Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Savannah brought it to my attention that I had put stewed tomatoe down for my lasagna recipe. You just want cans of whole tomatoe, the stewed tomatoe will make it runny. Anyone that tried it, I am so sorry.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

sandbox Owie

When grandma comes to babysit the children learn the texture and feel of all the elements in the yard!

Baked Mostaccioli

Its been awhile since I have I decided to do one of my favorite recipes, mostaccioli.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees:
1 and 1/2 lbs. ground beef
two fresh Italian sausage, (the kind you get in the deli, in casings)
1 lb. box of mostaccioli rigati noodles
20 ounces of Ragu Traditional spaghetti sauce
1 medium green pepper
1 small onion
1 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 cup Kraft Grated Parmesan & Romano Cheese , (that powdery type cheese sold in jars)
1 pkg. 8 ounces mozzarella cheese (NEVER SKIMP ON CHEESE. That cheap cheese does not melt good in recipes, and ruins them. I always buy Kraft cheese.)
Cook mostaccioli rigati noodles according to its directions on its box. Drain immediately and set aside.
Remove sausage from casing, and fry up with hamburger, green pepper and onion, and garlic powder, until all meat is nice and brown. Drain off fat.
In a 9x13 pan sprayed with pam baking spray, add together the noodles, the meat mixture, the parmesan and romano cheese and the 20 ounces of spaghetti sauce. Spread it out even, and put the mozzarella cheese on top. Bake for 20 minutes. I always make garlic bread with this. It is delicious.

Monday, March 29, 2010


My husband has been asking me to type this recipe on my blog for one of his friends at work. They are delicious.

1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup peanut butter
6 cups rice krispies
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup butterscotch chips

Measure corn syrup and sugar in cooking pan. Cook over medium heat stirring frequently til sugar disolves, and mixture just begins to boil. (If you let it boil to long it will dry out your scotheroos and make them hard.) Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter. Add rice krispies. Stir well. Press into buttered 13x9 inch pan. In another cooker on low heat slowly melt chips together and spread over top. Let cool, then cut into bars.
P.S. If you are not a big fan of butterscotch this recipe is also good just using all chocolate chips on top.

Savannah's Basement

The Bathroom
Where the bookshelf will be

family room looking into playroom

The wonderful nipsco crew + Kyle & Joe did a great job! Thanks guys!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Trivia questions for Steve
How many legs does a lobster have?

What was the first animal to win Patsy award in 1951?

Who was the youngest man to become president?

There was a question about a statue on an island.........missed writing that one down.

How many times was Marilyn Monroe married?

What is the largest fish living?

First cd to be manufactured in USA?

How many Kennedy kids were there?

In banking what does fdic stand for?

What city was the first subway in?

In SnowWhite what musical instrument does Grumpy play?

Steve......also did not copy down correctly the question about what cartoon has appeared on shorts the most during what time frame.

Name the academy award nominated song from Cinderella?

How many years did Sleeping Beauty sleep?

In animated Cinderella which foot lost glass slipper?

How many stars does Fleet Admiral have in Navy?

Name the boat that sunk in Giligans Island?

Old McDonalds farm had how many animals?

In pool what color is the number five ball, and is it a solid or stripe?

What two planets are between earth and sun?

Name the first talking movie 1927 by Warner Brothers?

Name Dennis the Menaces neighbors?

Name the dancers on Jackie Gleason show?

Name the puppetear that had Lamb Chops?

Who is the green hornets side kick?

Name the highschool that the gang attended in Happy Days?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Puppy Chow

This Saturday my girls and I are suppose to have "COOKIE DAY". A day to bake a bunch of different type of cookies. So I have been looking through old recipes and I found this one. Its not a cookie recipe....but its a easy and fast treat! My kids loved it when they were little!

