Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Cheesy Potato Casserole (Funeral Potatoes)

One of my favorite dishes to have for Easter dinner is this cheesy potato casserole - more commonly known around Utah as "funeral potatoes". They get that name from being served at almost always every funeral luncheon because they are easy to make, and can easily serve a crowd. So, even though these cheesy potato goodness have the reputation for being funeral-only, they are amazing when paired with with ham at Easter dinner.

Funeral potatoes are generally pretty inexpensive to make, but I found that using an app called Favado, a grocery app that shows you what is on sale at your local grocery store, helped me save big on all the items on my Easter shopping list, like ham, potatoes, eggs for dying, Easter candy, and more!

Cheesy Potato Casserole (Funeral Potatoes) at artsyfartsymama.com #Easterrecipes #easyrecipe #Utah

Ingredients:
1 (32 ounce) package frozen shredded potatoes, thawed OR 4 lbs potatoes, cooked and shredded
2 (10 ounce) cans cream of chicken (or mushroom) soup
1 cup sour cream
2 1/2 cups cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons butter, melted
salt and pepper
Topping:
1 1/2 cups corn flakes
2 tablespoons melted butter

Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, mix together cream of chicken/mushroom soup, sour cream, cheese, butter, and a bit of salt and pepper.
  2. Stir in potatoes, and carefully mix until everything is combined. Keep in mind that if you mix the thawed potatoes too much, you'll just end up with a sort of mashed potato! Not as good, I promise!
  3. Spray a 9x13 baking pan with cooking spray, and pour the potato mixture in evenly.
  4. Pour corn flakes into a gallon size Ziploc bag, and crush the flakes with a rolling pin.
  5. Pour the flake crumbs into a small bowl and add melted butter. Stir until all the crumbs are coated.
  6. Sprinkle corn flake mixture over the top of the potatoes.
  7. Cover the pan with foil and bake at 350ยบ for 45 minutes. Uncover, then bake another 10-15 minutes until hot and bubbly. 

When you're out shopping this week for Easter, remember to download Favado to save big on your ham, your eggs to color, and other delicious ingredients you'll need for your Easter dinner! I'm also sharing an Easter savings printable full of Easter recipes from some of your favorite bloggers and a helpful grocery list:

eggs-cellent-easter-savings-recipes

This post is sponsored by Favado. As always, all opinions are my own.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Easter Word Set

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

I'm always so excited to share these seasonal word sets from Wood Creations with you! I had a lot of fun putting this Easter Wood Set together. There are a lot of cute Easter and Spring sets available at Wood Creations, so go check them out if you have a minute.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

Every set from Wood Creations arrives unfinished, and needs a little sanding around the edges. After some sanding, the letters were ready to be painted, and the bunny had some extra pieces to attach later.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

I used DecoArt Americana Acrylic paints on the entire set. Each letter & piece needed 2-3 coats of paint each. Any kind of brush will work fine, but I always go with the cheap sponge brushes and haven't had a problem yet! Let each coat dry completely before adding another coat, and let the last coat dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

Now for my personal favorite part - adding the glitter!! All you need is some Mod Podge (any kind will do) and fine glitter. I really love the Recollections brand (you can find it at Michaels), but any fine glitter will do the job. Keep in mind that paint can show through the glitter sometimes, so try to find a shade of glitter that closely matches your paint colors.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

Place the letter on top of a scrap piece of paper. Then, paint a medium coat of Mod Podge evenly over the front of the letter. Pour your glitter over the entire letter, making sure that all the Mod Podge is covered. Wait a minute or two, and gently tap the glitter on top of the letter to press it down into the Mod Podge. By doing this, I've found to get a little better coverage.

Carefully stand the letter up and tap it on the paper to remove any excess glitter. Repeat for all the other letters. Once you're done, let the letters dry for a few hours. Then, you can spray the fronts of all the letters with a coat or two of clear spray paint to seal the glitter on. Now your glitter shouldn't shed all over everything!!

