Menu Plan Monday, April 27!

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SpringRadishes

Another week and another menu plan! I came up with this week’s plan mostly because of what we had on hand. I didn’t have time to shop, so my husband did the shopping and I just used stuff we already had in the freezer. I missed being at the Farmer’s Market, but there’s always next week right?

The theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap over at Celiac Family is radishes! I used to think radishes were weird, but now I enjoy them in a salad. I haven’t ever really cooked with them, so when I saw this recipe in my pintrest feed I saved it to try later when I get to buy some! (I would use kefir instead of sour cream!)

Food at a Spa Party I gave this weekend!

Food at a Spa Party I gave this weekend!

Sunday
Breakfast:
Grain Free Granola, fruit, coffee
Lunch:
Leftover Salsa and chips from the Spa party (I waaaay over made food for the amount of people who ended up coming, so my husband suggested we use up the leftovers for lunch on Sunday!)
Dinner:
Snack Foods

Rest of the week:
Overnight Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding
Egg salad
Double chocolate hazelnut bread from my gluten-free, vegan cookbook
Paleo Chocolate Cookies with sausage/yogurt for the Princess
Blueberry Cheesecake Smoothie

Dinner:
BBQ Pulled Pork, potato salad, corn on the cob
Waffles and bacon
5 ingredient Honey Mustard Salmon (never happened last week!)
Veggie Soup from freezer!
Pizza, salad
Leftovers!
Childhood Favorite Chicken and Broccoli Casserole (recipe coming soon!)
Healthy Dessert: Strawberry Dole Whip

For more menu ideas check out Org Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday! Or for gluten-free menus check out Celiac Family and the Gluten Free Menu Swap!

Feeding the Hungry Beast

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Sometimes, it’s a challenge feeding your kids. I feel like the past 5.5 years have been occupied with figuring what to feed the Princess, making sure she had enough to eat, and making sure that she had food when she was hungry. Any mom will tell you the terrible tragedy that will occur when you have a hungry kid on your hands and you have no food!

Last summer and occasionally this school year I found myself with the problem of needing snacks quickly when I was on my way out the door for an activity. For some reason house designers in Florida decided that pantries were a completely unneeded commodity and so I had to figure out a way to store snacks in an easily accessible area.

This is what I came up with:

snack organization

I used a 31 Gifts bag called Timeless Beauty Bag. I love this bag because it is so versatile! I was able to fit some of my favorite Trail Mix in some of the pockets, some honey sticks in the elastic, some squeezable applesauce in the other large area, some squeeze packets of almond butter, and when we have some a few dried fruit strips. This handy bag hangs in my kitchen most of the time, but it can also be rolled up and taken on a road trip! It looks like this:

snack organization 2

It makes such a difference to have all of these foods handy in one spot. I think it will be even more helpful when we have to start packing lunches everyday for school next year. You don’t need special equipment to try out this organizational method. Just get a basket or clear out a special drawer–the point is to have everything in one spot!
Happy Organizing!

Menu Plan Tuesday, April 21!

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It’s been difficult the past few weeks when I’ve had to choose between what’s important and what’s critical and leaving some important things undone. But eating is critical (especially for the Princess!) so I’ve chosen to cook instead of blogging about cooking since I didn’t have time for both.

The theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap over at Celiac Family is peas! I love peas! They are such a nice addition to almost any meal. It is hard to get fresh peas down here in Florida so I rely on mostly frozen and some canned. I can’t stand canned, but everyone else likes them.

Some soup from last month!

Some soup from last month!

Sunday
Breakfast:
Grain Free Granola, fruit, coffee
Lunch:
Out to lunch
Dinner:
Fried rice with peas!

Rest of the week:
Overnight Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding
Eggs
Strawberry shortcake
Blueberry Pancake
Mango Marriage Saver Smoothie

Dinner:
BBQ Chop Wrap from “Happy Herbivore Cookbook”
Strawberry Balsamic plus cashew cheese salad wrap
Fast Slow Cooker Pork Chops
5 ingredient Honey Mustard Salmon
Honey Basil Veggie Kabobs
Pizza, salad
Leftovers!

Healthy Dessert: Blueberry Bliss Bars

For more menu ideas check out Org Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday! Or for gluten-free menus check out Celiac Family and the Gluten Free Menu Swap!

Menu Plan Tuesday, April 7!

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Happy Easter! Since I neglected to take a picture of food this week, here’s one of my daughter before her spring program! She is dressed to represent the country she did her report on: Portugal. Since it is too difficult to find an authentic Portuguese costume, she is wearing the colors of the Portuguese flag, along with a shawl worn as an apron borrowed from her grandmother.

Program Night

The theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap over at Celiac Family is arugula! I love arugula in salads, and a couple of weeks ago I tried this stir fry with arugula in it and absolutely loved it. I tend to eat a lot of spinach, but it’s nice to add in some different greens like arugula.

I didn’t get this post up yesterday because I was baking our bread for the week! We also made some Breakfast Cookies which the Princess really enjoyed having for breakfast this morning.

Sunday
Breakfast:
Scrambled eggs with bacon, english muffin with dairy free cream cheese from Trader Joes. (It tasted JUST like a cheese danish!)
Lunch:
At Mom’s house: ham, green beans, jello salad, potato salad, carrot salad, cole slaw, apple sauce, and Easter Egg shaped sugar cookies decorated by the Princess
Dinner:
Snacky things

Rest of the week:
Cherry Banana Smoothie (only since I didn’t label the things in my freezer I mistook my cherries for blueberries and ate them all…so we’ll have blueberries instead of cherries this week!)
Breakfast Cookies
Simple Rice Pudding
Chocolate Hazelnut Bread

Dinner:
Black Bean and Potato Nacho Plate
Dutch Baby Pancake (made gluten-free and dairy free!)
Easy Crockpot Teriyaki Chicken (except with Pork!)
Macaroni Salad
Pizza, salad
Leftovers!

