun with it and make the day special for your children or grandchildren. There’s green scrambled eggs, green oatmeal, pots of gold pineapple, and a rainbow of fruit just to name a few easy ideas. So, why not print an Irish picture, button, or card to greet them on the morning of St. Patrick’s Day? It is easy to do and will guarantee a smile on your kids’ faces as they see their own picture in green! Best of all….IT’S FREE!

Irish for a Day grandparentsplus.com

 

First, find a picture of your child or grandchild on your computer. Go to glassgiant.  This link should take you to “St. Patrick’s Day”.

Next, click on “choose file” and find your picture on your computer to upload and double-click on the picture. It should upload to their site. Then click on “send”.

This will make a button, but I’ll show you how I changed it for a picture. I’ll walk you through those instructions after you have finished your button.

Once you have the basic button made with adding the words on it and picking the background, now download it to your computer. The picture will be off-center and look like this…

Irish for a Day grandparentsplus.com

If you’re making a button, you are done.  If you want to make a frame and change it to a picture for a card, continue on……

After you have downloaded the picture, go to Picmonkey.   Picmonkey is a free online editing site for your pictures. You’ll love this site and have fun enhancing your own pictures.

On Picmonkey, click edit and double-click to upload the picture you downloaded from glassgiant. Now, click  “crop”, and change to the size you want. Like this…..

Irish for a Day grandparentsplus.com

If you want a border, click “frame” and select the type you want and the color. You can always change if you don’t “apply” it..

Finally, when you get the picture the way you want, click “save” on top and it will save to your own computer. You can now print the picture and place on a card or use however you wish.

Irish for a Day grandparentsplus.com

This is actually a quick and easy process, once you have done it. Remember, anyone can be “Irish for a Day”! Your children or grandchildren will be delighted. Have fun!

Phyllis

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Easter Cross Scrabble Craft

Do you have extra scrabble letters? If so, this Easter Cross Scrabble Craft is an easy, quick, yet a meaningful one to make. If you need to find them, just do a search online or find at your local craft store. Thrift stores are a good source, too! I’ve included 2 versions of this craft; one for kids, and one for adults.

Easter Cross Scrabble Craft grandparentsplus.com

I recommend using a strong adhesive like GOOP instead of a glue gun. The pieces are varnished and mine broke easily when I used the glue gun. I re-glued with the stronger glue. This version is for adults as I found it hard for kids to use the glue. The” kid version”,  is explained later in this post. It makes it easier for them to do and you don’t have to find all those tiles for multiple kids doing this project.

Here’s the number of letters you will need for the cross….

H-1, E-3, D-2, I-1, F-1, O-1, R-1, M-1

When your Easter Cross Scrabble craft is completed, you can hang it as is, or frame it. 

An easy way to do this for a “kid version” Sunday School Craft is to copy the letters on your printer. It’s a lot cheaper, too.

Materials Needed:

1 copy of letters for each child

Scissors

Glue and Toothpicks (flat work better for glue)

1/2 sheet of construction paper red and black

 

Easter Cross Scrabble Craft grandparentsplus.com

Have students cut out the squares and glue to a half-sheet of paper. It helps to fold the paper in half the long way, and about one-third down. Now, students can follow the folds to glue on the letters. Have them start in the middle with the word “died” placing two letters on each side of the fold. This way, they will line up easier. Hope you can see how I folded this sheet of paper.
Easter Cross Scrabble Craft grandparentsplus.com

Hint for gluing….  Kids always add too much glue.  Have a dish of glue where they use a toothpick and apply just a dab. This will be enough to glue it on, but not enough to ooze out.

Add a black frame to finish it off. ( I would have these already cut for the students.)

Here’s the finished “kid version” project using paper tiles.

Easter Cross Scrabble Craft grandparentsplus.com

 

Either version you make is a craft that is meaningful and memorable for the Easter season and throughout the year. It’s a great reminder of God’s love for us.

Easter Cross Scrabble Craft grandparentsplus.com

Yes, Jesus died for YOU!

Romans 5:8-9  But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. 

He is Risen!

Phyllis

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How to Make an Easy Catapult

How to Make an Easy Catapult!

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

For our Oma and Opa Camp (aka cousins camp, grandma camp, etc.), I was researching catapult projects. I tried so many catapult ideas, but none worked very well. They were either so difficult to put together or the trajectory was that they just threw something straight down. (like the Kleenex box ones) How fun is that? For all the effort of putting it together, you want something that really works.  I, also, wanted  6-10 year old kids to be able to make it themselves without much help.