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

For the rabbit, I painted the entire rabbit with white paint and let dry. Then, I traced the body area onto a piece of polka dot scrapbook paper and cut to fit the rabbit. Paint a light coat of Mod Podge on the rabbit's body and lay the paper on top. Press all over the paper to make sure it sticks and that there aren't any bubbles. You can also add a layer of Mod Podge on top to seal & protect the paper.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

Paint and glitter the other rabbit pieces (collar and carrots) and glue them on with hot glue or E6000. Let the rabbit sit undisturbed until you are sure everything is dry. I also painted a triangle nose and inside the ears with Mod Podge and poured on some light pink glitter. Then, I used a Sharpie to add some simple eyes.

Easter Word Set at artsyfartsymama.com #Easter

Now the Easter letter set is complete and ready to put on display!! I absolutely love this set and can't wait to make some more last-minute Easter projects!


Monday, April 14, 2014

Family Game Night on a Budget

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Tony’s Pizza, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #tonyspizzeria http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV.

We are moving into a new home, so needless to say money is pretty tight. Now, just because we can't spend much money doesn't mean we still can't have fun! We just have to get a little more creative. Family game night has always been something we love doing together, and it that's an activity that costs almost nothing and always makes great memories.

Family Game Night on a Budget with Tony's Pizza #pmedia #tonyspizzeria

Game night just isn't game night without food! Snacks and drinks are a must-have and you can find your favorites for pretty cheap anywhere you go, but finding dinner is usually the tricky part. Pizza is always a favorite at our house, and it can really get costly pretty quick if you aren't careful.

Save 75¢ off two Tony's Pizzas for your Family Game Night on a Budget! #pmedia #tonyspizzeria

Luckily, Coupons.com has an offer on Tony's Pizza to save you even more! You can get 75¢ off two Tony's Pizzas (11.04 oz or larger) found in the Walmart frozen aisle (while supplies last).

We were pleasantly surprised by the Tony's Pizzas. Usually frozen pizza has a reputation of tasting like cardboard. We tried both the Meat-Trio Pizza and the Pepperoni Pizzas, and were impressed with the crispier, crunchier crust, and noticed there were a lot more toppings to give it a great flavor that the whole family loved!

Coming up with game ideas is probably the most challenging part of putting a family game night together. You'll need a few different options to choose from, and you might even need to think about purchasing a game or two if you don't own any. Here are a few of my go-to family game night suggestions:

1. FREE Games: Kick back and have game night like you did when you were younger! No batteries or technology needed here! Charades, pictionary, hide and seek (or lights-out hide and seek if you have older kids), Simon Says, tag, and 20 questions are just a few games that kids of all ages will have fun playing.

Family Game Night on a Budget at artsyfartsymama.com

2. Board & Card Games: If you own a bunch of board games, you're in luck! Choose from your collection, or have each member of the family choose a game and play each one throughout the evening. If you don't own any, don't panic. You could ask friends, family, or neighbors if they have some you could borrow. If you really want to purchase some for yourself, Walmart has great prices on all kinds of board games.

Some of our favorite board games for toddlers/small kids are games like Memory, Chutes & Ladders, Candyland, Hungry Hungry Hippos, Cooties, and Uno!

3. Video Games: Buying games to play on a console can cost a lot of money up-front, but really come in handy when you decide to have a family game night in. You can also rent video games for cheap at Redbox if you're looking for something new to play (using free Redbox codes can save you even more!).

Family Game Night on a Budget at artsyfartsymama.com

4. Puzzles: Puzzles are a great way to spend time together as a family. It teaches younger children that we need to all work as a team to get the job done, and it's so fun to just talk while you put puzzle pieces together. You can get puzzles for great prices just about anywhere, but I have found great quality puzzles of all different sized at the dollar store (score)!

5. Printable Games: There are literally thousands of free or incredibly inexpensive games online that you can download and print. I have a few free printable bingo games, and some memory games for the kids available here at Artsy-Fartsy Mama (check them out in the Printables tab above).

So don't stress out about family game night if money's a little tight or you are just trying to adjust your budget. It is possible to have a great night at home with all the fun (or more) of a night out on the town while saving money.

Family Game Night on a Budget at artsyfartsymama.com

To see more from Tony's Pizza, check out the Tony's Pizza website, and follow them on Twitter (@tonyspizzas), and on Facebook (Tony’s Pizza).

What are your favorite games to play as a family? If you have any suggestions, please list them in the comments! We are always looking for new ideas.


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