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Seems like yesterday

September 4, 2013
By Pat Jensen , Marshall Independent

When the kids were small, I thought it would be a very long time before I'd find myself enjoying some "me time." Even taking a quick soak in the bath tub was considered a luxury.

I still remember taking care of a new baby; those middle of the night feedings, the frequent diaper changes and "teething time."

It wasn't long before the first pair of walking shoes were needed. A few years later, I was dressing the kids for their first day of school and shopping for gym shoes.

Where did the time go? It seems like in the blink of an eye the kids went from potty training to drivers' education. Of course, at the time when I was tripping over toys and wiping runny noses, I didn't feel that way.

When a mother is at the point of losing all patience, she doubts the chaos will ever end. Believe me, it will!

As the years pass and the kids leave home to follow their dreams, parents may find themselves actually missing some (not all) of those trying times. That's why God often blesses us with grandchildren.

Great way to start the day


1-lb. pork sausage, browned and drained

6 eggs

2 cups milk

Salt, to taste

1 tsp. dry mustard

6 slices bread, cubed

1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 (4-oz) can mushrooms, drained

Combine all ingredients. Place in a 9x13-in. baking dish which as been coated with nonstick cooking spray. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 for 45 min. (uncovered)

Note: I used country style seasoned pork sausage and 1/2 tsp. salt.

No oars needed - just a fork

ZUCCHINI CANOES (2 servings)

1 med. zucchini

2 Roma tomatoes, diced

1/3 cup or more shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1/4 tsp. dried parsley

Dash each salt, garlic powder, dried oregano, pepper

1-1/2 tsp. grated Parmesan cheese

Cut zucchini in half lengthwise. Scoop out and discard pulp, leaving a bit more than a 1/4 -in. shell. (Use an ice cream scoop to remove seeds and some of the pulp). Place zucchini in a large deep skillet and cover with water. Bring to boil; cover and cook 2 to 4 min. or until tender. Drain. Note: If water does not cover zucchini completely, you should turn each half during the cooking process so all will be tender. Do not overcook.

In small bowl, combine tomato, Jack cheese, parsley and seasonings. Spoon into zucchini shells. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Place in a baking dish coated with nonstick cooking spray. Bake, uncovered in a 350 oven for about 20 min; until heated through.

Another option: Try this on the grill. Line pan with foil and coat with cooking spray. Easy clean-up! Cook on top rack, 20 to 25 min; on medium high.

A tasty luncheon dish


2-lbs. ground beef; season with salt/pepper

3 T. butter or margarine

Water, as needed

1-1/2 tsp. chili powder, or to taste

24-oz. jar spaghetti sauce

4-oz. can mushrooms, drained

flour / water (combined)

Cheddar cheese, grated

Chopped lettuce, tomatoes, onion, ripe olives

Corn chips (Fritos)

In a large skillet brown ground beef; drain off excess fat. Add butter and enough water to cover the meat - about 3 cups. Add chili powder, spaghetti sauce, and mushrooms. Simmer for about an hour. Add enough flour/water to thicken slightly. Meanwhile, assemble the grated cheese, chopped lettuce, etc. The amounts needed depend on the number of people being served.

When ready to prepare plates, put a layer of corn chips on the bottom, the meat sauce next, the cheese (so it will melt) and the remainder of the ingredients.

Serve with some hot biscuits or bread.

Note: I used a jar of Chunky Ragu (Tomato, Garlic and Onion)

Simply wonderful


1/2 cup margarine, melted

1 cup flour

1/4 cup powdered sugar

Combine and mix well. Pat into well-greased pizza pan (13-in.) Bake at 325, 10 min. or until pale golden. Cool crust at least 1 hour.


8-oz. cream cheese, softened

1 cup powdered sugar

Fold in: 2 cups whipped topping (Cool Whip)

Cover crust with this mixture.

Top with 1 can blueberry pie filling. Refrigerate. Cut in wedges to serve.

Food for thought: While it isn't necessary to have a cookie jar to be a good grandmother, it doesn't hurt.

Just a reminder ... Grandparents Day is Sept. 8.



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