Menu Plan Monday: Planning Meals Out- A Month At A Time!

Monday, February 29, 2016

Hi!! Happy Monday!!
How was your weekend??
We had no set plans- which was WONDERFUL. We ran our usual errands- but also made it to the park on Saturday afternoon and played a ton outside on Sunday too! 
We also did a little organizing and got some things out for the new baby- the kids were SO excited when Aaron brought up the pack 'n' play and bouncy seat from the basement!!!
And now we are back to Monday and the start of March- TOMORROW!
March is definitely a full month for us- between several school activities for the girls, celebrating St. Patrick's Day, celebrating Easter AND Aaron and I celebrate our 8th wedding anniversary at the end of the month! Throw in me getting more and more pregnant- and well- I would be lying if I didn't say this month might tire me out just a smidge :) trying to be prepared for March- I am doing something new in regard to how I plan our weekly dinner menu.  I am printed off a cute March 2016 calendar (you can find it here!) and I filled it in with meal ideas for the whole month!
So here are some ideas I had for the various "nights" I have planned out:

Sunday- Grill Out: Marinated Chicken (plus a veggie and some kind of potato or pasta side), cheeseburgers (plus a veggie plus french fries or tator tots), turkey burgers (same sides/veggie as cheeseburgers), hot dogs (plus steamed veggie and mac 'n' cheese), turkey sausage (plus veggie and mashed potatoes)

Monday- Italian Night: Meatball subs (plus a green salad or cut up fresh veggies), spaghetti and meatballs (plus a green salad), Alfredo pasta with chicken (plus broccoli), spiral pasta with meat sauce (plus a salad and garlic bread)

Tuesday-Taco Night: ground beef tacos in crunchy taco shells, shredded chicken tacos (using crockpot salsa chicken recipe found here), bean and cheese burritos, "Chipotle" burrito bowls, taco salads- using chicken or ground beef/turkey

Wednesday- Try a New Recipe!! This is where I am going to challenge myself a little bit (and my family) and try out a few meals that we haven't had before :) For March- I have it planned out that I will try 4 new recipes- that is my GOAL :) If our week ends up getting crazy- I may just default to one of our "go-to" meals- but my hope is that I am trying out at least one new recipe a week!

Thursday- Leftovers: Pretty self explanatory :) After cooking meals from Sunday - Wednesday- we should have a pretty good stash of leftovers in the fridge. I can't STAND wasting food AND having leftovers gives me a night "off" cooking! 

Friday- Meatless Meal Night- Soup, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Salads: As Catholics, we abstain from eating meat on Friday's during Lent- so every Friday during the month of March is super simple. I plan on making our favorite potato soup and freezing it for our Friday night dinners- but I also want to make a hearty vegetable soup too! I like to make our grilled cheese a little more fun by getting different cheeses like gouda, muenster, and pepper jack. Obviously if you eat meat on Friday's- this meal idea still can totally work for you! Just get a bunch of deli meat and a big loaf of Italian bread and make some sandwiches to go with a big pot of soup. I love having easy, casual meals planned for Friday- when all you really want to do is kick back and RELAX!

Saturday- Pizza Night: Again- self explanatory :) But I am a firm believer everyone needs a weekly pizza night on their meal plan :) For me- it is totally a night "off" cooking as the girls have a frozen cheese pizza (ain't no shame in my game! :) and Aaron makes his own pizza using a thin crust pizza kit from Aldi. I usually have a big salad. The kids and Aaron LOVE pizza night and look forward to it all week! I know a lot of people like to go out once a week-  instead of pizza- this could be that night for you! 
I know for a lot of people- weekly meal planning can seem "overwhelming." And I totally get that- I feel that way a lot of the time I sit down and try to think of 7 different meals I am going to make our family! Looking at your meal planning from a "month's" perspective might work better in the fact it gives you an idea of the meals you will be making- but there is also a lot of flexibility in that you don't have to come up with 31 specific recipes.
Also- I think this is a great way to help keep your monthly food budget in check- because at the beginning of the month- you already have an idea of what you will be making. So- if you see ground beef on sale- you can pick up several pounds of it- knowing you will be having multiple Italian nights and Taco nights- where you can use that ground beef in your meals!

