Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Seafood Salad - Gluten Free

So I went to Sams Club yesterday with the Gramps, just to look around.  Usually what we do is this:  I look around for 10 minutes and then I'm done and ready to go, but instead of leaving I spend the next 2 hours walking around the store trying to find my little white-haired husband who apparently can turn invisible in the aisles.

While I was hunting him down, I noticed their imitation crabmeat was in some new packaging.  It used to be packaged in a tray with the other seafood, and had an expiration date that was almost always 20 minutes after the time of purchase.  I don't know about you, but we can't use up 2 pounds of imitation crabmeat in half an hour.  But now, it is in one of those hermetically sealed packages and the expiration date was in NOVEMBER!!  Well, I couldn't help but grab a package!  When I got it home, I put it in the refrigerator, and afterwards my husband kept reminding me that I had 2 pounds of imitation crabmeat in the fridge that needed used up.  No matter how many times I told him the expiration date was NOVEMBER, he could not let it go.

So I made a seafood pasta salad for lunch that turned out GREAT!  I used gluten free cavatelli pasta from Meier, their own brand, and it was really good!  I will definitely go get some more of that!  Thank you Meier!  Love that store!

We ate it for lunch two days in a row, and made quite a dent in the HUGE bowl of seafood salad that I made.  It's really yummy!  The dressing ingredients may seem like a lot, but pasta tends to soak up liquid as it sits.

You could easily substitute regular pasta shells for the gluten free pasta if you don't need to eat gluten free!

Here is the recipe:
For a printable version please click HERE.

If you try it, I hope you like it!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Patchwork Zipper Pouch

Summer has been busy - a little too busy for me to find time to sew!  I am making an effort to finish some projects I started in late spring, and get busy with some new sewing.

I had this bag finished except for hand-sewing the binding on.  Yesterday as I watched a documentary on Netflix about the Royal Family, I finally completed it!  It still needs a charm for the zipper pull, but I can put this in my finished category.

I used a mini charm pack from Moda called Project Red for this bag.  It is quilted on the front and back.  I made the large bag, and have enough squares left from the pack to complete another one.
The tutorial I used can be found HERE.

It's a great size to hold sewing supples for my cross stitch projects. The youngest granddaughter wants one for her school supplies, so I will definitely be making another one!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Strawberry Banana Salad

Don't you just love Sunday morning breakfasts?  I don't know why they feel different than the rest of the week, but they sure do!  I just love my Sunday morning coffee, and looking out at the fields behind my home.  Nothing like it!

This morning as I was sipping my coffee, looking out the window, I started thinking about the coming week.  I don't know if it's because I'm retired or because I'm getting lazier, but it's always a challenge to keep up with my household chores.  I work much better if I have a plan for the week - the same as menu planning!  If I don't plan and put it on my TO DO list, I just don't get much done.  

I don't have an elaborate plan!  I pretty much do the same chores each day - cooking, dishes, beds, sinks, toilets, and laundry.  But I focus on one room each day, and just keep rotating the days.  That way each room gets a cleaning several times each month, and things keep straightened up this way.  So this week, besides doing my routine daily chores, the rooms I will focus on are:

Sunday: Dining Room
Monday:  Laundry Room
Tuesday:  Foyer
Wednesday:  Kitchen
Thursday:  Sunroom
Friday:  Master Bedroom
Saturday:  Den

It usually doesn't take me more than an hour or so to dust, straighten, vacuum/mop, and dust baseboards.  That way I have the rest of the day to do my daily chores and sew, shop, or whatever!

Last week, I made the Strawberry Banana Salad from Spend With Pennies.  She has a WONDERFUL blog with all kinds of great recipes!  If you haven't visited her site, take a look!  It's like buying a new cookbook at the store!

Like I usually do, I tweaked the recipe just a little bit.  I am absolutely positive it would be delicious as originally written!  But, my reasons for tweaking are:  I had a ton of rapidly ripening bananas, I just bought 4 pints of blueberries because Meier had them on sale 4 for 5 dollars, and I had 3 quarts of strawberries in the fridge.  Also, I forgot to buy plain Greek yogurt and only had lemon flavored on hand.   So here is my recipe, tweaked just a tad - and I have to tell you it is SO GOOD!  It is light, fresh, cold, creamy, just so yummy!  Perfect for a summer meal side dish!  

For a printable recipe, please click HERE.  

I hope you enjoy it!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Menu Plan for Week of Aug. 26 to Sept. 1, 2018

Here we are coming up on the last week of August!  I am looking forward to a visit to the apple orchard, cooler evenings, leaves starting to turn, yummy fall treats to bake....but I am so going to miss summer! It just goes too fast!