1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter
1 stick butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
cereal (wheat, rice, or corn chex, crispix etc.)
Melt chips, peanut butter and butter together in big pot over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in enough cereal to soak up this mixture. Dump into a large bag filled with the powdered sugar and shake.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Ratcat the albino ferret

What would you do if you went outside one freezing below 0 degrees day in February and you found one of these living underneath your deck? The poor little thing had earmites and pneumonia, but had been surviving by chumming up with my outside cat.....eating and drinking his food. The vet said that a lot of people buy them and end up turning them loose when they discover their stinky smell. I just think that is horrible. Yes, they do stink...but scrubbing down the cage with apple cidar vinegar is an easy fix.
Well, anyway being the pushover that I am when it comes to animals, we went and bought it the best ferret cage we could find with three levels. My husband named it Zeus, my son named it Kodo from Beastmaster, and I named it Ratcat---you know like Catdog! Cause this little guy looks like half rat and half cat. So guess which name stuck?! My grandkids like him, but they are a little afraid of him because he loves to nibble toes when he plays.

Monday, November 9, 2009



2 lbs. hamburger (my kids prefer just hamburger....but for my husband and myself I use less hamburger and fry a few fresh Italian sausages into my hamburger instead.)
2 -16 oouce cans of tomatoes
2-6 ouce cans tomato paste
1 cup water
1 Tbsp. dried basil crushed
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp.10 ounces lasagna noodles
2 beaten eggs
3 cup small cottage cheese
1/2 cup grated Romano Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. dried parsley
16 ounces of mozzarella cheese

Fry meat, drain. Add undrained tomatoes, tomato paste, water, basil, garlic, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Simmer, covered, 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. Cook noodles, drain. Combine eggs, cottage cheese, Romano Parmesan cheese, parsley, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. In 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan layer half each of the noodles, cottage cheese mixture, meat mixture, and mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Let stand ten minutes. Serves 8 to 10.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Daughter or Granddaughter? this my daughter or my granddaughter? When did my child have time to have three children of her own? Time sneaks past us as we watch our kids learn how to talk and learn how to walk, enjoying all the holidays with them, teaching them how to ride tricyles and bicycles, watching them on their first day of school, in Christmas programs, sports events, teaching them to drive, first dances and proms, on lazy days, and crazy days. I would advise all parents of young kids to enjoy each day, just the way it is now, because as all those grandmas said before really does fly by soooooooooo fast.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Hot Stuffed Bananna Peppers

What is it about men, football parties, and food with a spicy bite to it? Here is a recipe, (from my friend Mary), that Steve loves for me to make for that type of day!


2 lbs. hamburger

1 cup white rice

2 cups water

2- 16 oz. salsa (hot)

2 taco mix (hot)
As many peppers as it takes to fill up the bottom of your 9x13 pan (depending on their size)

one package of your favorite yellow cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice and clean peppers. (I would suggest wearing thin plastic gloves.) Fry hamburger, add taco mix. Put salsa, water and rice in a 9x13 pan. Stuff peppers with meat mixture and place them in rice and salsa mixture. Foil and bake for one hour, however last 10 minutes take foil off and put cheese on top to melt. Bread and butter helps tame this hot recipe down a little! Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

My birthday gifts

For my birthday presents from my husband a few things I wanted was some decor from the country house (which I need to order online), some Beautiful perfume from Este Lauder, a new purse and a deep fryer . I purchased a Kenmore deep fryer, came home and opened it and then checked the reviews online. How stupid of me ! It had a horrible review. They said that it would shut off right in the middle of deep-frying food. My husband told me to try it and see what happened.....and sure enough on my second batch of chicken it shut off right in the middle of it. So I packed it back up in the box and took it back. I have researched it a lot this time, and I am ordering one of the Presto deep fryers. Excellent reviews on all of the Presto deep fryers!

Deep fried food is not the healthiest thing in the world for you. But my kids grew up eating deep-fried fries at least once a month. You can not beat them. I do not think that a lot of new moms know how EASY deep-frying is. Why even waste your time frying chicken over the stove when you can just cover it with flour and seasonings ( I like garlic powder, salt & pepper) and throw it in a deep-fryer? Now adays deep-fryers come with manuals and excellent directions that tell you exactly how long and what temperature to make french fries , chicken, fish, or whatever you are craving. For example to make french-fries you just have to buy one of those huge containers of vegetable oil, heat it up in your deep-fryer, cut up your potatoes, (I have a french-fry dicer), fry them, take them out and put them on a plate to absorb some of the grease.....and load up on ketchup and enjoy. Go buy one tonight! They are great.....and super easy!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

surprise 50th!