I finally found an idea that was both simple and worked! The materials were inexpensive and easy to obtain, too! I need to give credit to almostunschoolers  for this basic idea.

Materials Needed:

Tongue depressors or large craft sticks

Spring Clothespins

Approximately 4 inch wood square  ( cut from a 2×4) or buy these end posts from Menards

Milk Cap

Glue Gun

Directions:

If you want to decorate the base with markers or paint, you may do that first or wait until it is put together. How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

First glue the clothespin to the base…

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

Hot glue the milk cap to the tongue depressor or large craft stick.  Be sure to leave room at the end for pressing it down.

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

Next, glue the craft stick to the top of the clothespin.

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

When glue is dry, kids can decorate with markers or paint at this point, too.  Now, use pom-poms to catapult into the cups. Number the cups with points and give turns to see who can make the most points.

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

They enjoyed making the catapult, decorating it, and playing the game.  I call that success! How did it fit into a Science Camp? Well, we talked about simple machines and a catapult is one which uses a lever! You use force to push the lever down and the energy is transferred to the pom-pom which sends it flying up.

How to make an easy catapult grandparentsplus.com

PicMonkey Collage2a

Now you know how to make an easy catapult that actually works and is easy to put together!

Have fun!

Phyllis

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Watercolor and Oil Art

Watercolor and Oil Art explores a science fact in a very fun and colorful way.  Oil and water don’t mix, you see, so you’ll have interesting things happen with your art project.  It’s so exciting to see how oil makes waves and moves the color. By using a glue gun, you can design shapes or squiggles that make a design among the melding colors.

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Using just liquid watercolors, a glue gun, and oil, you never know just what you’ll end up with for color variations. It’s fun to watch. Change this project for any holiday theme or design you would like to use. This is one art project that can be done over and over again. It will never turn out the same. Use your imagination and try different combinations.

The materials include: Watercolor Paper, Glue Gun, Liquid Watercolors, Brushes, Vegetable Oil, tray (optional), and Eye Dropper.

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Here’s an easy way to keep this project from getting messy. I bought 9×13 metal cookie trays at the Dollar Tree. They are the perfect size for any painting or craft project. It keeps the mess contained and if things need to dry, you can just dry them right on the trays. For this watercolor project, they can be stacked to dry by placing one tray horizontal and the next vertical. I have one for each grandchild, and it sure helps to keep glitter, glue, paint, etc. all contained! When the project is done, they are easy to wash off.

Ok, now to the directions….  This project requires watercolor paper. Construction just doesn’t work well. It is better with liquid watercolors, too. If you haven’t tried them, they are very colorful and easier to use than the watercolor paint trays. Have some wider brushes to use such as small sponge brushes.

You can buy liquid watercolors from Blick Art Supplies on the sidebar.

I’ve seen paintings that merely cover the entire paper, but I decided to experiment using some shapes outlined with hot glue. I liked the outcome. If you are using a shape, draw it lightly with a pencil and go over it with the glue gun. (I recommend that an adult operates the glue gun.)This will keep the shape from mixing with the other colors and it will stand out from the painting.

 

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Outline a shape with the glue gun.

 

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Paint watercolor inside the glue area.

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Drop oil in several places and watch it work!

Continue on and paint the background.

For our Oma and Opa Camp, I did the kids’ names in bubble letters with hot glue and they used liquid watercolors to make their project colorful and dotted it with oil . Even the boys got into it and thought it was “cool”!

 

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

After you have painted a section, while it is still wet, drop oil in squiggles or drops, and watch it change the paint. Continue until the entire paper is painted the way you like. If the watercolors dry too much, just get them wet again with more color or spray with a little water before you drop the oil. The action will continue for a while as it dries.

Let dry for a day and enjoy your watercolor and oil art that you’ve created. 

There are so many ways to vary this project. For instance, you can outline a pumpkin, stars, names, trees, bells, angels, cross, bunnies, fall leaves, and flowers, just to name a few. It is changeable for any season and the outcome is always different. 

For Easter…..

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Christmas…..

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

The oil was also dripped on the trees above.

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

For Valentines…..

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

 

This cross was painted with the usual watercolor tray instead of the liquid watercolors. It’s not as bright and harder to get the oil action to show. You need to use very deep colors, paint it heavy with color, and still it doesn’t have the same intensity as the liquid colors.

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

It’s a good investment to get the liquid watercolors as they last a long time. Your kids will enjoy those bright colors! No messy watercolor trays to clean, either.

Now, what will you plan on making with your watercolor and oil art?  Have fun!