So- I have this little area under one set of my kitchen cabinets where I have a strip of cork board- I have my monthly meal planned pinned up there and ready to go- and I have to tell you- it feels SO good to have a "road map" of what we will be eating this month!
This is my little "command center" in the kitchen :) I use a Plum Paper Planner- and I have the Meal Planner edition (I LOVE IT!!!). My planner also has a monthly calendar view- but the reason I didn't use it to plan out my meals is because I already have a lot of other things written on it. So- I decided to just go with a separate "meal calendar" for this month. 
Every week, I will write down our meals- and the specific meals I am making in my weekly calendar.
(Forgive me for this extremely yellowish picture- I took it this morning while it was still pitch black outside and the only lighting I had was our lovely overhead kitchen light:)

So what do you think?? Is planning out your meals, a month at a time, something that might work for you? Do you already do this? I am excited to give it a try! If I feel like it "works" for me- it will definitely be something I keep up with- if not- back to regular ol' weekly meal planning!  

And just a quick, friendly reminder- I am teaming up with Erica and Leigh for our monthly link up – Pinspiration Wednesday!  Our next link up is THIS Wednesday- March 2! The topic is: Favorite Easter/Spring Décor and/or Favorite Easter Recipes! So start pinning those favorite Easter and Spring ideas now and plan on sharing them with us on this Wednesday! :)

I am linking up with Laura today!

I hope you have the BEST day!!

Friday Favorites!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Hi!!! Is it just me or did this week totally fly by?
I feel like I was JUST writing my Friday Favorites post for last week...and here we are- only a couple days a way from the beginning of March!!

How was your week?  Our's was pretty standard...nothing too out of the ordinary...which is just fine with me :) We have NO plans for the weekend...but I would really like to tackle the new baby's closet- which is currently serving as our "crap" closet/linen closet. I need to do some major purging and organizing :)  Soo..yeah...a REAL big weekend at our house- HA!

Now let's get to the fun stuff! Here are some FAVORITES of mine from this past week!

SNUGGLE SCENT BOOSTERS. Do you know about them??? I just got some for the first time and I am LOVING the way they make my laundry smell! I got mine from you can get them here- or I am sure they are in most other stores. You use one "pod" per load of laundry and it just leaves the nicest, but not overpowering scent on all of your clothes!  Definitely my new FAVORITE laundry product!!
And since I seem to ALWAYS be talking about laundry, on Tuesday, I wrote a post about a new-to-me way I am washing my towels- check it out here!

I like BIG BOWS and I cannot lie....HA!
My girls wear a big bow in their hair- EVERY DAY- even if we are going to play at the park :)
For the last 4 or so years, I have exclusively bought all of my bows from a website called, Polka Dot Posies. I LOVE the selection of bows Polka Dot Posies' has AND their prices are SO affordable! Well..I love reading Christina's blog and she has mentioned several times her favorite place to buy bows for her daughter is Julia's Bowtique- so of course- I went and checked it out! :)  Their 6 inch wide bows are currently on sale from $8.00 to $4.00- so I decided to order some to see how I liked them!
Annnnddd...I LOVE them!! My girls wear their "shocking" pink colored bows the most- so I got 3 of that color so they could have a nice, new, fresh pink bow for Easter :)
Their white bows have seen better days- so I also got 3 new crisp white bows- but I sized down in these and got the 5 inch size :)
Here's the two bows I got- you can see the pink bow is quite substantial in size and I LOVE it. I know a lot of people think its ridiculous (my husband included- HA!) but a little girl with a big bow in her hair is my FAVORITE :)  I can't wait for Easter when my girls get to wear their new bows with their Easter dresses!! :)

And speaking of bows, I thought I would share my FAVORITE way to store bows!
I have 3 girls- so you can imagine the amount of bows we have :)
In each of the girls' rooms (Cora and Celine share a room and Charlotte shares a room with James), they have a bow board! We have it hung at their level so they can get their own bows AND put them back at the end of the day :)
Do you know what works perfectly as a bow board?? A photo/memo board like this one from Hobby Lobby! It is lightweight, easy to hang up and we just clip our bows on the ribbon that is supposed to hold pictures and notes. It works GREAT and I think it is super cute looking! 
Aaron and I watched "The Intern" last Saturday night and it was SO GOOD!!! We loved it! Robert DeNiro is just an incredible actor. And Anne Hathaway is flawless. It is definitely now on my "FAVORITE" movies list!  If you are looking for a fun, light hearted movie to watch this weekend- get to your local Redbox and rent The Intern!!!

