Easy Family Meals and Summer Treats!

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Nestle Americana Summer

The weather is finally starting to warm up a little bit here in Maryland, and our family is taking advantage of every beautiful day by spending as much time outside as possible!  We’ve been taking walks, playing soccer, heading to the playground, and doing Little Crafter’s favorite thing, mini-golf.  All of which is making us look forward to lots of outdoor summer fun.  Nothing says “American Summer” to me like having friends over for dinner in the backyard and then just chatting and letting the kiddos play until the sun goes down.  I mean, who doesn’t love easy family meals and summer treats?!  With the help of Stouffer’s, Edy’s, and Wonka Peel-a-Pop, we can get a head start on summer fun a few months early.

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When it comes to hostessing, I absolutely love opening up our home {and our yard} to our friends and family, but I don’t want to have to spend all day working in the kitchen to make a complicated meal.  You all know that cooking isn’t my forte, so I’m always on the lookout for quick and easy meals that are also delicious.  That’s why I’m excited about the Stouffer’s Skillets I found in the freezer section of our local Walmart.  They have fresh, flash frozen vegetables, the protein is included already, and there are no preservatives.  Plus, the best part is, the Garlic Chicken one I bought is ready in just 11 minutes!

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Honestly, I was a little skeptical of how it would taste because it was so darn easy…just open the bag, put it in a skillet, and cook it {on high for 3 minutes, then on medium high for 8 more}.  But, boy was I impressed!  It was delicious!  The chicken was tender, the vegetables tasted fresh, and the garlic sauce was really good!  I totally went back for seconds.

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Every summer picnic needs some frozen sweet treats, right?  So, after the meal, I brought out two options; Edy’s Outshine Fruit & Veggie Bars in Peach Mango flavor, and some Vanilla Grape Wonka Peel-a-Pop Frozen Dessert Treats.

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Little Crafter and his buddy I-Man went for the Peach Mango bars while Rosie-Girl chose to experiment with the Peel-a-Pop.  She was totally fascinated by the way you could peel back the grape part to reveal the vanilla center.

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I-Man loved his Edy’s Outshine bar…

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…but he was also jealous of his sister’s treat and demanded one for each hand.  Apparently both of them are I-Man tested, I-Man approved.

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We had a fun evening with our friends and the kids did what kids do best…play!  And if you can play and eat popsicles at the same time, what could be better?

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Even the grownups joined in the fun!  Hi, Uncle Matt!

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What about you? Are you planning on some all-American backyard get-togethers with your friends this summer?  If so, these are some great easy meals and frozen treats to serve!  Also, to add an extra special personal touch to your summer party, here’s a super quick project for you…Stenciled Americana Napkins you can use while you enjoy the food!

Stenciled Americana Napkins

TIME REQUIRED: 10 minutes
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: easy
SPECIAL TOOLS/SKILLS: none

Materials:

- white cloth napkins
- star stencils {mine are Handmade Charlotte}
- red and blue fabric paint
- spouncers {small round sponge brushes}

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It’s always good to prep your napkins by washing them first.  Then, place your stencil on top of the napkin and use the small sponge brush to apply paint inside the cut-out areas.  Less is more; if you use too much paint, it’s more likely to ooze under the stencil and distort your design.  If your stencil is smaller than the length of the napkin, carefully pick it up and move it, repeating the process until the entire side of the napkin is complete.

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Once your paint is dry, the napkins are ready to use!

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If you like, you can add a little pizazz by using some clear glitter fabric paint in the area around the stars.  It’ll sparkle in the sunlight, which is always fun!

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What do you think?  Are you ready for summer yet?!

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7 comments on Easy Family Meals and Summer Treats!

  1. Marilyn
    April 25, 2014 at 8:04 AM (4 months ago)

    My guys LOVE popsicles and those peel a pops looks so fun. I LOVE your napkins….they would be GREAT for a 4th of July cook-out!
    Marilyn recently posted…Heart Healthy, Low Sodium Soft ButterMy Profile

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