Monday, August 31, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, August 31, 2009

It's late Monday evening, but I do have a menu plan for this week. Today was the first day of school for all of us, so it's been busy from morning until night.
Here's our plan for this week:

Sunday~Lasagna Toss, Salad, and Garlic Toast

Monday~Breakfast for Dinner: Scrambled Eggs, Home Fries (oven style) and Bacon

Tuesday~ BBQ Chicken Burritos, Rice and Tossed Salad

Wednesday~Kielbassi and Kraut Sandwiches, Oven Fries and Baked Beans

Thursday~Stromboli and Salad

Friday~Make your own pizza night~ Chicken Taco Pizza or Pepperoni Pizza

Saturday~Ethnic Festival~we'll eat there

Be sure to check out more menus at

Have a week full of blessings,

Back to School 2009

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Back to School 2009Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox

Today was the first day of school for the kids. Miss M. loves preschool. H. is glad to be back at school with his friends. My class seems pretty good, but it is only the first day. ;0)

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Trojan Pride Loopy Hair Bow

Every Friday is Trojan Pride Day at our school. The students and staff are encouraged to wear the school colors of Carolina Blue and Black. I have wanted to make hair bows for dd for years now, but never have gotten around to doing it. Trojan Pride Day gave me an excuse to get it together and make some bows. I'm proud of my first "loopy bow" and am planning on making her more for the holidays. I followed the directions at The Ribbon Retreat. They were easy to follow and led to success on my first try!
Happy Crafting!

Zucchini Mock Apple Pie

Zucchini Mock Apple Pie

1 pie crust, unbaked

5 c. sliced zucchini, peeled and remove seeds

3/4 c. sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 c. real lemon juice

3/4 c. water

1 c. flour

1/2 c. brown sugar

6 tbsp. butter, butter

1/4 tsp. salt

ring to boil zucchini, sugar, cinnamon, lemon juice, and water; simmer until soft. Pour into an unbaked pie shell; pat crumb topping over mock apples and bake at 325 degrees for 25 minutes.




Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Preschool Orientation

Preschool orientation was held today at dd's school. She was very excited. Here she is at the door to her classroom.

Each student is assigned a symbol. DD's is a triangle. The children use the symbol to identify their lockers, seats and more.

Sitting at her table....

...and posing with her teacher, Mrs. Thomas.
School starts Monday!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, August 24, 2009

Welcome to another Menu Plan Monday, hosted by Laura at This week's menu is simple and easy to prepare because I am back to school this week!

Sunday~ Slow Cooker Sauce over Spaghetti with Chicken Parmesan and Ciabatta Rolls

Monday~Grilled BBQ Jack Chicken, Rice Pilaf and Sugar Snap Peas

Tuesday~Grilled Rib Steaks, Twice Baked Potatoes, and Corn

Wednesday~Cheeseburgers, Homemade French Fries and Salad

Thursday~Slow Cooker Pork and Sauerkraut with Mashed Potatoes

Friday~Pizza and Wing Night

Saturday~Barbecue Chicken Burritos, Salad and Salsa Rice

Be sure to check out more menu plans at

Have a week full of blessings,

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Thankful Thursday~Friends

It's Thankful Thursday and Iris of Grace Alone is our host. Iris has chosen the theme of friends for this week. You can join in and link here or find other participating blogs to read.

A faithful friend is the medicine of life.~Ecclesiasticus 6:16

Iris mentioned connecting with women who are not your immediate friends today in her post. That's timely for me because I am connecting with some women today that I know from work, but don't socialize with on a regular basis. We're heading to the movies to see My Sister's Keeper and to eat dinner. It will be a new experience for me, but I am really looking forward to it.

Today I'm thankful for~
  • my faithful friends
  • the laughter of my children when they play
  • quiet moments
  • my husband and his love
  • the coming change of seasons
  • my online friends
  • family
  • my teaching career

What are you thankful for today?



Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Classroom Tour 2009

I went into my classroom today to prepare for the new year. Above are some photos of the work I did today. I accomplished quite a bit, but still have so much more to do! I'm excited about the start of the new year, but sad to have the summer end. Our baby girl will start preschool this year and our son will be in his last year of elementary school. Such an exciting year it will be!



Monday, August 17, 2009

Lemon Chicken Tortellini

I tried this recipe for dinner tonight. DH said it goes in the keeper file. It was really delicious. I went easy on the spinach because the kids won't eat it and it's easier to put in less than to pick it out at the dinner table. :0) This recipe appeared in the August/September 2009 Taste of Home magazine.