I saw this quote yesterday and thought "YES." 
Just thought I would share some things that I felt grateful for this past week!! 

-a washing machine and dryer. I talk a lot about laundry being a pain and never ending- but I am so thankful we have running water and a washer and dryer to wash our clothes! 
- that my kids have clean, safe, comfortable beds to sleep in every night. and that they are put to bed by two people who love them and affirm them. 
- that I have a healthy, strong body and have been blessed with five uncomplicated, healthy pregnancies!
- that my husband, no matter what time he has to leave for work (sometimes it is REALLY early), always makes me a smoothie for breakfast :)
- for 4 kids, who combined together, probably say "mommy" at least 2,000 times a day :)
What are some things, big or small, that have got you feeling grateful??

Hope you have the BEST Friday and a wonderful weekend!!

I am linking up with Andrea and Erika for their Friday Favorites Link Up!

 I am also linking up with April for Five on Friday!
 Joining Karli for her, Oh Hey Friday Link Up! too!

And lastly, linking up with KatieTifDella & Caitlin for High Five for Friday!

Thursday Confessions!

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Hi!! Happy Thursday!
How has your week been going? 
As with most of the Eastern half of the country, we have had some crazy weather lately! Saturday, we were wearing flip flops and short sleeves...yesterday it POURED rain all day and then started snowing last night. My girls wore their pajamas inside out to bed- because supposedly that brings a lot of snow?!? HA! My oldest daughter REALLY wants a snow day!  

Anyway....Jessica, from The Newly, has recently started a fun new link up party called Confessional Thursday and I decided to join in this week!

//1// I CANNOT stand commercials that show people eating food. Or watching a cooking show and the host tries a bite of something they made and talks about it while there is food in their mouth. UGH. It seriously makes my skin crawl! I was on the treadmill at the gym yesterday and a commercial came on for Kraft Mozzarella cheese and during the whole commercial there were little kids shoving cheese and pepperoni in their mouth and then laughing with it in their mouths- just thinking about it is grossing me out- HA!

//2// And speaking of people eating food...I confess I am a HUGE stickler about table manners. I grew up with a mother who would poke your elbow with a fork if it even came near the table, you had to ask to be excused from the table,etc... and that has all definitely stuck with me. We are CONSTANTLY reminding our girls about proper table manners- and while I definitely feel bad sometimes for nagging them throughout dinner- I get over it really quick when I think about them having dinner at a friend's house in the future or going on a first date with their future spouse. Nobody's going to ask them out on a second date if they have pasta falling out of their mouth while they are talking about something! HA!  I am constantly telling my girls- I would have NEVER married their daddy if he had yucky manners. And I am DEAD serious! HA!

//3// I have been pregnant 5 times now and it NEVER fails- about 18 weeks into all of my pregnancies I start craving margaritas like CRAZY! And I am very specific about what kind of margarita I want: on the rocks, light salt rim and there HAS to be good tequila in it. And fresh lime juice. And if there could be a basket of hot, salty tortilla chips alongside it with some salsa- that would be GREAT. Here's the deal though- I DON'T drink when I am not pregnant!!! I can't tell you the last time I had a has definitely been at least 8 years...and yet- when I am pregnant- I can't stop thinking about them?!?! 

//4// I confess I am TOTALLY out of the loop and have not seen the Netflix series, "Making a Murderer." Also- never watched an episode of "Breaking Bad." And here is where you all are probably going to disown me- I have absolutely NO plans to watch "Fuller House." I think it is SUPER fun that they are bringing that show back- but we don't have Netflix- AND- I just don't care that much!! Now- if they brought back the series "Parenthood"- that's a totally different story!!! HA!

//5// I am OBSESSED with how newborn babies smell. Aaron and I keep talking about how excited we are for the baby to be born- and I will always say, "Oh my gosh- are you totally thinking about smelling the baby's head??" And he's like, "Um. NO. You are weird." HA! 
I seriously think about our new little baby, all tightly swaddled up, and his or her sweet little smelling baby head several times a day. Please tell me I am not the only one on this?!?!

Annnddd that's all I have for today :) I am waving my weirdo flag high today! And I am okay with that :) Ha!

Can't wait to read what everybody else is confessing today!!

Hope you have the BEST day!

What's Up Wednesday!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016 is the last Wednesday of the month...which means it is time for another What's Up Wednesday Post! I am joining MelShay and Sheaffer for their super fun link up party!

