Meal Plan Week 1

So often, when I tell people about my meal plan, or they see the week laid out on my fridge, they say “I could never do that!” Or “meal planning is so hard!”. I hear ya. That was totally me not so long ago. Meal planning was a chore and complicated and I never felt like eating what I had planned anyways.

Since our family grew to two kids though, it was mandatory. I needed a meal plan to effectively get the meals I wanted to eat on the table and to stop wasting fruits or veggies that I bought with no direction or purpose.

I’ll share more about how I meal plan later, but for now, here is this weeks meal plan. Monday- Sunday, just dinner planned this week.


Monday: Cheesy Orzo with Farmer Sausage and Broccoli (but I used green beans)

Tuesday: Broiled Steak (I have never tried this!), Baked potatoes, Brussel Sprouts

Wednesday: Spinach Tortellini Soup with Sourdough Bread

Thursday: White Fish baked with herbs, Butterey Green Beans, Rice.

Friday: Pizza and raw veggies.

Saturday: Leftovers or go out

Sunday: Pancakes and Bacon.


52 Suppers

This week I made two dinners! I figure, there will be weeks we are too busy, or gone and so its a good idea to double up once in a while if I want to hit my goal of 52 suppers.

#2. Wednesday the 13 – Jill and Dawson. This supper was so casual and thrown together. Gary put frozen chicken cordon blue pieces in the oven with a big pan of sweet potato fries. I cut up some veggies and made chipotle mayo. Definitely not fancy or homemade, but hospitality is more about the guests then the food!

#3 Thursday the 14th – Steve, Carmen, Jesse and Isabelle. I put a bit more effort into this dinner and made a dinner time staple in our house. Bacon Cheese Burger Pizza (recipe here) hasn’t failed me yet. It is always tasty and never healthy. I made a small cheese pizza for the kids which was a good idea. I served the pizza with that kale/ brussel sprout salad that everybody buys these days. I am kind of tired of it, but haven’t found an a;alternative yet. For dessert Carmen brought apple pie, and I also made a chocolate bundt cake because that is never a bad idea. (recipe here)



Supper #1 – Kelvin and Katie

January the 4th marked the beginning of my 52 suppers in 2016 goal. Our friends Kelvin and Katie came over to talk a bit of business (Kelvin is one of our hard working employees) but also to just visit.

I made fresh white bread and turkey soup made from the carcass of the Christmas turkey. I served it with cheese, deli meat, pickles and honey.

The soup was easily the best 100% from scratch soup I have ever made. But I have made some really terrible soups, so that wasn’t a difficult standard to reach. I didn’t follow any recipe so promises that it will turn out next time. Oops.

The white bread was also great. It has been a long time since I have baked bread and I almost forgot how simple it is. The recipe was easy to follow and my stand mixer did all the work. I followed this recipe from Dinner With Julie and I highly recommend it!



52 Suppers

I was never really one for New Years resolutions. “Lose weight”, “eat better”, “exercise more”. Those are things I have to recommit to every single day. January 1st doesn’t make them any more or less attainable. Last year however, my goal, (I am going to call it that cause resolution sounds so…cheesy) was to not buy Superstore clothing. I know, it sounds like a funny thing to decide but I was finding my wardrobe was filled with clothing I barely wore that didn’t fit well and looked shabby pretty quickly. So basically I was wasting my money.

I shop at Superstore pretty regularly and the clothes section temped me every single time but I am happy to say that I did not give in. Instead I bought fewer but better quality clothes that I hope to have for much longer.

For 2016, I will continue to stay away from the cheaper clothing (and might even add a few more stores to my no-go list). But also have thought of a few new goals.

  1. To text/ facebook message/ email people back within 24 hours. I often read a message and then get distracted, or need to think about an answer, or need to check something with Gary and then COMPLETELY forget about getting back to the person. It is a terrible habit that I think makes friendships in our day and age even more difficult then they already are. So in my effort to be a better friend, I am setting this goal. (Let me tell you, it is January the 8th and I have already messed up once or twice! Ah! Hold me to if friends!)
  2. My second goal I am calling 52 Suppers. I Love feeding people and having people in my home so I am challenging myself to host 52 dinners at my house this year. That is one a week and I think that is pretty do-able. I am limiting close friends/family dinners to counting only 6 times each in order to push me to invite new people. I hope to keep track of most of these dinners here so I can remember who all came over and what I fed them :).
  3. I also want to read at least 12 books. One a month should be manageable and maybe put just enough pressure on that I choose to read instead of watching Netflix. Haha!

