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Saturday, May 2, 2020

Dandelion Weed or Usable Plant

Spring is here... no greater time to take a look around and see and hear all the wonderful works of God that are happening. I once was in a play as a child and sang a song "Gods Coloring Book" oh it was a song about how things are made by God from the flight of a bird to the beautiful fluttering of the butterflies. Simply take a look around and take note of all the beautiful buds and blooms of spring.

It seems that nature lives by its own calendar. If you take a look it all happens with a sort of timing to the blooms on the tree, the grass growing and the dandelions coming along. Those cheerful spring yellow flowers that shares the message that summer will soon be there. Some may think of the dandelion as a weed others as a flower but God has created them to be an essential source of food for insects However, gardeners do not especially like to see dandelions take root in their lovely lawn.

The dandelion begins as a tiny little featherweight seed that is carried in from the tiniest breeze and somehow finds the perfect or imperfect place to take root. It does not choose to be planted in a certain area and yet it often lands where it is greatly noticed. Whether you love them or you are one that loathes them dandelions have been here longer than you or me.

If you are an individual that think of dandelions as a weed then allow me to make the case against your point. A weed may be defined as a plant growing "out of its area" sort of an alien invader growing in the lawn or garden. For example the queen Anne's lace growing in the flower bed or the chickweed growing in the lettuce patch.

The Dandelion is a member of the Taraxacum species of plant. The French botanists that discovered the plant originally named it "dent de lion" due to its jagged toothed leaves resembling a lions' teeth. It was in North America that the plants name changed to Dandelion. These flowers grow in high abundance in the Eastern United States. Thus allowing the beauty of the dandelion to grow where many live even if you are not one that appreciates them they are a type of superfood.

When you stomp, pull, or spray a dandelion to destroy it like other weeds we are destroying a plant that can be used in a variety of ways. The roots and leaves of the dandelion can be used as herbs for making tea, coffee, in salads or in soups and stews. Ancient Egyptians used the dandelions by drying the roots and grinding them up like coffee to brew to help relieve stomach aches. Native Americans have used them as a diuretic and the white milky juice could be created to treat warts. Take a look at the variety of recipes that you can make from dandelion greens such as wine, jelly, stews. 

Dandelion Greens with Double Garlic
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves of garlic, sliced
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 pound dandelion greens with stems, washed and roughly chopped
½ cup vegetable stock
1 clove of garlic minced
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the sliced garlic, pepper flakes, and some salt and black pepper and cook for about 1 minute. The garlic should soften and become fragrant.
Add the greens and stock. Cover and cook until the greens have wilted slightly, about 5 minutes.
Remove the lid, but continue to cook and stir until the liquid has all but evaporated, about 5 more minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Adjust seasonings and serve.

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Children Need To Play Outside

With all the technology today getting kids to play outside can often be challenging to get kids to play outside. This is a lot different when it was my childhood. We nearly begged to go outside and play there was so much to do especially when our friends were around. 

Today's parents may need to find  some inspiring ways to get kids to head outside. Perhaps the best thing to do is to step back in time and recall some of the old games that you liked to play
  • Tag
  • red rover
  • mother may I 
none of these games required anything extra and all were great for playing outside. Introduce the games to your children tell them stories about when you were a child. In fact why not play the games with them. 

It is important to get the kids outside to play during their childhood. It helps in physical, emotional and social development. Active play outside helps fight against obesity and helps children grow up strong. 

what was your favorite activity to do outside as a child??

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Bladder Cancer Awareness

May is Bladder Cancer Awareness Month. Each year more than 80,000 individuals in the United States are impacted by this type of cancer. 

You may be asking what exactly is Bladder Cancer??

Lets start by telling you that the bladder is the organ in your body that stores urine. You should all ready know that urine is the liquid waste made by the kidneys and is stored in the bladder before it is permanently removed from the body. The bladder itself is like elastic that becomes smaller or bigger as it is filled with urine. The bladder is muscular and will contract as the body urinates helping to push the urine out of the urethra, a tube that helps lead the urine out of the body. 

An individual with bladder cancer has abnormal cells that have started to grow from the bladder. One or more tumors will appear on the bladder of a person with bladder cancer Bladder cancer is a common form of cancer here in the United States. According to the National Cancer Institutes SEER program over 81,000 individuals were diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2018. Out of that number around 1/4 of them were expected not to live thru their condition. In fact, bladder cancer ranks number 6 in the most common types of cancer. 