What we're eating this week...I made a couple new recipes last week, including Shay's Enchilada Elbow Bake and Creamy Chicken Noodle Pasta from the awesome food blog, Damn Delicious. Both turned out super yummy and provided enough leftovers I was able to freeze enough for a couple meals this week! I post our family's menu plan for the week almost every can check out what's for dinner at our house HERE!

What I'm reminiscing baby boy!!! AAHH!!! Last night, James and I were looking at videos of him on my phone from last year and it was just CRAZY to me how much he has changed in just ONE YEAR. He was just a little baby who started crawling this time last year!!! And now he is this precious, crazy 19 month old little boy! It was so sweet to see him watch videos of himself!! After every video- he would look up at me and clap! I thought my heart my burst!!
What I am loving....My Urban Decay Naked 2 Eyeshadow Palette! For Valentine's Day, I mentioned to my husband that I would love a new Urban Decay eyeshadow in the shade called Verve. I have had the Naked 2 palette for over 2 1/2 years (!!) and ran out of that color- it is my FAVORITE- a couple of months of ago. Well- Aaron totally surprised me and completely spoiled me by getting me a brand new Naked 2 palette- instead of just the one color I was wanting!! I am LOVING having all new fresh colors!
What we've been up to...we really haven't been up to much! We have just been rocking our regular ol' school schedule and trying to pack in as much fun as possible on the weekends!
This past weekend- we had the most gorgeous weather on Saturday and I took the girls to get their faces painted at a local grocery store by our house (they were having a customer appreciation day and had some fun things going on).
Didn't the lady who painted their faces do an amazing job??? I told Aaron, face painting has come a long way from back when I was a kid and all you could get was a tiny rainbow painted on your cheek! HA!
What I'm dreading...I really am not dreading anything :) But if I had to pick something- I would say having to fold and put away the 2 mounds of laundry I currently have in my laundry baskets! HA!
What I am working on...we have just started getting things organized for baby #5's arrival! We are taking stock of the things we have- which is almost EVERYTHING- and figuring out what we need to get. We have the baby's room about 70% set-up- and all that is left is to organize the closet in the baby's room. UGH. Kind of avoiding that task- HA!  I have also started getting things taken care for "events" that will be happening in the next couple of months. I am almost all the way done getting the kids' Easter basket goodies and I just ordered my daughter's birthday outfit and decorations (her birthday is just a couple weeks after the baby is due!). I am a BIG fan of getting things DONE in advance, so I can just relax and enjoy the moment- and not be scrambling last minute to put things together. I know I am only going to get more tired and less motivated in the upcoming weeks- so getting a few things taken care right now makes me feel a little bit more organized! 

What I'm excited about...scheduling a pre-natal massage I won at an event several months ago! I have never had a pre-natal massage before- so I am REALLY looking forward to it!! And everyone in our house is getting SO SO SO excited about meeting our new baby!! Aaron was setting up the crib in the baby's room the other day and then later on in the evening he said, "Getting everything set up today got me really excited to meet our baby." 
SO sweet. And I couldn't agree more!!!  

And finally- I am also excited to be teaming up with Erica and Leigh for our monthly link up – Pinspiration Wednesday!  Our next link up is the first Wednesday in March- which is next week! The topic is: Favorite Easter/Spring Décor and/or Favorite Easter Recipes! So start pinning those favorite Easter and Spring ideas now and plan on sharing them with us on March 2!! :)
What I am watching/reading...I just finished reading "The Matchmaker" by Elin Hilderbrand. I loved it!! My friend Johannah recommended it and I am so glad I listened to her :) I just started reading "The Royal We" after seeing several bloggers mention they really enjoyed reading it.  I am still on the first chapter- but so far it seems like a fun book!
And I am still watching "The Bachelor." I am totally hooked :) And I am so excited/curious to see who Ben ends up picking in final episode!! And CANNOT wait to see Olivia and all that she has to say in the "Women Tell All" episode. That is going to interesting to say the least! HA!