Happy New Year friends! And if you want to come over for dinner…let me know! 🙂



12:30 am. What time is it? How long have I been sleeping? Somehow it feels like so long and not nearly long enough.

Woken up gradually to a corus of coyotes howling along with emergency vehicle sirens that are getting uncomfortably close. Are they off the highway? Coming closer? They stopped. I wonder if there is a fire. I hope there isn’t another fire. Is it someone we know? Is it something of ours?

I didn’t check on Noah before I came to bed. He’s so far away on the other side of the house. Maybe we should start locking the doors. I am going to go check on him. Make sure nobody came and took him. Oh lord, please let him be there.

My house is so scary in the dark. All lights on. The sliding door is open. Cool air in. Necessary. We live far of the road. It’s okay. I hope.

Shit these stairs are creaky. I hope I don’t wake the baby. Oh good he’s sleeping so nicely. I wish I could take a picture of how calm he is. So wild in the day. So precious right now. He’s huge.

Its hot in here. Baby monitor says 80… I don’t know what that means. Air conditioner and fan on. Ugh the screws are loose on this fan. So annoying. It will be fine. I am going back to bed.

I wonder if I can make it down stairs without the stair creaking. Nope.

Lights off, don’t look outside. Too scary.

I gotta pee.

My mouth is so dry. I forgot to write in my supper journal.

I can hear the fan rattling through the baby monitor. Maybe I’ll just fall asleep. It’s kinda like white noise…

Nope, not falling asleep. I need to take it apart and fix it. It’s been on the to do list for ages. Screw this, I am fixing it right now. Maybe I should snapchat this. No that’s lame. What ever, you sister snap chatted you clips of anastatia. Fixing your baby’s fan at midnight is much less lame.

Lights back on. Scary house.

Creaky stairs. Don’t wake the baby.

Take apart the fan. Why can’t Gary ever do this, he is so not handy. He would just buy a new one. Well, we need a new fan anyways, the other one is keeping the tomatoes cool. They need it more then me.

That was easy. So glad Noah didn’t wake up.

Shoot. He is crying. Maybe if I sit here quiet enough he will go back asleep without me having to come hold him. I’ll creep back to bed.

Freaking stairs! If we ever have a light sleeping baby, I am going to need to get these stairs fixed. Lights off. Back in bed. Darn it. He’s not going to sleep.

Lights on. Up stairs. He knows I am coming. He heard the stairs squeak. Where is the soother. Behind the crib. Great. Soother in. Lay down honey. Oh your diaper is soaked! Right. You drank 3 huge cups of water at dinner. Pick up to change. Instantly asleep. Oh well, I’ll change you in 6 hours… And your sheets. Cause they are already wet. Sigh.

Night night baby.

Sqeaky stairs. Lights off.

I should check garys phone and make sure nothing of ours is on fire. None of these texts look crucial. I have to write in my supper journal. Meatballs, rice, no veggies. Too lazy.

I need to start blogging again. I am so hungry. Suck it up.

Drink water. Sleep. 1:30am

Double Chocolate Peanut Butter (vegan) Cookies


Sometimes I make things that are so good I just have to share them. I am not the kind of person who has secret recipes. I would much rather share so that everyone can enjoy the deliciousness!

I am always on the look out for treats that are kinda healthy. If something can be 100% amazing and even just 50% healthier then the typical, why not right? I have had BAD luck with healthy cookies in the past. They usually end up crumbly, or not very sweet or just a general disaster. These cookies are vegan I have never really ventured too deeply into vegan eating (I like my dairy and eggs!) but I follow a few ladies on instagram who make some amazing looking vegan food. When I came across this recipe today it spoke to my constant craving for chewy, chocolate-y, peanut butter-y things. I couldn’t wait to make them and luckily I had all the ingredients I needed!

