Sunday, May 7, 2017

How to plan Mother's Day Brunch

Mother's Day is in one week and I don't know what it is about the holiday, but it makes me hungry for brunch!  Maybe it's memories of my sisters and I making breakfast in bed for my Mom, or the fact that Mother's Day is on a Sunday.  But it just feels like the perfect fit to indulge in some eggs, pastries and something a little extra to celebrate.  Check out some of my favorite brunch recipes to help you plan and host your Mother's Day Brunch!

How to plan Mother's Day Brunch - 14 Delicious Recipes

Eggs - A brunch isn't complete without an egg dish or two!

Mother's Day Brunch - Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll

Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll - Corn, Beans, Pigs and Kids

If you're entertaining for Mother's Day Brunch then this egg dish should be on the top of your list.  It's creative, eye catching and delicious!

Mother's Day Brunch - Biscuits & Gravy Casserole
(photo courtesy of The Pork Diaries)
Biscuits & Gravy Casserole - The Pork Diaries

This egg casserole has everything you'd ever want in one bite - biscuit, sausage, egg, and cheese!  Top that with gravy and you'll be scooting your fork all across your plate to make sure you get every bite of this "liquid gold" as my friend Alicia calls it.

Mother's Day Brunch - Farmers Market Quiche

Farmers Market Quiche - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

How about another eye appealing egg dish that will be sure to impress at brunch?  I love the creamy and rich flavor of this quiche and the bacon lattice brings it up a notch!

Mother's Day Brunch - Pepper Jack Egg Bake
(photo courtesy of Learning As I Go)
Pepper Jack Egg Bake - Learning As I Go

Are you a hashbrown or bread egg bake person?  Well, if you are a hashbrown egg bake person like me you're going to love my friend Katy's Pepper Jack Egg Bake filled with hashbrowns, eggs, ham, bacon and pepper jack cheese!

Mother's Day Brunch - Green Chili Egg Bake

Green Chili Egg Bake - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

This cheesy, buttery egg bake is a family favorite of ours.  And I love the unique flavor it has from the green chilies and cottage cheese!

Pastries - Pastries are the perfect appetizer and dessert for brunch so you better make more than one!

Mother's Day Brunch - Easy Pecan Sticky Buns

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

I love how simply these sticky buns come together.  And these will be sure to cover your sweet tooth for brunch, especially with ice cream as one of the ingredients!

Mother's Day Brunch - Champion Cinnamon Rolls
(photo courtesy of Food & Swine)
Champion Cinnamon Rolls - Food & Swine

There is something special about cinnamon rolls.  Maybe it's the knowledge of how much time goes into making them, or the memories tied to cinnamon rolls.  No matter the case, my friend Cristen's is sure to be a treat.  Afterall, they are award winning, so have a blue ribbon brunch with these on your table!

Mother's Day Brunch - Six Week Muffins

Six Week Muffins - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

These bran muffins are a tried and true favorite of our family.  They are a hearty muffin with a slightly sweet flavor.  For brunch they would be perfect to make as mini-muffins.

Mother's Day Brunch - Strawberries & Cream Skillet Roll
(photo courtesy of Cooking with Carlee)
Strawberries and Cream Skillet Roll - Cooking with Carlee

This sweet treat would be perfect if you're hosting brunch for Mother's Day.  My friend Carlee says this is a combination of a sweet roll and strawberry cheesecake.

Mother's Day Brunch - Double Chocolate Banana Muffins
(photo courtesy of Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats)
Double Chocolate Banana Muffins - Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats

Mom deserves a little chocolate, right?  Then you better add my friend Ally's Double Chocolate Banana Muffins to your Mother's Day Brunch Menu!  I love the flavor combination of chocolate and banana, and what makes these even better - they are simple to make!  This would be a great opportunity to get in the kids in the kitchen to help make brunch for their favorite lady.

Something a Little Extra - Every Mother's Day Brunch needs that little something extra - afterall, we're celebrating Mom!