Bladder cancer appears most often in individuals over the age of 55. The average age of diagnosis of bladder cancer is 73 (according to ) For the most part bladder cancer is treatable and often has a 5 year survival rate after cancer diagnosis. Around 3/4 of individuals with bladder cancer go on to see the 10 year survival rate and over half will also meet the 15 year survival rate.

Now that you know its your time to tell someone so that they know as well

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May Day

May day occurs the 1st of may and while we have only minutes left of it I thought I would share some history about it. It is a day to welcome in spring , it is a time where a great variety of events and festivities occur around the world to celebrate the change of season, and it is a day that has become known as International Workers Day.

The ancient old celtics of the British Isles held May 1st as the most important day of the year. On that day the festival of Beltane would be held. May 1st was thought to divide the year in half. It was celebrated as bring life and fertility to the world. As the Romans invaded the British Isles the holiday known as Floralia which was a 5 day holiday that worshiped the goddess of flowers, Flora. Thus combining the holidays and customs of Beltane with that of Floralia.

The May Pole dance and party was a custom that came about during medevial times. The maypole dance was a fertility rite. The pole helped symbolize the union on masculine and feminine. The maypole is thought to originate during the 16th century in Germany and Austria. A tree or tree trunk was put up and decorated and later it became a pole that was decorated with ribbons. The Maypole did not take off in America as it did in other parts of the world. However, America did share in its own historical events on May 1st

I can recall the first May day basket I made in school. I believe it was in the third grade and we made it out construction paper. In fact we made 3, one to keep, one to give someone we loved and one to surprise some with. The meaning of a may day basket was to fill a basket with treats or flowers to give to a neighbor or friend without them knowing. One will leave the basket on the doorstep of a neighbor , ring the door bell and run away. I delivered my basket to a widow woman who my family knew well. I took the basket that I had made and picked common flowers like violets and daisies on the way home, took that basket I was so proud of and placed it on the concrete door step of the ladies house, knocked on the door as there was no bell and ran.... hid behind a bush to watch her expression she was so excited and loved it very much. Thus a memory I will never forget of how to make someone smile... an early lesson on how to treat others.

Oh those simple days of past... no matter if you celebrate or not I  wish you
Happy May Day

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Thursday, April 30, 2020

Old Fashioned Raisin Bread

1 cup raisins
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. cloves
2 Tbsp. butter melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
enough milk for spreading consistency desired

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Combine raisins and water in a small saucepan; bring to a boil.
Remove from heat, add butter; cool to lukewarm.
Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.
Pour the raisin mixture in large mixing bowl; add sugar, egg and dry ingredients.
With an electric mixer, beat until thoroughly blended.
Pour into greased and floured sheet pan (15½x10½x1-inch) and bake about 25 minutes.
To frost:
In a medium bowl, mix together the butter, vanilla, confectioners’ sugar and 1 tablespoon at a time of milk to the desired consistency.

recipe resource 

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snicker-doodle Cookie #Recipe

2 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 egg plus 1 yolk
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup butter, softened
For the coating
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
To a bowl 2 3/4 cup all purpose flour, add 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp cream of tartar, 1 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp sea salt and stir to combine and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, add 1 cup softened butter, 1/2 cup light brown sugar and 3/4 cup white sugar.
Cream the ingredients together until fluffy the add 1 tbsp vanilla extract and the 1 egg plus another yolk.
Gradually add the flour mixture, stirring after each addition until the dough comes together.
In a small bowl add the 1/4 cup of white sugar and 1 tbsp of cinnamon. Stir until combined.
Scoop a small ball and give it a little roll to bring it together. Then place it in the cinnamon sugar making sure to coat it thoroughly and place on a lined cookie sheet.
Repeat with the rest of the dough making sure to space them about 2” apart.
Bake for 10-12 minutes.
Allow them to cool for 3 minutes on the sheet then transfer to a wire rack to cool.

