Father’s Day Luncheon Ideas

Father’s Day Luncheon Ideas

Everyone, including me, made a big deal about Mother’s Day a few weeks ago.  We Moms and Grandmas expect and receive  gifts, breakfasts in bed, brunches, lunches, teas, dinners on Mother’s Day.  I suppose we make a bigger fuss when we don’t get the pampering we know we deserve for all the things we do to take care of our families.

Dads on the other hand don’t seem to make a big deal about Father’s Day, at least not in our family.
As a child I  gave my Dad a tie every Father’s Day and that was that, no fan fare, no hoopla, just a tie.
My kids when they were young gave their Dad a mug, he doesn’t wear ties often but is a big coffee drinker, so every Father’s Day he got the inevitable mug and we’d let him throw steaks on the grill and call it a day.

These days Father’s Day often falls during our summer vacation and it gets lost amid the shuffle of traveling.   Often times we don’t even realize it’s Father’s Day until the day of and the kids and grandkids give Dad a call and we have our weekly Sunday Night barbecue and call it a Father’s Day dinner.

It seems to me Dads are often under appreciated and hardly ever complain about it.  This year I’m determined to start a change.  I’ve already decided to engage the grandkids in some Father’s Day Crafts for their Dads and Poppa.  I think we’ll make him lunch as well, and have our Sunday Night barbecue too!

Here are some Dad pleasing recipes to make Dad this Father’s Day.

Father's Day LuncheonHere’s my recipe for Crock Pot Beef Stew.

Everyone in the family, specially my husband, loves it!.  You can throw everything together in the pot before you go to bed, it will be ready for lunch.  Serve it with white rice, we do, or with mashed potatoes.  Totally yummy!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

You can’t go wrong with grilled meats! So fire up the grill and cook up some of dad’s favorites!

 

 

 

 

Father's Day LuncheonCook up a nice rib eye, on the grill or in a frying pan, and smother it with this delicious Balsamic Vinegar & Mushroom Steak Sauce. 

It’s another family favorite!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

For a lighter lunch try out my Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Pasta Shells.  Very easy to make, the kids can do it with a bit of adult supervision.

Click here for recipe!

If you don’t want to stuff pasta shells try out my Spinach & Cheese Pasta Rolls, it uses lasagna noodles.

Either one goes great with my Garlic Knots

This Chicken/Spinach/Broccoli Stromboli is perfect for lunch.  Dip it in your favorite pasta sauce!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

Chicken Marsala is another favorite.  I love to serve it with Garlic Mashed Potatoes.

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

 

 

This BBQ Pot Roast over Cheddar Grits  from Plain Chicken looks really delicious and filling.

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

Here are some great hot dog ideas from Pink Pistachio.

Dad’s love hot dogs, at least the ones in our family do!  Try these out for something a bit more gourmet for Father’s Day.

Click here for recipes!

 

 

 

Most Dads can’t resist a fat juicy burger.

Here’s one from Chow.com, it’s called the Juicy Lucy Burger!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

Here’s a Carnita Salad for a taste South of the Border!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

This Black & Blue Salad from Sugar Dish Me is filling and fresh.  Great for summer!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

 

 

BeefThis Italian Beef Hoagie is one of our favorites.  It’s cheesy, a little spicy, and oh so yummy!

Click here for recipe!

 

 

 

 

 

Or forget the formalities and give Dad or Grandpa what he really wants!  Take him fishing!  Pack sandwiches, fruit, and drinks and head out to the lake or river, or his favorite fishing hole.

This boxed lunch idea from The Cards We Drew is a cute way to pack his lunch, and everyone else’s too!

Thinking of Getting a Dog? Here are 8 Things You’ll Need to Buy

Thinking of Getting a Dog? Here are 8 Things You’ll Need to Buy

Are you thinking of getting a dog in the near future? Then there are several things that you’ll need to purchase ahead of bringing them home. Welcoming a dog into the family is one of the most amazing steps that you can take, but there are certain costs associated with the process that you’ll want to budget for – it’s not the cheapest endeavour after all.

