Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Update from Last Week

Okay, its been a few days since I posted and I want to give an update on new recipe successes/failures from the past week.  I hope I can remember everything.  As usual, things did not go according to the plan, BUT, it was okay, because, A) we did not eat out, and B) we ate food that needed to be eaten, like leftovers, or just stuff John and I wanted to clear out of the fridge/freezer.

Sunday, 1/22:  No one was available to eat with after church, so the kids and I picked up Taco Bell on the way home...Emma's choice (since she was the only one awake in the car at the time!).  I think I made sandwiches for supper.
Monday, 1/23:  I put a pork butt in the crock pot in the morning to make Pork Tacos and by 5:00 it was ready...oh, yum, these are dee-licious!!!
Tuesday, 1/24:  We went up to church to play with homeschool friends this evening and we were all supposed to bring our own supper.  I had pizza on the menu, and I made these pizza muffins that I found on Pinterest.  Now, that night when the kids first ate them, they were very "so-so" about them.  I should have known not to ask for opinions on a new food when they were so distracted.  They ate them, but they didn't want to talk about it, they wanted to play.  Anyway, I threw the rest in the freezer and today we had them for lunch.  First of all, they reheated beautifully.  Secondly, the kids LOVED them.  So, that recipe is going into regular lunch rotation!
Wednesday, 1/25:  Tonight I was super short on time so I fixed Hamburger Helper.  I know.  In my defense, the kids like fact, Emma once told me that it was the best meal I ever made!!  I tried not to feel insulted. She doesn't know yet that its basically slop.  However, they did NOT like this one...whenever I do fix it, I should just stick to the cheeseburger or cheesy mac stuff...this flavor was Philly Cheesesteak and it did not go over well.  John summed it up in two words, "Bland-burger Helper!"  Supper fail.
Thursday, 1/26: I tried to redeem myself by cooking a new recipe tonight.  Chicken Roll-ups...I would link the recipe again, but I'll save you.  It was horrible.  The kids didn't like it.  I didn't like it.  John wouldn't even eat the KNOW its bad at that point.  Fail-URE for the second night in a row!
Friday, 1/27:  I felt bad for everyone, having cooked such horrible suppers two nights in a row, so I let the kids have fish sticks and tater tots for lunch on Friday, and that evening we went to our nephew's birthday party at Chuckie Cheese, so I knew they would be happy with that.  Junky processed crap and pizza...what more could a kid want?
Saturday, 1/28:  We had spaghetti tonight.  No brainer.  They loved it, as always.
Sunday, 1/29:  After church, we ALL (John was with us because he now has Sundays off--YAY!!!) went to my parents.  Mom made roast, potatoes, carrots, all the usual was great.  Grandma made chocolate pie.  Yum, yum, yum yum.
Monday, 1/30:  John cooked tonight.  He made pork chops and mashed potatoes.  It was really good.  Kids gobbled it up.  Jessa kept asking for more chicken although we all told her 10 times it was pork.
Tuesday, 1/31:  Tonight I made chicken and rice.  This is one of our top ten favorites, I think...and it couldn't be easier.  I don't think I've ever linked the recipe, but here it is (because its so simple).  Melt half a stick of butter in a medium sized bowl in the microwave.  Add one can of cream of chicken soup, one can of cream of mushroom soup, one soup can of water and one chicken bullion cube.  Mix together, stir in one and a half cups of uncooked rice.  Pour in a greased 9 by 13 baking dish.  Push 3-4 frozen chicken breasts into rice/soup mixture, cover with foil.  Bake at 350 for 1 hour.  Uncover, bake at 375 for another hour, or until done.  You can also crank it up to 375-400 for 15 minutes if you like the edges of the rice brown and crispy, like I do!!  Or, if you have more time you can bake the whole thing at 350...or, if you have oodles of time you can bake it at 300 for three hours or so.  Its so forgiving and the kids LOVE it.  Husbands do, too.

So that's it for a week or so.  Tonight we're having sloppy joes because we have to go to church.  Quick and easy, but another crowd pleaser!  I'm going to try something new this week, I'm sure.

I still want to talk about morning routine...soon, I hope.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Menu Plan for 1/21/12 to 2/17/12

Here are my supper menus for the next few weeks.  I'm going to try to keep track of what we thought of the new recipes.