Mother's Day Brunch - 4 Ingredient Sunrise Smoothie

4 Ingredient Sunrise Smoothie - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

Brunch is a great time to make something a little extra special to drink.  This Sunrise Smoothie is a hit for all ages and only has 4 ingredients so it is super simple to make!

Mother's Day Brunch - Hash Brown Potato Pie
(photo courtesy of Family Around the Table)
Hash Brown Potato Pie - Family Around the Table

This hash brown potato pie has simple flavors and ingredients, but yet is everything you want to go along with your brunch.  I also love how this recipe has a special connection to my friend Ellen and her Mom!

Mother's Day Brunch - Onion Tart
(photo courtesy of Prairie Californian)
Onion Tart - Prairie Californian

This onion tart is pretty much a french onion soup in a pie crust - sounds perfect to me!  I love how my friend Jenny got inspired to create this unique recipe after meeting an onion farmer.  This post not only gives you a delicious recipe, but an inside look at an onion farm!  How cool is that! 

Mother's Day Brunch - Baked French Toast
(photo courtesy of Cooking Up Cottage)
Baked French Toast - Cooking Up Cottage

Mother's Day Brunch is a great excuse to indulge and have that something a little extra and my friend Lisa's Baked French Toast fits the bill!  It is simple to make and you can throw it in the oven while you're working on getting other things ready for your company.

Mother's Day Brunch - Cherry Breakfast Cobbler
(photo courtesy of The Tip Garden)
Cherry Breakfast Cobbler - The Tip Garden

I love how this cobbler uses simple ingredients, yet looks like something that you slaved over.  My friend Jan always comes up with great recipes and I love her story that goes along with it!

So what are you going to choose for your Mother's Day Brunch?  It is going to be a hard choice but I hope I helped you come up with some ideas.  Remember to Comment for a Cause!

How to plan Mother's Day Brunch - 14 Delicious Recipes

Friday, May 5, 2017

Comments for a Cause - Franklin County Freedom Rock

Comments for a Cause - Franklin County Freedom Rock
We have had a beautiful start to the month of May here in Iowa and I'm excited to share with you about this month's Comments for a Cause program.  To start though, let's talk about last month's cause, the Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund.  In the month of April I had a total of 53 comments, creating a $26.50 donation to help ranchers from Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Colorado that lost livestock and their homesteads due to the wildfires.  Before I go on, I have to let you know that this part of the country has been given another brutal hit by Mother Nature.  Last week a devastating and unimaginable April snowstorm hit Kansas and Colorado, leaving over 20" of snow in many parts.  Ranchers were unprepared and the snow has killed cattle and damaged the area's wheat crop.  To learn more, please read my friend Nicole of Tales of a Kansas Farm Mom's latest post.

Now moving onto May, I'm excited to be helping a local cause, the Franklin County Freedom Rock.  During the month of May I'll be donating $0.50 for every comment made on my blog to assist with the cost of having my county's Freedom Rock painted.

Comments for a Cause - Franklin County Freedom Rock

The Franklin County, Iowa Freedom Rock is a part of a the Freedom Rock Tour, where artist Ray "Bubba" Sorensen II, is painting Freedom Rocks in all of Iowa's 99 counties.  Back in 1999 Sorensen painted the very first and original Freedom Rock in rural Adair Conty as a way to honor America's veterans.  It became so popular, and so many people were moved by it that in 2013 he started the Freedom Rock Tour.  As of today, 59 county Freedom Rocks have been painted, and many more, like Franklin County's are ready and on the list to be painted next.  Sorensen is able to paint 10-12 Freedom Rocks a year and estimates the program will take 10 years to complete.

The Franklin County Freedom Rock was moved to its final resting spot at the end of February 2017 in Coulter, Iowa, at the trailhead of the Rolling Prairie Trail that goes from Coulter to Waverly, Iowa.  The 20 ton rock was donated by Martin Marietta of Mason City and moved courtesy of Dave's Crane Service of Union.  The rock will be painted in the future by Bubba Ray Sorensen in its own unique way that honors America's veterans.  So far the rock has had all donated costs and services, but a fund has been set up to pay for the painting of the rock.  I'm excited to help support my county's rock!

