Sunday Supper! Lasnagna.

Been a long day, was short handed in the kitchen at the nursing home so I went in at 6:00 to help with breakfast and get lunch ready.  Left at 10 to go home to make breakfast for the family, that is something we do together, have a late breakfast.  Sometimes we eat out and others we all pitch in a cook.  My son in law likes to fry bacon, I do the eggs and hash browns, my husband does the toast and the girls do fruit and drinks.

Sometimes we all go do something or everyone goes their own way, its our day to just hang.  Later in the day I made supper and everyone comes to eat, the kids, my mom and my sister and her kids.  Its just something we have always done.

Today I made Lasagna with three kinds of meat, hamburger, italian sausage, and a link sausage with parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese in it.  Simmered the sauce for 5 hours with fresh herbs and garlic, made the house smell so good.   I mixed Romano, asiago and parmesan cheese with cottage cheese, parsley and eggs for white layer.  I layered the noodles, cheese mixture, sauce and mozzarella cheese to fill the pan, I use a disposable pan, hate to clean up the mess.  I tried something new I made a white sauce and put mozzarella cheese in it and poured over the top, foiled it and baked it for an hour and a half.  Can you say Yummo?

The girls put together a nice green salad and made garlic bread and we were ready to eat, now the guys can do the dishes and put things away and everyone can go home and relax and get ready for another work week.

I love having a tradition of doing something once a week as a family, but I am sure ready for them to go home and have a bit of rest time before bed and not to mention the peace and quite after the grandkids have left.

Lovins’ from my oven



The joys of being a grandma, spoil them and send them home.

I am a mother of two girls who are very spoiled.  I have there grandchildren that I thought could never be more dear to my heart than my girls but I am so blessed to have them be so close to us that we get to see them every day.  They may not be more dear to me but its a whole different love than your own children.  Spoil them and send them home.

My youngest daughter had a baby when she just turned 17.  Boy was that a shock, I was not ready for that, actually I cried for weeks.  But when he came a whole new feeling game over me.  My daughter went back to school a week after she gave birth, so to  help her out he had a bed upstairs with her and one in my room Sunday through Thursday nights he slept downstairs and on the weekends he slept up with her.  It was a family life changing event.  My older daughter would get up a hour early just to feed him and have her time rocking him where she didn’t have to share time with everyone else.   Needless to say he is very spoiled by all of us.  6 year with out another baby in our family gave it lots of time on his own.  Along came the other two babies 6 and 7 years later and we have just as much love for them as we did for Zayden.  Although he calls grandma his best friend.  We do a lot of outside time together.   They don’t live with me now but after reading this post below I am very guilty of each and everyone of them.

I have to share this I couldn’t help but laugh when I read it. 

Whether you prefer one over another because your offspring’s tiny mini-me’s have two (or more) grandmothers and you want to reduce the wee one’s confusion as to exactly which grandma is on the phone, or because the word “grandma” makes you feel like Aunt Bee of Mayberry (if you’re under 30, Google this one), in the end, they all mean the same thing: You are not the parent.  This is good, people. Parenting is hard. It’s basically 18 years of schooling an often-recalcitrant young human into how to be a socially acceptable, productive member of the community. Grandparenting, however, is less goal-oriented. We are not actually raising the future of our country. When little Johnny sets the neighbor’s doghouse on fire or young Sally rides home on the back of her new boyfriend’s Harley, proudly wearing his dirty leather jacket emblazoned with an oversize “Road Kill” back patch, nobody asks, “Where are the grandparents??” Continue Reading below Simply put, we are not responsible for the way they turn out. That’s the parents’ job, and we’ve already done it. Now it’s just fun. When I think about the life lessons we endeavor to teach our tiny progeny as he or she grows up, I can’t help but note the delightful contrast between parenting and grandparenting.

1.  Table manners.

Parents: “Eat at the table. Sit up straight. Use a napkin.”

Grandma: “Throw a towel on the kitchen floor, and let’s call it a picnic.”

2.  Nutrition.

Parents: “No, you can’t have dessert until you eat your broccoli.”

Grandma: “I agree, broccoli is nasty. Here, have a cookie.

3.  Dating.

Parents: “What kind of family does he come from?”

Grandma: “Every girl dates a bad boy just once. Ask Mommy about her boyfriend before Daddy.”

4.  Weekends.

Parents: “Clean your room. Then rake the leaves.”

Grandma: “It’s Saturday. Let’s stay in our jammies with a bowl of popcorn and watch Frozen. As many times as you want.

”5. Financial planning.

Parents: “If you want a $120 pair of neon sneakers, save half of your allowance for three months, and we’ll pay the difference.”

Grandma: “What size are you? Here you go.

”6. Honesty.

Parents: “It’s important that you always tell the truth, no matter what.”

Grandma: (After backing into the neighbor’s mailbox because she forgot her glasses.) “Here’s 5 bucks. If anybody asks, this never happened and you have no idea how this dent got here.

  1. Saving money.

Parents: “You need a haircut. Go get me the scissors and the red salad bowl.”

Grandma: “You need a haircut. Let me make you an appointment with my hairdresser. Then we’ll go to lunch.