My family managed to pull off throwing me a surprise 5oth birthday party.....which is really funny when I think about it because my sister just had one two years ago....and I should have seen it coming. But I told everyone I did not want one, and I thought they would have listened to me. lol! I haven't been too crazy about turning fifty, but I love this time of my life and everyone that is in it now, so I just need to stop being so darn vain! We had a houseful of family, good food, nice visits, and games. It was great!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

For years I have been making biscuits and gravy the old fashioned way, because if you ask me, all of those little gravy packs at the store taste nasty. Then one day my husband told me about this gravy that somebody made at work, that tasted almost home-made. One pack is enough for four people, and the directions are even a lot different than those little packs. I haven't seen it at Walmart yet, but both stores in my small home town have it, off on a rack of its own. They have several kinds....make sure and get the Country Gravy one. When paired up with Grands Biscuits it is delicious. Sometimes we will throw some cut up bologna in it, or some fried pork sausage to change it up! Since it is not made out of grease it does not bother sensitive tummys.


Making gravy is not hard once you figure it out. I am going to write down the recipe for this that is only in my mind. Without actually doing it myself right now I can only estimate on the amounts...but this will give you a rule of thumb to go by. Perhaps soon I will make some and get on here and edit it more precise for you, except its just so much easier to make it the other way now! LOL!!!

You will need to have made bacon and saved the bacon grease prior. I have a bacon grease container in my fridge now that strains out the bits, when I was younger I kept it in a coffee can with a closed lid on it.

1. I use a high sided 10" skillet. Melt some bacon grease........put it all in a bowl. Turn OFF your flame. Wipe your sides of your skillet off, so that its not dangerous. Now I take a large tablespoon serving spoon and I put around 3 to 4 spoonfuls of that melted bacon grease back in my skillet, returning the rest. Now using that same exact spoon that you used for your grease measure 3 to 4 BIG STACKED UP HIGH heaping spoonfuls of flour, and stir til its a creamy mixture. If its dry add a little more of your melted bacon grease. If its runny add a little more of your flour.

2. Now turn on your flame to medium and add around 3 to 4 cups of milk. Gravy takes patience. Your job is now just to stand there and stir it, round and round so that it does not scald. Its got to get hot enough for the flour to thicken, around ten minutes. Pepper and salt to taste, and of course you can add bologna. When I make sausage gravy...I actually fry the sausage and use its grease, and if I don't have enough I add bacon grease to it. If you want to eat your home-made gravy with Grand Biscuits or home-made biscuits its up to you!

Drop Biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening
1 cup milk

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray baking sheet with Pam. Measure flour, baking powder and salt into bowl. Cut in shortening thoroughly. I use wessons vegetable oil, if I don't have shortening. Stir in milk. Drop dough by spoonfuls onto baking sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes.

My husband Steve

I want to introduce my sweet husband Steve. He is always very busy and on his off days he loves making wine, making a dark room for his daughter, canning food, sewing quilts, cooking, working on old lawn mowers, golfing, going to auctions, watching football with the guys, going to Cubs games, yard work. Laying around on the couch for too long is like a punishment for him.... I suppose like a time out for Lucas? lol

Lucas got pneumonia.

Lucas got pneumonia. He was in the hospital for two nights, and my husband said it was his worst nightmare. I would agree with that. Thank the Lord above that he is doing well now! My husband Steve, (paps) bought Lucas a toy tractor to play with while he was in the hospital. I think it helped soothe both of their hearts!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

fruit salad

Here is a fruit salad recipe that is awesome for two reasons:

1. Because it taste yummy.
2. If you are looking to make a large fruit salad for a party or holiday get together, this one is easy to make a lot of because it uses several canned fruit. Whats fun about making fruit salad is that you can decide how much of each fruit you want...and there is no wrong way!

Pour pineapple juice in bowl and save it, (to soak your sliced banannas and diced apples in it for 20 minutes to prevent them from browning.)
Before adding fruit drain all juices.
In large bowl slice and dice:
chunk pineapples
mandrin oranges
marshino cherries
Stir in some miniature colored marshmellows and a small box of instant vanilla pudding. Chill and enjoy.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Today I thought I would give you one of my favorite recipes, and it is very easy to make. It not only uses hamburger but it also uses hot sausage, which gives it a really good hidden secret flavor! It is so delicious people will be asking you for the recipe!