To ensure that you’re as organized as possible, here is a list of 8 things you’ll need to purchase. Of course, this isn’t a complete list – so you’ll need to conduct other thorough research before you bring your furry friend home. But to make sure that you start off on the right foot, the following are essential purchases:

1. Pet Insurance
One of the most important purchases that you’ll need to make is pet insurance. Why? Because it will ensure that the majority of costs associated with any treatments are covered. Giving you the peace of mind that not only your dog is in the best hands but that your finances aren’t significantly affected, it’s a must-have from the get-go.

Luckily, there are plenty of providers to choose from – meaning that you can find one that suits your budget. Many also offer finance plans, giving you the chance to either pay monthly in affordable chunks or annually if that better suits your circumstances.

2. Good Quality Dog Food
Ok, so this might sound like a given; but it’s still worth mentioning. Before you bring your dog home, you should purchase high protein dog food for them. Nutrition is key to helping them to thrive, so you want to give them the best possible start – whether they are a puppy or an older dog.

Along with their everyday food, you might also want to purchase delicious treats for them to enjoy. If you really want to get creative, you could also start to make these yourself – just make sure that you’re aware of the types of food they can and can’t eat.

3. A Dog Bed
You want somewhere where your new pooch can sleep. And although over time they will undoubtedly try to sleep on your bed or on the couch, giving them a bed to enjoy from the beginning is a must. Their own personal place to relax, they will love having a comfortable bed.

4. A Lead and Collar
Although these, of course, are two separate things they can be linked together under one point as they are both physically worn by your dog. A lead will ensure that you can take your pup on lovely long walks while the collar and ID tag will guarantee that people will be able to contact you if they ever went missing.

5. Toys
Playing with your dog is essential to bonding and their development. So as part of this, it’s a good idea to invest in some toys for them. There are so many to choose from – from plastic toys to soft ones. Available in most stores and online, you’ll be spoilt for choice for what you can buy for them.

6. Food and Water Bowls
Along with their food, you’ll also want to purchase food and water bowls for them. Something that won’t cost you more than $15 for each of them, they are another must-have that you should purchase as soon as you settle on the dog you’re going to get.

7. A Stairgate
Whether you’re getting a pup or a dog that requires some training you may want to consider investing in a stairgate for your home. This will ensure that they can’t get upstairs and know that the downstairs is where they should sleep/spend their time throughout the day. Although this isn’t an essential, it’s an item that many dog owners will invest in and use from the beginning.

8. House Training Pads
Yet again, this item can be useful whether you’re getting a puppy or are adopting a dog. As you introduce them to your home, chances are that they won’t be toilet trained. You’ll therefore have to take them through the process by investing in house-training pads. To do this effectively there are plenty of online tutorials that you can use.

How The Modern Working Environment Hurts Our Health

How The Modern Working Environment Hurts Our Health

When you go to your 9-to-5, you don’t expect to be entering into an environment, detrimental to your health. But so many of us have accepted that our professional lives come with risks to our minds and bodies. Indeed, for some occupations some dangers are unavoidable. Construction still remains the most dangerous line of work. But the average professional, shouldn’t be put into a position whereby they don’t feel mentally and physically protected. Here are some environments that hurt our health and how you can better take care of yourself.

Urban offices

If you work in downtown Manhattan in the US or in Canary Wharf in London, you will be familiar with what’s known as ‘smog attack’. This is pollution from buildings, cars, buses, ventilation systems, and the average person on the street (such as smokers) pouring into offices and making employees cough. It’s difficult to breathe when you’re in an office that is in the middle of a densely populated area. But there are some things you can do. Take a look at tactical window air circulation tips, as you can create a faster airflow in the office. You should also recommend the HVAC be increased on particularly bad days of pollution. This will extract the poisonous fumes and keep the office air clean.

Construction challenges

As mentioned, construction is inherently a challenging industry. If you work close to diggers, jackhammers, and large industrial vehicles, hearing loss is a very real and present danger. Excessive working environment noise can lead to tinnitus and permanent hearing damage. The average decibel level should not be more than 60. Anything that is in the range of 80 or above, is harmful to your hearing. Wearing silicone earplugs with industrial protective equipment is a great way to retain your hearing into old age. Audiologists warn that an exposure to noise over 80 decibels will cause damage to your hair cells in the inner ear. These can act as a cushion, absorbing some of the soundwaves to prevent the eardrum from being overloaded.