”8. Clothes.

Parents: “I don’t care what all the other kids are wearing. That outfit looks ridiculous. Go change.”

Grandma: “As long as I can’t see your underwear, your butt crack, or your belly button ring, Grandma’s good. And ask your mom sometime about ‘short-alls.’ Denim overalls, cut off at the thigh. She wore them her entire senior year.

”9. When his team loses a game because the other team cheated.

Parents: “That happens. But it’s how you behave that matters.”

Grandma: “That sucks. Show me the cheater, and Grandma will go kick him in the shins with her stilettos.

”10. Perseverance.

Parents: “No, you can’t quit piano lessons. We’ve paid for the year, and you made a commitment.”

Grandma: “You tried, you didn’t like it. Meh. Let’s try something else.

”11. Housekeeping.

Parents: “Before you go anywhere, clean your room. And that means with a vacuum cleaner.”

Grandma: “Bring me any dishes you’ve got under your bed, then keep the door shut. The housekeeper doesn’t come until Tuesday.

  1. Homework.

Parents: “I can help, but you need to figure this out by yourself. Keep studying.”

Grandma: “Put a comma there and a period there. Now let’s order a pizza.

”13. DIY.

Parents: “If you want to be a fairy princess for Halloween, let’s see what we have around the house that will work for wings.”

Grandma: “There’s a fabulous costume shop downtown. If we get there early, we can nab the wildly overpriced, wear-it-one-time fairy princess outfit before that hussy princess wanna-be down the street gets up.

  1. Obedience.

Parents: “You disobeyed us. We’re upset and very disappointed in you.”

Grandma: “I don’t care what you did. Grandma thinks you’re perfect

.”And so we find that aging really does come with benefits. We get grandchildren to love the bejeezus out of, without the constant worry we had as parents that everything we say or do will somehow scar them for life. We’ve learned to relax, knowing that somehow, with or without our inept fumbling, they will turn out to be pretty terrific adults

.And I’m not a “Mimi” or a “Nana” or a “G-Ma.” Those are left to my grandchildren’s other grandmothers. I will always be, simply, Grandma.

Setting the Valentines mood

I love to decorate the dining room at the nursing home where I work.  I picked up some read Christmas lights the day after Christmas, some read ribbon with the thought of a valentines tree in mind.  After all the other Christmas decoration were taken down everyone was wondering why I had them leave the one in the dining room.  Early one morning before breakfast I went in and put the red lights on and the ribbon and I left the lights off as the residents came in.  The lights put off a nice glow in the room, I played some love song music and told them there was more to come before valentines day.  Later in the day I ran to the dollar store and bought paper dollies and heart sticks, made  a paper chain out of red and white paper that looked like little hearts and had them help me decorate the valentines tree.  My grandkids love to decorate the tall skinny tree I leave up all year long.  I like to make holiday cookies with them and we make simple decorations for the tree each holiday.  I thought if they like it the residents would love it as well.

We now need to work on the table decorations and wall decorations.  I also make heart shaped cookies and have them decorate them.  Its good therapy for all of us to sit at a table and frost cookies and talk about things they did when they were young.  They just love to get involved to cooking.  I love my job.

If you have any easy craft items for seniors to do tag me please.

Lovins’ from my oven


Its National Pizza Week

This week was national pizza week and to celebrate the week with my grandson class at school I made little fruit pizzas.  I started by baking sugar cookies:

1 cup of Butter, softened

1 cup of oil

1 cup of sugar

1 cup of powdered sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 ½ cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tater

In a large bowl, beat the butter oil and sugars; beat in eggs until well blended.  Beat in vanilla.  Combine the flour, baking soda and cream of tartar: gradually add to creamed mixture.

Drop by small teaspoons onto ungreased baking sheets.  Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool

These are wonderful frosted with a light glaze.

For the Fruit Pizza I mixed 16oz of cream cheese with ½ cup of sugar and  2 tablespoons of orange juice.  Mix till smooth and then spread on the cookie.  Top with fruits of choice.  If you use canned fruit save the juice or you can use orange juice to make 1 ½ cups add ½ cup of sugar in a sauce pan bring to boil thicken with 2 tablespoons of corn starch and ½ cup of water.  Cool and put a spoonful on top of fruit on cookie.

If you don’t want to make cookies buy sugar cookies out of the bakery or use a roll of refrigerated cookie dough.   Use lots of fresh fruits for color and great flavor.

These were a hit with the first graders in my grandson’s class, as well as the ones I made for home.  Zayden always likes it when grandma bakes at home.  When my girls were in school I always signed up for the class parties, it was fun to bake with the girls and they loved to take decorated treats.  They didn’t outgrow that, when they cheered in high school they want snacks to take on the bus to the games.  They still like me to make things for them to take to work for snacks.  They never outgrow some things.

Lovins’ from my oven!


The weather outside is frightful, the house is so delightful

Well I can say winter has sure hit the Midwest this week it was -2 degrees this morning I have no clue what the wind chill was.   I am really ready for spring.  I am stiff as a board today, my 7 year old grandson spent the night, and school was cancelled today so he wanted to hang with papa on his day off.  Well, he slept in bed with us, we have a king size bed and he laided so close to my side we both shared one pillow, he got the most part.  Got to love them.