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Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Pineapple Sunshine Cake with Fluffy Icing

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups cane sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple (do not drain)
1 cup chopped pecans*
Pineapple Fluff Frosting:
1 container (8 ounces) Cool Whip*
1 small box (3.5 ounces) instant vanilla pudding
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple (do not drain)
Garnish, optional
Extra pecans or walnuts
Shredded coconut
Maraschino cherries
Fresh pineapple

Before you get started mixing up your cake batter, be sure to preheat your oven to 350° F, and grease a 9″x13″ cake pan with cooking spray (or shortening/flour).
In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, including the flour, sugar, and baking soda 'til well combined.
Add in the eggs, vanilla extract, and pineapple (do not drain the pineapple), mixing everything together well.
Fold the nuts into the cake batter (optional step).
Spread the batter evenly into the prepared baking pan, and bake at 350° F for about 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Once your crushed pineapple cake is fully baked, allow it to cool completely on a wire rack.
To make the frosting, add the crushed pineapple to a large bowl. Do not drain the pineapple.
Whisk the pudding mix into the crushed pineapple 'til well combined.
Let the pudding mixture sit for about 2 minutes.
Then gently fold the whipped topping or whipped cream into the mixture 'til smooth.
Now you can frost your pineapple cake and garnish with toppings like shredded coconut, extra nuts, maraschino cherries, and/or fresh pineapple.
Be sure to refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes before serving; and be sure to store any leftover cake in the refrigerator, as well

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Individual Creamsicle Pies

20 vanilla sandwich cookies made into crumbs
4 Tbls unsalted butter melted
8 oz cream cheese room temp
8 oz whipped topping
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
3/4 Cup orange juice fresh squeezed
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
food coloring optional

Mix the cookie crumbs with the melted butter, set aside.
In a large bowl, using a hand mixer cream the cream cheese for 1 minute. Add in the condensed milk and mix to combine. Add in the orange juice and vanilla, very carefully on low speed mix until everything is fully combined. Fold in the whipped topping. Optional: Take about 1/4 of the mixture and place in a separate bowl. Dye a medium orange color.
Pour the orange mixture back into the original mix. Very carefully just swirl the orange into the mix, not combining it all the way. This way you will get that pretty gradual orange coloring to the pies, like a marble effect.
Evenly divide the mixture among 24 silicone baking cups. Top off with the cookie crumbs mixture just up to the top of the cups. There should be just enough mix and cookies for 24 cups.
Place in the freezer until set, this can take up to overnight so prepare ahead of it. Serve with more whipped topping if desired, enjoy!

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sour cream noodle bake

1 pound ground beef
1/2 medium-sized yellow onion peeled & diced
1 garlic clove minced
One 15-ounce can tomato sauce
12 ounces egg noodles
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/4 cup small curd cottage cheese
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 1/2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and onions and cook until the beef is almost completely browned and the onions have softened about 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring often to prevent burning.
Add the tomato sauce to the skillet, stir to combine, and simmer while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the egg noodles and cook according to package directions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the sour cream, cottage cheese, pepper, onion powder until evenly combined.
Add the sour cream mixture to the noodles and stir to coat the pasta.
To assemble, add half of the noodles to a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish. Top the pasta with half of the meat sauce, and then sprinkle half of the cheese over the sauce. Repeat the layers once again.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until all cheese is melted.
Carefully removed the baking dish from your oven. Serve immediately, or let sit for 5 minutes. We like to serve this dish with a green salad and crusty bread.

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Confetti corn salad

For the Salad
1 can white corn, drained
1 15 oz can petite diced tomatoes, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, washed and diced
1 cucumber, washed and diced
1 stalk celery, washed and diced

For the Honey Lime Vinaigrette
2 tbsp honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup lime juice
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp dried cilantro (or 2 tbsp fresh)

Combine all salad ingredients
stir together all vinaigrette ingredients
pour vinaigrette over salad and chill til ready to use

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Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Spring Time Jello Squares

4 boxes of different flavors of Jell-O (can use sugar free)
1 can low fat sweetened condensed milk
2 envelopes unflavoured gelatin

For each flavor, dissolve one box of jello in one cup of boiling water. Pour into a flat container (I use my square Ziploc containers) and chill 4 hours until firm or overnight.
After chilling your flavors, run a knife through them and cut them into small blocks.
Carefully mix the blocks in a 9 x 13 glass pan, or large flat plastic container.
In another bowl, sprinkle 2 envelopes unflavoured gelatin into 1/2 cup cold water. After the gelatin blooms, add 1 1/2 cup boiling water and dissolve. Add the can of condensed milk. Stir and cool.
Pour cooled milk mixture over jello and chill overnight
Slice into blocks and serve.