Earning more money?

Working overtime is something that is ingrained in our professional personalities. We want to be seen as the harder worker, someone who deserves the promotion more than the other employees, etc. but what untold damage is being done to our psyche? Working overtime too often can lead to stress that is directly linked to the cause of depression. Do you really enjoy life if most of the time you’re just working? Existing is not the same as living, so take care of yourself and value your personal life and time away from the office.

Personal trainers

Personal trainers that take an exclusively hands-on approach are in danger of over-training. Fitness fatigue is a generally new phenomenon, particularly felt by athletes and professionals in the fitness industry. It can lead to hypertension, cramps, and stress. It’s better to film your fitness sessions so clients can always workout from home from time to time. It helps you get some rest and the content can be used again and again.

Working environments come with hidden trade-offs to our health. It’s time we started noticing the negative impacts of modern professional environments and took better care of ourselves.

How to Protect Your Hearing Better

How to Protect Your Hearing Better

Protecting your hearing is something that you definitely need to think about doing if you haven’t paid much attention to it before now. Luckily, there are many different ways of approaching this challenge and that’s what we’re going to talk about today. If you want to make sure that your hearing stays in good shape both now and going forward, here are some of the ways in which you can make sure that’s the case.

Know the Warning Signs

First of all, you need to know which warning signs to be looking out for. This hearing loss guide will tell you what you need to know about hearing loss and what it looks like. That way, you can pick up on any of those signs early on and make sure that appropriate action is taken to get the treatment you need when you need it.

Use Ear Plugs When Exposed to Loud Noises

Whenever you’re going to be in a situation in which you’re exposed to loud noises, you need to use ear plugs. This will allow you to ensure you don’t sustain direct and potentially long-lasting damage to your eardrum and inner ear as a result of those loud noises. This might be in the workplace or when doing things such as listening to live music.

Give Your Ears Time to Recover

When you are exposed to loud noises, even if you weren’t expecting it and weren’t properly prepared for it, you should give your ears the time they need to recover. By doing that, you’ll be able to make sure that any damage you sustained can be fixed and doesn’t become permanent. Resting your ears from time to time is a good idea but lots of people don’t think to do it.

Keep Your Ears Dry

As you get older, you should take extra precautions to ensure your hearing is protected. And that means doing things like taking extra care to ensure your ears are kept properly dry at all times. Take the extra time to do this to ensure problems don’t build up in your ears. It’s a simple case of making sure your ears are dried whenever they’re exposed to moisture; it’ll make a difference.

Be Careful When Listening to Music

When listening to music via headphones in particular, you should always take extra care to ensure you don’t play it too loudly. Exposing your ears to those loud sounds at such a close distance can do permanent damage to your inner ear, especially if it’s something that’s sustained and repeated over time. Turn down the volume and get used to doing so if you want to protect your hearing better.

If you take the steps we’ve discussed here, you’ll be able to protect your hearing better and ensure hearing problems don’t develop over time.

Taking Care Of Your Future Can Be Simple

Taking Care Of Your Future Can Be Simple

When talking about the future can be a scary prospect, especially for those of us who never want to grow up. The Peter Pan idea is wonderful, and we can all stay as young as we feel for as long as possible. But there are certain things and we don’t necessarily think about and need to for the future. Not necessarily about our finances, because that is something that is obvious to everybody. We need to be able to pay for our care as we get older but more importantly about our health and our situation. Making sure that we are comfortable, leading happy lives, and have all of the health care that we need is Going to make our old are you is much more enjoyable, and comfortable. So here are some ideas on how you can take care of your future in small steps that you will thank yourself for later.

Health

Your health is your number one priority, if you are eating well, staying hydrated, exercising, and doing everything that you need to prevent any mental health illness, means that you should be able to keep a good handle on your health at all times. We all like to think that we are doing our best to stay healthy, but there are certain things that we can do to improve this. Eventually, we may need to think about tools for our care, such as hearing aids. You can of course get rechargeable hearing aids which help reduce the overall cost of your care, and there are other things you can do to prevent excessive bills and charges when it comes to health tools. Whether it’s Some dentures, a pair of glasses, or a knee strap, there are things you can do to put down on the necessity of them, or at the very least reduce costs. Doing your research is essential, and taking care of yourself should always be your number one thing to do.