What I love about the Freedom Rock Tour is that it not only pays respect to Veterans, but many rocks have local ties to them and shares the faces of real, local veterans.  The original Freedom Rock even has ashes of veterans in the paint.  I also love the tourism aspect of the tour.  My family and I have checked out a few county Freedom Rocks and I hope to visit the original sometime soon.

And for those of you who aren't from Iowa, the Freedom Rock Tour is now going national!  Bubba Ray Sorensen is now setting out to paint Freedom Rocks in all 50 states.  He has rocks in Iowa, Missouri and Wisconsin so far, and plans in place for the state of Washington's next.

Have you ever seen one of the Freedom Rocks before?  Have you ever been to the original Freedom Rock?  Remember to Comment for a Cause all month long!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Easter Leftover Makeover Blog Party

It's the day after Easter, family and friends have left, and I've got a fridge full of food.  Well, for me the three items I have the most of in my fridge are hard-boiled eggs, ham and mashed potatoes, so what should I do?

Hard-Boiled Eggs - Breakfast - Chopped Egg & Chorizo Breakfast Pizza from Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats

Easter Hard-Boiled Eggs Leftover Makeovers including Chopped Egg & Chorizo Breakfast Pizza

On Saturday our kids dyed 48 hard-boiled eggs with their second-cousin, so to say I have a few hard-boiled eggs in the refrigerator would be an understatement.  So what can I do?  One option is Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats's Chopped Egg & Chorizo Breakfast Pizza.

I love breakfast pizza and Ally's version is sure to hit the spot with chopped hard-boiled egg, smoky and spicy chorizo, layered with a cheese sauce!  Oh yeah!  I can't wait to transform some of my hard-boiled egg leftovers into this breakfast makeover.

Ham - Dinner - Funeral Sandwiches from Jeni Eats

Easter Ham Leftover Makeovers including Funeral Sandwiches

Next up is ham!  We double-smoked two hams for Easter yesterday and I have a couple gallon bags with leftover ham in it.  With spring planting on the horizon this week the first thing I thought about making was Jeni Eats's Funeral Sandwiches.

These quick, glazed, baked ham and cheese sandwiches are delicious!  Between everything being melty, ooey and gooey, along with the delicious glaze on top - these have become a family favorite and are perfect for feeding a crowd, or a hungry tractor and planting crew.

Mashed Potatoes - Supper - Shepherd's Pie from Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

Mashed Potato Leftover Makeovers including Shepherd's Pie

Last up is mashed potatoes!  I made 10 pounds of mashed potatoes for yesterday and while people did a really good job of trying to finish them, I still have some leftovers.  So what better way to makeover mashed potatoes other than Shepherd's Pie.

This recipe is a great way to turn your mashed potatoes into another great comfort food.  Add in some of your leftover vegetables and some hamburger, and you've got a classic supper ready for your family.

So now it is your turn!  I've teamed up with my Country Fair Blog Party friends, Jan of The Tip Garden and Nicole of Tales of a Kansas Farm Mom to bring all of you an Easter Leftover Makeover Blog Party.  Feel free to link up as many of your posts that would work as a leftover makeover!  I can't wait to get inspired by all of your ideas.

What leftover are you excited to have in your refrigerator?  What's your favorite leftover makeover?  Remember to Comment for a Cause.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll #EasterRecipes

It's probably no secret that I love to entertain and have people over at our house - from having friends over to watch the big game, to hosting Easter this Sunday for 21 people - I love to celebrate with family and friends.  Today I'm sharing a great dish to make when hosting a group for breakfast or brunch.  In fact, this use to be a favorite of our church's youth group when My Farmer and I were youth group leaders.  We would have the high schoolers over for breakfast on Graduation Sunday as a way to relax and focus for the big day and have a little final hoorah for the seniors.  Anyways, the kids would gobble this up, so much that I would have to make two.  I hope you enjoy my Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll as much as a group of hungry teenagers! 😉

Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll

8 Eggs
1 cup Milk
1/3 cup Flour
1/2 tsp Garlic Salt
1/2 tsp Onion Salt
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1 cup Ham, diced
2 cups Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Beat eggs, milk, flour, salts, pepper and ham with whisk until well blended.

