Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Lemon Ricotta Cookies

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Lemon Ricotta Cookies

These are gourmet to the ‘t’!    Very tender, delectable, a smooth burst of lemon and always a favorite.    A very important component for these cookies, is to use fresh lemons. Purchase lemons that smell  fresh  and the skin is yellow for best results.


Lemon Ricotta Cookies



2 ½ cups flour

1 tsp.baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1 stick butter, softened

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

15-16 oz. whole milk ricotta cheese

3 Tbl. fresh lemon juice

1 lemon, zested


1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

3 – 3 ½ Tbl. fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 lemon, zested

1/2 – 3 tsp. water, use as needed to thin to desired consistency


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the lemon. First wash and rinse thoroughly.Ricotta Lemon Cookies

Roll the lemon on the counter which will make it release more juice.Ricotta Lemon Cookies

Grate the outside of the lemon, but use care to just scrape the top of the yellow. The white section is called a pith  and can make it bitter.Ricotta Lemon Cookies

Cut the lemon in half and juice the lemon with a fork or other kitchen tool into a strainer to catch the seeds.Ricotta Lemon Cookies

In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl combine the butter and sugar. With an electric mixer, beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating until incororporated.

Add the ricotta cheeseRicotta Lemon CookiesAdd in the lemon juice and lemon zest. Stir in the dry ingredients.Ricotta Lemon CookiesLine 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 1 1/2 Tbl. for each cookie) onto the baking sheets.Add in the lemon juice and lemon zest.Lemon Ricotta CookiesBake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges and when you lightly touch them, they spring back.Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 10 minutes. Put cooling racks over pieces of waxed paper. Remove cookies from baking sheet and place on cooling rack. Do this until all the cookies are baked. When all the cookies are baked, prepare glaze. Glaze: Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth.Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Spoon about ½ tsp. onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to gently spread.Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Allow the glaze harden for 30-60 min. Store in an air-tight container. Ricotta Lemon Cookies

Copyright, Recipe by foodnetwork, slightly adapted by Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Rice Krispie Treats

Stay-Soft BEST Ever Rice Krispie Treats and Pops

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Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

One of the BEST things in life is a GOOD soft, tasty Rice Krispie treat! 

But it has to be soft.

Yummy marshmellowy.

A little gooey, but not real sticky or that’s just a mess.

Most important it needs to have great flavor and not be bland and tasteless.

Do these sound like your kind of perfection in a Rice Krispie Treat?

If it does, and you love them like I enjoy a really good one, then I have the perfect recipe for you!

Making these soft delicious treats in a pan to cut into the usual bar, which is great. But I have a something special for you!  It’s a simple and clever way to have fun eating them, and of course, sharing them too.

These stay-soft best ever rice krispie treats and pops are  a family favorite.  Not only because they are very inexpensive to make, they are so simple, you’ll make them up often with the kids or grand kids as a quick and easy dessert and special treat.



Stay-Soft BEST Ever Rice Krispie Treats and Pops


4 Tablespoons butter (1/2 stick)

10 oz. mini marshmellows (or large ones in a 10 oz. bag)

5  1/3 cup of rice krispie dry cereal

*Additional 1-4 Tablespoons of additional butter

Optional:  Biscuit cutter, melting chocolate buttons or chocolate chips, sprinkles, parchment paper, cellophane bags, -use the right sized cutter with the bag:), ribbon



Using some of the additional butter (1-2 Tablespoons), lightly butter either a 9″ x 13″ cake pan or a jelly roll pan that has sides; depending on how thick you want to make your treats.

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Pre-measure your rice krispie dry cereal into a bowl.

Set it aside. 

If making Pop’s lay a piece of parchment out near you, but not in your way of working.  

In a large saucepan, melt the 4 Tablespoons butter (1/2 stick) over low heat.  

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Add in the marshmallows and stir continually.

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Keep stirring until they are completely melted – being careful not to burn them.

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Remove the pan from the heat and gently stir in the rice krispie cereal.

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Folding in until it is completely covered

Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Spread the mixture into the buttered pan of your choice.  Using buttered hands (with the rest of the butter), pack it down firmly if you are going to cut out shapes.

Allow the mixture to cool completely in the pan.

Cut them into bars for the original treat.

 Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Store in an airtight container to keep them soft and perfect.



