Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Menu Plan Monday May 31 - June 6

We have a busy week ahead, then again, when do we not have a busy week! It's just a new, different kind of busy. After being home full time for the better part of a year, my husband has returned to work leaving me to tame the wild beasts alone! Actually, Dad is usually the instigator when it comes to wild behavior in our house so maybe things will settle down just a little...we'll see...
Well, I can't feed them Purina Wild Beast Chow so here is my plan.....

Breakfast - Scrambled eggs, turkey bacon and toast
Dinner - We are reviving my kid's favorite - Meatball Monday! It'll be Italian meatball subs tonight with veggie chips and fruit

Breakfast - French toast, sausage
Dinner - Grilled lime chicken and peanut noodle salad

Breakfast - Apricot Crostata (I saw this on Everyday Italian and thought it would be a great breakfast treat. Giada's recipes are always wonderful!)
Dinner - Pierogi (frozen from Costco...they  were sampling them and they were so good and I'm a total sucker for those little ladies samples!) in bechamel with ham and peas

Thursday :
Breakfast - Hash brown casserole and biscuits
Dinner - Cheesy beef enchiladas, corn, watermelon

Breakfast - Muffins (from the freezer)
Dinner - Family Fun Night! Homemade calzones, antipasto and  root beer floats

Breakfast - Easy eggs Benedict, fruit
Dinner - Inside out cheeseburgers, sweet potato fries

Breakfast - Kolaches and donut holes on the way to church
Dinner - Salisbury steak with gravy, mashed potatoes and green beans

Friday, May 28, 2010

These are a Few of Our Favorite (Summer) Things....

Ah,'s out, road trips, swimming....I don't know where ya'll are from but here in Houston summer means all of those things plus Texas-sized mosquitos, heat like you've never experienced in your life (except if you maybe work in a crematorium) and fire ants with attitude. But we don't let that stop us from having fun! We stay really busy but always make time for our favorite traditions that make summer feel, well, like summer!
1. Popsicles  - Push-ups, bomb pops, fudgesicles...when I buy the first box of these the kids know it's summer!
2. Playing in the Sprinkler - It doesn't matter that we live an hour from the beach or have a pool at our disposal; nothing beats watching a bunch of squealing kids running through the sprinkler (except doing it while eating popsicles!).
3. Summer Reading Program at the Library - All year I have to beg the kids to finish their reading assignments for school but come summer, they become voracious readers. The library puts on a summer program that includes prizes for number of books read, fun enrichment programs (a few examples have been magic shows, puppet shows, Texas wildlife demonstrations, Opera Cat read by a member of the Houston Grand Opera, etc...) and a wrap party at the end...all for free!
4. Cheap movies - Our local theater has $1.00 kid movies two mornings a week throughout the summer. Even though we have most of them on video it's still fun to sit in the theater and see them on the big screen...did I mention they're only $1.00?!
5. Vacation Bible School - we never miss this one (this year my three oldest will teach while the four youngest are attendees). One week of fun, fellowship and character building lessons for the week of shopping with my sister for me!
6. Cooking/Eating Outside - In the summer, we cook outside because we don't want to heat up the kitchen...yes, I know, it's a twisted mentality (must be the heat!) and then we eat outside, too! We break out the special outdoor dining dishes, tablecloths and decorationsEven though we're dripping with sweat and smell of Deep Woods Off!, we love it and look forward to our outdoor dinners every year.
7. Family Reading Time - The kiddos read their library books by day but each night I read them a chapter of one of my favorite books from when I was growing up. Some of our favorites have been From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, Harriet the Spy, A Wrinkle in Time, The Narnia series, The Little House series, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, etc...(Oh, yeah, we read Lord of the Flies by candlelight after Hurricane Ike....fortunately there were few parallels....). This summer's list includes Black Beauty, White Fang, Around the World in Eighty Days....
If you haven't already, start a new tradition. Even if it's something as small as a popsicle, your kids will look forward to it and they will become some of their fondest memories. I know....these are all of the things my mother used to do with me!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

This week...

 myspace layouts

May 24: National Escargot day
May 26: National Blueberry Cheesecake day
May 27: National Grape Popsicle day (if that doesn't signal the start of summer I don't know what does!)
May 28: National Hamburger day
May 29: National Macaroon day (but what nation....?)