Last week the back-to-school flu hit hard at my daughter's house.  The last one to get it was the youngest, but she seemed to bounce back after 24 hours of yuckiness.  Hopefully they all will rest up this weekend.  While I stayed with the youngest granddaughter on Friday, I washed all their bedclothes, blankets, and clothes, and wiped down their house with Lysol!  Stair railings, doorknobs and handles, faucets, toilets, furniture - if I could reach it, it got wiped down!  Their cats were hiding, or I would have Lysoled them too!  I was on a mission!

This week's menu finds me transitioning to fall meals.  I love comfort foods, and fall is a great time to enjoy some of the old standbys.  I'm still enjoying lots of fruit with breakfast, especially berries.  But I can't wait to get some fresh apples right out of the orchard!

Here is this week's menu plan:
For a printable copy, please click HERE.
Recipe links and notes are below.


Fluffy Pancakes are from Chocolates and Chai
Broccoli Cauliflower Bacon Salad is from Genius Kitchen - a tried and true favorite
Snickers Rice Krispie Treats are from Brown Eyed Baker


Slow Cooker BBQ Ranch Meatloaf is from Chef In Training
Our Best Cheesecake is from Kraft Recipes - another tried and true favorite cheesecake


Breakfast Pizza is from Six Sisters Stuff
Taco Salad for a Large Crowd is from Taste of Home - This is my go-to taco salad recipe - I have made it for years, and everyone always loves it.  I sent it in to my granddaughter's school last year for a teacher luncheon, and a few teachers actually sent me thank you notes for the delicious salad!
Paula Deen's Layered Mexican Salad is from Genius Kitchen - you can't go wrong with Paula Deen's recipes - I am a big fan of her cooking!


Hash Brown Sausage Quiche is from Genius Kitchen
Fried Apples are from I Save A to Z - these are so good!  My granddaughters love Cracker Barrel's fried apples, and when I made these they gobbled them up and begged me to make them again!


Roast Beef is from Genius Kitchen - easy and delicious
Key Lime Pie is from Favorite Family Recipes - so easy and so good!


Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken is from The Recipe Critic


Hawaiian Baked Ham Sandwiches are from All Recipes - my family loves these little sandwiches made on Hawaiian rolls - I like them because I can make a whole pan full to feed a crowd.
Southern Pea Salad is from The Southern Lady Cooks - we all love this salad, creamy and crunchy!

I think that's it for this week!  I hope you find something you want to try!  Let's get those aprons on and get cooking!

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Weekly Menu Plan for August 19 to 25, 2018

Another week has flown by!  Hard to believe we're coming up on the last part of August already.  And it looks like we are in for a bit of relief from the heat and humidity this week - I'm ready for that!

This week's menu plan has quite a few new-to-me recipes to try.  They all look and sound really good, so I'm hoping we like them!  I seem to go in cycles with new recipes.  For awhile I make only tried and true meals, and then I get in the mood for something new and different!  This week is one of those weeks!  I tried to balance it out with some recipes I always use, but I'm always on the lookout for new ideas!

Here is this week's menu plan:
For a printable copy, please click HERE.
Recipe links and notes are below.

Egg, Sausage, and Hashbrown Bake is from My Kitchen Escapades (very good and gluten free for me!)
Roadhouse Burgers are from Blog Chef - an easy and yummy way to change up a regular burger, and the garlic mayo adds a nice zip!

Breakfast Quesadillas are from Tastes Better from Scratch - these sound really good and easy to make!
One Skillet Chicken Pot Pie is from Community Table - a new recipe for me
Strawberry Banana Salad is from Spend with Pennies - light and yummy

Cowboy Pasta Salad is from Carlsbad Cravings - another new recipe to me, but it looks and sounds great!
Ron's White Bread is from All Recipes - we all love the taste of homemade bread, and the bread machine makes it so easy!  My grandkids love this bread!  I use my breadmaker all year long, but for some reason I've neglected it all summer.
Amish Peanut Butter Cream Pie is from The Baking ChocolaTess - this is SO GOOD! The first time I made this, my oldest granddaughter thought she had died and gone to Heaven!  I do believe she would have eaten the whole pie if there was no one else around!

Slow Cooker Pot Roast is from Capper's Farmer - I haven't made this particular recipe before, but have made one very similar, so I know it will be good!
Triple Fudge Brownies is from Taste of Home - I cannot tell you how many times I have made these brownies over the years.  They are my daughter's favorite.  So easy and so good!  They are more cake-like than fudgy, but so good with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Autumn Sausage Casserole is from A Year of Slow Cooking - this recipe just tastes like autumn to me! It has all the fall flavors mixed together, and we like this all through the fall and winter.

Apple Fritter Coffee Cake is from Domestic Doozie - a new coffee cake recipe for me to try! This recipe is on quite a few blogs, so I figure it must be good!

That's it for this week!  I hope you find something yummy to try - See you later!

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Weekly Menu Plan for August 12 to August 18, 2018

It's been a tad hot out there!  Most days we've had here in August have been too muggy and sticky to be outside for long.  I sure wish the kids didn't have to be sitting in a classroom all day - this is prime swimming weather!