To make the POP’S, using a muffin or biscuit cutter (or anything that is round and will go through the depth of the mixture and cut)

push through to the bottom, using a firm pushing down motion.Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Take your circle out and push a craft stick into the center of one end to make a POP.

Do this with all of your POP’s until you cannot cut anymore shapes out.  

Put your melting buttons or chocolate chips into a microwavable bowl.  Heat for 30 seconds and stir.  Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Repeat this process until the chocolate is completely smooth and warmed through, but not hot.Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Dip one of the POP’s into the chocolate, helping with a spatula, spoon, or another utensil to cover up as far as you desire, and also to help scrap off the backside and make the chocolate layer more even all around.Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Cover with sprinkles (or heath bits as shown) while with chocolate is still wet on the POP. Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

Lay on the prepared parchment paper and allow the POPs to set up. Rice Krispie Treats

Easy, quick and delicious Rice Krispie Treats

To make them even more presentable for gifts, etc.  have cellophane bags that are larger than the POPs.   

Put the POP end into the bag first so the stick may sticking out of the bag; depending on the length.

Now tie with ribbons, or whatever you desire. 

Makes a great gift, take-home treat, oh there are so many uses for this scrumptious treat.  

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

10 Summer Serve and Learn Activities

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10 Summer Serve and Learn

Summer is the BEST time of the year, but sometimes it can be a challenge IF:

You are a parent

You are a caregiver

You are the older sibling babysitting younger brothers or sisters

I’m kidding…well kind of….

See, it’s about that time of the summer when ‘what are we going to do’? is heard about every 5 or 10 minutes.

And the ‘screen-time’ arguments have begun, such as: how long they get/want/deserve/need.

Have you gotten to the point yet when you think you will scream, or run far away, when you hear the words “I’m bored” one more time….

Guess what?  I have THE perfect solution!

It’s more than just keeping busy, though that is a good thing.

THIS teaches important life skills in such a fun and engaging way, they won’t even realize that they are learning and doing things that are useful and helpful!

WHAT is the key and answer here?  

It is my 10 Summer Time Serve and Learn Activities!


TELL me more!

My 10 Summer Time Serve and Learn is more than just keeping the kids out of trouble, busy and time fillers.  

These are activities that will teach them:

  • They will Learn and Practice life skills that will last their whole life.
  • How to be kind and compassionate to others.
  • Many of the activities are educational in a very entertaining way, and enjoyed so much, they will not guess at all of the lessons they are learning.
  • They will learn to interact with others, a HUGE skill that is needed today.
  • All of these activities are free or very inexpensive.
  • Provide great lasting memories of a wonderful and unique summer.
  • Help them become better for what they will accomplish as they do any or all of these Serve and Learn Activities.


HOW do you go about implementing this extraordinary much-more-than-a-boredom-buster-list-of-activities? 

1- If your children are young, you could take one activity a week, say on a given night as a planned family time, and do one idea in each of the 10 activities.

2- If your kids are older and you are trying to keep them busy so you can get some things done.  Or another concern of busy and working parents, is to find worthwhile activities that keep the older kids from so much screen time and video games.  This is a fantastic way to accomplish that purpose also.  You could have the kid(s) do everything listed in the 10 Summer Time Serve and Learn.

3- Here is where you have to decide how important this is to you, as a family and for your children/kids/teens.  I personally like a reward system that is modest and small.  We all work for something.  A paycheck, a thank you, something, until we reach the point of real charity.  But the kids are usually still growing into that.  So, may I suggest that either a vote is taken, or you give the value you are willing to pay when the designated number of Serve and Learn Activities are done. 

For example:  If you must leave older kids at home during the day, it could be very useful to consider that each day or every few days, one of the activities would be done.  Again, for example, on Tuesday, they made the Cherrio Bird Feeder together, cleaned it all up and had a good time as a family without arguments; maybe  donuts would be the reward.  

You could tell them that when all 10 Serve and Learn Activities were done, again without contention, having fun and leaving it clean, the reward could be a night of family bowling, swimming at the local pool (watch for coupons) or hiking with a picnic.  

Let us know how you chose to implement these 10 Summer Time Serve and Learn Activities by yourself, or as a family in the comments, in the Instagram feed or FB posts.  Pictures would be awesome!

