Sunday, January 30, 2011

Meal Plan-1/30/11

Wow. I was instantly reminded last week why I need to keep up with my meal plans. I didn't meal plan in the beginning of last week and we suffered terribly as a result of it. I managed to scrounge up a couple decent meals, but majority of the time I was flying by the seat of my pants. In other words, we ate like crap.

So, now that the kids are taking a nap, my main priority is to get a plan together. Well first, my priority is to grab a cocktail then get a meal plan together. Yes, I am going to drink at 1:45 on a Sunday. Leave me alone.

We have a super busy week this week, so most of my dinners are going to be things that I can throw together relatively easily.

Sunday-Sweet Potato Enchiladas. If you haven't tried this recipe yet, shame. on. you. It's a little slice of heaven wrapped in a tortilla.
Monday-Butternut Squash Ravioli
Tuesday-Falafel Pita Sandwiches.
Wednesday-Salad of some sort
Thursday-BBQ chicken
Friday-Homemade calzones. A couple weeks ago I made my own pizza crust. From scratch. With yeast and everything. It was a mess of flour all over the place, but I really liked it! This time I am going to try with some whole wheat flour instead. Yummy.
Saturday-Take out. I am babysitting this night so need something quick.

Happy meal planning!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Links: I Got Some to Share

My crafty mind is about to explode with all the cutesy Valentine's ideas out there. As if I have all the time in the world to be making crafts, right?

Anyways, over the past week of visiting my favorite blogs, I have picked up a few ideas along the way (both crafty ideas and more) and wanted to share with y'all.

-Children's juice alternative (caffeine-free of course!)
-Free Blog Header (do I dare try?!?!)
-Valentine card idea (I am soooo doing this for the kiddos Valentine's Day parties!)
-PB & Raspberry pops
-Creative (easy) cards for the love of your life
-Maybe my kids will eat this butternut squash recipe? One can dream, right?

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Kaiden-ese

Kaiden talks all. the. time. Most of the day it's things like "What is this? What is that? Mommy watch me do this. Mommy I want this, Mommy I want that." I have really contemplated making is a hard fast rule in our house that you are allowed to say something ONE TIME. After I acknowledge your request if you say it again (or ask for it again) then you will not get it. Harsh? Maybe. But, it just may save my sanity.

Actually, some of the things that come out of his mouth are pretty funny. Most of the time I think I will remember them and intend to write them down, but I should know by now that it's a miracle if I remember what I ate for breakfast in the morning so how I think I am going to remember all of his Kaiden-ese each and every day is beyond me.

Here are some of the things that I do remember that makes me laugh:

"A little minute." Things to him are a little minute. "Mommy come watch me do dis for a little minute." "I just want to watch TV for a little minute."

"Mommy, look at me. I am a man with a mouth." (He had something on his lip and he was saying that he had a moustache)

When he wants you to repeat what you said: "Mommy, what are you saying with your mouth?"

"Mommy, what is that man doing with his mouth?" Sometimes in books or looking at people on the street if they are making a funny expression this is how he asks what they are doing.

"Mommy say 'Yay' to me." When he does something that he thinks is good he wants me to say "YAY!"

Leaving for soccer practice with Daddy, "Bye-bye Mommy! See you soon! Be a good girl!"

"Mommy, are you listening to me?" If I don't answer him right away after he asks a question. Wonder where he got that from?

"I am a little bit older than you, Mom. I'm a little bit older."

"Paco, you are the BEST doggie ever."

"Mommy, you look so pretty!"

Pointing to my boobs, "Mommy, what is dat in dare? What is dat?"

We were reading a Sesame Street book in which they were decorating a snowman. I asked him, "What would you decorate your snowman with?" In which he replied, "Ummm, a hat. And also I would decorate it with snow."

Kaiden's version of "Ring around the Rosey:" "Ring round da rosey, paca-do-a dosey, pashes, pashes, we all fall down!"

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Meal Plan-1/16/11

My crock pot meals last week were WONDERFUL! I "made" everything in the morning, let it crock all day and viola! all we did was dish it out and serve right at meal time. I will definitely be using my crock pot more often. It left me feeling so free and actually took a few afternoons to walk the dog and get outside with the kiddos instead of spending so much time prepping that nights dinner. Score!

Sunday-Chicken salad sandwiches (veggie sandwich for me)
Monday-Lentils over rice. I buy these at Costco (a pack of 4 for like $6.00) and they are SOOO good. No wacky ingredients, just heat (I heat on the stove top because I rarely use the microwave) and serve over rice or in a tortilla. MMMmmm....
Tuesday-Quinoa and Black Beans in tortillas with avocado and sour cream
Wednesday-Baked spinach and ricotta stuffed pasta shells
Thursday-Salad with sliced pears, candies walnuts, cranberries & feta cheese
Friday-Personal pizzas (or calzones) with homemade pizza crusts
Saturday-Out to dinner after church

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Forgiveness

The church that we attend offers an opportunity to attend a group called "Life Training" that meets outside of regular service times. It is a 12 week course that takes you through different areas of real-life experiences, struggles and issues that we all may face including rejection, judging others, loving others & forgiveness. Some people use this course to grow spiritually while others use this as a starting off point to learn biblically based ways to overcome addiction, trauma, anger, divorce, etc.

We had heard on many occasions about how wonderful the course was so hubs and I agreed to start as soon as the New Year hit. Because they don't provide child care we will need to go on a rotating schedule, him one week me the next, but the class just keeps rotating through the 12 classes so it is easy to start and finish at your own pace.