Menu Plan Monday May 24-31

I'm back! We are going through some transitions...all good...that have kept us on the move this past week. Not to be mysterious or anything, but I don't want to give anything away until everything is for certain. However, we are getting our menu planning back on track!  We're eating from the pantry and freezer cause we've stockpiled too much! Also, hurricane season is upon us and for those of you in the Gulf Coast region who have experienced a hurricane and the extended power outages that can follow, this is not a time to keep a full freezer!  Here's my plan...

Breakfast - Omelets, fruit
Dinner - Swedish meatballs served on a bed of egg noodles, lingonberries

Breakfast - Breakfast pizza (English muffins with scrambled eggs, crumbled bacon, cheese, pizza sauce)
Dinner - Chicken and Parmesan stuffed ravioli (Costco) florentine: going to add spinach and garlic alfredo sauce on my own to jazz it up; glazed carrots, salad

Breakfast -  Kiss my Cheesy grits and toast
Dinner - Falafel, pita, tzatziki sauce and hummus, Greek salad

Breakfast - Pumpkin chocolate chip muffins
Dinner - Crockpot spaghetti, green beans, salad

Breakfast - BELTS - Bacon, Egg, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich
Dinner - Family Fun Night! Homemade pizza and boneless wings and a movie (TBA)

Breakfast - Donuts and milk
Dinner - Sesame orange chicken, rice, vegetable egg rolls

Breakfast - Pigs in blankets
Dinner - Something in the crockpot because we have a ballet recital to go to!

Happy eating!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

It's Friday Already?

What happened? Where did my week go? I miss one week and it's just a downhill slide from there. I think I've hit the proverbial wall that all who run marathons (ok, I don't "run" in the traditional sense, but seven kids do keep me moving in all sorts of other ways!). I go through this phase a couple of times a year where I'm just so tired of cooking and thinking of things to cook that all I want to do is eat out or basically eat anything that I don't have to make or clean up after. I think it's spring fever left over from when I was a kid. This time of year is when all kids get a serious case of short-timers...I guess I still haven't out-grown it! Anyway, as my grandmother used to always say, "This too shall pass". I'll be back in the mommy swing of things again soon. In the mean time, I have thoroughly enjoyed myself! We celebrated the end of the first round of my diet with a midnight pancake run to IHOP, we celebrated Mother's Day with an amazing Mexican food brunch at Sylvia's Enchilada Kitchen, we tried out another of Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives finds: Hullabaloo in College Station (we try every place he visits in our area...he can sure pick 'em!) and supped on our favorite (and cheap!) local pork BBQ at Dickie's. Oh yeah, I almost forgot...we went to Movie Tavern today and had lunch and a movie (Furry Vengeance and mini Mediteranean sandwiches with artichokes, roasted peppers and aoli on toasted sourdough...yummy!)
Well, it's back to schedules and structure next week!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Menu Plan Monday May 3 - 9

Sorry I missed last week...first, we were in Little Rock, Arkansas competing in yet another Irish Dance Feis and then it was on to Big Sandy, Texas for a week for our regional homeschool conference! It was awesome! Lots of fun, fellowship and learning. The kids had so much fun with their new friends and activities, they cried when we had to come home today. I did too when I saw how much laundry we had generated. I may finish in time for next year's conference.
Best of all, I didn't have to cook for an entire week! I truly enjoyed being served but am ready to get back in the, kitchen. Here's my plan...

Breakfast - French toast
Dinner - Asian pork tenderloin (in the crockpot), oops...already had that, we'll have bourbon molasses mustard pork loin instead with baby Brussels sprouts and swiss and bacon mashed potatoes

Breakfast - Easy eggs Benedict
Dinner - Chicken with lemon and artichokes with angel hair pasta and peas

Breakfast - cereal...I know, I know...I had a (another) weak moment and a coupon!
Dinner - Amazing turkey burgers with salsa mayonnaise, chips

Breakfast - pigs in pancakes with fruit topping
Dinner - Crockpot stuffed bell peppers, salad

Breakfast - biscuits and sausage gravy
Dinner - Family fun night!

Breakfast - Scrambled eggs, hash brown casserole, bacon
Dinner - Salisbury steak, garlic mashed potatoes, green beans with bacon

Midnight Pancakes at IHOP to celebrate my being able to eat starch and sugar again! (I've been on a very restricted diet for 46 days and lost 30 pounds so far!)
I'm not worrying about the rest of the's Mother's Day!

Have a great week!