2 lb. hamburger
one tube of hot pork sausage
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green pepper
2 Tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 can of tomato juice
1- 16 ounce box elbow macaroni

Fry hamburger and sausage in a fry pan til done, and drain. Add onion, and green pepper, cook and stir, (please stir so meat doesn't get crispy), til veggies are tender. Transfer your meat mixture to a big pot, (like one that you would make soup in.) Add tomato juice and all of the seasonings, and stir. Cover and simmer on low.
Now cook macaroni according to directions on their box, (if they give you a few choices for time cooked, pick the smallest amount of time.)
Drain the noodles, and add to meat mixture. (I use most of the noodles, but not all of them, because you want it to be a little juicy.) Simmer ten more minutes on medium to low to blend flavors. I always buy one of those one of those frozen garlic breads and bake it in the oven when I make this recipe. This goulash is great as left-overs. I usually make sure that I have an extra can of tomato juice to add some to it the next day, as noodles tend to soak up all the juices while in the refrigerator.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Introducing my kids

I am an extremely proud mom of three. Let me tell you just a little about each. Savannah is 25 and married to Kyle and they are the wonderful parents of my precious grandchildren. Stephanie is 20 and is going to college for visual communications, and is dating the love of her life Bob. My youngest Joe is a Senior in high school already. When you are raising your kids everyone warns you time flies, but you just don't know how fast until your children are all grown up.

apple cutter corer

I bet you have all walked past one of those apple cutter corers at Target, and thought to yourself that it looked like a pretty neat and handy gadget. Well next time you see one, throw it in your cart! For around $5.00 you get an extremely handy item that makes cutting an apple quick and easy with no mess, and if you have teens in your life you will find that suddenly they are eating more apples because its fun to use. My kids love apple slices with warm caramel to dip them in!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

salmon patties

My husbands co-workers love this salmon patty recipe. They are easy and inexpensive to make.

Salmon patties

one can of pink salmon
2 eggs
large onion chopped up
1/2 cup white corn meal
3/4 cup flour

Open and drain your salmon. Look for small bones, and remove. If you miss a few do not worry about it. They are very very soft and you do not even know they are there. Add ingredients and mix well. I use a ten inch skillet, and I put a half of cup of vegetable oil in the bottom. (Let it heat up, on low to medium heat for three minutes or so that you do not saturate your salmon, it puts a seal on the patties, when you fry them.) Make patties about the size you would make medium cheeseburger, not too thick. Fry on each side til golden brown, around five minutes on each side. Enjoy!

The Littlest Dumpling#3 - Owen Kyle

The Littlest Dumpling #3

My daughter told me, and I agree, that Owen's eyes resemble mine some! What a thrill that is for me. My son-in-law, Kyle, lost his mother a few years ago, and I have often wished for my own selfish reasons that she was around still so we could talk and laugh about our three beautiful grandchildren together. Owen Kyle is a happy little guy who warms even strangers hearts whenever they see him!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Lemi Shine

After you wash your dishes in your dishwasher and you use your detergent like Cascade, and your rinse aide like Jetdry, are you still frustrated to find your dishes covered with a white dirty substance after they are done?

Its because of hard water. And there is a product out there called Lemi Shine that works wonders for that problem. If your dishwasher has a rinse in the beginning of the cycle wait til its over then open your dishwasher up and sprinkle a little in there. You will be absolutely amazed at how your dishes shine now! I am still waiting for my husband to put me in a new water softner, but until then I buy a Lemi Shine every week, available at Walmart by the other dishwashing stuff!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Dumpling #2 - Lucas Stephen

Dumpling #2 Lucas Stephen

Lucas is my little two year old fireman wannabe! He is already a mans man. He prefers hanging with the guys, (his dad, paps, and uncle), way before he would any girls or women. He is a regular Handy Manny type of guy, who is seen often using his toy tools to things that he feels need some adjusting.
If you are afraid of frogs beware of this little guy. He will pick one up and throw it at you with no hesitation. Lucas is a helper and he has a big heart.

