Monday, April 25, 2016

Our Delicious Weekly Menu | Paleo | April 24th

Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  More leftovers

Monday - Lunch:  Salad and Smoothies

Dinner:  Daddy's in Charge (Mommy teaching night class)

Tuesday -  Lunch:  Salmon Salad on Spinach Greens with Smoothies (I use the protein salad recipe from the Whole30 Cookbook)

Dinner:  Super Veggie Minestone Soup with Salad and Spinach Biscuits*

Wednesday -  Lunch:  Salad and Smoothies

Dinner:  Out for My Birthday!

Thursday -  Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Sticky Chicken Drumsticks with Asparagus Salad and Fruit

Friday - Lunch:  Salad and Smoothies

Dinner:  Creamy Pork Chops (or roast) with Mashed Cauliflower and Green Goddess Quinoa Salad*

Saturday - Lunch:  Brunch (Pancakes, Bacon, and Smoothies)

Dinner:  Leftovers

Sunday - Lunch:  Tuna Salad Cucumber Cups with Fruit

Dinner:  Taco Salad with Hidden Veggies

*Not Paleo friendly


I'm getting excited to start incorporating our garden produce into the menu!  Especially dinosaur kale; it's my favorite!

This week I'm also starting Money Saving Mom, Crystal Paine's Make Over Your Evenings course.  I keep thinking about how often my evenings are completely unproductive, and I have high hopes that this course will inspire me.  I would love it if you would  join me on this adventure!  My plan is to blog about my progress.  (I think this itself would be progress, actually!)


Have a great week!




Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

3 Reasons You are Ruining Your Evenings (and so am I)


It's 8:15pm.  I just tucked my toddlers into bed, and I can finally finish cleaning up the kitchen from dinner, put the groceries away, and fold a load of laundry, but somehow I crawl into bed a couple hours later with the dirty dishes still in the sink and the laundry still in the dryer.  


Does this sound familiar?

If you're like me, you probably have the best of intentions in making the most of the evening by tidying up and getting prepped for tomorrow.

BUT if you're like me, you might get your kids tucked into bed and think, "It's been a long day, and I can finally sit down and relax for a few minutes."

The next thing you know, it's time to get to bed, so that you can be rested when your alarm goes off at 6 AM the next morning.

Where did the evening go?

I've identified three reasons that I consistently ruin my evenings.

1. Spending Too Much Time on Social Media

Do you sit down to check your email, just to find yourself still scrolling through Facebook half an hour later?

I certainly do.  And we are not alone.  86% of moms are members of at least one social network.  And mothers with children under five spend 37 hours each month on their smartphones using apps or browsing the web.

Nevertheless, social media can suck time away from all of the important things we need to get done.

Social media can wait.  This is just one reason why you might be ruining your evenings.


#2.  Putting "it" off until tomorrow.

Do you ever think, "I'll just do that in the morning"?

I do.  Somehow I think that if I put off the things I need to do in lieu of the things I want to do (i.e. social media), that I'll be able to easily catch up later.

And then life laughs in my face when I hit the snooze button three, maybe four, times the next morning.

The dishes in the sink just grow and grow.  The laundry pile seems to triple in size each day that I don't wash a load.  These chores-that-never-end (they just go on and on my friend), should not be delayed until tomorrow.

And this is reason #2 that you might be ruining your evenings.  (I do.)


#3.  Forgetting to delegate.

Once the kids are in bed, and I can finally get back to those things around the house I need to finish before bed, I tend to 1) get overwhelmed and sleepy and 2) forget to delegate.

Why should I need to finish clearing the table or washing the dishes at all when I have a wonderfully capable and willing husband and a wonderfully capable (though admittedly less willing) tween who can help with the dishes and such?

The answer is that I shouldn't.

Not that I won't have things to do after tucking the toddlers in bed, but I need to learn to delegate better.

I'm working on a cleaning schedule that clearly delegates tasks to each member of the family, including my oldest toddler, but the first few days of it haven't gone smoothly.  It's a work in progress, right?

Do you delegate efficiently?

This is yet another reason that you might be ruining your evening (like me).