Watercolor and Oil Art grandparentsplus.com

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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Roast Beef Reuben Sandwich

Try this new version of a Reuben. I call it a “Roast Beef Reuben Sandwich”! This sandwich is so delicious with the new combination of flavors that it may become your favorite. My mouth just waters when I think of it. My family loved it!

Roast Beef Reuben grandparentsplus.com

Roast Beef Reuben Sandwich
Recipe Type: Lunch or Dinner Sandwich
Cuisine: American
Author: Phyllis Van Rossum
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
A new combination of flavors make this Roast Beef Rueben Sandwich absolutely delicious!
Ingredients
  • 8 slices of bread- Sourdough
  • Sliced Roast Beef – don’t skimp!
  • 8 slices Gouda cheese
  • Jar of Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage (found ready-made in vegetable aisle) or homemade
  • Coarse Ground Dijon Mustard – optional
  • Butter
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat skillet
  2. Drain Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage
  3. Arrange 8 slices of bread
  4. Place a slice of Gouda Cheese on 4 slices of bread
  5. Layer Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage on top of cheese
  6. Add Roast Beef on top of Cabbage
  7. Top with remaining slice of Gouda Cheese
  8. Spread remaining 4 slices lightly with coarse ground Dijon mustard (optional or serve on the side)
  9. Place those 4 slices with mustard side towards the four cheese-topped sandwiches.
  10. Spread with butter and place buttered side down in pre-heated skillet.
  11. Butter the top of the sandwich while in the skillet
  12. Grill until browned on each side.
  13. While grilling cover with a lid to warm the inside of the sandwich and melt the Gouda cheese

The combination of Roast Beef, Gouda Cheese, along with Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage is fantastic! My husband was skeptical and then after tasting it declared it to be his favorite!! You just have to try it to believe how good it is.

Roast Beef Reuben grandparentsplus.com

 

Serve with Coarse Ground Dijon or regular mustard on the side. Not a mustard fan? You’ll still love it without it.

Wish you could taste it right now. YUM!

Roast Beef Reuben grandparentsplus.com

Even if you don’t particularly like a corned beef  with sauerkraut Reuben sandwich, I know you’ll enjoy this one! Try it! 

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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DIY Copper Drapery Rods

My DIY Copper Drapery Rods!

DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

In my kitchen, I  display my collection of vintage copper tea kettles and coffee pots above the cupboards. I like the patina the copper gets as it ages. While wondering what I was going to do about drapery rods in the kitchen, I got the idea of looking into using copper drapery rods to coördinate with my vintage copper accents!

Here’s a sample of two of the areas above the cupboards where I display my copper pots.

DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

 


DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

I looked online, but what I found was a fake copper finish and not real copper plus they were expensive. So, I  went to my local home hardware store to see what they had for copper pipe that might work.  

One problem I had to work around was that the windows were at a 45 degree angle to each other. There was not enough room to put two rod holders in that area. I needed something with a 45 degree angle to tie the two areas together. A custom rod was too expensive.

Also, I wanted to hide that the windows were not centered on each wall when they built the house. That has always bothered me so I hoped that the final product would hide that flaw. (why don’t builders think of those things?)

Deciding to use the copper pipe, but not wanting it so shiny, I researched online about how to give new copper that aged patina. I finally came up with a product that would do the trick in one application. Other ideas like hard-boiled eggs, etc. (yes, that was what one site suggested) were too complicated. The product I found is called, Liver of Sulphur Extended Life Gel. It came in a 4 oz. jar, but I only needed a small 1/2 tsp. to do all the copper. (If you need some, I’ll sell you mine. I don’t think I’ll ever use it up.) Perhaps contact someone who makes jewelry to see if they have something to give patina to the copper.

The 10 ft. length of 3/4 inch copper pipe was around $11.00. I also found a 45 degree copper fitting that would work for the bend in the wall.

The Liver of Sulphur aged the copper, but it was a bit uneven. It was hard to paint the product on a round pipe and then quick stop the aging with Baking Soda solution.

DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

My husband took some fine steel wool and evened out the patina. Yes, perfect!

DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

There wasn’t room to add a finial on the end so I just used copper end-caps to finish it off. My husband put the rods up with three drapery rod holders which I had painted with a copper color spray paint and it was perfect! The window placement flaws are hidden and I feel so much better about it and I love my DIY Copper Drapery Rods! They sure cost less than the standard drapery rods and far less than custom ones that were at a 45 degree angle! Total cost was around $25.00 for both windows. (not counting the Liver of Sulfur, but including drapery rod holders) 

DIY Copper Drapery Rods grandparentsplus.com

These diy copper drapery rods would go with many combinations of neutral decor as well. I am very happy with how they turned out! Have you thought of using copper pipe?