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Monday, April 27, 2020

Our Menu This Week with Potroast Recipe

♥♥On the menu this week♥♥
Monday === grilled out burgers and dogs
Tuesday=== salsbury steak and taters
Wednesday --- chili dogs and chips
Thursday --- stir fry
Friday --- polish sausage and veggies
Saturday --- out of town
Sunday --- potroast

2-3 pounds chuck roast
1 packet ranch dressing mix
1 packet au jus mix
1/2 cup pepperoncini juice
8-10 whole pepperoncinis
1/4 cup butter cubed

Place the roast into the slow cooker and sprinkle on the ranch dressing mix and the au jus mix. Pour the pepperoncini juice on top then add 8-10 whole peppers. Place the cubed butter on top.
Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

Once done, shred the meat and serve over mashed potatoes, rice, noodles, cauliflower rice...

If you want to cook potatoes and/or carrots with the roast, add them in during the last two hours of cook time.

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Happy Homemaker Monday

♥♥The Weather♥♥
This is the time of year hubby is hot, everyone starts to wear shorts and I am no longer wearing a heavy coat but tote my sweater along. Yes we are here in spring and the days are getting warmer but its not quite summer yet.

Monday night april 27
partly cloudy 56 degrees slight chance rain
Tuesday april 28
warm day with high of 76 and low of 57 slight chance of rain
Wednesday april 29
slightly cooler with high of 60 degrees and low of 47
50% chance of rain
Thursday April 30
bit warmer with high temp of 66 and low of 45 with only 10% chance rain
Friday May 1st
warm day of 72 as high and 52 of low and again only 10% chance of rain
Saturday May 2nd
warmest day of week with high temp of 82 and low of 62 again only slight chance of rain
Sunday May 3rd
may bring in thunderstorms but still has high temp of 79 and low of 53

♥♥On my mind♥♥
Lots of things on my mind today. The virus and wearing masks here in Illinois is to happen soon. I am an essential worker in the health field and I am a bit concerned about it all but also ready to get back to life as I also buy and sell items for a living and this helps me make money as well as makes me a bit happy.
Here in Illinois I have also been paying attention to what is going on in the meat markets. It seems that there may be a food hike coming so today I went out and filled the freezer

♥♥On my tv♥♥
been catching up with American Idol as I work evenings and need to watch when I am off so never tell me who wins as I will find out soon

♥♥On the menu this week♥♥
Monday === grilled out burgers and dogs
Tuesday=== salsbury steak and taters
Wednesday --- chili dogs and chips
Thursday --- stir fry
Friday --- polish sausage and veggies
Saturday --- out of town
Sunday --- potroast

I work Tuesday - Friday this week so easy meals for hubby

♥♥From the camera♥♥

These girls are all hard working nurses and CNAs 

♥♥Looking around the house♥♥
The entire family is at home .... currently it is all quiet ... housework is done and soon it will be bed time

♥♥To relax this week, I will♥♥
Go out of town to see my grand=babies This always brings a smile to my face and makes me happy. It may just be a few hours but is a great time to make memories

♥♥On my prayer list♥♥
Praying for the state of the union, our state and our little town. 
Praying for states that are opening the doors
Praying for friends with health issues
Praying for those in hospitals and nursing homes that feel lonely

What would your answers be share at Diary of a Stay At Home MOm

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Sunday, April 26, 2020

Pretzels and a Delicious Dip #Recipe

Pretzels originated in either France or Italy by monks. The early pretzels were handed out to young children as rewards for memorizing bible verses. The idea behind the shape of a pretzel is that it is to represent "a child's arms folded in prayer. The three empty holes represent the holy trinity." The early treats were known as "pretiola" which means small reward. However, when the treats were made in Germany the name was changed to "bretzel" and after that the name was changed to "pretzel". 

Now that we know how the pretzel came to be the next question may be how did the hard pretzel occur?? The hard pretzel it seems may have occurred because of a cooking blunder. Leaving the original pretzel in the oven to long will bake it a crispy crunchy bite that could not be left alone.

1 tub (10 ounces) Savory Garlic Philadelphia Cooking Creme
2 cups shredded Triple Cheddar cheese (Vermont White Cheddar, Sharp Cheddar and Mild Cheddar cheeses)
1 Tablespoon chili powder
optional: 1/3 cup Michelob Ultra Amber, or other beer of your choice
Pretzels or baked pita chips

Combine Savory Garlic Philadelphia Cooking Creme, shredded Triple Cheddar cheese, chili powder and beer, if you like. Refrigerate 6-8 hours. Serve with pretzels or baked pita chips.

recipe source 

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a little bit of everything
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