Lemon Chicken Tortellini

1 package (19 ounces) frozen cheese tortellini
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-in. pieces
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 small sweet red pepper, julienned
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, optional
1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach
6 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions: Cook tortellini according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute chicken in butter until no longer pink. Remove and keep warm. In the same pan, cook red pepper until crisp-tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Add 2 cups broth; bring to a boil. Combine the flour, salt, pepper and remaining broth until smooth; gradually stir into the pan. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in the chicken, lemon peel and pepper sauce if desired. Add spinach; cook just until wilted. Drain pasta; toss with sauce. Sprinkle with cheese.

Menu Plan Monday, August 17, 2009

Welcome to another Menu Plan Monday! Amazingly enough we stuck to most of last week's menu very closely. Saturday's menu changed because we went to the lake for the weekend. This week should be pretty right on as well. It's my last week of summer vacation (boo-hoo!) so soon it will be back to easy weeknight dinner for us! Here's this week's plan...

Sunday~BBQ Italian Chicken Fingers, Garlic Shells and Corn

Monday~Lemon Chicken Tortellini (first time) and Salad

Tuesday~Grilled Rib Steaks, Twice Baked Potaotes and French Style Beans

Wednesday~Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches, Homemade Fries and Cucumber Salad

Thursday~Out to dinner...traveling

Friday~Out with friends for my birthday!

Saturday~Traveling to pick up the kids....will probably grab a bite on the way home

Visit Laura at for more great menu plans and recipes!

Have a week full of blessings,

Our Weekend at the Lake~August

We were at camp this weekend. On Saturday, dh's brother Mike came down to ski and boat with us. The guys skiied, tubed and even jumped off the rope swing. Hunter even did the rope swing....very brave of him! We had a nice day visiting with Mike. On Sunday, we spent the day at the beach. The kids had a great time swimming and playing in the sand. It was the first weekend this year that we didn't have a thunderstorm while we were on the lake. :0)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Show and Tell Friday, August 14, 2009

Welcome to Show and Tell Friday, hosted by the talented Kelli. You can view her lovely show and tell and other posts at

This cabinet was handed down to us from our Aunt Kathryn. She cared for an elderly woman, who left this cabinet to her when she passed, along with a table that we were also given. The cabinet holds the china that was also handed down to me by our aunt. Just like the china, the cabinet and table belonged to a retired teacher. I don't know the name of the cabinet maker or the date it was manufactured. I'm thinking sometime between the 1930's and 1950's.

This is the detail at the top of the can see the age of the finish here and in the photo below.

This is the detail at the bottom of the cabinet.

Thanks for stopping by my show and tell today!



Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thankful Thursday~Hope

It's Thankful Thursday and Iris of Grace Alone is our host. Iris has chosen the theme of hope for this week. You can join in and link here or find other participating blogs to read.
One of my favorite passages about hope from the Bible:

~1 Corinthians 13:13 13
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Today I am thankful for:

~my husband, his love, patience and faith in God.

~my children, who are happy and healthy

~the very patient instructors, Miss Michelle and Miss Lisa, at the dance studio where dd4 is attending her first Ballet Camp.

~friends, new and old

~new beginnings

~our home

~our patient realtor, who still searches for a house for us with great patience. He is hopeful that he will find us the "perfect" house. :0)

~visits with my mom

What are you thankful for today?


Teaching Heart Mom Giveaways

Teaching Heart Mom

I'm a bit late, but Colleen at is having a week of giveaways for teachers and homeschool moms. She has some great stuff, so stop on over!



Monday, August 10, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, August 10, 2009

Welcome to my August 10th edition of Menu Plan Monday, hosted by Laura at . Please be sure to visit her and view 100's of great menus this week!

Our menu plan is quite simple this week. Our daughter is attending her first ballet camp for 3, 4 and 5 year olds each evening during the dinner hour, so dh will be doing most of the cooking this week.

On Thursday evening, when I sat down to do my menu for the next two weeks, my mil commented that she decided at 4:15 what to make for dinner at 5. I just smiled. About 10 minutes later, I had the menu planned and she said, that didn't take too long. I smiled again. Maybe, she'll become a planner now too.

Sunday~Spaghetti and Meatballs, Tossed Salad and Garlic Toast

Monday~Best Grilled Pork Chops, Rice Pilaf and Grilled Zucchini

Tuesday~Lemon Basil Chicken, Garlic Pasta and French Style Green Beans

Wednesday~Sloppy Joes, Cheesy Crockpot Hashbrown Potatoes, and Baked Beans

Thursday~Subs and Chips

Friday~Flatbread Pizza and Wings

Have a week full of blessings!