Sat, 1/21:  Taco Macaroni Skillet (new recipe found via Pinterest) Well, since this was on the menu yesterday, I've already made it so I know how it went over...the kids thought it was okay but no rave reviews from them.  I liked it, though.  Plus it made a lot, and was cheap.  This is definitely one to keep and try again, and as the kids get older, make them eat, HA!  I also made a loaf of this Applesauce Bread and the kids LOVED that...I needed to use up some leftover homemade applesauce that we opened...interestingly enough, the kids don't really like that too much.  Maybe its the texture?  I don't know.  They like the store bought stuff, but the homemade applesauce we made and canned they are very "eh" over.
Sun, 1/22:  We usually have our big meal for lunch on Sundays, either with one set of parents or go out with church friends...this week, everyone is busy, including John, so the kids and I will probably grab McDonalds on the way home.  They'll be very happy with that!
Mon, 1/23:  Sweet Pork Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw  Excited about this it.
Tues, 1/24:  Homemade Pizza
Wed, 1/25:  Chicken Roll-Ups (new recipe) Been wanting to try this one for awhile...we'll see if its any good.
Thurs, 1/26:  Tostadas
Fri, 1/27:  Leftovers...going to my oldest nephew's birthday party, too.
Sat, 1/28:  Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup (new recipe found on Pinterest)
Sun, 1/29:  Sunday Dinner with parents
Mon, 1/30:  Spaghetti (I may make up a batch of meatballs and put the extras in the freezer, we'll see)
Tues, 1/31:  Chicken and Rice
Wed, 2/1:  Sloppy Joes
Thurs, 2/2:  Leftovers
Fri, 2/3:  Pizza
Sat, 2/4:  Baked Potato Soup What I make is similar to this one...all recipes for this are basically the same.  Somewhere I read a recipe that called for a package of white gravy mix, and since I have that in bulk in my pantry, I usually stir in a 1/4 cup or so...I think it does add a nice flavor and body to the soup.
Sun, 2/5:  Sunday Dinner with family may want to celebrate John's birthday
Mon, 2/6:  Salisbury Steak...this is a recipe my husband affectionately nicknamed "Meat Muffins" many years ago...teasing me for making mini meatloaves in a muffin tin.  However, it wasn't even this recipe I made, but the name stuck.  I'll try to find a similar recipe or post it when I make it.
Tues, 2/7:  Chicken Tortilla Soup (from the freezer)...this was a combination of recipes from kids loved it; hoping they will love it again!
Wed, 2/8:  Baked Ham and Cheese Sandwiches  Okay, I've been hearing a lot about this recipe for awhile now, and my mom made them on Christmas.  Yes, they ARE really good.  I liked them a lot, but I don't think anyone else in my family tried them.  I'm curious to see what both John and the kids will think, as they can be unpredictable in their food likes/dislikes.
Thurs, 2/9:  Leftovers
Fri, 2/10:  Ritz Chicken with Cream Sauce (new recipe found via Pinterest)
Sat, 2/11:  John's Birthday!!  We've already been invited to a church friend's birthday party,, John will probably be working anyway.  We'll most likely be celebrating his birthday on one of his nights off this week. Oh, and its Papa John's $6 Customer Appreciation Day, too, so that takes care of supper.
Sun, 2/12:  Sunday Dinner with parents
Mon, 2/13:  Cheesy Slow Cooker Chicken We like this one, however, I've made a couple of modifications...I put 8 oz of velveeta instead of the cheddar soup (usually have it on hand plus its cheaper), and a package of dry italian dressing it a nice kick.
Tues, 2/14:  Spaghetti
Wed, 2/15:  Hamburger Helper
Thurs, 2/16:  We're hosting our small group this month and we've decided to have Mexican food...don't really know any other details yet, but you know it will be good...I just can't send people away hungry!
Fri, 2/17:  Leftovers

Whew, that's a lot of menu planning for me!  This is just a guide, too...I will most likely NOT have all of this, especially on the exact nights, but its great to always have a plan, right?

The kids and I have started working on some daily routines.  We've come up with a simple morning routine first.  I'm planning on posting some of that soon...maybe the beginning of the week?

Saturday, January 21, 2012

So what is this thing? Oh, yeah, a BLOG...

Before I start, here's something funny I was thinking about the other day.  Here's what my frazzled, scattered brain thought:  "It sure would be neat if I could record all the day to day things we know, what the kids did, if we went anywhere special, new recipes or activities we tried, just our day to day happenings.  And it would be super cool if I could share it with people, you know, kind of like facebook but not quite so "out there", make people work a little to read it."   Well, duh, do have a blog.  Isn't that what a blog is?  Why, yes, it is!  So, I say ALL that to say, I've decided to share a little more of our life in this blog, more as a record for myself than anyone else, but I have been told by more than a few people that our life is quite entertaining, so perhaps someone else might find our day to day happenings interesting.  Maybe.  I don't know.

Last night I was going to go grocery shopping, which involved going to four different stores: Price Chopper, HyVee, Walmart, and Aldi.  I only got to Price Chopper.  They have a great sale going on right now on chicken, whole chickens or thighs and drumsticks for 69 cents a pound.  That's a pretty good deal.  And you can cook both of those for meals, chicken meat, stock, etc...lots of versatility.  So I really wanted to get some chicken.  I did.  But I didn't get anywhere else.  I had dropped Emma, Jessa, and Luke off at church for Parent's Night Out, which is a blessed event, went to the store, then headed home.  The plan was for John and I to go out to eat somewhere before picking up the kids.  Well, we couldn't decide where to go, so we ended up ordering from Applebee's and picking it up there and eating at home.  So that's what we did, while watching "That Thing You Do" on Netflix.  What a Friday night.  Back to the food.  It was pretty good.  We don't eat there often, maybe once every 6 months, and I always get the same thing.  Oriental Chicken lemonade...John usually gets the Santa Fe chicken salad.  We are both always reminded of our early married years when he worked at the "Crapplebee's" (as we affectionately call it!) in Joplin when we eat there.

