Archive for Menu Plans
Just like last week, I don’t have much of a menu plan to share with you this week. Our family is having the most amazing time in Colorado – finding service opportunities, holding Meet and Greets, and catching up with friends we rarely get to see. We’ve been taking lots of pictures, which I’ll be sure to share as soon as I can!
We’ve been blessed to cook many of our meals in our friends’ home where we are staying. They eat a gluten free diet, so for the meals we’ve shared, I’ve done my best to make them GF.
Here are some of the meals we’ve enjoyed so far:
- Scrambled egg and cheese sandwiches with apple slices on our way to help with a food bank
- Lamb kabobs on the grill, stir fried veggies (carrots, broccoli, and asparagus), and fresh strawberries
- Brats on the grill with strawberry/pineapple/orange/mango smoothies
- Italian Pasta Bake made with Tinkyada rice pasta, tossed salad, green beans, watermelon
- Cereal (hey, we’re on vacation!)
What do we plan to eat this week?
We’re not entirely sure yet, as we plan to continue to be on the road for a few more days. During each of the days we’re spending time serving with organizations, we’ve just done whatever has been easiest and best for the people we’re working with. Plus, we’re doing all we can to make home-cooked meals as simple as possible for our host family. The more we can cook with or for them, the better! They are, after all, housing six additional people for over a week. :)
What has been really nice is the availability of awesome grocery stores in these parts! Really, I try not to be jealous. But how cool (read: unfair, boo, wah) is it that when we punched “Whole Foods” into our GPS to grab some food for the grill, something like TEN stores came up within just a few miles of our friends’ house! But really, we’re just so very happy for those of you who can drive five minutes and have access to such great stores. Really. I’m happy for you. Totally. :)
Later in the week, once we get home, our menu will likely consist of lots of salads, grilled meats, steamed veggies, Chicken Patty Sandwiches, and Calzones that are already made and in the freezer…and I’m really hungry for Whole Wheat Waffles with strawberries.
Here are my menu plan archives if you need more healthy menu inspiration. Meanwhile, I will be munching on fresh organic blueberries and cherries from Whole Foods. With each yummy bite, I will continue to be happy for my friends here and for all of you that you have such great stores in your backyard. ;)
How close is the closest Whole Foods store to your house? Me? I have to drive two hours. Oh, but we’re getting one in Lincoln later this year, so that will make it only about an hour away – yay!
My family is spoiling me again this Mother’s Day. I just finished a delicious lunch (made by everyone but me), and now I am listening to Matt and the boys clean the kitchen. I think I may go take a nap.
Here are the flowers I received at church today. Each boy (including Matt) got to pick one flower to give me. I am amazed that somehow they coordinated and all picked a different color to bring to me.
Our family has some exciting days ahead of us this week and next. We take off Wednesday for a week long trip. Therefore, the menu plan? There’s no need for one.
I will share with you what the first few days of our week look like before we leave, but I’ll warn you, it is not exciting in the least:
Monday and Tuesday
Leftovers, clean out the fridge, scramble more eggs, make some smoothies, finish cleaning out the fridge
Pack sandwiches for the road, plus lots of fruit and water bottles
If you want some real (and helpful) menu ideas, please check out this link which is always available to you: My menu plan archives.
I’ll share more about our upcoming trip on Gratituesday, because without a doubt, this trip is one that we have looked forward to for quite some time and we are so thankful it is finally here!!!
A couple of weeks ago, we were blessed to go to a Geography Fair on our local Christian college campus. There, our boys got to “experience” and learn about many other countries in the world. It was a lot of fun, and inspired me to have our boys create a little geography fair of our own. :)
They were each in charge of choosing and researching any country in the world last week. They wrote information about it, created a flag of their country, and looked at the foods found in those countries. This week, they are each making one dish that represents their country. We’ve worked them into our menu plan this week!
Sunday, May 5
Baked oatmeal cups, kiwi
Nacho bar fundraiser for mission trip kids at church
Huddle at our friends’ house
Monday, May 6
Belgian Waffles (made by Asa, who studied Belgium last week)
Chicken patty sandwiches, fruit salad
Alfredo sauce with pasta, steamed broccoli and carrots, tossed salad
Tuesday, May 7
Homemade poptarts, oranges
Something Venezuelan – made by Justus (update to come)
Thursday, May 9
Honey cinnamon muffins, strawberries and cream
Recipe from Djibouti – if in fact Elias and I can find one that will work!