Thanks for stopping by, 

Phyllis

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Stromboli – Baked Italian Sandwich

Stromboli – a baked Italian Sandwich, is a favorite at our house. It is so easy to make that even kids can do this recipe! The frozen bread dough makes it simple and ready to do when you get home from work. Just follow the directions on the frozen bread dough package to thaw and use for this sandwich.

Stromboli- baked Italian sandwich grandparentsplus.com

 

Vary the ingredients to what you like. If you like onions, but another person doesn’t want them, just do 1/2 the sandwich with them and 1/2 without. Mark with a toothpick. 

I’ve used this for an informal party and had my guests make their own.  Each couple makes their sandwich to suit their tastes.  (You need double ovens to bake four sandwiches, however.) At the end of the evening, send home the left-overs with them.

Stromboli – Baked Italian Sandwich
Recipe Type: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6 servings
Easy Italian sandwich using frozen bread dough, various meats, and cheese. Baked and served with warmed spaghetti sauce.
Ingredients
  • 2 loaves of frozen bread dough
  • 2 egg yolks (save whites)
  • 1 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. parsley flakes
  • 1 lb mozzarella cheese – shredded
  • Various meats, cheese, tomatoes, veggies, olives, etc.
  • (see suggested amounts below for two loaves)
Instructions
  1. Make a paste of egg yolks, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, pepper, oil, and parsley flakes. Spread down half down the center of dough on each baking sheet. (This is like a pesto.)
  2. Layer ingredients of your choice. Approximate amounts for the two loaves are: ham (approx. 1/2 lb sliced), turkey (1/2 lb.), salami (1/4 lb.), green or red peppers, onion, tomato, olives ( black or green)
  3. Cover with mozzarella cheese or cheese of your choice. Add all ingredients to the middle 1/3 of the dough.
  4. Fold both sides over to the center. Moisten the edges with water and press to seal. Be sure to seal it well!
  5. Make air-vents by making cuts along the top sides.
  6. Brush on slightly beaten egg whites over the entire top.
  7. Bake @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

 

This is the first step of the Stromboli.

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

Kids love to do this, too!

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

 

Spread the pesto down the middle of the dough….. and follow the next steps.

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

I did this with grandchildren and the kids made the entire Stromboli by themselves. I sealed it up for them as that’s the hardest part. Because they put what they wanted in it, they loved it!

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

After baking for 30 minutes, slice, and serve with hot spaghetti sauce for dipping! 

This is also a great idea for those football game days! 

Stromboli - Italian Baked Sandwich grandparentsplus.com

I’ll bet this becomes a family favorite!

Enjoy!

Phyllis 

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Homemade Chicken Nuggets

These are the best Homemade Chicken Nuggets by far! Your kids will never want any other chicken nuggets other than these, but don’t limit them just to kids! Adults like them, too!

They are so quick and easy to make. Besides that, they freeze well. It’s a quick dinner from the freezer to the oven. Heat in the oven at 400 degrees for 5-10 minutes and they are ready. 

Need a quick appetizer?  Add some dipping sauces of mustard, BBQ sauce, or honey and you’ve got a wonderful appetizer that adults will love. Great idea for those football game days!


Homemade Chicken Nuggets grandparensplus.com

Homemade Chicken Nuggets
Recipe Type: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Phyllis Van Rossum
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Best Chicken Nuggets!
Ingredients
  • Chicken Breasts
  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Panko Bread Crumbs
  • Oil of choice or butter
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Like it spicier? Add some Kickin Chicken spice!
Instructions
  1. Cut chicken into bite-sized cubes.
  2. Beat eggs
  3. Have 4 shallow bowls and place flour, eggs, and Panko bread crumbs in each separate bowl.
  4. Roll cubes in flour to coat
  5. Dip in beaten eggs
  6. Roll in Panko bread crumbs – usually found in the baking aisle
  7. Fry in oil or butter of choice
  8. Season to taste
  9. When browned, remove and drain on a paper towel
  10. If freezing, place on baking sheet to freeze individually. When frozen, bag and seal. This way, you can use the amount that you need.

 

Don’t substitute regular bread crumbs for Panko. It’s Panko bread crumbs that make them so crispy and good. You’ll find a couple different brands of them in the baking aisle.

If freezing for later, place on a flat cookie sheet to freeze individually. When frozen, bag in smaller amounts. I like to make a big batch and have them in the freezer all ready to use. 

Homemade Chicken Nuggets grandparentsplus.com

YUM! Tender and juicy! They are the best! 