Healthy Dessert: Chunky Monkey Ice Cream

For more menu ideas check out Org Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday! Or for gluten-free menus check out Celiac Family and the Gluten Free Menu Swap!

If You Clean Your Glasses…

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It’s been a little quiet around here again. I really am thinking of stuff to write, but the finding the time to sit down and do it is tricky. Here’s a little glimpse into what’s been going on around my crazy household, inspired by “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” by Laura Joffe Numeroff . If you haven’t ever read it you should!

One day recently I noticed that I wasn’t seeing as clearly. I thought nothing of it at first because it is almost time for my yearly eye exam, but then I glanced at my glasses and they were so dirty I was amazed I could see anything! I cleaned my glasses and saw things so much more clearly.

Once I started seeing things clearly I noticed a huge amount of dust. I shouldn’t have been surprised since it had been ages since we did a deep dusting (maybe Christmas?!). So that Friday we had a family cleaning party. For about an hour the Princess dusted all flat surfaces, Hubby did the floors, and I cleaned bathrooms and the kitchen and anything else I could find in that time period.

That weekend we enjoyed a clean, clutter free house (because the clutter has to go before you can clean!) and I was thrilled. But when the clutter was gone and the dust was gone I noticed something else…my curtains were not the same color as when I hung them. Upon further inspection, I noticed they also had a huge layer of dust on them! I carefully dumped them all in the washer and then when they were done washing quickly hung them up again wet. (I don’t do ironing!) It’s amazing what a different color they are now!

My house seems fairly clean now, but I was noticing the other day that my glasses were looking dirty again…

Menu Plan Monday, March 16!

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A month ago it was chilly, and a month later its hot. I think I have a love/hate relationship with Florida weather!

I’ve had a few issues with getting everything done that is involved in menu planning lately. Either I would have a wonderful plan and shopping list and then fail with actually cooking the food, or I’d have no plan and do well with shopping and cooking. It was driving me crazy, but a friend reminded me of Pepperplate.com and how it generates shopping lists from your recipes/menu. Their app has really improved since the last time I tried using it and my menu plan and shopping list was done in 15 minutes!

The theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap over at Celiac Family is cabbage! I bought a cabbage a couple of weeks ago and still have half of it left. Last week we had this yummy taco casserole and this week I think we’ll have a stir fry with noodles and cabbage.

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I’ve been keeping up with weekly baking so except for last week when it just didn’t happen we’ve been able to eat homemade bread instead of gf freezer bread. I’ve also been able to tolerate some meat again so it makes planning and executing the plan so much easier! We’re also on the tail end of strawberry season here, so I got a half flat from the farmer’s market and hope to make some freezer jam today.

Saturday
Breakfast:
Egg McMuffin with ham and daiya cheese on vegan English muffin
Lunch:
Sunbutter and jelly, cantaloupe (we did Engineering Day downtown!)
Dinner:
Rotisserie chicken, potato salad, broccoli
Sunday
Breakfast:
Cereal with strawberries, english muffin, frozen coffee drink (used frozen almond milk!)
Lunch:
Steak, leftover potato salad, corn on the cob, broccoli
Dinner:
Strawberry shortcake

Rest of the week:
Marriage Saver Mango Smoothie
Oven Pancake with blueberries
Chocolate Banana Bread
Vegan English Muffins
Eggs/ sausage

Dinner:
Stir Fry with noodles and cabbage and coconut aminos
Almost Instant Tomato Soup
Freezer Burritos (Freeze the leftovers for quick meals!) using Zucchini Flour Tortillas
Cauli-Power Fettichini “Alfredo”
Chipotle Copycat Beans and Rice
Veggie (Lunchmeat for others) sandwiches
Pizza, salad
Leftovers!

I’m trying to make a healthy dessert once a week also this week is Gaps friendly Chocolate Chip Cookies. Actually the Princess can almost make these herself except for operating the oven part.

For more menu ideas check out Org Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday! Or for gluten-free menus check out Celiac Family and the Gluten Free Menu Swap!

Happy Endings…

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The term happy ending sometimes seems like it is misnamed. For me a lot of endings seem to mean something sad. At the end of school it always meant the end of favorite subjects and the end of a fun year. At the end of camp it meant saying good-bye to new friends that I knew I would most likely never see again. When we moved it meant saying good-bye to neighbor friends and favorite spaces.

Some endings aren’t so bad though–the end of something good can mean the beginning of something even better! The end of my college years meant a new job with new friendships. The end of my first car meant more reliable transportation. The end of my single years brought me into the arms of a wonderful man that I am delighted to fall more in love with everyday.

It’s been a little quiet around here this week because I’ve been taking time to contemplate and grieve. This past week was the end of a good friend’s battle with cancer, the end of her pain, and of her life here on earth. While I will miss her more then I can really put into words right now, I am thankful for those endings because it means she’s in the arms of her Lord and Savior whom she so faithfully served and loved with all her heart.

Today the world is missing someone who was the hands and feet of Jesus to everyone she met. She didn’t like good-byes anymore then I do, but I can say with all confidence–see you soon!