Custardy Baked Oatmeal

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I tend to jump to conclusions.  I decide whether or not I may like a recipe before I even try it, so I’ve probably missed out on a lot of really amazing things.  On the bright side, I usually love the dishes I make and rarely have one that bombs!  My friend gave me this recipe for baked oatmeal, and it sat in my recipe file forever.  She’s the same one who made me try the baked brie that I knew I’d hate (I didn’t) and the pumpkin chocolate chip cookies that are my obsession in the fall.  So after I finally tried this recipe, I realized I really need to trust her judgement and make everything she recommends — immediately! Continue reading

Pumpkin Steel Cut Oats

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I know it’s not fall.  But for me, pumpkin is not limited to a few months a year.  Plus, today is drizzling and cloudy and rainy so it feels like fall.  Pumpkin steel cut oats it is!

Start by toasting steel cut oats in the dry pan.  I usually use medium heat and keep stirring them until they are fragrant and starting to brown.  This makes it takes richer and more nutty. Continue reading

Resurrection Rolls

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One of the things that’s really important to me is making traditions for my kids as they grow up.  Because we are from Michigan, it’s also important that my traditions are portable.  Going to a certain place each year may work well for some families, but we never know where we will be from year to year.  There needs to be a thread that runs through each special occasion so my family feels stability amidst lots of packing, driving and unpacking.  This tradition of Easter morning resurrection rolls can be made wherever we are.  I love the symbolism with these sweet breakfast treats.  Each night before Easter, I pull the Rhodes rolls out of the freezer and put them into a greased cupcake pan.  I cover it with plastic wrap and pop it in the fridge to defrost overnight.  In the morning, the kids help put the marshmallow inside the roll, but when they come out of the oven they are empty!  It’s miraculous, and the kids are always amazed.  It gives us the perfect opportunity to talk to them about the even more miraculous resurrection of Jesus Christ and his empty tomb!

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Elderberry Syrup

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Flu season is crazy right now.  All over Facebook, I see posts about people whose families are being ravaged by this multi day yuck that is circling.  Having just begun a new business 6 months ago, my husband and I cannot afford to be sick and miss out on work…and my son leaves for a mission trip in 2 1/2 weeks, so we are no holds barred on the immunity boosting.  All my crunchy mama friends have been downing elderberry syrup, so I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon.  The last week or so we’ve been mixing a couple teaspoons into a small shot of juice and I’m hoping this superfood will keep the sickies at bay.

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First Day of Spring!

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I don’t know when it happened.  Maybe it was after I read the book Making Ordinary Days Extraordinary.  Maybe it was my grandma’s words ringing in my ears “take joy in the little things in life because the big things don’t come along very often.”  But somewhere along the way, I began to celebrate little things.  It could be a paper chain hung or a favorite meal, a compost cake for Earth Day or a special walk in the park.  I noticed it this time last year on the first day of spring.  My husband and I had run away for the weekend and left my mom in charge of the kids.  I called her on this morning one year ago and said “It’s the first day of spring!  Can you please do something special with the kids?  It can even just be going out for ice-cream or a visit to the park, but tell them it’s to celebrate the first day of spring!”  For some reason, naming it makes it take on epic proportions.

My mom did great!  She went to Lowe’s and was able to procure free birdhouse kits from their last kids’ building day.  They went home and made birdhouses to welcome spring.  Then they headed over to Lumpy’s for ice-cream.  The kids were thrilled.  It was an inexpensive way to make an ordinary day extraordinary.

This year, my daughter noticed the flower I had drawn on the calendar signaling the first day of spring.  At the Awana store this week, she used her money to buy a birdhouse….”because Friday is the first day of Spring!”  There will be ice cream cones.  There will be a mini celebration because the calendar says that winter is gone and spring is here.  My kids will be content.  But mostly, I hope they will remember all those times we took joy in the little things, because the big things don’t come along very often!

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Green Mac and Cheese

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So many people serve their kids green food on St. Patrick’s Day.  I love to do it too, but I’m not a fan of unnatural food coloring.  My kids requested green mac and cheese today, and I was happy to oblige.    When they were babies, I used the Annabel Karmel books to make purees and toddler foods.  We’ve adapted this recipe and used over and over throughout the years.  It’s still a favorite and made a perfect healthy addition to St. Patrick’s Day.  Maybe you can serve it to your family tonight! Continue reading

St. Patrick’s Day!

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I used to work at an Irish Pub and really learned to love corned beef.  I have some family favorites that we use for St. Patrick’s Day.  While I have shared them separately on the blog previously, I thought I’d put them together for an easy St. Patty’s Day post.  Enjoy!

This is the basis of both of the following recipes.  It’s for a perfect corned beef.  You’ll find the recipe here.

Corned Beef www.slipnotdesigns.wordpress.com

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Egg Topped Veggie Breakfast

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eggtoppedveggiebreakfast-3After the breakfast recipe I posted the other day, I felt like had to redeem myself!  This is not even really a recipe, so I can’t call it that.  It’s more like a breakfast idea.  I eat this multiple times a week and absolutely love it!  My kids eat it, too, but they really love it on a tortilla with a bit of greek yogurt and salsa.  I don’t need the extra carbs so I eat it in a bowl. Continue reading