What I am listening to...I haven't been listening to a ton of music lately...but I have been putting on the Sam Smith station on Pandora when I clean up the kitchen after dinner.  There are always SO many good songs on that station!! I am also still totally OBSESSED with Adele and my very favorite song off of her new album, 25, is "Water Under the Bridge." 
What I'm wearing... Oh how I wish I had some cute outfits to how show off...BUT. I don't. HA! At 31 weeks pregnant, I am wearing the same 4 maternity tunics and 3 pairs of maternity leggings and 1 pair of maternity jeans on permanent repeat. My girls have started asking me when I am going to wear pretty clothes again! HA! But honestly- I am okay with my super boring outfits...I only have 9 weeks (maybe 10 if this baby is stubborn!) left of my full panel pants and boring maternity tops- and then I can do a little spring/summer clothes shopping!!

What I'm doing this weekend...We have absolutely NO plans, other than church, this weekend and I am totally OK with that!! We always seem to busy the whole entire weekend no matter how little we have planned! I just always appreciate SO much 2 days off of our regular "school" schedule....not having anywhere to be at a specific time is one of my love languages- HA!

What I'm looking forward to next month...
Daylight Savings Time!!! St. Patrick's Day!!! We aren't Irish- but I love getting the kids all dressed up in green and we always have a "GREEN" breakfast: green pancakes, green yogurt, green milk, green eggs and green applesauce. My kids max out on the amount of artificial food coloring they should probably have in a year in one day! HA!  And Easter! I am almost done getting everything I need to fill the kids' Easter Baskets and I plan on getting our Easter decorations up in the next week or so!

What else is new...Nothing really! Just enjoying being where we are RIGHT NOW :)

BONUS QUESTION: What's Your Favorite Easter Tradition? We always spend Easter at home, with just our family and it is such a fun and beautiful day!! We go to early Mass at church and then once we get home, the kids get to find their Easter Baskets that the Easter Bunny hid the night before!  We have an Easter egg hunt in our backyard and I always make a bunny cake that I let the kids decorate themselves :) Easter is one of my most FAVORITE holidays! 

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog today!! I hope you have the BEST day!!

Tuesday Talk!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Hi!! Happy Tuesday!!
Hope you had a great start to your week!

Sooo...while I am sure we all have many things in our lives that make us different from one another- I am going to assume there is one thing we all share in common: LAUNDRY.
Am I right???  HA!

Given the fact that I am pretty much doing at least one load of laundry a day- it happens to be a favorite topic of mine to talk about :)

I know I might be really late to the party- but I just recently discovered how awesome plain ol' vinegar and baking soda are for washing towels!!!
So here is the current situation with our towels:
Aaron and I received A LOT of beautiful, high quality, fluffy towels as wedding gifts.
That was 8 years ago. There is NOTHING wrong with our towels. Like I said, they are high quality, we have PLENTY of them and there is really no reason to get rid of them or buy more of them.
Except- that because of how long we have had them (I am assuming???), after just a couple of uses, they start to get stinky. I KNOW. Don't think we are gross. PLEASE. HA!
So- knowing that going out and buying a bunch of new towels was NOT an option- I did what I always do when I need an answer to something- asked Google, "how to make my stinky towels un-stinky!" (How I got through undergrad and graduate school without Google is BEYOND my understanding- HA!)

And the overwhelming answer, from almost every blog and website that popped up in my search was this: WHITE VINEGAR + BAKING SODA.

I found this fun graphic off of Pinterest (of course) explaining the process of using the vinegar and baking soda on your towels:

Guess what?? It works!! I was SO worried my towels were going to have a weird smell when I pulled them out of the dryer...but they smelled CLEAN. And they were soft! I wouldn't say they were as fluffy as the first day we got them- but they definitely had a little more "oomph" to them :)  
I have heard over and over again how awesome vinegar and baking soda are when used as cleaning agents- and well- I am now a believer!
I have now exclusively started washing our towels using the vinegar/baking soda method. It is CHEAP, it is keeping our towels in great shape AND our towels don't stink anymore!

I would love to know- have you used this method before to wash your towels?
Do you use vinegar and/or baking soda to clean other things?

And because it seems like laundry is one of my favorite topics to chat about- check out this post where I compared several different stain removers and also this post- where I share about my FAVORITE stain remover of all time!
Okay- now it is your turn- if you have a laundry secret- share it with me!!
I need of every trick of the trade I can get!!

Hope you have the BEST day!!

Linking up with all the wonderful bloggers from Tuesday Talk today!

 Becky at BYBMG | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Stephanie at Wife Mommy Me | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Christina at Waltzing In Beauty | Pinterest | Instagram
Michelle at Grammie Time | Pinterest | Instagram  
Whitney at Polka Dotty Place | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram 

Menu Plan Monday!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Hi!! How was your weekend?? 