After I get off of work tonight I am going directly home and get back in my pajamas.   My husband will be work second shift so it will be a night of doing whatever I want.  My sister and I have a T-shirt business and have to get a  logo put on about 35 shirts, but putting a transfer on them only take a minute so that will go fast, then I want to work on some ornaments for next year’s craft shows.  We start early and put things in bins and put them in an extra room in my house.

The day after Christmas I went to Walmart for clearance items I bought a couple boxes, large boxes of Styrofoam ball ornaments, tonight I am going to paint mode podge on them and sprinkle them with epson salt or a mixture of cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg.  It will take me a couple days to get the all painted, I just lay them on plastic to dry.  I will put decoration on them and a bow for hanging.  The smell of the cinnamon and spices makes my house smell so good I hate to put them away.  Putting them in a air tight container will enhance the smell so when we get them out at a craft show our area will have a smell to draw people in.  I love the primitive look of the spices on candles, ornaments or whatever you want to cover.   I did this on battery operated candles for my daughter’s wedding and added a burlap ribbon and flower for decoration, when the candled warmed the cinnamon smell filled the room.  AMAZING!

No cooking for me tonight, the week my husbands on seconds I call my free week, no cooking.  I am on day three of my new diet and I will make due eating some steamed vegetables and fresh fruit tonight.

Have a great day and if you in the Midwest, try to stay warm.

Lovens from my oven,


Who I am

My name is Julie Sonneborn, I live in Illinois right where Illinois, Iowa and Missouri meet.  You can stand on the banks of the Mississippi and see all three states at one time.  I am a dietary manager, caterer, mom, sister, wife, aunt, and most of all a grandma of three beautiful grandchildren.  I love spending time with all of my family.  I love to cook and do craft with them.

In my blog I am going to share some of the things we do together as a family as well as our favorite recipes.  I think we have some pretty great foods coming from the Midwest.   Our breaded tenderloins are to die for, friends of mine moved to Michigan and are always posting to me to come make tenderloins for them, no one makes them there.  I am going to share my version of tenderloins so they can make their own.   I could go make them on a mini vacation or send them the recipe but I want to share it with everyone and get their ideas.

I want people who are learning to cook as well as experienced home cooks to read my blog, people who love do it yourself crafts, gardeners, movie watchers and people who love the outdoors.  These are all things I love to do with my family.

Looking into my plans of 2015

Happy New Year to all!  I hope you and your families have time for fun, reflection and relaxation today. Life is a unique and amazing journey. Here are 5 things to celebrate and think about as you ring in 2015.

You’re alive – Life is unpredictable and scary at times. Always remember how precious it is. Take a moment to appreciate each breath you take and each heartbeat you feel, and smile more often.

You’re here – Celebrate yourself and your accomplishments. Look around; you are the only person that got yourself where you are. You deserve a pat on the back! There’s nobody better qualified to be you than you!

There Are Less Fortunate Out There – Is life hard? Yes. Are there going to be disappointments? Definitely. But it could always be worse! Be thankful for what you have and you can go far.

There’s Always Opportunity – The only person that can make your life better is you. There are opportunities everywhere; you just have to find them! Go take those opportunities!

Happiness Leads to Healthier Lives – Studies show that an active effort to stay positive and happy can benefit physical health. Turn that frown upside down and stay positive!

My goals this year:

  • My Blog-I am going to put my heart and soul into making this blog one that many will want to follow.  I want to share the many wonderful things that go on in the Midwest and my family.
  • The same goal most people try at the beginning of the year, I am going to get healthy, try to lose weight and I am going to exercise.   This is going to be a family project!
  • I am the dietary manager at a local nursing home.   My job there is to monitor diets, order food, direct kitchen staff, and make sure all state regulations are being followed.   I have been putting off getting certified for several months, I need to study and go take a test.  That is my plan for January.
  • I also cater at a local winery; I like to help with people with their wedding planning and catering choices.  Although this last year with a full-time job was a bit much.  There were weekends we had 6 or 7 things going on and with a small staff we were all ready for wedding season to be over.  This year we have set a goal of only taking on 3 wedding a month, after all this is supposed to be for fun.
  • Something we do that I think is relaxing is we craft, the whole family gets involved, and we have decided to do that a bit more this year.  We have put that on the back burner for the last few years due to me being so busy and my sister had kids that were sick when born.
  • My husband and I are in the final stages of purchasing a bit of property in the country, it’s not a lot but it will somewhere for the family to get out and shoot bows and they shoot trap.   My grandson and worn the grass out of my back yard from riding his four wheeler, so that is the first thing to be hauled out there for him to ride with the wind out there.  There is a small barn we are going to fix up into a “man cave” they can make there messes and clean them up themselves.  Looking forward to spending a lot of time there.  I’m hoping that since they got their wish I get some sort of remodel at home for ME.

That pretty much sums up my plans for this next year, now it’s time to put the plan into action.