I created an terrific checklist that you can download for free so you can easily keep track of each 10 Summer Time Serve and Learn Activity as it’s completed, click HERE



            10 Summer Time Serve and Learn Activities

1- It all about the BIRDS

Kids Can Serve & Care:


Kids Can Learn: We live in a beautiful and special world.  By keeping it clean we can appreciate miracles all around us even more. By feeding the birds, we can watch them close up and enjoy their amazing colors and how they fly.



2- Invite someone, or a family, over for a game night

  • Try choosing from the old fashioned games like these: 

Old Time Game of Kick The Can

How To Play Old Fashioned Hop Scotch

Make up a batch of THE BEST Homemade Bubbles

This game of 100 is AWESOME for ALL ages


Learn: Playing is important at any age and we need to make sure we take time to have some fun!

“Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.” -Mr. Rogers

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -George Bernard Shaw



3- Plant a garden or flowers 

  • With your family, or yourself, plant some vegetables or herbs to use in preparing your own food this summer.  See my post HERE for some ideas on gardening
  • Plant flowers to make your home look more attractive to you and others.  A planter or window box will make a big difference if you are limited in space or resources.

Learn:  It is incredibly empowering and therapeutic to actually plant, raise and harvest your own food and blooms.    The effort and energy put forth to teach your family this skill is some of the most well-spent and important you can do.  Again, see my post HERE




4- Visit or help someone

  • Weed the garden or flower beds, or do other yard work for someone who is unable.
  • If someone has recently had surgery, ask what you can do to help them.
  • Make posters for your local care center or facility to cheer them up. See this post HERE for ideas
  • Someone who might be overwhelmed with family or their life’s situation could use a hand. 
  • One of my amazing readers makes the baby bibs from my post to give to the new moms in her church.  You can see the easy to make tutorial HERE

Learn:  By visiting those who are elderly, have a young family, or unable to get out on their own, we are showing compassion and kindness.  Looking outside of our self to other’s needs and doing something to ease their burden are some of the most important skills we can learn, practice often to become a better person.




5- Welcome Someone To The Neighborhood, or Take A Treat to Those You Already Know

  • You will find lots of ideas of how to Welcome new neighbors to your neighborhood in THIS post.
  • THIS treat is always popular to take to anyone of any age:)
  • OR take a treat to a neighbor you want to get to know better.  This SWEET Tag HERE is one you might want to use. 


Learn: It’s hard to move to a new place and then meet people sometimes.  When we reach out to others we are making new friends as well as helping them feel comfortable in their new neighborhood.

By taking a treat to those you already know, but haven’t talked to in a while, makes your neighborhood and community stronger, you feel more included surprisingly and the friendships develop.



6- Serve At Home

  • Eat dinner together and have a conversation without technology. You’ll find the post HERE about dinner conversations, how to do them easily and with some FUN! 

Learn: Technology is a great thing, but too often it gets in the way and we don’t take the time to talk to each other, even in our own family.  This is a perfect way to learn new things about each other in a natural and creative approach.



7- Learn About Your Family 

  • I have a post on how how and why to do a Family Tree HERE
  • Get to know a family member better by visiting in person, or skype.

Learn: With your child learn who their family tree members are as they fill out one, or both of the styles of Family Tree’s in THIS POST. Fill one out yourself if you haven’t before and ask living family members in your Family Tree to share an inspiring experience they had, or one they learned a valuable lesson from that you may not have known. 

Knowing our family and their life is so important because it connects us to our past and helps us understand our self also.




8- Love the Animals

  • Shelters are in need of many supplies all the time, and have lots of animals to care for.  Did you know that some shelters have other animals besides just dogs and cats they need items for too?  See my post on Service to our local Animal Shelter HERE

Learn:  Compassion and kindness for all of God’s creatures




9- There Are Those In Need ALL year long

  • Have you ever thought of helping your local MEALS ON WHEELS?  In my area they are in need of general greeting cards all year long.  You can find our more HERE
  • Donate to a local food bank. It’s natural to think of those less fortunate at Christmas and other holidays, but the need is there all year long.  

Learn:  Serving others is how we learn about ourselves. 




10- Say Thank you!

  • We appreciate a ‘thank you’ and should express gratitude often.  But when do we actually sit down and write a note of thanks to someone?  
  • It also teaches our family members volumes we cannot speak as we act by doing.
  • See my post HERE for all the how’s, why’s, when’s and what to write in a thank you card.