This week's menu continues with some good old-fashioned comfort food for the kids, as they transition into being in school all week.  They are coming home hot and tired, and ready for some relaxing family dinner time.

The oldest granddaughter is in high school, and the first football game is this coming Friday.  We always enjoy going to the games, and cheering on our team. She is in marching band, and oh my goodness they are so good!  I can't wait to see their show for this year.  Last year was SO GOOD, I don't know how they can top it!  My kids went to the same high school my grandkids go to.  When my son was in the same marching band she is in, they won the Bands of America National Competition.  That was so exciting - and my granddaughter is in the same band!  They always make the Finals competition, but haven't won it again since then.  I would love for her to experience that!

But on to this week's menu plan.  First off, it will help if you cook all the chicken you need for the week at the beginning of the week.  Usually on Sunday, I toss frozen chicken tenderloins (I buy the big bags of them at Sams Club) in my crockpot with some seasoned chicken broth, set it on low, and let them go all day.  When they are done, I just drain them and put them in a covered bowl in the fridge, ready to use when I need them.  If I have cooked more than I need, I just chop the chicken and make a bowl of chicken salad for lunches.

Here is this week's menu plan:  (Recipe notes and links are below)
For a printable copy, please click HERE.


Chicken and Rice Bake is from Mommy's Kitchen - this recipe makes two 9X13 casseroles.  I usually just take one of them to my daughter's house so they can enjoy it, but you can freeze one to use later.  I have never frozen the 2nd one, though.  I like giving it to someone just to be nice!

Banana Cream Pie Bars is from Like Mother Like Daughter - a yummy no-bake dessert!


Ham and Egg Breakfast Sliders are from Mom Endeavors - she actually calls them Gameday Breakfast Sliders.  These are really good, my family gobbles them up.  Make these the night before, follow her directions to #6 on her recipe, where it says you can refrigerate them at this point.  Cover them with aluminum foil, then all you have to do in the morning is brush them with the melted butter and bake for 15-20 minutes. It makes your morning much easier, because most of the dishes and pots and pans from prepping the recipe are already done!  

State Fair Casserole is from Everyday Mom's Meals - this is really a corn dog casserole. It's much easier to make than corn dogs on a stick, and kids love this meal.  Since the State Fair started the same day school started, there's not much chance the kids will be able to go.  So this way they at least get a taste of some state fair food!  This is a dinner made for kids!


Yogurt Parfaits - this isn't really a recipe, I just layer vanilla yogurt, strawberries or blueberries, and granola in individual dishes.  I repeat the layers twice.  That's it - super easy!

Broccoli Cauliflower Bacon Salad is from Genius Kitchen - we all love this salad.  Since I use frozen chicken patties and onion rings, this is the only thing I need to prep early in the day.  I like to make it in the morning or the night before serving, then just pull it out of the fridge at dinner time.  There are lots of recipes for this salad, but this one is my favorite and the one I always make.

No-Bake Banana Split Dessert is from Sugar Apron - sometimes I just line the pan with whole honey graham crackers, and let them soften all day from the cream filling poured over them.


Meatloaf is from Yummy Healthy Easy - sometimes the best recipes are the easiest!  This is very similar to what my mom used to make, and it just beats the other fancy ones I've tried hands down!


Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo is from Delish - I have made this a bunch of times.  My grandkids love bowtie noodles, and anything Alfredo.  So this dish is always a hit with them!  I have made the sauce as per the recipe from Delish, but if I am in a hurry I just use 2 jars of bottled Alfredo sauce from the store.  Still good!  The homemade sauce is definitely richer and better, but sometimes I just need a quick substitute!  


Crockpot Swedish Meatballs is from The Country Cook - this is one of my favorite recipes!  I use frozen meatballs from Sam's Club that are gluten free, and I like it served over mashed potatoes.  But everyone else in my family likes it best served over egg noodles, so this week I am treating them to their noodles!

Blueberry Pie is from Veronica's Cornucopia - I haven't tried this one yet, but I cannot wait to make it!  It sounds yummy!

That's it for this week!  I hope you find something you and your family like, or you can use an idea or two to help you plan!

Monday, August 6, 2018

Weekly Menu Plan for Week of August 5 to August 11, 2018

Sorry this is a little late getting posted.  I had a busy weekend and not much computer time!

I have a super busy week planned ahead, so this week's menu is easy and quick to prepare.  I plan on using the grill a few times, which will most likely be operated by my husband.  That lets me prep things inside while he is out grilling, and I like that on busy days.

Since I have to be off and running in a couple minutes, here is a copy of this week's menu:

For a printable copy, please click HERE
Recipe links are below.

Recipe Links:


Baked Spaghetti is from Deep South Dish

The rest of the week I am using tried and true recipes that are easy to throw together.  If you would like a copy of a recipe I haven't linked to or shared, please let me know and I will post it.