Hobbies

Keeping the mind young is as simple as having hobbies that you enjoy, that keep the cogs turning. A lot of people take up puzzles, or even play some online games with friends And quite often you will find that older people tend to use social events to incorporate card games such as poker or backgammon nights. Staying sociable, and keeping a hobby that benefits you in many ways is a brilliant connection that will help you stay young, and enjoy your time.

Connections

We are social creatures, and sometimes it can be tough to make social connections and keep them thriving, especially if we don’t see our friends and family on a day-to-day basis. But with modern technology, you can use apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook, or even Zoom that will help you to see and hear from your left ones. Keeping these connections driving is something that will certainly improve our mental health and confidence levels. Going out and visiting people occasionally, or meeting up for lunch are wonderful ideas and something that many people look forward to

DIY Comic Strip Frames & Boxes for Father’s Day

DIY Comic Strip Frames & Boxes for Father’s Day

Comic Strip Frames

In our family Father’s Day is sometimes overlooked, lost in the hustle and bustle of summer vacations, family reunions, and other events.   This year due to the Pandemic I don’t think we’re going anywhere.  I doubt we’ll even let the kids go to the mall or the movies, assuming those places are even open.  So making dad a cool gift will give the kids something to do to break up the monotony of staying home all summer.

There were many great ideas out there, I even wrote a post, 12 Really Cool Father’s Day Crafts – FREE Printables, highlighting my favorites.

I showed the different ideas to my grandsons, Dion and Devon, they both loved the comic book decoupage frames and boxes. Devon especially loved the frames and wanted to put his picture wearing his Captain America costume in them.  Definitely right up his alley!  Dion decided he’d make the boxes and fill them with candy, he knows how much his dad and uncles like candy.  He’s filling his poppa’s box with coffee K-cups, his poppa’s a big coffee drinker.
These ideas came from Crafts by Amanda, aside from the frames and boxes she also makes comic strip magnets.   She uses comic book pages from comic books she was lucky enough to find at a garage sale for a quarter.  We weren’t so lucky, we didn’t have any old comic books laying around and I didn’t want to hit the garage sales in search of any.  Instead I found some free images of comic strips online (there are many, just do a google search for “free comic strip images”) and printed them to use for our craft projects, they worked just fine.
I found the unfinished frames at the Walmart craft department, they cost $1.11 a frame.  The paper mache boxes came from our local craft store and were $4.39 each for the large oval ones.  The boxes come in many shapes and sizes and ranged in price from $1.99 on up.  Mod Podge can be purchased at Walmart’s craft department and most other craft stores.  We used small sponge brushes that we got from Home Depot for .54 cents each, they have them at Walmart in the craft and paint departments as well.  This whole project ( 4 frames & 4 boxes) cost me less than $30 and I still have lots of Mod Podge glue and sealer left for future projects.  So the average cost for each frame and each box is about $3.75.  A great deal!
We pretty much followed the directions found on her site but added extra coats of Mod Podge glue (affiliate link)and a coat of Mod Podge gloss sealer (affiliate link).  Thanks to Crafts by Amanda we came up with super Father’s Day gifts that didn’t cost much and were very easy to make.  The boys made 4 frames and 4 boxes in a couple of hours, that’s including drying time between coats!  (The boys went out to play while they waited for the glue to dry, they are very good multi-taskers!)
I found that working with comic strip pages is very forgiving, the print is so busy you don’t really notice flaws such as wrinkles and seams.  A great craft for kids who aren’t always patient about gluing things together!
*Clicking on affiliate links will take you to our Amazon affiliate.
Comic Strip Frames
Here are instructions for the frames and boxes!
Supplies for frame:
Comic Books or printed comic strip images – if you are going to print them be sure to adjust the size on the printer so that the image will fill the page otherwise you may end up with a tiny image surrounded by white paper.
Mod Podge Original Glue – Matte finish
Mod Podge Acrylic Sealer – Matte Finish
Small sponge brushes
Scissors
Pencil
Newspaper or drop cloth to cover work surfaces
Comic Strip Frames
Directions:
1.  Position the frame on top of the comic strip page as best as you can so that you can have the images you want on the frame.  The boys tried to get as much of the super hero’s image on the frame as possible by shifting the wood frame around until they were satisfied that they weren’t cutting off “vital” parts. Trace frame onto comic strip page with pencil. To get the desired images you may have to trace two “C” shaped strips and connecting them when you position them on the wood frame.  We didn’t need to so we just traced the whole frame and the inside part as well.  Remember the rectangle you cut out of the middle won’t be placed on the wood frame.  We saved those pieces for later should we decide to make them into magnets or other craft.
2.  Cut out the traced shape being careful to cut the middle opening out without cutting into the surrounding piece.  Should you nip a bit of the outer piece don’t worry too much about it.  You don’t need to start all over, just glue it securely in place later on, you’ll probably hardly notice it.
3.  Brush a light coat of glue on the wood frame and on the backside of the strip or strips you will be using.  Allow to dry for 5 minutes.
4.  Carefully position the comic strips onto the glue coated wood frame (place the side of the comic strip you brushed glue on to the frame – both glue coated surfaces should be together).  The strip should lightly adhere to the wood.
5.  Working from the middle of the frame out, gently lift off the comic strip section by section and press onto the frame to work out bubbles and wrinkles.  You may have to dab on a bit more glue so that the strip sticks to the wood well.
6.  When you’re satisfied with the placement and have made sure there are no wrinkles or bubbles brush on a coat of glue over the entire surface.  You don’t have to soak the paper, just be sure you get the glue brushed on evenly on the whole frame.  Allow to dry 10 -15 mins, or until it’s no longer sticky.  We had a fan on so it didn’t take our glue to dry, it dried in about 5 minutes.
7.  Once the glue is dry check the frame, you may have to trim off excess paper at this point.
8.  Brush on 3 – 4 more coats of glue, allowing glue to dry between each coat.  About 10 – 15 minutes drying time between coats.
9.  After your last coat of glue allow the frame to dry for an hour.
10.  Spray on acrylic finish.  This is a job for adults to do outdoors or in a well ventilated area.  If you’re sensitive to chemicals wear a mask when applying the acrylic finish, it has a very strong smell and can’t be healthy.  Allow to dry at least an hour before inserting your photo.  We let ours dry overnight.
Comic Strip Frames
 
