Tag Archives: cooking

Meal Planning

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With a large family, it is just a given that there is a lot to do around here! With homeschooling the kids, and trying to keep the house at least livable, stopping to figure out what to feed these ravenous little monsters can be quite a challenge!

For awhile, I faithfully kept a menu planned. Somewhere between child four and five, I stopped. I recently tried finding the form on the web that I had used before, only to my complete frustration, I could not find it! I came across many great resources for “household management” forms, but could not find one that had the layout I wanted. So, a grand idea hits me! I am a pretty smart chicka, I can make one myself! I wanted a four week menu that covered all seven days, not just week days. I also wanted to include an afternoon snack, so I squeezed that in, between lunch and dinner.

So, obviously, when you see the B, L, S, D, they stand for breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. I even found some cute clip art to represent different food groups!   There is not a ton of space to write, but I like to see all four weeks at a glance, so I don’t repeat similar meals too often.  Also, there is a second, blank page, for some reason.  If you print, just print “page 1”.

The following link should allow you to print, but will not allow any changes to the form.

I would love your feedback!

MonthlyMenu-signed

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Yummy Brussels Sprouts

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How can yummy and Brussel sprouts go in the same sentence? When you follow these directions, it can! My kids actually ask me to cook Brussel sprouts! It is so easy, too!

Raw Brussel sprouts
Olive oil
Onions, finely chopped
Bacon (either packaged crumbles, or cook some and crumble it)
Salt and pepper

Heat some olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.

Shred desired amount of raw Brussel sprouts with your food processor. I actually process about half with the blade on “shred” side, then flip the blade to “slice” for the rest.

Sauté the onions, add Brussel sprouts. Stir to mix well and coat with oil. I put the lid on, removing every few minutes to stir. Cook about 20 minutes, or until desired doneness. Season to taste.

Delicious!!!

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Rolos Turtle Cookies

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Ok, now I am all about healthy eating, and all that. But sometimes you just have to have some good ole comfort food!

The kids wanted some cookies, so we started scrounging around to see what we could make, since I found myself out of chocolate chips! We found a partial bag of Rolos and a chocolate cake mix and a little bit of pecans in the cabinet, which led to these…

ROLOS TURTLE COOKIES

1 pkg chocolate cake mix
2 large eggs
1 stick real butter, melted
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
A handful of Rolos, about a cup, cut into quarters

Preheat oven to 350. Stir together cake mix, eggs, butter, brown sugar, and vanilla. Stir in pecans and Rolos. Drop by tablespoons onto GREASED (Rolos stick) cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. Allow to cool on sheet for just a couple of minutes, then transfer to cooling rack.

Results are one amazing, chewy, turtle like cookie!

You can switch up this basic recipe with other flavors of cake mix and add ins to create all kinds of cookies!

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Happy Homemaking 101-1

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What’s For Dinner???

Do you sometimes (or ALL the time) feel completely overwhelmed by maintaining your home? All the cleaning and cooking never ends! This is true whether you are a stay at home mom or you work outside the home, isn’t it? It is also true whether you homeschool or send your children to public or private school, am I right? No matter what scenario describes your family, life is always so busy!

That is why I decided to start this blog. As a very busy homeschooling mom of 4, I would like to share some of my ideas for making the hilly, bumpy road of homemaking a little bit smoother! I will try to add a new thought or idea each night, unless a major disaster or bout of fatigue interrupts!

Let’s start with feeding that ravenous family of yours…Do you often find yourself near dinnertime, or even past dinnertime, having no idea what is for dinner? Come on, admit it, you know you do! That is about to end! First thing your’re going to do is come up with a plan!

Grab a pen and paper….Got one yet?….Still waiting….Ok, good!

Now, think of at least 2-4 easy to fix dinners that your family would be happy to eat once a week or every other week. These are going to be your “staple dinners”. Want to know what ours are? Grilled cheese and soup, spaghetti, breakfast and pizza. Now, set a specific day for these “staple dinners”. Consider which days you always have activities to attend in the evening and plan on something simple for that day.

For example at our house, Monday is grilled cheese & soup day. I make large batches of soup and freeze, I’ll talk about that another day! Canned soup is fine, though.

Wednesday we have church and need something simple, so it is spaghetti day.

Thursday is always breakfast night, usually Special Scrambled Eggs and toast. I will add the egg recipe at the end. Sometimes we have pancake or waffle night, with toppings such as chocolate chips, peanut butter, strawberries and whipped cream, which is really a hit with the kids!

Friday is always pizza night. I use Jiffy Pizza Crust Mix and jarred pizza sauce, you can add whatever toppings you like! My kids love helping make the pizza!

Plan to use your Staple Dinners on a night that fits that meal. Use your simplest Staple Dinners on your busiest evenings! You will soon be on the path to Happy Homemaking! Get started working on your Staple Dinner Menu!

In the coming blogs, I will be have more tips on meal planning, as well as simplifying other areas of homemaking!

To Be Continued…

Special Scrambled Eggs

 1 Dozen Large Eggs

1/2 Cup Sour Cream

1/4 Cup Chives

Salt and Pepper, optional (tastes fine without it)

Preheat a large non-stick skillet over med-low heat for approximately 5 minutes.  Drop a bit of water in the skillet, when it sizzles and disappears, the skillet is hot enough! While skillet is preheating, whisk all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl for about 2 minutes, until well mixed and ‘frothy’.  Add to skillet.  For fluffier eggs, do NOT stir the eggs until they begin to set!  Once they begin to set, gently use a spatula to carefully lift sections and turn.  This will make for larger, fluffier scrambled egg.  Just trust me!  (When you over stir, you could get tiny little pieces of rubbery eggs, not good.) Continue to cook and gently move/flip the eggs until they look done. Remove from heat.  Enjoy!