This Week’s Meal Plan & Today’s Recipes

Meal Plans for 12/28 – 1/3/16 (Yikes!)

So today is my prep dat for things I can do make or do ahead of time. I’ll make a quiche and some black beans and rice to have for lunches on days I don’t want to have leftovers. And I’ll run to the store if there are ingredients that I’m missing.

I’ve planned out all three meals because I’m really good at skipping breakfast which is bad. And I often struggle over what to have for lunch.

So here you go.

Breakfast: Smoothie (berries, spinach, almond milk, protein powder)
Lunch: Quiche
Dinner: Lentil-Quinoa Soup, Cornbread

Breakfast: Egg White Omelet w/ Veggies; toasted Ezekiel bread
Lunch: Leftovers
Dinner: Beef & Bean Burritos; Homemade Mexican Rice

Breakfast: Smoothie (banana, Greek yogurt, almond butter, honey, almond milk)
Lunch: Leftovers
Dinner: California Chicken Wraps; Roasted Veggies

Breakfast: Hard-boiled egg; turkey sausage; toasted Ezekiel bread
Lunch: Black Beans & Rice w/ Sausage
Dinner: Leftovers

Breakfast: Smoothie (strawberries, yogurt, almond milk, honey, protein powder)
Lunch: Leftovers
Dinner: Homemade Pizza (trying a grain-free crust): 1. chicken & spinach Alfredo, 2. beef & mushroom, 3. cheese & cheese smile emoticon
Treat Night: Homemade Ice Cream Sundaes

Breakfast: Bacon & Egg Breakfast Pizza (grain-free crust)
Lunch: Leftovers
Dinner: Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches; Crash Hot Potatoes

Breakfast: Smoothie (banana, yogurt, almond milk, almond butter)
Lunch: Leftovers
Dinner: Slow Cooker Bacon Ranch Chicken, Pasta, Green Peas, Roasted Carrots

I will post pics and dinner recipes throughout the week.

Here are the recipes for the two things I’ll make today for lunches. 🙂


Easy Quiche

I’ll make this today to have for lunches this week. Hubby will be off so I’ll have to feed him, too. Notice that the word “easy” is in the title (name?) of both recipes. 🙂

Prep: 10 min
Cook: 50 min
Total: 1 hr
Servings: 8


2 cups milk
4 eggs
3⁄4 cup biscuit baking mix (I’m trying a grain-free baking mix)
1⁄4 cup butter softened
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 (10 ounce) package chopped frozen broccoli, thawed and drained
1 cup cubed cooked ham
8 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease a 10 inch quiche dish.
In a large bowl, beat together milk, eggs, baking mix, butter and parmesan cheese. Batter will be lumpy. Stir in broccoli, ham and Cheddar cheese. Pour into prepared quiche dish.
Bake in preheated oven for 50 minutes, until eggs are set and top is golden brown.


Easy Black Beans & Rice

Prep: 5 min
Cook: 25 min
Total: 30 min
Servings: 4




1 tablespoon olive oil
1⁄4 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic crushed or minced
1 cup white rice I like medium grain
2 cups chicken broth
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄2 teaspoon cumin
15 ounces canned seasoned black beans drained and rinsed
1/2 package smoked sausage or turkey sausage, sliced into “coins”


In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, and sauté 3 minutes, until onion is tender and starting to brown. Add garlic, and sauté one minute longer. Add uncooked rice, and stir and sauté 2 minutes.

Add broth, salt, and cumin. Stir together, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, saute sausage slices in a tiny bit of oil over medium-high heat until browned on both sides. Set aside to drain on paper towels.

Remove lid, stir in beans and sausage, and cover again. Turn off heat, and let stand for 3 minutes before serving.


Menu Planning in the Works

Good afternoon, all!

I’m starting with some menu planning for the coming week and the month of January. Going to use these themes for January. We’ll see how it goes and change it up in February if we have to. (Don’t tell Hubby, but he is going to join me in eating healthier.)

*Meatless Mondays

*Tex-Mex Tuesdays

*”What’s Up?” or “What’s New?” Wednesdays (undecided on name, but it will be new recipes or it might be family member’s choice)

*Throwback Thursdays (leftover buffet night)

*Family Friday (pizza or pasta)

*Soup and/or Sandwich Saturdays

*Slow Cooker Sundays

I have been scouring the internet for new recipes and downloading them to Plan to Eat which is what I use (and love!) for meal planning and am ready to get started. (This is not a usual Sunday and we have leftovers from the THIRD Christmas dinner, so we will actually be having leftovers tonight. Which is fine by me!)

We sometimes have other leftover nights if the fridge is full, but we definitely do Thursdays. Sometimes we have soup twice in one week. (I love soup!) Sometimes I’m really just not in the mood to cook and I order pizza. True confession right there.