Our's was fun and busy as usual :) It doesn't seem to matter how little we have planned...we always end up having two packed days of doing stuff! I have to say though- in my opinion- there is no better way to go to bed every night- than very tired...but HAPPY tired. I love my family SO much!

The biggest event that happened over the weekend was the Butterfly Ball! 
Friday night, Aaron took our 3 girls to their school's Butterfly Ball AKA Daddy/Daughter dance.
I made them each a little bouquet (out of Aldi's $4 half dozen roses and some babies breath- they turned out SO cute) and he asked each of the girls if they would go to the dance with him. It was precious :) Aaron said they had a blast taking pictures in the photo booth with their friends, eating A LOT of cookies and running around and dancing like crazy!

The rest of our weekend was spent running errands, playing outside, doing lots of laundry, going to church and tackling a few house projects (and please note- Aaron was the one tackling those projects- NOT ME! HA!)

And now we are at the beginning of the LAST WEEK OF FEBRUARY!!
I am not one to wish away time- I really try to be mindful and focus on right where I am- but I am SO excited to be moving into March! Daylight Savings Time starts on March 13- which is SO huge to get that extra hour of sunlight, and we get to celebrate St. Patrick's Day AND Easter! And finger's crossed it will be getting a little warmer :) Anyway- February has been a great month- but bring it on March :)

Sooo...I have our meals all planned out for this week and my goal was to utilize freezer meals- so I didn't have to cook much this week- HA! 
Here is what we're having for dinner at our house this week:

Monday: Submarine Sandwiches, Shoestring Potato Fries and Carrot and Cucumber Sticks- I always like to plan a simple meal for Monday- I am always a little extra tired (I am such a wimp!!) from jumping back into the busyness of getting the kids to and from school and I really don't like prepping a big meal. So- for dinner tonight I am making our favorite sandwich, cutting up some veggies and baking some shoestring fries (got them at Aldi!) and calling it dinner!

Tuesday: Pancakes, Turkey Bacon and Sliced Peaches
Aaron has a dinner meeting and won't be home for dinner- and since my kids love breakfast for dinner- and Aaron is NOT a huge fan of it- it's the perfect night to make it! I use the Aunt Maple's pancake mix from Aldi (it makes great pancakes and all you do is add water to the mix!) and we get our turkey bacon from Sam's club- we really like the Oscar Mayer brand! We bake our turkey bacon in the oven at 425 degrees until it just starts to get crispy- and it is SO good! My daughter Cora and my baby boy James LOVE it!! Peaches are a favorite fruit in our house so we will have those in place of a veggie :)

Wednesday: Enchilada Bake, Black Bean and Cheese Taco Chips + Green Salads
Thursday: Creamy Chicken Pasta 
Last week I made Shay's Enchilada Elbow Bake and my family (minus two picky eaters :) really enjoyed it!! We had enough to have it for 2 meals AND I was able to freeze a container of it for another meal! We are going to have it paired along side black bean and cheese taco chips- (I just break crunchy taco shells in half, spread some black beans on them and then melt cheddar cheese on top- Voilà- Taco Chips! :) We will have side salads for our veggie!

Thursday: Creamy Chicken Pasta and Steamed Broccoli
I made this recipe for creamy chicken pasta this past Sunday and had enough to freeze for another meal!  Aaron and I really enjoyed it- the kids not so much. Oh well! You win some and lose some! HA! We are having it one more time with some steamed broccoli and then I will probably not make it again for our family- just because I don't want to hear my kids complain :) I will say- it would be a WONDERFUL meal to make for friends or a family who just had a new baby! It makes a ton, uses not that many ingredients and really was tasty!!

Friday: Potato Soup, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches + Green Salads
It is a meatless meal night at our house since it Friday (we don't eat meat on Fridays during Lent), so we will be having homemade potato corn chowder, grilled cheese sandwiches and salads. A very simple meal- but super yummy! :)

Saturday: Pizza Night
During Lent, we have moved our pizza picnic night to Saturday night. The kids have cheese pizza and Aaron makes this super yummy pepperoni, pepperoncini and mushroom pizza.  We use a Mama Cozi pizza kit from Aldi and they turn out SO good!