Learn:  It only takes a couple of minutes to do this simple task, but the effects on us as the sender, and those who receive it are priceless.



I can’t wait to hear what you and your family are LEARNING, PRACTICING and BECOMING this summer!

Please share in the comments on in this post, on my FaceBook comments and Instagram feed, so we can learn from each other, be encouraged and get awesome ideas. 

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

EASY Way to Fill In YOUR Family Tree!

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Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

FREE Fill-In Family History Tree Templates to Download

We all need roots to feel we have a foundation to grow from.  A base, such as a solid stem or trunk, to gain strength as we face challenges in life.  Branches to reach for lofty heights and extend to do good.  Our family tree helps us individually see the many talents, abilities and life-lessons we can gain as we learn about our family.

That’s why in our Learn-Practice-Become we are filling our a Family Tree for our self.  Then with our children and grandchildren if we have them. 



Do you know many of the details about your family?

What they look like, maybe when they were younger?

Do you resemble them physically?

Do you know where they were born?


WHY is this even important? 

Because as we learn about our family, we practice one of the most important responsibilities we have. That of connecting our past to the present and the future.  It helps us become our very best as we understand more about our relationships, our culture and more about the people we are related to. 


HOW can we accomplish this, or even begin?

It’s very simple!

I have created two FREE Fill In Family History Tree templates for you to choose from so you can easily ‘see’ your family!

If you choose the template with pictures, you begin by putting in your picture, name and birth date.

Then your mom’s picture and her name and birth date.

Next your dad’s picture and his birth date.

On to your mom’s mother’s picture – which would be your grandmother’s picture and her information, and so on.

See how straightforward!

One Family Tree template includes pictures as a download, one is to be pasted in or drawn in, and both are Editable/Fill-In. 


What is the purpose of a Family Tree?

It helps us learn about those who are related to us in a visual way; putting people together like a puzzle with faces, dates and understanding how we are related.

Such as these questions: 

  • Do you know your grandparents? 
  • Do you have pictures of them?
  • What information do you have for your parents?
  • Do you know when they were born or how did they meet?
  • What are your great-grandparents like? 
  • Where they are from?

These are all important bits of information that add up and can help you become a better person and understand more about yourself.


How does filling out a Family Tree help your family? 

As your children understand their relationships with the present, they feel a foundation in their life.  They connect with the past, which most often brings a stronger identity, resulting in more self confidence and resilience in their present attitude and outlook.



 Two Easy FREE Fill-In Family Tree with or without Pictures Template

Now to choose from two different Free Family Trees that I have created for you.  Each begins with the child, to the parents and then the grandparents on both sides so it isn’t overwhelming, but gets the information started and the curiosity going.

Though it shows a child in the example, it is intended for any age, and every stage of life.


A little more before getting started of  WHY family history is so important for your kids, teens and you.

I really like these quotes to help us understand why learning about our family is worthwhile and significant:

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” —Marcus Garvey

  • Eighty families (were interviewed), including both parents and children, to see how much they knew about their own family’s history. Among the questions: Do you know where some of your grandparents grew up? Do you know the source of your name? Do you know some of the illnesses and injuries that your parents experienced when they were younger? The result? The more children knew about the previous generations of their family, the higher their self-esteem and basically, the happier they were.  (Source:


  • In the preteen years, children whose families collaboratively discuss everyday events and family history more often have higher self-esteem and stronger self-concepts. And adolescents with a stronger knowledge of family history have more robust identities, better coping skills, and lower rates of depression and anxiety. Family storytelling can help a child grow into a teen who feels connected to the important people in their life.  (Source:


  • Many people desire to know where they come from, but a sense of belonging is especially important for children and youth. A knowledge about their family history gives children of all ages a sense of their place in the world. It can also give young people something to live up to—a legacy to respect. Family history also provides an opportunity for children and teenagers to make a meaningful contribution to something bigger than themselves. This lesson provides ideas about how to involve children and youth in family history activities. Children and youth who develop an interest in family history are more likely to participate in family history throughout their lives.  You will find a great wealth of information on this site (Source: ttps://


BECOME better by actually DOING this!:)


1- THIS FREE TEMPLATE is editable and fill-in.  Simply help your child, or do it yourself, to type in the names and dates as you find them using the editable or fill-in feature.  Print it out and glue or draw in the face of the person who’s name is below the circle.  

