Thankful for Cheers – Recipe: Turkey Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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We have this little tradition in our house.  When we are having a fancy family dinner for Valentine’s Day, Christmas, New Year’s Day, Easter, Birthdays, etc., we let everyone have sparkling grape juice out of real wine or champagne glasses.  We started the tradition a few years ago without a real thought about where it would lead us.

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Fast forward to present day.  It is now a nightly tradition.  Ethan takes it upon himself to make sure that a dinner does not pass us by without us doing a “cheers”.  And, we have a big table.  But, that does not stop him.  Sean and I have to make sure that everyone’s cup touches everyone’s cup.  If someone has not “cheered”, Ethan will notice, get up, and go to that person or insist that they come to him.

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We love it.  It kind of just started out slowly and has progressed into this wonderful thing that everyone enjoys each night.  Sometimes Ethan will even do it when we are not at home. I am sure that other people wonder what we are doing.  Just having a proper meal, of course.

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I am thankful for the little things.  I am thankful that what started out as something little done to celebrate something big has now turned into something big to celebrate something little.  I love that we are able to sit back each night, whether we are having a fancy meal or simple grilled cheese sandwiches, and reflect on the day, our family, and the joy that comes with celebrating life, through the eyes of our children.

Turkey Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Turkey Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Ingredients

Honey Mustard Dressing

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons mustard

1 tablespoon Karo syrup

1 tablespoon honey

Sandwich Fixings

Sliced sourdough bread

Spreadable butter

Turkey

Swiss cheese

Cheddar cheese

Leftover cranberry sauce

Instructions

    Preparing the honey mustard
  1. Mix the mayonnaise and mustard together.
  2. Add the Karo and honey, and whisk together.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Preparing the Sandwich
  5. Heat large skillet over medium heat.
  6. Using a large work area, spread butter on each slice of sourdough bread (depending on how many slices that you need for your family).
  7. Spread honey mustard on the other side of one slice (repeating as you go), and place the bread, butter side down, on the skillet.
  8. Top with Swiss cheese, turkey, cranberry sauce, and cheddar cheese.
  9. Add another slice of bread, butter side up, to the top of the cheddar cheese.
  10. Cook for about 3-5 minutes, and then flip to the other side.
  11. Cook for another 5 minutes.
  12. Repeat with all sandwiches, cooking as many at a time as your skillet will allow.
  13. Slice in half and serve with extra honey mustard and/or cranberry sauce.
http://cookingformykids.com/2011/11/23/thankful-for-cheers-recipe-turkey-grilled-cheese-sandwich/

Cheers!

Thankful for My Husband – Recipe: Turkey Sandwich Roll

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I am thankful for my husband every single day.  During thankful week, as I sit and reflect on all of the things that I am thankful for about him, the number one thing is that he allows me to be a stay-at-home mom.

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You see, I was supposed to go back to work when Gabriel was 3-months old.  I had a really good job, and we had thought that I would just return to it.  We had thought that it would be easy.  That is, until Sean found me in the nursery crying when Gabriel was 6-weeks old.  I was having a panic attack because I knew that my time at home with him was half-way over.

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And, do you know what he did?  He hugged me and told me that we would make it work.  He told me that I could quit my job and stay at home to be a full-time mom.  He made my dreams come true, and I am so thankful to him for that.  We knew that we would make financial sacrifices along the way, but we never looked at it like that.  We never thought in terms of what we were giving up.  We only focused on what all we were gaining.  To be available to and for my children at a moment’s notice is a gift that my husband gave to me.  So, often, when he asks me what he can get me for my birthday, Christmas, etc., I tell him that he has already given me the best gift in the world.  Because, he has.

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Another reason that I am thankful for my sweet husband is because he will try anything that I cook, even when it is not his favorite thing.  And, I love it when he smiles his warm smile of appreciation and thanks for me the meal, even when it is something, like sandwiches made out of leftovers, that is not necessarily his favorite things. I appreciate him for that. I love that I can experiment with food, knowing that I will always have an eager, loving audience. And, I truly love it when he is happily surprised when something as simple as a roll and some leftover turkey turns into a really good meal.