Sunday, August 9, 2009

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

I found this recipe at last week. I made it for Saturday's family reunion. The entire tray was eaten and I got many compliments on this easy to make goodie! How can you go wrong with chocolate and peanut butter together? ;0)
No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

2 cups peanut butter, divided
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar, divided
3 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.)
Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Morsels, divided

Grease 13 x 9-inch baking pan.

Beat 1 1/4 cups peanut butter and butter in large mixer bowl until creamy. Gradually beat in 1 cup powdered sugar. With hands or wooden spoon, work in remaining 1 cup powdered sugar, graham cracker crumbs and 1/2 cup morsels. Press evenly into prepared baking pan. Smooth top with spatula.

Melt remaining 3/4 cup peanut butter and remaining 1 1/2 cups morsels in medium, heavy-duty saucepan over lowest possible heat, stirring constantly, until smooth. Spread over graham cracker crust in pan.

Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until chocolate is firm. Cut into bars. Store in covered container in refrigerator


Grata/Gelesh Reunion

Yesterday was the annual Grata/Gelesh Reunion, started many years ago my dh's grandparents. This was my 19th reunion with his family. We had a good time and good food too! Thanks for stopping by!



Friday, August 7, 2009

Cheesecake Cups

These are the Cheesecake Cups dd and I made to take to the family reunion tomorrow. They were very easy and kid friendly! I topped them with chocolate chips( because I forgot cherry pie filling!), but they could be topped with anything!
Cheesecake Cups

16 vanilla wafer cookies
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softenened
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350.

Line muffin pans with cupcake papers.

Place one wafer cookie on the bottom of each cupcake paper.

In a medium bowl, cream together cream cheese and sugar.

Beat in eggs and vanilla until smooth.

Pour over wafers in cupcake papers.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until set.


Top with chocolate chips, caramel sauce, or fruit pie filling of your choice.




Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thankful Thursday~Joy

It's Thankful Thursday and Iris of Grace Alone is our host. Iris has chosen the theme of joy for this week. You can join in and link here or find other participating blogs to read.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. ~Galatians 5:22
That is one of my favorite bible verses about joy and I wanted to share that with you on this Thankful Thursday. I have much to be thankful for this Thursday afternoon.
I am thankful for...
  • the bargains that we found on our annual back-to-school shopping trip.
  • the peace that fills my heart when I pray. I'm dealing with some anxiety and facing some big decisions. Asking the Lord for help eases my anxious feelings.
  • a patient husband.
  • healthy children.
  • my friend, who totally gets me.
  • for our home and food, when some have nothing.

Thank you for stopping by today! What are you thankful for?

Blessings ,


Monday, August 3, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, August 3rd

Welcome to Menu Plan Monday! This week, Menu Plan Monday has a guest host: Toni at The Happy Housewife. Thanks to Toni for hosting this week!
We ate at home every day last week. The only change on the menu was that we had hamburgers on Saturday. The meal I had planned was for at camp....where my kielbassi is in the freezer. So, we substituted.

I don't plan my breakfasts of lunches. Generally we have pancakes, french toast, toast, waffles or cereal. For lunch, we usually have wraps or sandwiches, salads, or leftovers.

Here's the plan for this week:

Sunday~ Chicken Parmesan over Spaghetti, with Garlic Toast

Monday~ Grilled Meat Loaf , Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Green Beans

Tuesday~Slow Cooker Round Steak over Noodles, Zucchini Casserole

Wednesday~Easy Chicken Noodle Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Thursday~Slow Cooker Boneless Pork Ribs, Homemade Macaroni and Cheese, Baked Beans

Saturday~ Family Reunion

Be sure to visit Toni's for more great menus and recipes!

Have a week full of blessings!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Herbs and Flowers

It's a beautiful, sunny day here. I am so happy to see sunshine after a week full of rain. I've been doing yard/garden work most of the day and wanted to share my harvest from the herb garden as well as some pictures of my morning glories.

Chives, Parsley and Basil

This is my favorite one...

.....but the pink is beautiful too.

I plan on posting more information about drying your own herbs at home sometime this week.



Christmas in July Giveaway

Ms. Life at is giving away a copy of the book A Bit of Applause for Mrs. Claus by Jeannie Schick-Jacobowitz and Susie Schick-Pierce. It is illustrated by Wendy Wallin Malinow.

Stop by and leave a comment at Ms. Life's Place for a chance to win!