What do you think? Do any of you do themed nights? I think it just makes it simpler when you’re meal planning. I know that the last couple of weeks with all the stuff that we’ve had going on that I’ve not been meal planning and man, oh man, can I feel it! And I don’t like it.

Meal planning is one of the easiest ways to simplify your weekdays, in my humble opinion. (That and learning to say the word “no.”)

Let’s give it a try together. I’ll post my week’s menu here as soon as I’m done.

Y’all have a blessed day!


Back to School Challenge: Taking Control of Your Family Calendar

Happy Tuesday!

Well, Boy Child has officially flown back into the nest. My sweet Mama was kind enough to remind me that I and two of my brothers did the same. She also gave me some very sage advice: Enjoy them while you have them home. Enjoy them. While they’re home. Sigh. So that got me thinking that we need to get back into the habit of having a family dinner night. Just one night a week where we all sit down at the table at the SAME TIME and enjoy a meal.

So while both of my children are adults, we still occupy the same house and have to intentionally make time for that. It’s hard because we all work – plus Boy Child is going back to school – but I’m going to try. And while we are the typical “Back to School” family with little kiddos, a lot of this post still applies. I originally wrote about this back in August, 2013, but it bears repeating. 🙂

Some of you have kids who have already started back to school. If not, it’s just around the corner. If you’re not affected by the school calendar, you can call this your end of summer challenge. 🙂 I’m going to address something that I see as a real problem with so many people today: busyness. So often, when I ask someone how they are, they respond with, “Busy.” Or tired. Or stressed. They wish they had time to just sit and relax for a few minutes each day. They wish they had time to make dinner at home. They wish they had one night a week that they didn’t have some activity or another to get to.

Guess what? YOU are the genie in charge of your calendar (and, as a result, your kids’ calendars as well, at least to some extent), so you can grant your own wish. So consider what you put on there very, very carefully. When it starts looking a little crowded, remember that it’s okay to say “no.” To activities. To obligations. Yes, even to your kids.  If you’re going to make a schedule and stick to it – not a bad idea at all – then schedule in some down time every day and aim for at least one weeknight free from outside obligations. It is good for you to have some down time. It’s good for your kids. It’s just good for your spouse. It’s good for your marriage. It’s NEEDED for your sanity.

So.. my challenge to you this week is this: Think before you act when it comes to your calendar and your schedule. First, practice saying “no.” It doesn’t come easy to a lot of us. But is really not a bad word. Doesn’t even have four letters. 🙂 Then, when you (or your kids or family) are offered  an opportunity – whether it’s sports, the PTA, a church activity, committees, clubs, etc. – tell the person who asks you that you’ll get back to them. Tell them that you have to check your calendar and discuss it with your spouse.

Do NOT immediately say “yes.” You may say “yes” eventually, but don’t say it on the spur of the moment before THINKING and LOOKING AT YOUR CALENDAR. Take some time to seriously consider what saying “yes” will mean to you. Is it one hour per week for real? Or is it going to turn into several hours per week and even on the weekend? If, after looking at your calendar and discussing it with those who will be affected (your family), make a conscious and thoughtful decision. If it’s more than you want to take on, just say “no.” Just. Say. No. The world will not end. The earth will not tilt off its axis. Someone else will do the job. Really.

If it’s something that will enrich your life in some way or something that you really want to do, then by all means, say “yes.” Just remember: Sometimes you have to say “no” to good things so that you can say “yes” to the best things. If you say “yes” to everyone and everything, eventually something you really, really feel passionate about and want to do will come along and you won’t have time for it. How sad is that?

This is something that I have struggled with in the past. Sometimes I still do. But I have gotten better at saying “no” to people and things. Sometimes there are things I’d like to do but I know that I don’t want to or can’t give it the time it will actually require. It’s better to give fewer things your best shot than to stretch yourself too thin and not be able to give your best to anything. So determine what’s best for you and say no to things that are just “good” or that will just be draining your time and energy.

Get out those calendars.  Take a good hard look at them. Don’t add anything that you really don’t want to do or that is going to be a source of stress and anxiety. With your family, choose a day that will be free of extracurricular activities. (The middle of the week is a good one for that if you can swing it, but it might be Friday or Saturday). Next, add things that MUST be done. I personally think that a great rule of thumb is to limit your children’s extracurricular activities to one – maybe two – in a season/time period, but that’s just me. I find it tiring just to hear about friends’ running their kids somewhere every day of the week. I can’t imagine actually doing it! Be selective. Be careful. Be honest – with yourself and others. Don’t take on more than you can handle. Just don’t.

“A full calendar does not equal a full life.”

Y’all have a great week! And remember: It really, really is okay to say “no.” Really.