Poppa (Maternal Great Grandfather)


This is my great grandfather, Joseph Serneels.  I was 10 when he passed away but I remember so many wonderful days spent with him.  He was so cool driving a gray camaro.  I hope to find a picture of it someday as he passed it down to my parents (we did not have much money and needed a car) when he decided he could no longer drive.  He would take us for ice cream (even driving over the bridges to get us from the Island we live on when many others would not), to a local amusement park and out for a special lunch.  He loved little birds and when he died I bought a few to put in his casket as it was a special thing for us looking at pictures of little birds.


poppa, his mother, sister standing, father, and aunt seated

This is my great great grandmother with poppa’s hand on her shoulder and my great great grandfather


Gigi (Ruth Serneels) was Poppa’s wife.  You can see she matched his cool style.  This is my great grandmother.  She was extremely independent for her time.  I come from a very long line of independent women which probably explains my intolerance of “needy” women, but that’s a story for a different post.  She died of uterine and stomach cancer before I was born but I heard many wonderful stories of her standing her ground and being a spitfire for her times.


grandma Jeanne Serneels


This is Gigi and Poppa’s daughter Jeanne Serneels Link.  She is my grandmother.  She is active and involved in all of her grandchildren, great grandchildren and great great grandchildren’s lives to date.  She is the best grandmother, nana one could ever ask for. At 89 she is going strong.  She taught me many things throughout my childhood and I love passing these traditions on to my children and she loves to come help and watch. 


Poppa’s mother, Poppa, my mother, grandma Jeanne

My mother is the little girl in the picture.  The above picture is exactly how I remember my Poppa. He had a few more wrinkles and thinning hair but always had a sunny smile and soft eyes.

These are my roots and I love exploring them and sharing them with my children.


Mini Meatloaf and Rainbow in a Pan Veggies


This is a wonderful homemade meal on the fly.  The meatloaf is fun for the kids to help make and it’s super tasty.  I do not make a starch with it because there is stuffing right in the meat so you just need a side veggie and dinner is on the table!!


mix beef and stuffing and press into pan


put a little pasta sauce in a dip in the middle


bake and then top with cheese and set in oven to melt (this is something the kids love to do as you can see)


little tasty cups of meatloaf!!

My kids call this veggie side “rainbow in a pan”.  Super easy and pretty too!!


zucchini, summer squash, orange and red pepper, snap peas


sprinkle a little panko crumbs on for the extra texture

Mini Meatloaf recipe (this is adapted from the Kraft website)  HEAT oven to 375°F.

Take 1 lb. extra-lean ground beef

1 pkg. (6 oz.) STOVE TOP Stuffing Mix

1 cup water

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 small jar spaghetti sauce

grated mozzarella cheese

Mix all together in a bowl. Press into 12 muffin cups sprayed with cooking spray. Makeindentation in center of each with back of spoon; fill with spaghetti sauce (or you can use Ketchup or alfredo or even BBQ sauce).

BAKE 30 min. or until meatloaves are done (160°F).  Sprinkle on cheese and bake 5 min. or until melted. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Rainbow in a pan recipe:

Slice zucchini and summer squash thin

julienne style slice the orange and red peppers

Clean snap peas

Using a saute pan add 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic flavored olive oil, add veggies and cook until soft.  Sprinkle with panko crumbs and let sit for 2 minutes off of heat.  Serve