Supplies for box:
Paper Mache Box  – any shape or size
Small sponge brushes
Scissors
Pencil
Newspaper or drop cloth to cover work surfaces
Spray paint (optional – in your choice of color)
Directions:
1.  If you want to spray paint your box before applying the comic strip you can spray paint it in what ever color you want.  Allow it to dry completely before proceeding to glue on comic strips.  We didn’t paint ours.
2.  Position the lid on the comic strip page, try to include the images you want to apply to the lid.  Trace the shape of the lid on the page.
3.  Cut out the traced shape.
4.  Cut out 2 strips of the page in the width you desire – you can cut them as wide ad the sides of the box or slimmer so that you will have plain edges on the top and bottom.
5.  Brush glue on the box lid, sides of the box, and on the backside of your comic strips.  Allow to dry 5 minutes.
6.  Position the comic strips to on the lid and sides of the box.
7.  Working from the middle, gently lift off the paper and work out bubbles and wrinkles as you press it on to the box.
8.  When you’re satisfied with the placement and are sure you’ve worked out all bubbles and wrinkles brush on a coat of glue on the comic strips.  Don’t soak the paper, just be sure the glue is spread evenly.  Allow to dry 10 – 15 minutes.
9.  Once the glue is dry check all sides of the box and lid. You may have to trim away excess paper so that the comic strip is even with the lid and box.
10.  Brush on 3 – 4 more coats of glue, allowing glue to dry between each coat.  About 10 – 15 minutes drying time between coats.
11.  After your last coat of glue allow the frame to dry for an hour.
12.  Spray on acrylic finish.  This is a job for adults to do outdoors or in a well ventilated area.  If you’re sensitive to chemicals wear a mask when applying the acrylic finish, it has a very strong smell and can’t be healthy.  Allow to dry at least an hour before inserting your photo.  We let ours dry overnight.
Fill box with what ever you want or nothing at all, the boxes make great storage for cufflinks, coins, and other small stuff.
Comic Strip Frames