Double Chocolate Chip Vegan Cookies (Originally from a new-to-me blog Oh She Glows)

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp ground Flax mixed with 3 tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 cup natural Peanut Butter
  • 2/3 cup Coconut Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp fine grain Sea Salt
  • 3 tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 1.5 cups Oat Flour (grind up whole oats in your food processor)
  • 1 tbsp Almond Milk
  • 2/3 cup mini Chocolate Chips (or what ever vegan chocolate you would like)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  1. Mix flax with water and set aside to thicken up. Whisk again once the flax has thickened up.
  2. Add the rest of the wet ingredients to the flax and beat until well combined. You can used a mixer, but a firm rubber spatula did the trick for me.
  3. Next, beat in the dry ingredients one by one following the order of the ingredient list. Only add the milk if your mixture seems very dry. It should be moist, but not super sticky.
  4. Shape into balls that use about 2 tbsp of dough each. Pat balls down into 1/2 inch thick disks on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Space the cookies 2-3 inches apart.
  5. Bake for 10-15 minutes (mine were perfect at 13!) and the let cool on the pan for about 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. Enjoy alone or dipped in milk (or…what ever you would like).

A List on a Rainy Weekend

It has been a super rainy weekend and has seriously lacked in productivity. I got up late on Saturday (despite my 7 am alarm aspirations), fumbled through a slow breakfast while I did paperwork and finally made it outside at 10:45 to clock in a few hours of yard work. At approximately 11:05 it began raining. Dang. But then, I came inside and made the most amazing vegan chocolate cookies (which I will post ASAP), updated my iPhone, did the dishes and did my best to not check instagram every 5 minutes. Sunday was more normal with church in the morning (I wore pants so tight that I couldn’t even cross my legs haha!) then a matinee with my mom and sister and later, grandmas 80-something birthday in the evening. Obviously I have had some thoughts this weekend, (cause when do I not?) so I made a list.

  1. I am slightly (and only slightly) ashamed of the copious amount of selfies on my phone…wanna see some?

Bored Selfie

On-my-way-to-an-adult-job selfie

On-my-way-to-an-adult-job selfie

Wine Drinking selfie

Wine Drinking selfie

1/2 face selfie

1/2 face selfie

New Glasses Selfie

New Glasses Selfie

Gym Selfie

Gym Selfie

Excessive right?

2. Late night gym workouts are actually awesome. I almost always hit up the gym    before noon but Saturday night came and I had no plans, Gary was going out so I decided to do a long medium paced cardio work out. There was almost nobody else at the gym. I listened to country songs too loud and tried to walk backwards on the treadmill. I almost ate it and then laughed at myself.

3. Reading is a much better idea then watching episodes of Dexter on Netflix. Partly cause the show freaks me out and partly cause I just finished the first 9 seasons of Grey’s Anatomy and seriously need a media break. Also, at this rate I am going to be reading East of Eden for 5 years.

4. I can’t wait till it is warm enough to plant my garden! The short, rainy, time I spent  outside on Saturday was so exciting! My flower gardens were looking more healthy and well spaced then ever before. The lack of buttercup growing was also encouraging. I have spent soooo many hours just digging that pesky weed outta my flower beds. ALSO, my rhubarb is shooting up and even has a few leaves starting! Its going to be pie time before I know it!


First bits of Rhubarb life.

5. Oh dear, I am already at number 5 and I am coming back to the selfie topic. Fantastic. I am now vowing to take more pictures with other people. Do you ever find it awkward to ask someone to take a selfie with you? Or is it just me? Like my friends are generally older then me…and being all….”hey lets take a selfie!” just seems kinda…immature. Or do I just need to get over myself and just be myself Yeah…probably.

6. I am super blessed to have Grandparents and especially to be able to spend time with them as they get older. We make sure to celebrate every birthday with my grandma Garner specifically. I remember last year when she said something about how she didn’t think she had any more birthdays left. That makes me panic a little bit while also feeling super thankful that we did get this whole year with her.


Grandma on her 89th Birthday

7. Gary bought me a bunch of lamb from a hay customer. The meat I mean. Its in my freezer, not in the barn (just to be clear). I have no clue how to cook it. I have some in the fridge to make into Greek inspired skewers…but what else?

8. Blogging is the ultimate procrastination for working on my adoption book. Cause I am writing things about our life, and posting pictures…which is kinda like my adoption book..except 100x less stressful. If my grammar is bad (likely) and my punctuation is questionable (undoubtedly) it doesn’t matter so much on the blog. In the adoption book it feels like my future, our future, is in the balance of every sentence I write and every picture I select. I know that god is ultimately in charge and I really have to try to remember that when I face the task of getting that book done this week.

So those are my 8 weekend thoughts. Tell me what to do with lamb meat! Weigh in on how you feel about selfies! Come back tomorrow for Double Chocolate Gluten Free Cookies (that also happen to be Vegan!).