This can also be printed and written on the lines, without using the editable or fill-in feature. 

Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

2-  THIS FREE TEMPLATE WITH PICTURES is also editable and fill-in, done with Canvait does not require a paid account to use this template. 

HERE are the instructions for this 2nd style of Family Tree 


Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

b) HERE are the very easy detailed instructions for this Free Template with Pictures, along with the Family Tree.  It includes step-by-step instructions and pictures so you can easily make this Family Tree.


c) AND you can visit my YouTube Channel HERE where I have a video titled: Family Tree Instructional Video to walk you through these instructions!

Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree instructions for anyone of all ages and stages of life


Steps To EASILY Search Your Family Tree


Step 1 –

Click HERE to go to and you will find  the area titled: FAMILY TREE


Step 2 –

Click on the title: FAMILY TREE  or HERE


Step 3 –

Type in your name and information and keep adding to the name of the nearest deceased relative.  FamilySearch will do an automatic search for the deceased person to see if that person has already been added to FamilySearch.  If they have been added previously, you just need to click “add”.  If not, you will need to create a “new” person.


Step 4 –

Once that person’s name comes up, click on that person to see information to add to it, or see what’s there!


If nothing appears then you get to start your very own Family Tree right there on Family Search if you’d like!


You can read more about Family History in my first of this series: You Learn More About Yourself By Doing This!

Another wonderful resource for Genealogy is Rachel’s beginners guide to Genealogy:


Family History is truly one of the greatest adventures of self discovery we will set out on.   

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Patrotic Beaded Flip Flops

DIY Patriotic Flip Flops

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Patrotic Beaded Flip Flops

Patrotic Beaded Flip Flops

Have you ever made DIY Beaded Flip Flops? It’s a great way to beat the heat on your feet, bring style to your outfit and celebrate all things Patriotic.  Of course you can make these any time of year, in any color, but for this tutorial, we are thinking FIREWORKS!

These really east Patriotic beaded DIY Flip Flops shout Red, White and Blue!

They are simple and freehand, so you can make a straight line, or any design you choose; meaning you can’t go wrong and will turn out fabulous.

A terrific art to try, a family activity, girls day , or youth project. Please share with us how your turned out by sending me your picture of your DIY Patriotic Flip Flops to  Now go have some FUN with these!!!

DIY Patriotic Beaded Flip Flops


A Pair of flip flops with the plastic straps

Fishing line


Beads – tip:  make sure the needle(s) will fit through the bead as you choose the beads.Flip Flops

We used regular sewing needles because they were thin enough and strong. 

You will want to double the fishing line with a length as long as you can manage. 

Better less than more because the line will tangle.Flip Flops 1To begin, tie a large knot at the end of the fishing line and bring to the outside from the inside first.Flip Flops 2Go back to the inside and and stitch a few times about 1/4″ or so apart to give it support to the knot.Flip Flops 3

Begin by stringing the first bead on the outside strap and pulling the line throughFlip Flops 4Push the needle through the strap allowing just enough room for the bead and pull throughFlip Flops 5Repeat this step with the red bead, making any design or pattern you desire.  Flip Flops 6

It can be a straight row, or zig-zag or wavy. 

The only requirement is that you have fun with it.Flip Flops 7When you reach the end of the thread, tie if off by making a loop…Flip Flops 8Take your needle through the loopFlip Flops 9


And pull the thread to form a knot. 

Do a few zig-zag stitches through a previous hole used for a bead to make a strong knot.Flip Flops 10At the middle point, stay behind the post with your needle as shown here. 

It will look nicer and it’s too difficult to poke through anyway.Flip Flops 11Continue beading until both straps are decorated to your creative flair.Flip Flops 12

Flip Flops 13

And now you have a unique and stylish pair of flip flops!

Flip Flops 14

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014, 2018

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.


Patriotic Shirt

DIY Fireworks Shirt

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Patriotic Shirt

Tie Dye Firework Patriotic Shirt

This DIY Fireworks Shirt is an easy, quick and fun way to make your own Patriotic shirt.

With your own homemade DIY Fireworks Shirt, you’ll look Patriotic on the 4th of July. 

