Meal Plan Monday: A Lazy Spring Break Week

Meal Plan Monday

Good Monday morning everyone and welcome to the Spring Break edition of MPM on FHM&M.  (Wayyyyy too many acronyms there)  Maybe the “lazy” should simply be for the cooking.  This week is going to be a week of no new recipes (unlike spring breaks in the past with meal plan challenges).

So, what does this week look like?

Here we go!!!

Saturday:  ate at the hotel in Dallas

Sunday:  After the trip and a large lunch at Taco Cabana, I wasn’t hungry.  Muffin ate pizza.  Josh made a sandwich from the boneless ribs left over.  I eventually ate a piece of the yummy peppered maple turkey we bought at Central Market.

Monday:  nuggets, fries, celery sticks and dip

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Tuesday:  Ranch Chicken Enchiladas x 2, rice, beans

Wednesday:  Pepperoni Pizza Lasagna (recipe forthcoming), salad bar salad

Thursday:  leftovers or hot dogs

Friday:  pizza rolls x several to freeze, corn

Saturday:  Imperial Cathay Style Shredded Pork with Garlic Sauce, egg roll

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Sunday:  Smothered Chicken, rice, broccoli

What’s on your meal plan for this week?

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Meal Plan Monday: A New Recipe, Several Old Ones, and a Surprise!

Meal Plan Monday

Good Monday morning, blogosphere!

Yes, I do tend to have a Garfield-type hangup about Mondays, except in one aspect:  Monday is Meal Plan Monday, the most awesome day ever!

Even though I’m writing this on Saturday, so I still feel really jolly and weekend-i-fied.

I completely drew a blank for much of this week’s meal plan.  Yes, I know I could have consulted the craziness that is my meal plan for October, but I knew most of that was new stuff, and I’m trying to only try one new dish a week.

I mean, I’ve been trying for three weeks to do a Tip Tuesday post about Muffin’s lunch meal planning, and I haven’t gotten there yet.  What is the likelihood I can handle more than one new dish a week?

So, without further ado, here is the plan: (I will editorialize by each one)

Saturday:  Chick-Fil-A-style chicken nuggets, veg sticks, fries

Sunday:  Baked Ziti with Two Mozzarellas and Parmesan Cream Sauce, salad

Monday:  Oma’s Meatloaf, greens, and poutine (a huge surprise for Josh with real white cheddar cheese curds I found at the “good” Kroger)

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Tuesday:  Taco Tuesday complete with LEGO movie, chips, salsa

Wednesday:  breaky Wednesday (probably pancakes)

Thursday:  Do I really have to say it?  Leftovers!!!

Friday: Pizza of some variety

Saturday:  fried rice, eggrolls, and fortune cookies 🙂

Sunday:  Tourtiere (if the weather is cool enough), maybe another round of poutine

What’s on your meal plan for this week?

Meal Plan Monday: A Nod to (Hopefully) Cooler Weather

Meal Plan Monday

I am psyching out the weather.  Yes, the mercury has (FINALLY) dipped below 100.  Yes, we are enjoying temperatures in the mid-90s, considering them almost glacial in contrast to the blistering, punishing 103s and 104s.

The other day, Muffin and I left the house to go for a drive.  Muffin noted (keeping in mind the temperature was already hovering in the 70s) that the weather was finally the way he liked it:  COLD!

So, in honor of Muffin, the “cold menu”:

Saturday:  soup and grilled cheese

Sunday:  pork loin, potatoes, onion, and carrots

Monday:  Mexican pizza, broccoli with ranch for dipping

Tuesday:  Chick-Fil-A (use the card night)

Wednesday:  waffles and bacon/sausage (homemade)

Thursday:  leftovers!

Friday:  hot dogs on a campfire!

Saturday:  grill something

Sunday:  chicken nuggets (Guess what’s on Muffin’s lunch menu for the last week of September???)

And now, the Muffin lunches:

Monday:  pizza lunchable (because he didn’t take it last week), clementine, broccoli and dip, Capri Sun, fruit roll-up

Tuesday:  leftover pork loin, veg from the pork loin, fruit squeeze pouch, chocolate milk, candy piece

Wednesday:  slider sandwich with cheese (Muffin loves the slider sandwich buns we got from Kroger!), sweet pickle and tomato on the sandwich, fruit cup, juice box, fruit snack

Thursday:  leftover Mexican pizza, extra tomato slices, apple, Propel water, pudding cup

Friday:  tuna sandwich slider, yogurt, fruit cup, olives and pickles, “tree” cookie, Hi-C box

What’s on your meal plan for this week?

We Plan Wednesday: The September 2015 Menu

We Plan Wednesday

When I sat down a few weeks ago and planned out the menu for the remainder of the year, I did so in an attempt to sketch out something useful for the remainder of 2015, knowing that once school started things were going to be busy.