Black bean salsa, organic chips, fresh pineapple, orange slices
Saturday, May 11
Scrambled egg sandwiches, fruit
Teriyaki chicken and veggies (broccoli, carrots, zucchini, peppers)
If you happen to have any wonderful Djibouti recipes hanging out in your kitchen – please share!! Elias wasn’t kidding when he said they were hard to find. :)
As I looked over my kitchen in an effort to plan this week’s menu, I realized how low we are on fresh and frozen produce. Indeed, we are Fruitless in Seattle…er, Nebraska.
Actually, I think it just seems this way because we are so spoiled. I love having a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables to choose from when I plan my meals. To get us through the beginning of the week, we do have just a few apples, oranges, and bananas. There is home-canned applesauce in the pantry. I have some frozen peas, green beans, strawberries, and blueberries. There is a little lettuce in the fridge. Otherwise, I’m looking forward to a shopping trip soon! I’ll plan to snap a picture of what I get and share it with you. (To clarify, I’ll share the picture, not the produce. Sorry. My boys eat big.)
Soooo – if you look at the menu plan and think, “Wow, she just keeps putting a generic “fruit” or “vegetable” as a side dish,” that is because by those days I anticipate being completely out of whatever we currently have on hand, and I’m not sure what I’ll be blessed to find at the store. Who knows? It could be that on Thursday, we’ll have kumquats! (Because as we all know, kumquats are plentiful in Nebraska this time of year.) ;)
Sunday, April 28
Easy breakfast casserole, oranges
Chicken sandwiches, carrots, fruit
High School Huddle – Italian pasta bake, green beans, cream cheese corn, frosted brownies (these brownies, this frosting)
How’s your supply of fruits and veggies? Ever had a kumquat? (Can’t say that I actually ever have.) Are you looking forward to the Ultimate Homemaking eBook Bundle Sale this week as much as I am?! Just a few more hours…
I had almost forgotten about this Blueberry Coffeecake recipe. It was perfect for breakfast this morning before we headed out to church. (I baked it last night so that it would be ready to serve!)
This week, we decided to get our four boys into the kitchen for some more intense cooking experiences. They each get to take one full day, and have full responsibility for planning, cooking, and clean-up. That’s not to say that they won’t have help and guidance. But the majority of the work is up to them. It’s been lots of fun helping them plan their meals! They really had to give thought to their plans so that they would make the menu balanced throughout the day. I believe I should do this more often!
Later this week, I’ll share some pictures and tell you how it’s been going.
Sunday, April 21
Blueberry coffee cake
Scrambled egg sandwiches, apples, baby carrots
Huddle at our friend’s house
Saturday, April 27
Scrambled eggs, fruit-kefir smoothies
Grilled salmon, baked potatoes, green beans, tossed salad
Stay tuned to see how the boys do with executing their menu plans!! :)
I knew this weekend was going to be a busy one. As Matt rattled off our boys’ soccer game schedule late last week, and I decided that if we were going to eat well, I’d need to plan ahead. For each meal, we had a very small window of time before we’d need to leave the house again for another game. And so, I spent part of Friday getting ready.
This worked out perfectly. I made a Lasagna Casserole and a Hearty Green Bean Casserole to put into the oven as soon as we got home from games. I also made Chicken Salad for sandwiches or pitas on the run. I wish I was always able to make time to prep food ahead like this. It sure does make game days go more smoothly, as well as fill hungry soccer players who run several miles each day playing games!
I was excited that since we had to head to Lincoln for games on Saturday, and because we had a little bit of time to kill between games, I was able to run into Trader Joes for a few minutes. I spent a lot of time in the produce department, and as you can see, I had quite a bit of fun there!
I was able to get pears, plums, kiwi, sweet potatoes, mandarins, avocados, and sweet peppers. I love having such a yummy variety of fresh produce on hand. (We’ll see if this stash even lasts us one week…) :)
Here’s what our menu looks like for this week:
Saturday, April 20
Fried eggs on toast, oranges and pears
Lamb chops, sweet potato fries, steamed broccoli and carrots
Do you have a Trader Joes nearby? I wish ours was closer, but it sure is fun to hop in every few months!
We’re in between soccer games this afternoon. It’s a little windy, but I’m loving the sunshine!!
Here’s to a great week!