Because you’ll be wearing Red, White and Blue in an imaginative and original way, since YOU designed it!  

You can customized this  DIY Fireworks Shirt to your own personality.  The best part is, this craft does not require artistic ability, and it will turn out perfect!

It’s a great project for teens or a youth activity.

Get your family together so they can express them self in art, while having a fabulous time together.  You’ll also stand out in the crowds (and easy to spot each other which is a nice bonus) while enjoying the celebrations, parades, fireworks and all we have with our blessed freedoms.  

DIY Patriotic Firework Shirt


Sharpie Markers

Spray bottle

Rubbing Alcohol

Cotton t-shirt

Plastic, cookie sheet, cutting board, anything to put between the front and back of the shirt so it does not bleed through Patriotic Shirt 1


Pour the rubbing alcohol into the spray bottle, do not dilute

Place your t-shirt on a flat surface.

Tuck the plastic, cutting board, whatever you are using in between the front and back of the shirt to prevent bleeding through

With any color of sharpie marker you desire begin to make designs

Patriotic Shirt 2


Continue all across the t-shirt in the pattern of your choice. Patriotic Shirt 3

When you are finished with your masterpiece,  spray the ink designs with the rubbing alcohol to make it ‘bleed and run’Patriotic Shirt 4Continue until you are happy with the resultsPatriotic Shirt 5ALLOW TO DRY FOR at least 1 hour.

When the shirt is COMPLETELY dry, put in the dryer for 15 minutes to set. 

We have not had a problem with the ink coming off onto other clothing in the wash, but test for your own results.

Carrie Groneman Pattern, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014, 2018

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Caring for Pets, Dogs, in the Summer

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Summer Pet Care 1

Summer Pet care

I’s all about our pets and we have some tips and advice for the dog and a bit about cats to keep them safe this summer.

My daughter-in-law Ashley, who has worked as a veterinarian tech, and LOVES animals, was so kind to prepare this article for us. Thanks Ash!

   Updated with even more very useful information.  Please check with your veterinarian about any questions concerning this post.

 Summer Pet Care

4th of July Pet Safety

More pets are lost on July 4th than on any other day. Here are some tips to help keep your pet safe:

  • Be sure your pet is wearing an up-to-date ID tag on its collar at all times.
  • Take a current photo of your pet, just in case you need to locate your animal.
  • Exercise your dog early in the day before the celebrations and parties begin. This will cause the dog to be tired, calm and easier to relax during the noise and commotion that comes with this holiday.
  • Keep fireworks and sparklers away from all pets!!!
  • During cookouts, ask guests to play with pets away from bbq flames.

If your pet is afraid of loud noises:

  • Play a cd or the radio with soft music to drown out the sounds of the fireworks
  • If possible, keep the pet in the basement where the noises cannot penetrate the area as well.
  • Ask your veterinarian for a tranquilizer to help calm your pet if it is severely anxious.
  • Give your pet distractions, such as a frozen treat or chew bone.


Tips and Suggestions

Pets can easily get over heated, some breeds more susceptible to heat related problems such as very thick coated cats and dogs (ex: Akitas & Malamutes – long haired cats & dogs) and those with flat faces (boxers, pugs, Persian cats).

  • Leaving a pet in a car during the heat, even with the windows cracked can be dangerous. Even when it is 70-80 degrees outside, it can quickly rise to 100 degrees in the vehicle. Leaving a pet in a car, even for a few minutes can be dangerous for the animal.
  • Use caution when taking your dog while exercising because it is closer to the ground and will get heated much more quickly then you will.
  • To help with the heat, if you have a thick coated pet, trimming its coat will help. However, avoid going to short as the layers in their coat protect them from heat and sunburn.
  • When using bug spray for pets, do not use anything with DEET in it. There are all natural ones, like Burt’s Bee’s (which is what I use for my pups) and some made specially for pets, found at most pet store.
  • For sun screen, find one that does NOT contain Zinc Oxide, it is toxic to animals. Baby Sun screens, and animal specific usually do not have Zinc Oxide.
  • It’s not a good idea to shave your pets hair very short. The hair acts like a barrier to protect again the Sun’s rays. Try thinning your pets hair, by brushing with a hair thinning brush like the Furminato
  • Heart Worms have been an increasing issue passed along to dogs by mosquitoes. Ask your vet for more information and preventative measures
  • When using insecticides and pesticides make sure these are safe for use around pets; otherwise they can be lethal to animals.
  • Check often to make sure your pet has plenty of clean water. When traveling with your pet there are many options for water such as special water bottles to spill-proof water bowls.
  • To cool down your pup of any age, put cool water in a small wading pool and be sure to keep enough water for the dog.
  • When is hot too hot?