Dumpling # 1 - Addison Marie

Dumpling #1 - Addison Marie

Dumpling #1......The joy that you get from any grandchild is unexplainable, but when you are one of those lucky grandparents that get a duplicate of the child you raised and get to re-live your own child growing up again through your grandchild it is very emotional. Miss Addison is loaded full of her mother Savannah in looks and personality. I feel as though I can predict her actions because every thing she does I have seen before many years ago, dejuvu! Some days when she is being emotional and her parents are disciplining her in front of me I feel like standing up in front of them and saying, "who are you people, and why are you making my child cry?" LOL! , but I don't because I want her to respect her parents, even though it is REALLY HARD and so I BITE MY TONGUE. When you are a grandparent you know deep inside how fast this precious time flies by and you appreciate every single day with them, good and bad, every single mess they make, its all beautiful. Addison is a girly girl, that won't go down a slide if there is an ant on it. She sings and twirls and pretends she is a princess. She loves to have her dolls act out any situation that has gone on at home, holidays, and events. She is the typical three year old...full of why's and who's. Her teacher says she is very well behaved and considerate of others.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

No- Bake -Cookies

If you like chewy chocolate cookies, then this would be the recipe for you. It is a recipe that doesn't take too long to make on top of the stove, but it takes your full attention while you make it. The proper timing in this recipe frustrates some, but once you get it down, its really easy.

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1 stick of butter (margarine is fine in this recipe...cause it is not baked)
1/2 cup peanut butter
3 cups quick cooking oatmeal (measure well)
1 tsp. vanilla

Lay out wax paper on a counter large enough to drop a batch of cookies onto.
Combine sugar, cocoa, milk and butter in a cooker.
Using a LOW TO MEDIUM HEAT CONSTANTLY STIR mixture bringing it to a full rolling boil, (that is as soon as all of it is boiling good....outside,inside, everywhere!), NOW TIME IT FOR ONE MINUTE AND 20 SECONDS AND KEEP STIRRING ALL AREAS OF THE COOKER SO IT DON'T SCALD.......proper timing is everything here so I would suggest using your stove timer. Next step, remove from heat quickly, add peanut butter, oatmeal, and vanilla. Mix well. Quickly drop cookies by teaspoonful onto wax paper because you only have so much time before they start forming. Let them cool, and enjoy.

P.S._________________________________________________________________ If your cookies are hard and dry looking you cooked them too long, or used too high of a heat. There is no fix for when that happens.
If your cookies are runny and not forming a solid looking cookie, you probably didn't cook them on a high enough heat long enough, or failed to add enough oatmeal. You can try to add more oatmeal, and it might make them eatible, just not as pretty, as you will see dry pieces of oatmeal sticking out of the cookie. This recipe may take a time or two before you perfect it, but it is worth it...because they were always one of my families favorites!

The secrets to making a good cookie

1. The biggest secret is in the butter that you buy! If your cookies are going flatter than a pancake, have you been using margarine? Try replacing it with real butter for a delicious tasting cookie. If you bake a lot and are trying to keep the cost down use Crisco butter flavor all vegetable shortening in place of butter because it last a long time and it won't make your cookies fall flat!

2. Replace your old cookie sheet with an insulated cookie sheet. They work magic!

3. Use Pam cooking spray to keep those cookies from sticking.

These rules apply to any recipe you follow. Good luck!

Becoming a Grandmother!

Here I am holding Addison Marie, the star of the show, the gal that introduced me to the proud world of grandparenting, and for that I will always have a special bond with her! Can you see the pride in my eyes?

One year and one day later Lucas Stephen was born. If babies are born within the same year they call them "Irish twins". I still call them my little Irish twins...even though they missed it by one day. I am glad they each have their own separate birthdays to celebrate!

Two years later I was gifted with Owen Kyle. He had a hard start in life because he had TTN. Some newborns' breathing during the first hours of life is more rapid and labored than normal because of a lung condition called transient tachypnea of the newborn (TTN). Because of this condition Owen had to stay in the NICU an extra week and it was very hard on me watching his parents worry about him getting past all of that, while I was babysitting his big sister and brother.


Welcome to Grandma's Little Dumplings! My name is Colleen and I live in a very small town in northern Indiana. I have been a stay at home mother of three, stepmother of two for 25 years. I have had to learn how to cook for many on a budget. I am a proud grandmother of three grandkids and seven stepgrandchildren, and I have learned a lot in my soon to be 50 years. So I thought I would create a blog and share with you some of my wisdom of recipes, ideas and helpful suggestions.