Enjoy!

Phyllis

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Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake

There’s a favorite restaurant that I like to go to for breakfast. Their Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake is amazing! I go there just to have that with an omelet or eggs.  I had never tasted hash browns like that before. I finally asked the cook if he gave out his recipe. He wouldn’t tell me the amounts, but he did give me the ingredients. So, I’ve experimented and have come up with a recipe that tastes like the one at the restaurant. They are the best! You might say they’re GOOD-Ah!

Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake grandparentsplus.com

 

Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake
Recipe Type: Breakfast or Brunch side dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Phyllis@grandparentsplus.com
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 10-12 servings
Gouda Cheese melted in with a hash brown mixture! The best hash brown recipe you’ll try!
Ingredients
  • Frozen Hash Browns (28-30 oz.)
  • 2 cups shredded Gouda Cheese
  • 3/4 cup yellow onions
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 pint of heavy cream
  • 2 tsp vegetable base (look for this in your soup aisle)
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
  1. Thaw hash browns and place in large bowl.
  2. Add shredded Gouda cheese
  3. Saute onions and garlic until translucent in 1-2 T. olive oil and add to bowl.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste
  5. Mix together
  6. Mix 2 tsp of Vegetable Base into 1 pint of heavy cream and stir until combined.
  7. Put hash brown mixture In a grease 9 x 13 pan
  8. Drizzle the heavy cream with vegetable base over the hash browns in the pan.
  9. Bake in 350 degree oven for 1 hour
  10. Remove from oven, cover with foil and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.
  11. Cut in squares and serve.

The vegetable base, in this recipe, adds great flavor. It’s a bit expensive, but you’ll use it again and again.

This Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake makes a nice big pan. If you have left-overs, just freeze the individual portions to use later. Take out as needed and microwave.

Another great recipe for hash browns are the Shreds. You might want to check them out, too!

Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake grandparentsplus.com

Oh, I’ll still go back to that restaurant for breakfast, but now I can have those hash browns anytime.

Gouda Cheese Hash Brown Bake grandparentsplus.com

I know you’ll enjoy this recipe!

Phyllis

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Winter Sunset

Most of the beautiful sunsets occur during the summer with the gorgeous colors mirrored across the lake. However, this winter sunset was awesome with the patterns on the ice. I had to take a picture and show that winter can be beautiful, too. 

Winter Sunset

 

 

This is the view out our great-room window! We never tire of the beauty of God’s world around us!

This is not my usual post, but thought I’d share.

Thanks for viewing and Happy New Year!

Phyllis

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On Grandparentsplus.com, we use third party companies to advertise on this site. These companies may use non-personal info (NOT INCLUDING your name, address, email and or telephone number) about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide goods and services that may be of interest to you. More information about this is here.

Other ads may produce some revenue from purchases. We truly thank you for your support!

Phyllis

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About Us

 

My blog is from my experience as an elementary teacher, children’s pastor, mother of 3 , and grandmother (Oma) of 7! The ideas that I share have three requirements: inexpensive, fun to do and look good! All parents, grandparents. teachers or anyone that works with kids needs lots of ideas for crafts, games, and kid-friendly recipes. I hope the ideas I post are helpful and fun!

Along with having great times with grandkids, I like to decorate, cook and entertain. You will see posts that are along this line as well. Sorry, I just can’t stick to one subject. When I find something interesting, I enjoy sharing it. I like variety, don’t you?

How I got started doing this blog:

Each summer, my husband and I have held an” Oma and Opa” Camp for the grandchildren (age 4 and up). The purpose is to have a special time with them where we just have lots of fun activities, laughs and enjoy being together. It is also an opportunity to bond and form friendships with their cousins. We find that having them with just ourselves is quite different from when their parents are around. It is fun to see them become independent, responsible and helpful with what they have learned from home. At the beginning of the 4 day camp, we talk about expectations ( the teacher in me) and what they will be doing. They are so excited and look forward to coming each year. Last year, Kyle, age 4, told his mom that he had waited for Oma and Opa Camp all year!

I  build around a theme and plan activities, crafts, food, games, and Bible stories that relate to it in some way. During camp, I take lots of pictures and after camp is over, I create a photo memory book of all the memories from Oma and Opa Camp. They love these books and look at them over and over.

Many people encouraged me to share these ideas online and so I started to do just that.

I hope you’ll find some interesting things to cook, plan, create or just have a little fun with your family!

Phyllis (Oma)

(By the way, “Oma and Opa” is Dutch for Grandma and Grandpa)

 

 

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