#4.  Bonus! Justifying Watching Just One (okay, maybe two) Episodes of That Show You Don't Even Care About

"I worked all day for everyone else in my family, so I deserve 45 minutes to myself to watch the latest fad on Hulu (or Amazon Prime or Netflix)"

Do you ever find yourself saying that to yourself?

I can't tell you how many different shows I've watched in the last year alone.  I'm in no way attached to them, they are just mindless entertainment.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's complete fine to watch mindless entertainment, but not to the extent that it ends up ruining your evening.


. . .

But what can we do to make our evenings run smoothly and prepare us for the next morning?

I have what I hope will be the answer for me.

One of my very favorite bloggers, Crystal Paine from MoneySavingMom.com, is hosting a course called, Make Over Your Evenings.

I'm SO excited to take part in the course, and if you are anything like me, you should be excited to take this course, too!

The Make Over Your Evenings class requires just 15 minutes once a day for two weeks.  I bet you can handle that!

Registration starts April 21, 2016 at midnight!  And if you sign up in the first seven hours, by 7 AM EST, the cost is ONLY $5!

If you have a hard time waking up in the morning like I do, don't worry!  The class will be discounted all day long!  From 7 AM to noon, the Make Over Your Evenings class is only $7!  And from noon to 5 PM, it will be $10.  And if you can't sign up until after work, don't fret, the course will be discounted to $13 until the end of the day.  That's still a 30% discount.

So hurry to MakeOverYourEvenings.com to get more details and SIGN UP!

Let's Make Over Our Evenings together, so that we can stop Ruining Our Evenings.








**This post contains affiliate links.  Please see my full disclosure policy.**




Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Our Weekly Menu | April 19th


Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  More leftovers

Monday - Lunch:  Lunch Date

Dinner:  Daddy's in Charge (Mommy teaching night class)

Tuesday -  Lunch:  Salmon Salad on Spinach Greens with Smoothies

Dinner:  Protein Spaghetti and Marinara with Green Beans and Fruit

Wednesday -  Lunch:  Salad and Smoothies

Dinner:  Creamy Pork Chops with Mashed Cauliflower and Salad

Thursday -  Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Tomato Basil Spaghetti Squash Bake with Salad and Fruit (Mommy @ work dinner)

Friday - Lunch:  Salad and Smoothies

Dinner:  Tandoori Chicken with Rice and Kale Salad

Saturday - Lunch:  Brunch (Pancakes, Bacon, and Smoothies)

Dinner:  Raw Bell Peppers with Mexi-Quinoa Stuffing with Salad and Fruit

Sunday - Lunch:  Tuna Salad Cucumber Cups with Fruit

Dinner:  Sticky Chicken Drumsticks with Asparagus Salad and Fruit





Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Our Weekly Menu | April 4th


Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Chicken Pad Sew Ew with Oranges

Monday - Lunch:  Salads & Smoothies

Dinner:  Taco Soup with Salad

Tuesday -  Lunch:  Tuna Salad in Cucumber Cups with Fruit

Dinner:  Raw Lasagna from Rawesome with Salad and Fruit

Wednesday -  Lunch:  BLT Salad

Dinner:  Mini Egg Frittatas with Veggies and Fruit

Thursday -  Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Chicken Curry with Rice and Asparagus

Friday - Lunch:  Salmon Salad on Spinach Greens with Smoothies

Dinner:  Spaghetti Squash Chow Mein with Chicken and Fruit

Saturday - Lunch:  Pancakes

Dinner:  Chicken Salad with Tomatoes, Spinach Salad, and Cottage Cheese

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Paleo Sweet Potato Sloppy Joes with Salad






Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Our Weekly Menu | March 29th


Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Monday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Dad's in Charge

Tuesday -  Leftovers

Dinner:  Stuffed Portabellos with Hummus Gravy and Kale Salad

Wednesday -  Grilled Cheese with Salad

Dinner:  Salmon Salad on Spinach Greens with Fruit

Thursday -  Super Duper Salad

Dinner:  Chicken Pad Sew Ew with Oranges

Friday - Lunch:  Grilled Cheese with Fruit and Salad

Dinner:  Leftovers

Saturday - Lunch:  Pancakes

Dinner:  Fiesta Tortilla Bowls with Fruit

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Raw Lasagna from Rawesome with Salad and Fruit






Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Our Weekly Menu | Paleo, Whole30 | March 20th


Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Thursday - Lunch:  Out

Dinner:   One Pot Zucchini Pasta with Pineapple Whip

Friday -  

Dinner:  Salmon with Collards and Cantaloupe

Saturday -  

Dinner: Chicken Salad with Spinach Salad, Tomatoes, and Cottage Cheese

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Couscous Salad with Cheese Quesadillas

Monday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Beef Stroganoff with Rice and Salade

Tuesday -  

Dinner:  Summer BLT Rolls with Fruit

Wednesday -  

Dinner:  Veggie Stir Fry with Rice

Thursday -  

Dinner:  Salmon Salad on Spinach Greens with Fruit

Friday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Paleo Breakfast Casserole with Fruit

Saturday - Lunch:  Pancakes

Dinner:  Leftovers

Sunday - Lunch:  Brunch Out for Easter

Dinner:  TBD






Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Our Weekly Meal Plan | February 15th


Our Weekly Meal Plan (Whole30, Paleo)

Monday - Lunch: Sandwiches

Dinner:  Leftovers

Tuesday - Lunch:  Sandwiches

Dinner:  Leftovers

Wednesday - Lunch:  Sandwiches or Leftovers (we have to get the fridge cleaned out!)

Dinner:  Salmon with Collards and Cantaloupe

Thursday - Lunch:  Sticky Chicken Drumsticks with Spinach Salad, Baby Carrots

Dinner:   Tandoori Chicken with Rice and Asparagus

Friday - Lunch:  Egg Salad with Spinach Salad, Trail Mix, and Pineapple

Dinner:  Ground Beef Stroganoff with Rice and Roasted Cauliflower

Saturday - Lunch:  Sandwiches

Dinner: Seven Spice Roast Beef Sandwiches with Salad and Fruit

Sunday - Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Cracklin Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Salad






Find previous meal plans here.
**Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday**

This post may contain affiliate links.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Five on Friday: Home Edition II

Like last week, I have continued my quest to finish my house again this week.  

Finish decorating.  

Finish purchasing all of the various pieces of furniture and accessories needed to make this house into a home.

1. A teal and orange living room

I have wanted to make over our living room decor into a teal and orange theme for the past few years...long before we even moved to the South.  But, I have been unwilling to spend the money to do so.  We are still on a budget, but there is a big difference between being a graduate student and being employed full-time!  Last week, I mentioned the pillow covers that I ordered on Amazon from China.  (It'll be another few weeks before they arrive.) 

This week, I finally chose some curtains, the teal chevron ones below.  I'm still not convinced that they are exactly what I was wanting, but we'll see when the pillow covers arrive.  


2. A kitchen rug

When I bought our new living room rug, I also picked up a bright colored braided kitchen rug at my new favorite discount overstock store.  It didn't work.

So, I went back and found a new option.

Besides having amazing quality rugs at this overstock store, it also carries carpet remnants that have been bound along the edges.  AKA, rugs.  

I found a 5x7 berber carpet remnant to use as a rug in the kitchen for less than $20!  That's my kind of rug!

Overstock Carpet Rug

And it looks perfect!

3. Kallax

I know I've already mentioned IKEA recently, but now that we've put the new Kallax unit together for our Little's room, I just have to mention it again!

The Little's Room, still in progress

It's perfect.  Just the right size.

And our son was the perfect helper.  My little handyman.

My little handyman with his tools.
That's not how we use shelves!
Or is it?


4. A dining room FAILURE

As I mentioned in my previous post, I had a great Pinterest-inspired idea for our dining room and Christmas clearance helped me make that a reality.

A chalkboard tablecloth sounds pretty neat, right?

So so wrong.

You'll just have to read over here to see just how bad it was.



5. Meal Planning for More People



My MIL arrived yesterday, and my FIL arrives today.  I'm not so confident in my cooking abilities, so I'm trying to figure a new menu for the next week or so that doesn't require gourmet training, but is still healthy.  

Any ideas?

HAPPY FRIDAY!