Sunday: Homemade Chicken Nuggets (for the kids) and Panko Crusted Chicken over Big Green Salads (for A & J)
For our Sunday dinner, I am going to bread some chicken breasts with Panko breadcrumbs plus some seasoning and bake them in the oven to have over big salads for Aaron and I. 
I will just cut the chicken breast into bite size pieces and bread it for the kids to have "chicken nuggets." They really like when I make homemade chicken nuggets- and I really like it when they actually eat some form of protein without gagging- HA! The kids will have green beans and some buttered parmesan noodles to go along their nuggets!

And that's our menu plan for the week- simple and easy!
Do you have your meals planned out for the week?
Any yummy, new recipes you are trying out??
Tell me about them!

Happy Monday and hope you have the BEST day!

 I am linking up with Laura today!

Friday Favorites!!

Friday, February 19, 2016

Hi!! Happy Friday!!

How has your week been?
Our's has been really has flown by because my girls only had 4 days of school this week! I am not complaining at all that Friday showed up a little sooner than it normally does! :) :) :) 

I have some fun, random favorites to share with you this week!
Here we go!

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a post about some Kate Spade look alike earrings I had found at Walmart- for THREE DOLLARS!!  You can read the post HERE! I picked up a really pretty opalescent pair the first time I saw them at the store and loved them so much (I find them more comfortable to wear than my REAL Kate Spade studs!!), that I had my husband pick me up a few more pairs!
Isn't the jade green color so pretty?? The glitter turquoise just so fun??
Here's an up close picture of the jade green pair- you can see the flecks of sparkle in them a little better.  And to make these earrings even more awesome- when I my husband got them this past week- they were on sale for $2!!! I mean, what can you buy for $2?? HA!
I love my original Kate Spade studs...but I sure do love my Walmart earrings too! Definitely a new FAVORITE in my jewelry box!!
And speaking of amazing jewelry finds at Walmart, my favorite friend Laura texted me this picture of these fabulous tassel necklaces that she found at her Walmart....for FIVE DOLLARS!! Aren't they so pretty?!? She ended up getting the necklace on the far left and I have to say I am loving the necklace on the far right- loving that combo of white beads, bright turquoise stone and yellow tassel!!
And because Laura knows that I LOVE a good price comparison- she sent me this picture of a similar looking tassel necklace on Neiman Marcus' website....such a pretty necklace...aaannnd it is $95. Crazy right?? I personally don't think I would be able to tell the difference between the Walmart tassel necklace and this higher end necklace!

Tonight is the Butterfly Ball at my daughters' school- and they are getting all dressed up in princess dresses and their daddy is taking them for a fun night of dancing!!
The PTO asked for people to bake treats for the dance and I signed up to make 2 dozen brownies :)
Of course, I used my FAVORITE brownie recipe- it is the only one I ever use!!
It is seriously the easiest recipe EVER- and it makes the most delicious, rich, fudgy brownies!! YUM. I highly encourage you make some this weekend :)

Yesterday, I washed our master bedroom sheets- and then decided to get a little head start on some spring cleaning and I also washed our pillows and our duvet cover.  Such a PAIN to do- but oh my goodness....getting into bed last night was pure heaven. Seriously- clean, crisp sheets is one of my most FAVORITE things ever!!

I had to share this picture :) I seriously laugh SO hard every time I look at it!!
So- about a week ago, Celine and James were jumping on our big, leather oversized chair in the living room (which is a big NO NO in our house) and after asking them to stop a couple of times and both of them continuing on with their jump party- they got sent to time out :)
Celine was totally devastated. James on the other hand...well you can see how he feels about his punishment! HA!
Definitely one of my FAVORITE pictures of these two!!

And for my final FAVORITE of the week...I am SO excited and happy that we have a day of SUNSHINE and temperatures predicted to be in the middle 60's tomorrow!!!
What a gift to have a day like that in the middle of February!!
Honestly- it has not been a bad winter at all here in Central Indiana...but it definitely hasn't been warm enough to be playing outside. I can guarantee you will be outside pretty much all day long tomorrow- and I can't wait!! :) 
Hope you have the BEST Friday and a wonderful weekend!! :)

I am linking up with Andrea and Erika for their Friday Favorites Link Up!

 I am also linking up with April for Five on Friday!
 Joining Karli for her, Oh Hey Friday Link Up! too!

And lastly, linking up with KatieTifDella & Caitlin for High Five for Friday!