Valentine's Day

Did you have a wonderful day? 
We did...as with most years, our Valentine celebrations are centered on our family, not just the hubby & I...

Here's how it went...

For the dining room I hung streamers of bright pink curling ribbon (curled slightly in sections), cut out paper hearts & paper heart chains

The place settings....

Scalloped felt place mats: cut a rectangle out of red felt (any size you like.  Fold accordion style and round each end.  Unfold and trim/clean up and scallops that need it.

Conversation jelly beans in a pink paper cupcake liner made for fun dinner talk & the kids were dying to eat their brownies (baked in a muffin tin) before dinner started.  

To make the cupcake topper, cut 2 circles of coordinating card stock, one measuring 1/4 inch larger. Decorate smaller circle with a heart sticker, then affix to the front of a bamboo fork with a glue dot.  Affix the larger circle to the back of the bamboo fork, making sure to center the smaller circle on the larger.

On the menu, heaping portions of homemade lasagna (recipe follows), garlic bread & Sprite with maraschino cherries

Our Favorite Lasagna

1 lb. ground beef, browned & drained
1 pkg. no-boil lasagna noodles
1 extra large (or 2 regular) jars of your favorite marinara sauce
1 small container ricotta cheese
2 eggs
salt & pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese + additional
3-4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (depending on just how cheesy you like it)

1. In a bowl combine: ricotta, eggs, salt and pepper, & Parmesan, set aside.
2. In a 13 x 9 inch casserole dish layer:
1 cup sauce
4 lasagna noodles
1/3 of the ricotta mixture
1/2 of the ground beef
a good handful or so of mozzarella
1 cup sauce
4 lasagna noodles
1/3 of the ricotta mixture
1 1/2 cups sauce
4 lasagna noodles
last of the ricotta mixture
last of the ground beef
1 cup sauce
4 lasagna noodles
remaining sauce
mozzarella & extra grated Parmesan

3. Cover with foil, bake at 350 degrees, until bubbly & noodles are tender, about 50 minutes.  Remove foil and cook additional 10 minutes or so until cheese is brown & bubbly.  

4.Allow to cool 10 minutes (at least) before cutting...this will ensure your layers stay pretty & together :)

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