I've missed blogging SO much!! But, let's be honest.. with three kids under 3 1/2, one of whom is 3 weeks old today, I don't have a lot of free time and when I do I'm either cleaning up or trying to sleep! However, I definitely have a lot of posts planned and will get to them slowly but surely!
I am super duper excited to start something new... MEAL PLANNING!! I stumbled upon the Keeper of the Home blog and was inspired to join her Plan It- Don't Panic 6 week meal planning challenge and joined the FB group as well! There's nearly 600 members in the group so far! Every Monday Stephanie is going to post her meal plan on her blog and anyone is welcome to link up and post theirs. People have already started posting their plans on the FB page and it is nice to get ideas from others! I love the accountability piece of this. I committed to it and I've wanted to meal plan for a long time (I did it for two weeks a while back then was hugely preggers and thus lazy and slacked off..) so this is perfect! I'm competitive to a fault so I'm looking at this as sort of a competition. I will win if I stick to it for the 6 weeks! Here's hoping that by then it will be a habit and will continue! I suppose the prize is less stress and a plethora of meal ideas, recipes, and such. I'm also thinking a bonus to this deal will be some new blogging friends!
Say Mmm and I love it! I haven't had a ton of time yet to figure it all out, but I've added some recipes and links to recipes. It is going to be an awesome place to keep track of what we will be eating (on the calendar) as well as my grocery list! Love it! It has some great features. I will be able to share my calendar, meals, and recipes with others. It even has a way to post it onto my blog. Looking forward to fiddling with it and hoping it can become a tool that I can really utilize. Oh and you are able to access it from your Iphone too!
** Here is a post with LOTS of different ideas for planning and recipe resources! Awesome! **
The challenge doesn't start until the 26th, but I think I will start this Monday, the 19th. Since I like to take pictures of my food, I'm thinking I will take pics of the food I make and update my post with them as well as review new ones I try. We will see.
As I was cleaning up the dishes from dinner tonight though, a thought crossed my mind. If I'm doing all of this planning, it means I will be doing all of the cooking! Methinks I need to strike a deal with the hubs. I cook, he cleans. Sounds good to me!! Either that or I need to schedule some Triple D days (Dad Does Dinner)! :)
Another goal I have (assuming I get the hang of the dinner planning), is to be better about planning healthy breakfasts and doing a better job of having well rounded meals. It seems like too often we just have the main dish and not really side dishes, salad, fruit, etc. My 18month old son has a lot of allergies (milk, eggs, sesame, tree nuts, oranges....) so sometimes I alter recipes so that he can eat them! I will post if the recipes are egg/dairy free just in case you also are looking for egg and dairy free choices!
Here's what we have for this week so far:
Monday: Pillsbury Crescent Dogs
Tuesday: Smoked Sausage (from Indiana- we pack it with us across the country after every 4th of July Family Reunion!- yes, it is that good!), Beans, and brown rice
Wednesday: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings (changes I made: I used one can cream of chicken and one can cream of mushroom, instead of adding water I added one can of low sodium chicken broth (14oz), and I only used one can of biscuts- it was plenty). This was DELICIOUS and is definitely a keeper!
Thursday: Corey's birthday!! Homemade pizza (or calzone?...), salad, and lemon bars
Sunday: cookout at friend's house
Other random stuff I have made this week:
Baked Oatmeal (I omitted the cranberries and added 2 mashed bananas and chocolate chips. I also cooked it in my Pampered Chef Deep Covered Baker).
Rice Crispy Treats (made with Earth's Best faux butter so Ben could eat them)
And although I made these last week, you NEED this recipe and you NEED to make these. You will thank me.. or not since it's hard not to eat one after another after another. Somehow the fact that they have fruit in them and oatmeal, I can convince myself that they are "healthy". Go ahead and make Banana Cookies! Funny story about these- I didn't have any baking soda, so I asked my friend (and neighbor) if I could borrow some. I promised him that I would give him some cookies in return. He and his wife were busy all weekend and well.. when I saw him early this week and he asked about the cookies.. there were none left! oops!
So.. who is with me?! Take the challenge!