IMG_66196259441554_resized (3)

How to tell if your pet is suffering from heat stroke:

Early stages:

  • Heavy panting
  • Rapid breathing
  • Excessive breathing
  • Bright red gums & tongue
  • Hard time keeping balance
  • If your pet has these symptoms and you cannot cool down your pet and advanced signs of heat stroke begin to become apparent, immediately go to the veterinarian.

Advanced stages:

  • White or blue gums
  • Lethargic and unwilling to move
  • Uncontrollable urination or defecation
  • Labored, noisy breathing
  • Shock

If your dog or cat shows any of the signs above, immediately try to cool them down by:

  • Apply rubbing alcohol to paws
  • Apply ice packs to groin area
  • Pour cool water on them
  • Give it ice chips and small amounts of water
  • Offer Pedialyte to restore electrolytes

***One way to tell if an animal is dehydrating is to pinch the skin on the back of its neck and pull up and let go. If it snaps back into place your pet is fine. If it is slow to go back in place, your pet is dehydrating. If the skin does not go back down, or takes a long time, your pet is severely dehydrated and should be taken to a veterinarian immediately.

If you happen to see a pet left in a car when it is hot outside options are:

  • Take note of the vehicle’s make, model and license plate. Ask the store manager or security
  • Help you locate the owner of the car.
  • In many states it is against the law to leave an animal in a hot car. If you live in an area with this law, call animal control or law enforcement.
  • Keep an eye on the pet in the vehicle until help or the owner arrives.

Traveling with pets:

  • Take plenty of water while traveling or hiking.
  • Pack ‘poop’ bags and use them. Be a responsible pet owner.
  • Do your homework and make sure that the location you want to take your pet is a pet-friendly place. Most hiking trails require that your dog is on a leash.
  • A retractable leash allows your dog plenty of room to play, while allowing a tight rein when needed.
  • Take along a dog toy, that way if you wear out before the dog does, you can sit, throw the toy for them to fetch.
  • If hiking or going to a lake, your dog will most likely be very dirty or wet; pack towels to cover your seats for the ride home.
  • If you take your dog on a hike or in the open, there is the potential for an encounter with a rodent or wild animal which could pose potential threat of disease such as rabies. Make sure your pet is up to date on its vaccines.
  • There is a vaccine to help protect against rattle snake venom. It does not stop the venom, but slows it down enough that you have more time to get your pet into the vet.

Taking your dog to the park:

  • Treat this activity with your dog, just as you would a child and do not take eyes off them. Though you may know the temperament of your own pet, you do not know that of other dogs.
  • Make sure your dog is healthy and up to date on vaccines. It only takes one sick puppy for others to catch it. For instance Parvo is a highly contagious and deadly disease that can easily be spread throughout the dog community. It mostly affects young puppies and unvaccinated dogs. It is wise to avoid places like dog parks and pet shops until your dog has been vaccinated at least twice for the Parvo disease. Parvo can live in the soil for many years, making it an easy disease to spread from dog to dog.
  • Please clean up after your dog!!! Keep ‘poop’ bags in your car or with you if walking.
  • Many weeds can also harm your dog, such as fox tails which imbed themselves in a dogs ears, eyes, armpits and toes. Ask your veterinarian which plants and weeds to be cautious of in your area and what to look for if your pet is exposed.

 The Yellow Dog Project

If you own a dog that ‘needs their own space’ while out with other dogs, The Yellow Dog Project is the solution! The concept is this: if you see a dog with a yellow ribbon tied to its leash or collar this signals to give the dog space and not to approach the animal.

Possible reasons a dog needs space:

  • Health issues
  • Elderly
  • Dog in training
  • Animal in rehabilitation from surgery
  • Dog is frightened/aggressive toward other dogs or certain types of people (example: children)

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Meals on Wheels

Cards To Help Meals On Wheels Recipients

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Meals on Wheels


Cards To Help the Recipients of The Meals On Wheels Program is an incredible way to spend a few minutes of your time!