Line a 15"x10"x1" pan with parchment paper and spray heavy with cooking spray.

Pour egg mixture into prepared pan.  Bake 15 minutes or until edges are set at 350°F.  Top with cheese.  Bake an additional 2 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Roll up omelette immediately, starting at one short end, peeling off the parchment paper as it's rolled.  Place on platter & cut into slices to serve.

Ham & Cheese Omelette Roll #EasterRecipes

Are you celebrating Easter this year with a special Easter Breakfast, Brunch or Dinner?  Remember to Comment for a Cause!

13 bloggers are sharing 46 recipes and tips to help you serve up deliciousness this Easter. Follow #EasterRecipes on social media to see what we're serving up!

Be sure to check out all of the recipes and tips posted today as part of this week's #EasterRecipes:







Monday, April 10, 2017

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns #EasterRecipes

It's Holy Week and one way I'm celebrating is by sharing different Easter Recipes with some of my blogging friends!

Did you see the article circling around on Facebook last week about how a study from Japan determined eating ice cream for breakfast may improve mental performance and alertness?  Well, this recipe for Easy Pecan Sticky Buns is here to help you out!  That's right, these breakfast sweets are just a little bit sweeter by using ice cream as the "cream" in the caramel sauce!  I know all of my ice cream fans are excited and everyone else is probably intrigued, so I won't wait any longer and I'll share this easy and simple recipe!

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns #EasterRecipes

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns

2 cups Pecans, chopped
1 - 8 count Jumbo Refrigerated Buttermilk Biscuits
1/4 cup Cinnamon Sugar
1/2 cup Butter
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 cup Vanilla Ice Cream

Spray a 9x13 pan with cooking oil spray and spread pecans on the bottom of the pan.  Roll the biscuits in cinnamon sugar and place on top of the nuts.  (I like to sprinkle a little extra cinnamon sugar on top of each biscuit too 😉.)  Do not crowd the biscuits, but they can be touching.

In a small sauce pan, mix the butter, brown sugar and ice cream; bring to a rolling boil for 1 minute.  Pour the caramel over the biscuits.  Bake at 350°F for 20 minutes.  Let the rolls cool for 5 minutes and then flip over to enjoy!

I hope you like these Easy Pecan Sticky Buns as much as my family and I do.  My favorite part of this recipe is probably that it is so simple to pull together and it uses ingredients I usually always have in my kitchen.

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns #EasterRecipes

Having some crowd-pleasing, simple breakfast ideas is important for Easter Week when you have extra company staying over at your house.  On Thursday, I'm going to share another breakfast or brunch idea that is great for entertaining.  Check out my blogging friends' posts this week and follow along to see the 46 recipes and tips shared throughout the week by following #EasterRecipes on social media.

13 bloggers are sharing 46 recipes and tips to help you serve up deliciousness this Easter. Follow #EasterRecipes on social media to see what we're serving up!






What recipe are you excited to try from today's #EasterRecipes shares?  Remember to Comment for a Cause!

Easy Pecan Sticky Buns #EasterRecipes

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Clear Lake's Yurts - A Family Bucket List Must!

The sunshine yesterday had me thinking summertime!  Now I realize we haven't even started corn and soybean planting, but it had me thinking about what might be on our family's annual summer bucket list for 2017.

Planning a summer bucket list is a fun family tradition that our whole family likes to get involved in creating.  This year we would like to encourage everyone to make their own, and include camping in one of Clear Lake, Iowa's Yurts!

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - a family summer bucket list must!

Clear Lake's McIntosh Woods State Park is home to boat access to Clear Lake, fishing docks, trails, parks, camping spots, and two yurts!  The yurts are a fusion of a cabin and a tent and are located in a private, oak shaded area with its own dock.

