Monday, December 31, 2012

MPM: A Brand New Year

I'm starting up with Menu Plan Monday again.  Although I continued to create a weekly menu, I didn't always post.  So a new year means more posting.  I generally just plan out dinner entres but I may include some sides, lunches, breakfasts, and snacks occassionally.  I'm also going to include more information so that I can look back at previous menus to create new ones.  I'll include links where available and pictures afterward.  Here's this week's plan:
  • Monday: Dinner Out for New Year's Eve
Paul and I are going to the Melting Pot while the kids have a sleepover at Grandma's.
This is a recipe I found on Pinterest.  Like the poster, I don't plan on using sour cream (saves me a trip to the store).  We'll probably have a veggie and rice as a side.
  • Wednesday:  Pasta, Sauce, and Salad
This is a go-to meal for us, meaning I know the kids will eat it.  It will probably be spaghetti noodles (their favorite) and whatever jar marinara sauce we have.  I'll also make a salad (starting with pre-packaged bag and adding other stuff) and maybe garlic bread.  This is also Logan's first day back to school so this is a good meal since the afternoon is going to be a little stressful, getting back into the routine.
I made this just last week (and I try not to repeat recipes too quickly) but it was really good so we'll have it again.  I think I'll try a new side like Honey Roasted Red Potatoes.
Another pinterest find.  I don't typically use whole chickens so I may just do breasts although Logan loves chicken with bones.
Paul is starting his busy season so I decided Saturday's would be good for the crockpot.  This is a pinterest recipe and should be plenty so that we can leftovers Sunday and maybe even enough for Paul's lunch on Monday.
  • Sunday:  Leftovers/CORN
This is the day we Clean Out the Refrigerator Night (CORN).  If we don't have any leftovers then we'll have sandwiches and soup or breakfast for dinner.

I have a set of school lunches that we rotate through for Logan (plus he usually buys once a week).  I'd like to add to the rotation but don't want to try new things at school (in case he doesn't like them, I don't want him to be hungry).  I'm going to use Saturday and Sunday to try out new lunch possibilities and then add them into the weekly menus if he likes them.  I'm going to be trying some new smoothies for breakfasts (at least for Paul and I).  Hopefully, we'll find some we like and maybe even the kids too.

I may also try to make a sheet cake this week to as a special treat.  I made this one just before Christmas for Jesus' birthday and it was so good.  I got the recipe from a church cookbook we had, but did get the icing recipe online because I didn't have one of the ingredients the cookbook used.  Unfortunately, I ruined it.  I put it in the oven to free up counter space for Christmas cooking and forgot to take it out when I turned on the oven to preheat.  Oops, melting plastic wrap and pampered chef server.

You can check out more menus at Organzing Junkie.

Happy New Year!!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Pinterest 79-110

I have completed 110 pinned ideas.  That's a lot but it's not even a 10th of the pins on my boards.

North Pole Breakfast:  Our elf on the shelf brought this on his first day back.

Elf Calendar:  I didn't specifically use hers, but I did write down the activity for the day, the special treat the kids got , and a general idea for the elf.

Elf Bubble Bath using marshmallows (until the cats started eating them)

Christmas Express: We used this idea when we took the kids to see the light display at the lake.

Reindeer Cam:  I had pinned this but forgot about it until someone reminded me on Facebook.  The kids loved watching Santa.

Paper Strip Tree (I had to delete the pin because it wouldn't link):  I did this one day with Sophie while Logan was at school then let him make one later while she was napping.

Wrapped Trash Present:  I did this the day we opened presents and it was so nice. The room didn't seem as cluttered as it usually does.

ABC Family Christmas Shows: I used the listed to set the Tivo.  The kids watched some oldies but goodies.  There are a couple that Sophie still asks about.  Of course there were a couple that didn't keep their interest.

Lemon Butter Shrimp:  This was really good and it didn't matter that I didn't have lemon slices.

Teriyaki Salmon:  This was good too.

Crockpot Lemon Chicken:  This was okay.  The kids didn't much care, but then they usually don't.

World's Best Chicken:  Yeah, the name is deceiving.  It was just okay.

Honey Glazed Carrots:  These were actually pretty good, I even ate them and I hate cooked carrots.

Easiest Dinner Ever:  Was very easy and we ate it a couple of different ways, just like she suggests.

Addiction Chicken:  Again, misleading name.

Beer Crockpot Chicken:  The only beer I had was some Asian ones I'd bought as a gift, but combined with the "fancy" seasoning mix I had, this chicken tasted really good.

Dump Chicken:  There's a whole bunch of options on this site and I've probably made a dozen of them.  Most are okay, in fact, none stand out in my mind as either really good or really bad.  The nice thing is that I'll do one of these when I make another chicken meal, using the other half of the big bag of frozen chicken breasts.

Cornucopia Fruit Cups (no link just a picture):  I wished I'd taken a picture when I made these for a playdate.

Crispy Flounder:  This was so, so good.  I just used regular breadcrumbs (not planko) and Old Bay seasoning.

Packing Peanut Snowman:  I had a bunch of peanuts that came in one of the kids presents.  I went online and found several activities for them.

Glue Sponge:  I think this would work better with more glue (it takes a lot to fill the container), but I did use it with Sophie.  I'm going to try to make it work because she loves to cut and glue scrap paper.

Birdseed Ornaments:  We've had amazing weather and the birds have been everywhere so we made a couple of different options for them.

Ways to Play:  I've printed out the monthly ideas and put them in my calendar so I'm already for the new year.

Fluffy Stuff:  The kids had a blast with this stuff.  First, they just played inside keeping in a tub, then I sent them to the backyard to throw it around.

Another Bird Feeder:  We found some pine cones at the church and decided to try these feeders.

I Spy Packing Peanuts:  I let the kids choose the objects to put in the box then created a checklist with simple drawings.

Clean the Garbage Disposal:  Not sure how much this helped but...

Refill the Swiffer:  I was halfway through mopping the kitchen floor when I ran out of cleaning solution.  I knew I'd pinned this so I had Paul help me and I refilled it with a pine cleaner.  I'll probably try a different solution next time.

Marble Track:  I've had the pool noodles for over a year to do this but couldn't find marbles so I started looking for small balls that would work.  Once I found the balls, I couldn't remember where I'd put the noodles.  Finally, the stars aligned and we were able to try this out.

Chopsticks and Pompoms:  I've had these out several times.  I usually use an ice tray to sort the pom poms.

Kids Journals:  I have one of these for each of the kids and will pull it out randomly to give them something to do.  They've traced objects, cut out things to glue in it, colored pictures, made their gift list.

Paper Fortune Cookies:  We made these as a special ornament during National Adoption Month.