Sometimes we want to help, but wonder what can we do?

We may not have a lot of money to help, but still want to do something, right?

Maybe we don’t have the freedom to go to places to serve, but still want to make an impact, is that possible?

YES to all of these with if you have a couple of minutes here and there, can color and have access to a printer, or have some cards that will work.



First, what is this Meals On Wheels Program? 

Meals on Wheels is a national (USA) organization that has the focus of:

  • Serving the rapidly growing elderly population
  • Relieving the threat of isolation, hunger and limited mobility to those in need. 

It works like this:  Cities or counties are assigned a local office, which arranges for meals to be delivered to the home bound, elderly, or anyone who may need assistance in this manner. 

In most areas, a hot meal is delivered for lunch, with a sack-lunch type of meal being left for dinner. 

As I said, my friends and their family’s were thrilled with this service due to the situation they were in.

After more research, I found that many of the recipients of these meals live alone, and far too often, the only contact with people they have, are the drivers or deliverers of these meals during the week!  That’s so sad!

What can be done to help these people who are alone and with no one?

To address the isolation and loneliness felt by the many who receive these meals, greeting cards are delivered with the meals in my area.


Why color or purchase a card?

Because a card would mean some form of contact from another person who took the time to care. It would show that another human being actually put pen to paper and made time in their day for them!

WE could bring a smile, some comfort and encourage another person with just a little bit of effort.

If you’d like to make a difference for good and help out with Cards for Meals on Wheels, here’s how to start.

First off, it’s really EASY to do this.


HOW can WE get involved?

I wanted to help us all have some fun with these Cards for Meals on Wheels, as well as make them special. 

1- I had some great cards created just for you, that I am offering for free.

2- You can easily download them, simply print them off and color-in the cards for this Meals on Wheels project.

3- Your kids can be involved in a way they would look forward to serving a total stranger. You could get some friends together and make or color in the cards. You can relax and color in a card or two while watching tv; the possibilities are endless.

4- The point is, print off as many of the Cards for Meals on Wheels I have provided for you at your local copy store as you’d like to use, or do it on your home printer, and have some FUN!


These are the Cards for Meals on Wheels I had made just for you, so you can easily participate in this very worthwhile project.

HELLO Birdie card is HERE


KEEP SMILING Hot Air Balloon card is  HERE

THINKING OF YOU Mandela style card is HERE 


Now, if you’d rather purchase cards to write in, I really LIKE THESE  and they’d be perfect for this purpose.



However, if you want to make your own cards, this is the information you will need:

  • Cards must be generic for a man or woman.
  • No need for envelope
  • Cards should be 6″x8″ or smaller
  • Cards can be simple or ornate
  • Cards are not to be holiday or special occasion oriented, making them usable all year long
  • Purchased ‘thinking of you’ cards would be perfect
  • Do NOT personalize it in any form, such as happy birthday or themed in any way – such as holiday, etc.



What do I write inside the Cards for Meals on Wheels?

Here are some ideas of what can be written inside the card after it is colored in, or in a purchased one:

  • Thinking of You
  • Have a nice day
  • Keep that Awesome Smile Showing
  • Stopping by with a friendly hello from me to you
  • Bringing a Smile by to share with you today
  • Hope it’s wonderful in your corner of the world

Do not sign it please.  



What do I do with the Cards for Meals on Wheels after I make them?

  • Send cards to me if you do not have a Meals on Wheels office close by, or it is not convenient, or they are not asking for cards. 
  • Send cards directly to the Davis County Meals on Wheels office – information below
  • Send them to your own Meals on  Wheels agency -you will want to contact them first to make sure they are also in need of these cards.



I hope you, your family, friends, neighbors, church group, youth group, will get together and color up some cards.   You can see how I put this together for a neighborhood get-together and it turned out great.  Stan and I also colored some at home, and also at an outdoor free concert in the park:)  It’s fun and relaxing to serve while enjoying a bit of childhood or hobby. 

It’s a great way to learn how to think of others.  Practice being kind to those you do not know.  and become a better person as nothing is expected in return, except the gratification of bringing happiness to another.  

Office Manager
North Davis Senior Activity Center
Wendy 801-525-5080
Davis County Health Department

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today