Jul 182014

Block Party Blog Hop Button

Thanks for stopping by! I’m participating in Week #2 of the Feature Friday Block Party Blog Hop, which is co-hosted this week with author MJ Schiller. You can #FF us on Twitter with @JolanaMalkston and @MJSchiller. I’ve brought Old Settlers’ Baked Beans to the party – Enjoy!

Baked Beans


1 pound of bacon, cut up
1 pound of lean ground beef
1 large onion, chopped (1 cup)
2/3 cup of brown sugar
¼ cup catsup
¼ cup BBQ sauce (any brand)
2 Tb. prepared mustard (spicy brown)
1 Tb. apple cider vinegar
2 Tb. molasses
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
1 1-pound can dark red kidney beans, drained
1 1-pound can butter beans, drained
2 1-pound cans pork and beans


Brown the bacon and remove from the pan with a slotted spoon.  Sauté the onions in the bacon grease until translucent and then remove with a slotted spoon and add to the bacon pieces.  Drain drippings from the pan; blot with a paper towel if necessary. Brown the ground beef, removing the fat as it cooks out.  Mix all the ingredients together, adding the beans last.  Pour the mixture into a large casserole dish or 9” x 13” baking pan.  Bake uncovered at 350° for one hour.

Serious Whimsy

The Camp Grandma Chronicles

Camp Grandma II is over. The campers, namely three of my grandchildren, have gone home. The house is now as quiet as the eye of a storm after the worst passed over. Macho Guy likes it that way.

For five days, I managed to keep up with a three-year-old, a five-year-old, and a seven-year-old. What little energy I have left, I’m using to write this post.

Oh. I must have dozed off for a bit. Where was I?

Right. Camp Grandma. We swam in our lake, we fished, we built sandcastles, we did arts and crafts, we read stories, we played games on Grandma’s Wii, and we had two movie and popcorn nights.

Macho Guy and I took our three little campers on a field trip on one of the five camp days. We visited a dairy farm to watch automated cow milking, we went to a cider mill that had a children’s playground, and we went to a local ice cream shop for a treat. The little campers had a blast jumping on a bounce pillow at the playground, but the highlight of the day was when they watched one of the dairy cows poop. The cow’s hind end was turned toward us, so the campers had an unobstructed view of the massive amount of poop exiting the cow’s derriere. Macho Guy explained that the poop was called cow pie. They giggled and pointed, and they went into hysterics every time Macho Guy said cow pie and I said poop. Kids. The things that amuse them. Seriously.

A few years earlier, during the first Camp Grandma, I had only two campers to stay ahead of—a two-year-old and a four-year-old. They visited after their new baby brother was born. Their harried mom and dad told them they were going on vacation by themselves to Camp Grandma on the Lake.

Yay! They were so excited they couldn’t wait to leave home. They woke their dad at six in the morning on the day of departure. Daddy opened his eyes, astonished to see that the four-year-old had dressed his two-year-old brother and had already filled both their little backpacks with their favorite toys. Nope, they weren’t too anxious to go on vacation to Camp Grandma.

They were pretty well behaved most of the time, but our camping fun was interrupted once by some very naughty hijinks. I told the boys they couldn’t do anything at Camp Grandma that they weren’t allowed to do back home. The four-year-old, who may someday have a successful career in politics, assured me without batting an eye that their parents had no rules.

No rules. Sure. Uh-Huh. I managed to keep a straight face and told him that Grandma did have rules and that Grandma expected them to obey those rules—or else.

Shortly after Camp Grandma was over and the boys were once again at home with their mom and dad, I got a phone call from their dad. He was finding it hard to keep from laughing. It seemed the boys got into trouble and the four-year-old made an interesting claim when his mom and dad disciplined him. He told them that he and his brother didn’t want to live with them anymore. They wanted to live with Grandma. When asked why, the little scamp said, “Because Grandma doesn’t have any rules.”

I laughed so hard I almost dropped the phone. That little stinker! It didn’t take him long to learn how to play one against the other.

Look out, Washington, DC; here he comes—for sure.

Let’s go see what everyone else brought!

  4 Responses to “Feature Friday Block Party Blog Hop – Week 2!”

  1. That recipe sounds great. I’m going to try it soon. LOL at the reflections on Camp Grandma. Hope you’re not still dozing off. 🙂

    • Camp Grandma was fun but exhausting. Kids have so much energy at that age. Keeping up is a challenge. 🙂

      Not to be sexist, but that bean recipe is a real man pleaser. The guys in my family always beg for them whenever we have a family potluck dinner. Enjoy!

  2. I love the young kids. They have a way of saying things with honesty because they don’t understand the nuances of language. It sounds like you had a wonderful time and Camp Grandma was a success! I am sure you will have them back again next year!

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