I hope to get to the rest of the stores this week, maybe.  I find myself constantly going to the store.  And I don't really enjoy it that much anymore.  It's definitely easier to go by myself, and I haven't even attempted taking four children to the store.  I was thinking this morning that I probably could get to Sam's with four kids, because of their ginormo carts that hold 2 kids up top and the carseat in the basket.  Hmmm, we'll see.  But if I go there, I'll probably end up with a super-sized amount of junk I don't need.  I don't know.  Maybe someday.

Menu plan next, I promise.

Friday, January 20, 2012

A New Year, A New Start...whatever...

I'm back...

I think.

Wow, a lot has happened since I last blogged about, well, anything, and after looking through my posts I discovered something.  I miss blogging.  I miss planning meals and writing about it.  I liked doing it.  I found it to be fun.  Not that my life isn't fun, it is...but it is also many other things.  Crazy, chaotic, and loud.  And these days I have much less time to plan meals.  Why, you ask?  Oh, well, remember those "things" that have happened in my life since I last blogged?  Yeah, that's called...another KID!!!  Yep, 2011 was the year of pregnancy #4 and ended up in the birth of Remington Charles Brents, born on November 29, 2011.  Lucky, lucky me...and I mean it, for real...I AM so lucky, incredibly blessed, and thankful for my chaotic crazy noisy life.

But, there comes a time when you have to pull your head out of your...well, you know...and return to life.  To organized life.  To life with a plan.  So many areas of my life need a plan.  But for now, I've decided to start with a dinner plan.  SO I have planned out four weeks of dinners instead of just one, because I have a lot less time to sit and plan these days, its actually more like big chunks of time every so often to plan AND grocery shop.  So I'm going to give this a whirl and see if it works.

Okay, so that's it for now.  I do have the next 4 weeks of dinner meals planned out, and I would love to type them out, add links, pin all the pictures on Pinterest, but I need to write a grocery list right now.  So I'm off to do that, on good old fashioned PAPER with one of those archaic PENS, and I'll be back, with my menus, my links, and my pins.

Bye for now...

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Menu Plan! Week of: May 22-28

So how about a menu plan?  Okay!

Sunday, 5/22:  We're supposed to take "Grandma's Potato Salad" to a picnic for John's work, so we probably won't have a big supper.  Either sandwiches or leftovers.
Monday, 5/23:  Crockpot Chicken Tacos
Tuesday, 5/24:  Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Green Salad with Orange Dressing
Wednesday, 5/25:  Homemade Pizza with PW's Pizza Crust (I do prefer her recipe over this one, however, this one only takes 30 minutes, where PW's requires a couple of hours of rising time, BUT, her's makes 2 crusts and can sit nicely in the fridge for a few days, so there are advantages and disadvantages to both)
Thursday, 5/26:  Spaghetti and Meatballs with this bread
Friday, 5/27:  Leftovers or Sandwiches
Saturday, 5/28:  Grilled Hamburgers and Chips

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Do Not Faint...It's a Menu Plan!

Long absence...long story, but let's get to important things for now:  a new menu plan!

Breakfasts:  Going to "try" to make Ham and Cheese Biscuit cups for the freezer, as well as some breakfast burritos, I made a big batch of granola today, so there will be granola, yogurt, and fruit parfaits, and always cereal, bagels, etc.

Lunch:  The usual: hot dogs/mac and cheese, pb&j sandwiches, pizza quesadillas, leftovers, salad (for John and I), tuna salad

3/26: Greek Turkey Meatballs with Skinny Tzatziki with these flatbreads
3/27: Beef Stew--family recipe, I'll try to post, Garlic Cheddar Biscuits
3/28: Fixing Lunch for a few guests!  We'll be having "make your own wrap, sandwich, or salad" and Pistachio Cake
3/29: Cheesecake Factory's Lettuce Wraps
3/30: Cheeseburgers and Onion Rings
3/31: Baked Chicken Quesadillas (kind of my own recipe)
4/1: Leftovers or Baked Potatoes with broccoli, cheese, and ham
4/2: Spaghetti or Pizza

Plans usually change, so things could be made on different days!

I'll be back...promise!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Oh, no.....

Oh, no, I've become one of those blogs.

You know, like the blogs I mentioned way back in the beginning, in my introduction post, when I went on and on about how I disliked sporadic blogs, how they are kind of a let down, blah, blah, blah....


That is what seems to be happening here.

Let me (briefly) tell you what happened about 5 seconds after I hit "publish" on my last blog post...Annie, our yorkie poo, had puppies.  In our bed.  Well, that's where she started out.  Actually, she had a puppy while I was writing the post!!!!!!  Sadly, that little pup didn't make it...:(  But we do have three wriggling, squeaking, totally adorable puppies.  Anyway, since then, a kind of snowball effect has occurred, both literally and figuratively.  We've had tons of snow, cold, fever, throw-up, more fever, slobber, puke, puppies, and more....plenty for this mom to handle.  And sadly, the old blog has gone by the wayside.  But have no fear...

I'll be back soon.  I know, that's really reassuring, isn't it???