3 Ingredient Cake Batter Milkshake

vanilla milkshakeI like easy.

Especially when it comes to cooking and baking.

Even better, I like treats that are easy to make with grandchildren. And, have I got an easy, easy, EASY recipe for you to make with a grandchild! (By the way, did I tell you just how easy this is to make?) It’s called the 3 Ingredient Cake Batter Milkshake.

3 Ingredient Cake Batter Milkshake
2 cups vanilla ice cream
1 cup milk or Half and Half (depending on how rich and creamy you want it)
1/2 cup dry cake mix (from a box cake mix)

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth. Pour into cups and you are done. It’s ready to eat. (This could also be called the 3-minute milk shake since it is so gobsmacking easy to make!)

If you want, you can have chocolate ice cream and a chocolate cake mix. Or vanilla ice cream and a lemon cake mix. Or vanilla ice cream and a funfetti cake mix. (Oh! This all sounds so yummy. I think I’m hungry.  I need to go make this milk shake RIGHT NOW!)

This makes 2 servings – just enough for you and a grandchild to enjoy. Unless Grandma gets rather piggy and doesn’t want to share because the milkshake is so dang good and hard to resist!!

Neighborhood Walk

grandmother and granddaughterIt’s blazing hot in my neck of the woods. Well, except for today and tomorrow with rain showers predicted and the temperature is supposed to get up to only 80 degrees or so. Eighty is so much more bearable than 100 degree weather!

Where was I? Oh. I haven’t really started talking about what I want to talk about. Silly me!

Wait! I sort of have. Back to how hot it is.

While our daytime temperature is hot enough to tickle a cactus’ soul, it does cool off in the evenings. In fact, the evenings are absolutely divine! And, evenings are the perfect time to take a stroll around your neighborhood with a grandchild — and to play the neighborhood walk game.

neighborhood_walkTo play the game, print my neighborhood walk checklist. Have your grandchild select which page she wants to use. Give her a clipboard and a pencil. Then, head on out into your neighborhood.

As you stroll along, have your grandchild check the box when she sees one of the items on her paper. Be lenient when deciding if something ‘counts’ to be checked off.

For example, the picture on the checklist for a swimming pool is an above-the-ground type of swimming pool. But, if you see a ‘real’ one in the ground or even a kiddie wading pool, those could count, too.

For the basket ball standard, you could count a small plastic one that is only 3 feet tall. And white blossoms on a tree could count for white flowers.

You could have a walk with several grandchildren and make it a contest to see who could be the first one to get all of the items checked off their list. You could give the winner a small little prize.

If my checklist is way off for things that you would see in your neighborhood, you could create you own. Simply type up a list of things — you really don’t have to have pictures on your list. Just words would work fine — for grandchildren that can read.

After the walk, go back to your home for a root beer float, an ice cream cone, or some other sweet treat. Ending an activity with a treat will almost always guarantee that your grandchildren had a good time!

Water Fun With Grandkids

It’s hot where I live. Real hot. Hot like 100 degrees and hotter hot. It’s so hot, that it behooves me to have a fun new water activity for the grandkiddos. Yes, it behooves me!

Instead of running through the sprinklers, how about running under a ‘shower?’ A pool noodle shower?

To make the pool noodle shower, I cut a pool noodle in half. My husband used an awl and poked lots of holes all over in it. He had a wooden dowel that was about the same size as the hole going through the noodle. He put that in one end to plug up the hole and then put duct tape over the outside of the noodle.

We shoved the hose in the other end of the noodle. We hung the hose over a branch of a tree and turned on the water. The grandkids enjoyed running through the water and playing with their pool noodle shower.

You know, once you make something, you learn lots. And, after seeing how things turn out, you think of ways to improve it and make it better. At least that’s the way I am!

Here are my lessons learned. We think that we should have used a thicker tool to poke holes in the noodle. We think that if the holes were a little bit bigger that the water would squirt out a little further. As it was, the water only squirted out about 10 inches.

Second thing. My husband only put two strips of duct tape across and one around the end of the noodle. After a while, water leaked out around the edges. That was okay because that was just more water for the kids to play in.

However, because the leaks were fairly big, I think that it affected the water pressure inside the noodle. Maybe that had something to do with the anemic squirting out of the water, too. So, I would have put more duct tape overlapping the layers to prevent the water from leaking out.

Then, the noodle hole was a tad bigger than the end of the hose. That made it so the hose didn’t stay inside the noodle. Luckily, we had another hose that had a fatter end and stayed in the hole better.

If the hole in the noodle is too big and the hose doesn’t stay inside it, maybe you could stuff a wedge or something around the hose to help it from falling out of the hole.

Last year, I got a pool noodle from the dollar store. The hole in that pool noodle was smaller. So, instead of purchasing a pool noodle from Wal-Mart like I did for the pool noodle shower, you might want to check your dollar store first. One from there might work better.

Here’s a teeny video of playing in the water. It very briefly shows the pool noodle sprinkler. Then, it shows the grandkids running through the pop bottle sprinkler (which you can read about here).

Have fun playing in the water with your grandkids!

YouTube Preview Image


Great Family Reunion Activities

Have I ever told you how clever my daughter and daughters-in-law are? Well, they are. To the nth degree clever. They came up with some great ideas for activities for our family reunion.

We had our annual family reunion this past weekend at Bear Lake, Utah. My favorite part? ‘Canoeing’ with the grandkiddos. Part of the time they were happy as a clam (and me, too) to ‘canoe’ on dry land.


At one time, just my oldest grandson and I were in the canoe. He snuggled up to me as I ‘paddled’ along. Life just doesn’t get any better than snuggling in a canoe with a grandchild!

On Saturday, we played in the water.


Sunday morning before we broke camp, we had some activities. This was when we had the two fabulous activities.

My daughter told the grandkids they had 5 minutes to collect rocks and to stack them on top of each other to see who could build the highest pile of rocks.



The grandkids raced off, collected rocks, and came back to construct their rock tower. Without realizing it, they learned that it was easier to stack flat rocks than round ones.

The grandkids had fun — and it was a no-fuss-no-expense activity to prepare. That’s my kind of activity!

My daughter-in-law had a great activity, too. Each grandchild received a ball that looked like dough. They were given a plastic cup about 1/4 full of vinegar. The grandkids put the ball into the vinegar. It started bubbling and smoking. When it stopped, the grandkids stirred the solution and found a prize!

Some prizes were plastic frogs! Others were compass rings.
I asked my daughter-in-law how she made the balls. She said she just mixed baking soda with water until it was doughy. She formed a ball around the rings and the frogs and set the balls aside to dry.

The balls were kinda crumbly so if you do this activity, you might want to keep the balls in a bowl or container of some kind to contain the pieces that fall off.

I did a squirt gun activity with the grandkids. They had to squirt water at a ping pong ball on top of a plastic cup.


We had such a grand time!

These activities are easy for family reunions, birthday parties, family get togethers, or just any ol’ time the grandkids come for a visit. Why don’t you give them a whirl sometime?

Hope you have fun doing them!