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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Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce

Chicken Spirals look absolutely amazing ! This recipe certainly has that “wow” factor of a beautiful and delicious company dish. Your guests will think you spent hours preparing this , but it’s actually easy to put together. 

When you’re looking for something special to serve, consider Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce. Your guests will be delighted!

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce grandparentsplus.com

For this recipe, I am using the thin-sliced ham, but you can use Pastrami, any Kosher deli meat, or the expensive prosciutto. I also used 3 large,whole breasts instead of the 6 half-breasts. This made 3 larger rolls and I just cut them into 6 slices instead of 3.

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce
Recipe Type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Author: Adapted recipe from the Grand View Lodge in Nisswa, MN
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 servings
A spiral of chicken that is stuffed with ham, cheese, and spinach. This is a special main dish that has a “wow” factor!
Ingredients
  • 6 large skinless and boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 10 oz. packages of frozen, chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 12 thin slices ham
  • Colby Jack cheese, Gouda, Monterrey Jack. Pepper Jack or any cheese
  • Cut into six 2 x 1/2 inch sticks
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • Creamed Spinach Sauce:
  • 3 tbsp. butter, melted.
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • Use 1/2 pkg of chopped spinach from ingredients above
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream or half and half
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Stuffed Chicken Directions:
  2. Place a chicken breast with boned side up between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Pound lightly with the flat side of a meat mallet. Start in the center and work to the edges. Pound to 1/8 inch thickness. Remove top of wrap and sprinkle with pepper. Continue with each chicken breast.
  3. squeeze spinach until well-drained and almost dry. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 of the Squeeze spinach until very dry. Use 1 1/2 pkg and mix with the lighty beaten eggs. Save 1/2 box of the spinach for the cream sauce.
  4. For each chicken roll, spoon about 2-3 tbsp. spinach mixture over each flattened chicken breast
  5. Top with a slices of ham or other choice of thin-sliced meat. Place a stick of cheese at the edge.
  6. Start from the edge with the cheese and roll into a spiral, pressing edges in to seal. Secure spirals with wooden toothpicks
  7. Place rolls,seam sides down, in a 9 x 13 greased baking dish. Drizzle the rolls with melted butter.
  8. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until chicken reaches 170 degrees.
  9. Cover with foil and let rest a couple of minutes.
  10. Remove toothpicks and slice each chicken roll. Top with cream sauce.
  11. Creamed Spinach Sauce:
  12. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan
  13. Add 2 tbsp. flour and stir constantly until bubbly
  14. Slowly add 3/4 cup chicken broth to the flour mixture stirring constantly
  15. Add remaining spinach, stir and cook for 4-5 minutes.
  16. Add 1/2 cup whipping cream or half and half. Heat until warm. If too thick, add more cream.
  17. This should be a gravy-like consistency.
  18. Salt and Pepper to taste.
  19. When chicken is done…
  20. Remove toothpicks from chicken
  21. Cut chicken into spiraled slices
  22. Ladle hot creamed spinach sauce over the spirals.
  23. Serve with wild or white rice

While I’m not paid for this recommendation, it is a lot easier to work with pounding the chicken when using Glad Press and Seal. Lay one piece on top and one on the bottom of the chicken breast. It stays together while pounding and it makes it easier to roll the chicken up, too. Just take the bottom piece and roll the chicken in a spiral.

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce

Layer the spinach mixture, ham, and roll with cheese. Secure with toothpicks. Don’t worry if your chicken roll resembles a porcupine, just secure it as the toothpicks come out after cooking.

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce grandparentsplus.com

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce grandparentsplus.com

It’s nice to prepare and roll the chicken spirals on the evening before your dinner. Wrap and place the chicken rolls in the refrigerator ready for the oven.  This way, you don’t have the preparation and clean up to do before your dinner. When ready, just pop the chicken in the oven to bake. I made the creamed spinach sauce ahead as well. It thickened as it cooled, but just thin with extra chicken broth, if needed.

When baked, remove toothpicks, slice chicken, layer 3-4  spiral chicken slices on a plate and drizzle with the sauce. Serve with wild rice, white rice, or a combination. Offer additional creamed spinach sauce in a gravy- boat for guests. 

Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce grandparentsplus.com

 

I know you’ll enjoy this special recipe for Chicken Spirals with Creamed Spinach Sauce! Next time I’m going to try it with Gouda cheese. You can change the cheese and the meat for a different flavor combination.

Enjoy!

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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