Sunday, April 7
Crunchy ranch chicken, stir fried rice and veggies
Huddle at our friends’ house
If you haven’t already, many of you who pre-ordered Oh, For Real should be receiving it in the mail any day now! (Those of you who just ordered last week – yours will be on its way tomorrow!) I’ve heard back from several of you who have received your book already. Thank you so much for your encouraging responses!
Jolene: Got my Oh, For Real book today in the mail!!! Loving it already!
Patty: Just wanted to let you know that since bringing your book home my oldest (10 years) has been cooking up a storm. I have never seen him so excited to be in the kitchen. He is preparing everything with only a little guidance. We have had a lot of messes in the kitchen, but some delicious food.
Beth: I got my book in the mail yesterday. I enjoyed looking through it last evening even though it made me hungry. I plan to share the book with my daughter.
I have to say (and I feel a little bit giggly as I say it) – Having my own cookbook in my kitchen has already been a tremendous help to me, too. I have to keep reminding myself that it’s there. My first response when I need to check a recipe is to run to the computer to look it up here on my website. Then I remember, “Laura! Look in your book!” And there it is. I’m so thankful for it, and I’m happy to say that so far, I’ve been careful enough not to spill anything on it. (Now that I’ve said that out loud, I will probably go goober it up with a pretty combination of chicken broth, barbecue sauce, and cookie dough.)
Here is what our menu plan looks like for this week:
Sunday, March 24
Homemade poptarts, apples
Barbecue chicken sandwiches, carrot sticks
Huddle at our friends’ house
Our family is hanging out in Branson with extended family for a long weekend - having a blast!! What I’m most excited to share with you though, is that our first two Meet and Greet events were SO MUCH FUN!!
I was excited about it and knew it would be fun to meet some of you. I just had no idea how much fun it would be. We laughed. We met each other’s kids. We shared. We asked questions. We laughed some more.
Thank you so much to all of you who took the time to come for a visit. This made me want to take a huge tour so that I’d have the opportunity to meet more of you! Someday, maybe our family will make it to your area. :) (Here are the upcoming Meet and Greet events we know of for sure. And if you’re anywhere close to Springfield, MO – please come visit on Tuesday, March 19! Read the time and location details here.)
Below is a picture of part of our group in Kansas City. There were a lot more kids playing in a different room, and another gal showed up later (forgot to get a picture at that time!). And just in case you were wondering, we hid all of our sugary drinks before having Matt snap the shot. Oh wait, did I just rat all of us out?!?! Oops. :)
Here’s the group at Branson. Don’t worry. We weren’t hiding our sugary drinks in this picture. We just hadn’t ordered them yet. ;)
Here is a good guess as to a menu plan for this week. Here’s hoping by the time we get home, I will have enough of a brain to follow it. If not, we can always resort to Creamy Mac and Cheese with a veggie.
Monday, March 18
Giant breakfast cookies, applesauce
Burgers on the grill (cooked by another family member)
Supper – Reservation at Mel’s Hard Luck Diner (my dad has a gift certificate!)
Tuesday, March 19
Traveling day – not sure what we’re eating but we’ll see you Springfield, MO folks at Panera Bread at 10:30! I can not wait!
We’ve got a big week coming up!
My dad and his wife Tacy planned a trip to Branson for all of us “kids” and our families - so all 21 of us are heading there at the end of the week. On the way, our family will be stopping in Kansas City to meet some of you, then we’ll meet more of you in Branson the next day! On the way home, we’ll hit Springfield to meet even more of you. Hope those who live in those areas can come!
I’m thankful that for the most part, we’ll be eating home-cooked meals (I guess that would technically be “lodge-cooked meals”) while in Branson. Each of our families are taking turns preparing a meal for the entire group. This is so much better than eating out all week – and everyone in the family is a great cook!
We’re also all planning to take along some desserts and snacks. I started baking Chocolate Chip Cookies today to take along, plus I plan to make some Chewy Granola Bars, Giant Breakfast Cookies, and a bunch of fruit. Our time away should be lots of fun!
Here’s what our menu looks like for this week – at least what I know of it. :)
Sunday, March 10
Chili Mac, peas
Huddle at friends’ house
Thursday, March 14
Scrambled egg sandwiches, applesauce
Sandwiches, baby carrots, peaches (on our way to the KC Meet and Greet!)
Dinner at our friends’ house
Saturday, March 16
Scrambled eggs, toast, fruit
Bbq meatballs (cooked by another family member)
Frito Chili Pie (cooked by another family member)