Turkey Sandwich Roll

Turkey Sandwich Roll

Ingredients

Honey Mustard Dressing

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons mustard

1 tablespoon Karo syrup

1 tablespoon honey

Sandwiches

Sliders or rolls

Turkey, sliced

Swiss cheese

Prepared honey mustard

Instructions

    Preparing the honey mustard
  1. Mix the mayonnaise and mustard together.
  2. Add the Karo and honey, and whisk together.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Preparing the sandwiches
  5. Preheat the oven to 350.
  6. Slice open the rolls.
  7. Spread each side with a thin layer of the honey mustard dressing.
  8. Place turkey and cheese on one side of the roll.
  9. Top with the other half of the roll.
  10. Place in the preheated oven, and bake for 10-15 minutes.
  11. Serve with extra honey mustard for dipping and/or cranberry sauce.
http://cookingformykids.com/2011/11/22/thankful-for-my-husband-recipe-turkey-sandwich-roll/

It takes a very special man to show his wife such love and appreciation, while simultaneously giving her the gift of a lifetime – that of being a mom. Thank you, Sean! I love you!

The Things That Matter – Recipe: Meatball Sliders

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As I sit here with my littles playing in the other room, I cannot help but think of the things that really matter in life.  Yes, we often get caught up with the details, especially at this time of the year, planning how to make each day special and memorable.  And, believe me, I do the same thing…because it does matter.

But, in reality, what always matters the most to me are my children, my family.  I have known the fear of watching a child suffer, not knowing what the outcome would be.  And, while we are not exactly at that same place right now, there are still a lot of unknowns that cause our hearts to sink at times.

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As I was pulling up to Dell Children’s Hospital this morning, with Ethan smiling happily in the back seat, my heart automatically started racing.   In the past, when I have pulled into the same parking lot, it has not been for good reasons – surgery, a trip to the emergency room post-surgery, genetic specialists, and possible seizure evaluation. And, to make matters worse, the last time I was there, my van got broken into while we were inside.  Nope, the memories are not exactly good ones….hence the reason for the racing heart.

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But, you know what?  Today went smoothly, and Ethan was a champ.  Ethan’s swallow study went great, and it showed that he is not having any problems swallowing.  The great news is that we can rule swallowing out as a reason for his choking.  Yes, it still leaves us with unknowns, but that is okay.  Because, it is something else that we were able to check off of our list.

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And, to top it all off, we met a wonderful speech therapist who truly did go above and beyond her call of duty for that moment.  She spent an extra 15-20 minutes with us, doing a brief evaluation of Ethan.  She was impressed with his receptive verbal skills, and she had fun getting Ethan to do little activities for her.  She was charmed by his smile…just as we all are.  She recommended some additional things that got our wheels turning.  We definitely do not have all…or probably even half…of the answers yet. But, we have another place to look.  And, for that, we are thankful.

Yes, I went through a moment of brief frustration that we had not been given some of this information sooner.  But, then I decided that I simply had to see the unicorns and rainbows in it all.  That speech therapist was placed in our path today for a reason.  She spent the extra time with us for a reason.  And, I choose to believe that the reasons are some form of divine intervention, where these people, these events, are put into our path to help us know which directions to take.  Because, even though the journey is sometimes rocky with a lot of twists and turns, we have always found the signs that point us in the right direction.

There are so many things that matter, and that list of things is different for each person, for each family.  For me, today, the things that really matter are health, happiness, and family.  But, there are things that go along with that – food, celebrations, holidays, and memories.  They all go together to create the big, happy family picture.

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I made these meatball sliders this weekend, and they were a hit.  I wanted to have something ready when we got home from our soccer game so that we could sit down as a family and watch the football game.  I loved that my backdoor was a revolving door of children, nieces, and parents.  I have always wanted our house to be a home, a place where everyone feels welcome, because, to me, that is one of the things that really matters.

Meatball Sliders

Ingredients

3 pounds hamburger meat

2 15 ounce cans tomato sauce

1 6 ounce can tomato paste

8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

2 teaspoons salt, divided

2 teaspoons ground black pepper, divided

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon sugar

Slider rolls

Pepperoncini peppers

Parmesan cheese, optional

Instructions

  1. Mix together the hamburger meat, cheese, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon of pepper. Form into 2-inch balls.
  2. Heat large frying pan over medium heat. Add the meatballs, one at a time.
  3. Fry for about 6-8 minutes, and then turn to fry on the other side for 6-8 minutes.
  4. Drain grease and reduce heat to low.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix together the tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, onion powder and Italian seasoning.
  6. Pour the sauce mixture over the meatballs, and simmer on low for 15-20 minutes.
  7. Place 1 meatball inside of a slider roll, and top with pepperoncini peppers and Parmesan cheese.
http://cookingformykids.com/2011/10/18/recipe-meatball-sliders/

Enjoy!

I have shared this recipe at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage and  The King’s Court.