Monday night was my turn to go to the first class which was on forgiveness. Now, fortunately for me (and I realized this during the class) I don't really have anything in my life that I can think of that I have felt I have been done wrong by. No one has hurt me to the point that I feel bitterness, resentment, anger or just plain can't let go of like some of the people there that are facing abuse, adultery, addictions, divorce and such. Despite this, I was able to use this class as a way to grow in my faith and can honestly say that I learned a lot.

Reasons why we don't forgive:
-We have intense anger
-We don't think it's fair
-We think we are letting someone "off the hook" by forgiving
-We feel like the other person hasn't suffered enough. We want payback.

People that are hurt want:
-Affirmation/recognition from their betrayer that they are hurting
-Payback

Forgiveness is:
-For your benefit. To free yourself from the prison of bitterness, resentment and anger
-A CHOICE that you make. It's not about feelings.

Steps to Forgiveness:
-Write down what act needs to be forgiven, how it made you feel and what it would feel like to forgive that act.
-Confess to God that you have been holing that person guilty for the act, and hurt, and the ramifications.
-Put the offender in God's hands, entrusting the offender to Him and let go of the debt you feel they owe.
-In humility, tell God you are willing to be reconciled to the offender and allow Him to love the offender through you.
-Drop the charges and dismiss the case. Don't revisit it again.

Forgiving someone doesn't mean you are saying that what they did to you is okay. Forgiving someone is to put yourself at peace with what has happened and freeing yourself from the prison of bitterness. Besides this, forgiveness is commanded of us. So, set yourself free. Forgive.

If you forgive others for the wrongs they do to you, your Father in heaven will forgive you. But if you don't forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:14-15

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Meal Plan-1/9/11

I am going to try a whole week of new recipes (except for the tortellini soup-that's a favorite of mine). All crock pot recipes. I am hoping this will make my meal time routine a little easier. If they are good recipes I will throw them in regularly to make dealing with two kids at dinner prep time a "breeze." One can hope, right?

Sunday-Crock pot tortellini soup
Monday-Crock pot chili (with my own twist on the recipe)
Tuesday-Left overs.
Wednesday-Breakfast for dinner Crock pot breakfast casserole (sausage on the side) with Crock pot apple sauce (made overnight the night before so to free up my crock for the casserole)
Thursday-Crock pot meatless enchiladas
Friday-Crock pot mac 'n cheese and hot dogs
Saturday-out to dinner after church.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Savings!

So a few months ago I briefly talked about my venture into the world of couponing. Since then I have been trying to learn all the in's and out's of how to maximize our dollar at the grocery store and drug stores. It's not an easy task, let me tell you, as you can easily find yourself spending WAY too much time searching for the best deals and driving all over to different stores just to match up your coupons with the sales. But, while I am still a newbie to all of this, I have been extremely proud of myself and the money I have saved by taking a little time and doing my homework.

All this time I never thought coupons would be worth my while since most of my purchases are on organic and "green" products. But, low and behold all this time I WAS WRONG! Now that organics are becoming more mainstream there seems like there are many coupons to be had! And most of the blog sites that I follow are geared exactly for this purpose. It's actually becoming pretty addicting to see that number on the register go down as we ring up my purchases!

Here is a look at just some items that I have recently purchased with coupons:

7th Generation dish soap-$.69 each! (this sells for sometimes up to $3-4.00)
Muir Glen pasta sauce jars-$3.79 (normally $4.30+)
Muir Glen tomato sauce cans-$1.39 (originally $2.38)
Barbara's cereal (we LOVE this stuff)-$.70 each!
Naturals cereal-$.50 each
Almond Breeze milk-$.50 each (I got 2 of these last week for FREE!)
Tom's of Maine mouthwash-$1.00 each (normally priced at $5.00 each)
Pantyliner (up & up brand)-$.12 each
Carefree pantyliner-FREE!
Santa Cruz Organic juice-$2.59 each (normally $3.89)
Annie Man 'n Cheese (I always have some on hand for "emergency" lunches)-$.75 each (they are now on sale for $1.00/box)
Naked coconut water-(hubby loves these)-FREE!
International Delight coffee creamer-FREE!
Kettle chips-$1.00/bag

I also recently got some sausage links (my kids love their sausage occasionally for breakfast) for FREE and have also gotten a ton of FREE toothbrushes, floss, toothpaste. As well as Always pads for a DOLLA! HOLLA!

Like I said, it takes some time and some planning, but I have been able to really save some money....not as much as the people out that there that don't buy mostly organic like I do, but I do save a good amount to make it totally worth it!

Some of the sites that I regularly follow:
Cents'able Shoppin-Sheryl is a local here in the Phoenix area so most of her prices match up to the sales that are at my stores. And, oh my goodness, she does her homework!
Saving Naturally
Organic Deals-I recently found this one and I LOVE it for all my organic needs
Money Saving Mom-Duh. Any seasoned couponer follows her.

Happy Saving!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Meal Plan-1/3/11

Ewww. That was the first time I wrote "11" for the year. It always takes me a few months....if not close to the full year to get the hang of it.

Anyways. I am so sick of food from the holidays that meal planning is the last thing that I want to do right now. I have had more than my fair share of junk and I. MUST. STOP. EATING. ALL. OF. IT. NOW! I feel like a blimp. Back to eating healthy. Today.

Monday-Eggplant Parm with homemade pasta sauce (with a little califlower puree mixed in! Hee hee)
Tuesday-Chicken Brats w/ rice and veggies
Wednesday-Roasted sweet potatos and cherry tomato salad
Thursday-Veggie meatball sandwiches
Friday-Appetizers delight....Bruscetta, cheese & crackers, hummus and chips/celery/carrots
Saturday-out to dinner after church