Note that I said, “sketch.”  This monthly plan is not intended to be the end all and be all.  If I can’t manage to follow the weekly meal plan 100% of the time, I DEFINITELY can’t expect to do so for the monthly plan.  Life and poop happens.

That being said, I think this advance planning will alleviate the meal plan monotony that hit a few months back.  I’ve included new recipes with a mixture of old favorites hopefully leading to some level of comfort with the menu.  I tried to be seasonally conscious.  I tried not to heat up the kitchen too much in the planning for August and September.

And the kicker is, I’ve tried not to plan too much for weeks that I know will be busy.

There is a method to my madness, as the old bard once said.  I hope there is no madness in the method.

1:  Beef Nacho Pie from The Tidy Nest

2:  Mini Bacon and Egg Toast Cups from Fifteen Spatulas

3:  leftovers/scrounge

4:  One Pot Pizza Pasta from Budget Savvy Diva

5:  Happy Birthday, Mom!  (Make S’mores Granola Bars from Recipe Girl)

6:  Crock Pot Simple Chicken Spaghetti from Crock Pot Gourmet (This was planned for earlier this month, but we re-did the Houston trip.)

7:  Red Beans and Rice (in the slow cooker!)

8:  Chick-Fil-A calendar card meal

9:  Bacon, Corn, and Cheddar Pancakes from Foxes Love Lemons

10:  leftovers/scrounge

11:  Pizza Rolls from Broke A** Gourmet

12:  Crock Pot Pizza Meatball Subs (I will also make Chex Lemon Muddy Buddies from Six Sisters’ Stuff.)

13:  Slow Cooker Garlic Chicken from Recipe Girl

14:  Slow Cooker Easy Quiche from A Spicy Perspective

15:  Chicken Street Tacos from Life in the Lofthouse

16:  Grilled Margarita Chicken from The Slow Roasted Italian

17:  leftovers/scrounge

18:  Salmon/Tuna Patties from Deep South Dish

19:  Crock Pot Asian Chicken from Country Cook (I will also make No-Bake Biscoff Granola Bars from Two Peas and Their Pod.)

20:  Slow Cooker Coconut Chicken from The Recipe Critic

21:  Super Quick Spaghetti Carbonara from Budget Savvy Diva

22:  Beef and Bean Burrito Skillet Dinner from Deep South Dish

23:  Herbed Baked Eggs and Praline Bacon, both from Fifteen Spatulas

24:  leftovers/scrounge

25:  Pizza Quesadillas from Macaroni and Cheesecake

26:  Crock Pot Chicken Cheesesteak Sandwiches from Life in the Lofthouse (I will also make Loaded Rice Krispie Treats from Life in the Lofthouse.)

27:  jambalaya

28:  Crock Pot Chicken Parmesan from Mom on a Mission

29:  Wholly Guacamole Enchiladas from Mommy Hates Cooking

30:  Huevos Rancheros from Fifteen Spatulas

I’m very excited about this month’s menu!  I’ve always wanted to try huevos rancheros, and I never have.  I’m also excited about the carbonara, the praline bacon, and the chicken cheesesteak sandwiches.  Those are all out of my cooking comfy zone.

But the one dish I’m most hopeful about is the guacamole enchiladas.  When we go to Dallas and go to Abuelo’s, I always order the avocado enchiladas.  I hope these are just as yummy!

What’s your plan for September?

We Plan Wednesday: August’s Menu Plan

We Plan Wednesday

I sat down last week and planned out the menus for the rest of the year.

Now, don’t get excited.  I haven’t completely lost my mind.  I simply saw my Chick-Fil-A calendar sitting on the table, pretty much blank, and felt the need to fill it (or, at least, August-December) with meal plans.

Now, do I honestly believe that all of these items for the remaining four months of the year will be made (and eaten) as planned?  Uh, no.

But a girl has to have a plan as the school year gets ready to gear up.  I can always fall back to the plan in the event things get crazy and my mind is fried as far as Meal Plan Monday is concerned.

The goal for August?  To heat up the oven as little as possible.

Here we go:

1:  Korean “Beef” Over Rice from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

2:  Cheesy Chicken Tater Tot Casserole from Country Cook

3:  Perfect Mini Meatloaf from Artsy Fartsy Mama

4:  Mexican Pizzas from Life in the Lofthouse

5:  French Toast Kabobs, fruit, breakfast meat from A Beautiful Mess

6:  leftovers/scrounge

7:  mini pizzas

8:  Crock Pot Cashew Chicken from Favorite Family Recipes

9:  Pork Loin Roast with potatoes, onions, and carrots

10:  Chicken Parmesan Baked Pasta from Gunny Sack

11:  Ranch Chicken Enchiladas from Life in the Lofthouse (Hopefully, this time I will get a good picture!)

