• 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 loaf (1 pound) unsliced French bread
  • Balsamic GLAZE (optional and as seen in picture)


  1. In a large bowl, combine oil, basil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Add tomatoes and toss gently. Sprinkle with cheese. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.
  2. Bring to room temperature before serving. Cut bread into 24 slices; toast under the broiler until lightly browned. Top with tomato mixture. Serve immediately. Yield: 12 servings.

Vernal Pool Expedition and Discovery Day at The Nature Conservancy SAT 7th


Event Start: Saturday, April 7, 2018, 05:00 AM

End End: Saturday, April 7, 2018, 12:00 PM


Vernal Pools are small but very dynamic wetlands that blossom with life every spring to the accompaniment of a cacophony of sounds. They also play an important role in improving water quality, controlling flood waters, and providing habitat for wildlife. Join Ray Stewart, from the Ohio Wetlands Association, to learn more about these special pools, and how you can help monitor pools in your neighborhood. Please join us to discover vernal pools and their Hidden Wonders.

9:00 am – Welcome and registration (beverages and snacks)

9:30 am – Introduction to Vernal Pools Presentation

This introduction to vernal pools will explain the nature of vernal pools reasons for their rich biological diversity and seasonal explosion of life. There will be a brief discussion of the challenges and need for the conservation of these unique habitats.

10:15 am – Citizen Scientist/iNaturalist for Vernal Pools Presentation

iNaturalist is a free online utility and smartphone app used to document field biology observations. This presentation will identify the key features of this program and how it will be used by the Ohio Vernal Pool Network to document and explore the diversity of Ohio’s Hidden Wonders.

11:00 am – morning hike to explore pools and gather specimens

12:15 pm – bring your own bag lunch (beverages and snacks available)

*Our afternoon session is especially family friendly.

1:00 pm – Nature Center opens-  Show and tell of macroinvertebrates from morning collection session.

2:00 pm – Macro-Invertebrates Presentation

Often equated with ‘insects’, macroinvertebrates represent a broad expanse of curious life forms that contribute to the dynamic ecology of vernal pools. This presentation will show a representative range of organisms and peculiar attributes that belong to this little-known fauna.

3:00 pm – afternoon family hike to nearby vernal pools to see what lies beneath the surface.

*Children 17 years or younger must be accompanied by an adult


Dr. James K. Bissell Nature Center

3973 Callender Rd, Rock Creek, OH 44084


440-563-3081 |

Beef and Broccoli Stir-Fry


  • 3tablespoonscornstarch, divided
  • 12cup water, plus
  • 2tablespoons water, divided
  • 12teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1lb boneless round steak or 1 lb charcoal chuck steak, cut into thin 3-inch strips
  • 2tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 4cups broccoli florets
  • 1small onion, cut into wedges
  • 13cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2tablespoons brown sugar


  1. In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 2 tablespoons water and garlic powder until smooth.
  2. Add beef and toss.
  3. In a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat, stir-fry beef in 1 tablespoon oil until beef reaches desired doneness; remove and keep warm.
  4. Stir-fry broccoli and onion in remaining oil for 4-5 minutes.
  5. Return beef to pan.
  6. Combine soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger and remaining cornstarch and water until smooth; add to the pan.
  7. Cook and stir for 2 minutes.
  8. Serve over rice.

Glow in the Dark Easter Eggs


  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Shaving cream
  • Glow in the dark or neon paint
  • A container
  • Paper towels
  • A spoon or similar for swirling




  • Fill a container with shaving cream.  You want the shaving cream to be deep enough to cover the eggs.
  • Smooth the shaving cream with a spoon, and then add the glowing paint of our choice to the surface.  I added mine in rainbow order
  • Use a spoon or similar to gently swirl the colors
  • Then gently place your hard-boiled eggs into the shaving foam
  • Let the eggs sit for about 10 minutes, and then turn them over to cover the other side.  Once all sides of the eggs have been saturated in the shaving foam carefully remove the eggs from the foam and place each one on its own paper towel.  I used a spoon for this, and that worked really well
  • Carefully wrap the paper towel around each egg and gently squeeze.  Do not wipe or rub, as the eggs need time to dry.
  • The eggs will be beautiful but slightly damp & sticky at first, but after twenty minutes or so they will be completely dry and oh so pretty!!!