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - a family summer bucket list must!
A look inside the yurt!
Each yurt comes with a double futon, twin bunk beds, table and chairs, electricity, ceiling fan, picnic tables, grills and firepits.  The yurts also have a nice bathhouse with hot showers and toilets.  You are responsible for bringing your own bedding, bath supplies and camping supplies.

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - complete with private dock
My family enjoying time on the yurts' private dock.
Perfect for watching wildlife, water activity and fishing.
To say our family had fun staying in a yurt would be an understatement.  The kids loved how we were camping, and Mom and Dad loved how we were camping, but above the ground, and on mattresses.  We don't own a camper, so this was a nice alternative for our family.  You can rent a yurt for $35 a night.  Reservations can be made up to a year in advance and the yurts are available for rent May 1 - September 30.

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - a family summer bucket list must!
Hobo packets on the grill
Roasting marshmallows over the fire
Besides sleeping in the yurts, our family loved relaxing around our fire pit and making hobo packets and s'mores over the fire for supper.  We even made cinnamon rolls over the fire for breakfast in the morning.

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - a family summer bucket list must!
Gotta have s'mores!
Staying in a yurt is a perfect way to enjoy Clear Lake.  Our family loves how Clear Lake has events and festivals all summer (and really all year long).  To check out all the possibilities when visiting Clear Lake be sure to visit and order their visitor guide or view the digital edition.  Some of our favorite family activities in the Clear Lake Area are going to City Beach and swimming in the lake and jumping around in the splash pad, and participating in the childrens' programs at the Surf Ballroom.  We also love to grab a bite to eat at PM Park and go to the Viking Drive-Inn for ice cream!

So with all of this contagious sunlight, start planning a summer getaway for your family to Clear Lake!  Have you been to Clear Lake before?  What are some of your favorite summer or family activities?  Remember to Comment for a Cause.

A look at Clear Lake, Iowa's yurts - a family summer bucket list must!

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Comments for a Cause - Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund

Comments for a Cause - Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund
It's the first of the month and no foolin' I have a report on Comments for a Cause.  Since the beginning of the year things have been busy and after some refocusing the last couple of weeks I'm excited to get back on track with monthly Comments for a Cause.

To get started let's talk about the Ronald McDonald House.  Since January, I have had a total of 83 comments, creating a donation of $41.50 to help out families with hospitalized children staying at one of the 362 Ronald McDonald Houses worldwide.  Thank you for all of your support.

Now for the month of April I'm looking forward to helping farmers and ranchers affected by the wildfires in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Colorado by donating $0.50 for every comment made on my blog to the Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund.

In March a wildfire spread across the states of Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Colorado.  More than two million acres have burned.  Tens of thousands of cattle and other livestock have died and tragically seven people also lost their lives.  Farmers across the country are stepping up to help their fellow farmers and ranchers by donating supplies, time and money to get these communities the support they need, and this month I'm doing my part by donating to the Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund, an area hit severely by the wildfire.

My heart goes out to all of those affected by the wildfires.  My heart also goes to everyone that is lending a helping hand.  In fact, just today, some friends of ours were part of a hay convoy down to Kansas to help ranchers whose grasslands and hay resources that were burned.

Comments for a Cause - Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund - Hay Convoy from Mount Pleasant, Iowa
Our friend's son standing in front of the Hay Convoy
from Mount Pleasant, Iowa to Meade, Kansas
This group of farmers from the Henry County, Iowa area not only donated hay, but time, fuel and semi-trailers to make the long distance haul to south of Dodge City, Kansas.  One of our friends said that he was happy and honored to help and knew that "if something happened to us (Iowa farmers), they (Kansas ranchers) would come help us."

Comments for a Cause - Ashland Community Foundation Fire Relief Fund - Hay Convoy from Mount Pleasant, Iowa
The crew left at 4 a.m. this morning to make the 11 hour drive to Kansas
So help support farmers, ranchers, families and communities impacted by the wildfires in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Colorado by commenting all month long.  Check out my Farmers Helping Neighbors on National Ag Day post to find out other ways you can help too.  Do you know of other ways people are helping the wildfire victims?  Please share in the comment section and remember to Comment for a Cause all month long!