12:  Marinated Root Beer Grilled Chicken from Six Sisters’ Stuff

13:  leftovers/scrounge

14:  Crock Pot Pizza Potatoes from Kayotic Kitchen

15:  Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup from A Spicy Perspective

16:  Crock Pot Simple Chicken Spaghetti from Crock Pot Gourmet

17:  pulled pork (from freezer) sandwiches, cole slaw, chips

18:  tacos

19:  breakfast for dinner (pancakes)

20:  go to Chick-Fil-A (for the Chick-Fil-A deal) and lemonade for National Lemonade Day

21:  mini pizzas

22:  Fuji Chicken from Mandy’s Recipe Box

23:  Crock Pot Bacon Garlic Chicken from Crock Pot Ladies

24:  Mexican Lasagna (try to make it as a slow cooker dish) from Artsy Fartsy Mama

25:  carnitas bowls using carnitas from the freezer

26:  English Breakfast Burgers from Foodtastic Mom

27:  leftovers/scrounge

28:  Pizza Waffles from Life in the Lofthouse (plug the waffle iron in outside)

29:  Waffle Iron BBQ Chicken Sandwich from Buns in My Oven (plug the waffle iron in outside)

30:  Crock Pot BBQ’d Chicken and Cornbread Casserole from A Year of Slow Cooking

31:  Olive Garden Copycat Chicken Vino Bianco from The Slow Roasted Italian

I also plan to make two dessert dishes for inclusion in Muffin’s lunches.

On the weekend of August 22, I plan to make Churro Chex Mix from Six Sisters’ Stuff.  On the weekend of August 29, I plan to make Star Crunches from Crock Pot Recipe Exchange.

What are your favorite keep-the-kitchen-cool meals?

A Cent Saving Saturday Mid-Week Interruption: Cow Appreciation Day @ Chick-Fil-A!

Cent Saving Saturday

Yup.  I know that you are now shaking your head in confusion because today isn’t Saturday.  Tomorrow, however, is Cow Appreciation Day at many Chick-Fil-A’s around the country.  (Thanks to Pinspired Home for the reminder.)  If you visit her reminder page, she also has the link for the printable cow kit on Chick-Fil-A’s site.  Remember:  if you wear something cow-themed, you receive a free entree.  If you go all cow from top to bottom, you get a free meal.  Enjoy, all!

Also:  Cent Saving Saturday this week will feature both the American sales (for my area) and the Canadian ones (for my mother-in-law’s area in Ontario).  Enjoy!

Do you plan to attend the Chick-Fil-A event tomorrow?

Cent-Saving Saturday: Making Restaurant Faves @ Home!

Cent Saving Saturday

Josh and I have been desperately trying to eat out less.  First of all, it’s very not wallet-friendly.  Second, Muffin at a restaurant is usually very unpredictable.  Third, I’m a homebody.  And it gives me a sense of accomplishment to have made something that the restaurants can…but better.

So far, I have made and posted a few restaurant recipes, usually from Chick-Fil-A or Chipotle.  I have plans in the upcoming months to make recipes from Olive Garden, Wendys, Subway, and more.

One great restaurant recipes source is Todd Wilbur’s Top Secret Recipes (both the books and the site).  Just keep in mind that he charges $$$ for some of the recipes on the site.  If you subscribe to his e-mail, he unlocks a recipe a newsletter for free for a week or so.  Another excellent source is CopyKat.  She has a ton of restaurant recipes.

I sniff the aroma of a new challenge (possibly) in the wings…

Here are some of the recipes from restaurants (either copycats or clones) that I’ve tried:

Chipotle’s Pork Carnitas

Chick-Fil-A Lemonade

Chipotle’s Barbacoa

Chipotle’s Cilantro-Lime Rice

Chipotle’s Corn Salsa

Auntie Anne’s Soft Pretzel Bites/Nuggets

Chick-Fil-A Chicken Nuggets

What recipe would you most like to copy from a restaurant?

Even though I won’t be taking advantage of many of this week’s deals, here are the Kroger and Albertson’s finds for the week.

Kroger

Strawberries, 1 pound package, $1.28

Big K 2 Liter Soft Drinks 67 cents (buy 3, get one free)

Kroger Mustard, 20 ounce, $10/10

Albertson’s

Boneless chuck shoulder roast, $1.98/lb.

Essential Everyday canned veg. 49 cents (wyb 6)

Best Choice sugar, 4 lbs., $1.79 (wyb 6)

Dreyer’s Ice Cream, $1.99 (wyb 5)

So, that’s the roundup of sales.  Not too many items that I would consider purchasing, but those that are available are at a pretty good price.