Fried S’mores


12 egg roll wrappers
2 bars Hershey’s Chocolate
4 graham crackers, crushed
24 marshmallows
Vegetable oil, for frying
1/4 c. cinnamon-sugar
Melted chocolate, for dipping (optional)


  1. Place an egg roll wrapper on a clean surface in a diamond shape and place 2 pieces chocolate, about 1 tablespoon of graham crackers crumbs, and 2 marshmallows.
  2. Fold up bottom half and tightly fold in sides. Gently roll, then seal fold with a couple drops of water. Repeat until all egg roll wrappers are used.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil (it should reach 1″ up the side of pan) until it starts to bubble. Add egg rolls and fry until golden, 1 minute per side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and season with cinnamon sugar immediately.
  4. Serve with melted chocolate, if using.

Polish Open-Faced Sandwich (Zapiekanka) Recipe


  • 1 loaf bread (long French, cut in half and then cut in half horizontally to yield 4 pieces)
  • Optional: thinly sliced ham or lunchmeat of choice
  • 2 cups mushrooms (sautéed)
  • Optional: raw or cooked vegetables of choice
  • Optional: mayonnaise
  • 3 cups cheese (grated melting cheese of choice)
  • Garnish: ketchup
  • Optional: chopped chives


  1. If the bread is very long, cut it into 3 pieces and halve each horizontally, otherwise, cut it into 2 pieces.
  2. Layer meat, sautéed mushrooms and cheese on each slice of bread and toast in a hot oven until the bread is crispy and the cheese has melted. Drizzle with ketchup and serve hot.
  3. Note: Although the traditional zapiekanka consists of mushrooms, cheese, and ketchup, newer versions include ham, salami, vegetables, fried onions or chives, spinach instead of mushrooms, and Highlander’s smoked oscypek cheese instead of the melting cheese.

    The variations are limitless.


It’s the First Week of Spring

It is celebrated differently all over the world.

Spain- the planting season as the ground thaws and the daylight hours become longer so crops can grow

Scotland- Festival called Whuppity Scoorie. It involves local children running around a church swinging around paper balls on strings, before scrambling to pick up coins that are thrown down for them.

Indian -spring is the festival of Holi – also known as the festival of colors.

Christianity- Easter and the rebirth of Jesus.

Daylight Saving Time – which means there will be less sunlight in the morning and more in the evenings.

According to,

In the US and the rest of the northern hemisphere, the first day of the spring season is the day of the year when the Sun crosses the celestial equator moving northward (on March 20th or 21st). This day is known as the Vernal Equinox.


A common misconception is that the earth is further from the sun in winter than in summer. Actually, the Earth is closest to the sun in December which is winter in the Northern hemisphere.


National Read Across America Day

March 2nd is called Dr. Seuss Day or other known as National Read Across America Day 2018 in the US.

Hats Off to Dr. Seuss’s Birthday!

March 2nd is Dr. Seuss’s birthday—what better way to celebrate than to read? Did you know Dr. Seuss would be 114 this year? While he is no longer with us, his legacy lives on in the pages of his books. He forever changed the way children’s books were written and continue to inspire generations.

Check out Seussville here: WAHOO!

Chicken Cordon Bleu


  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 slices Swiss cheese
  • 4 slices cooked ham
  • 1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Coat a 7×11 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Pound chicken breasts to 1/4 inch thickness.
  3. Sprinkle each piece of chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Place 1 cheese slice and 1 ham slice on top of each breast. Roll up each breast, and secure with a toothpick. Place in baking dish, and sprinkle chicken evenly with breadcrumbs.
  4. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink. Remove from oven, and place 1/2 cheese slice on top of each breast. Return to oven for 3 to 5 minutes, or until cheese has melted. Remove toothpicks, and serve immediately.

Recipe from


Beef Shish Kabobs


  • 1 1/2 lbs. steak, cut into cubes
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 zucchini, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. Dijon Mustard
  • 1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Wood or metal skewers


  1. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
  2. In a bowl, combine the olive oil, Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Add the beef to the bowl with the marinade, and stir until well-coated.
  4. Thread alternating pieces of meat and vegetables onto skewers.
  5. Season each kabob to taste with sea salt and ground pepper.
  6. Grill the kabobs on the preheated grill, turning frequently, until nicely browned on all sides, about 15 minutes.


Recipe from