Monday Meal Plan #22

Happy Holiday Weekend! I hope you’re enjoying a lovely, long, Presidents’ Day weekend!

Weekend Recap

What fabulous weather we’ve had here in upstate New York this weekend! With highs in the 40s and 50s, and more snow gone every time I look out the window, it’s feeling very much like spring is coming.

On Saturday, my husband and I took our daughter to her gymnastics class at  the Y, then we checked out an estate sale for some bargains. I’m late to embrace estate sale and garage sale shopping, but I now think they’re a lot of fun. (Maybe this has something to do with me being over 40??) My husband got a large Christmas wreath and two small paintings for $2, and I scored a box containing two glue guns and a bunch of new glue sticks for $1, plus a box of lovely, vintage Christmas ornaments for $10.

Yesterday, we went to a state park to attempt snowshoeing for the first time. (One of my goals for 2017 is to try three new activities.) The sun was bright, the temps were warm, and the snow was more like slush. I don’t know much anything about snowshoeing, but I have a feeling these were not ideal conditions. We lasted for ten minutes, all of us feeling like the snow shoes were too heavy and made it difficult to walk. I knew we were done when my daughter fell, stepped out of her boot while getting up, and put her foot down in the snow. I guessed she would be complaining about her cold foot within two minutes, and that ended up being too generous of an estimate.

After a quick Target run, we brought some food home for a late lunch. Immediately afterwards, I headed out for a long walk, to atone for my Five Guys consumption. I haven’t been out for a walk in months, and it was gorgeous and felt great!

The Weekend Ahead

School vacation week starts today, so my daughter and I will be home all week. As someone who will stay glued to the couch and in her robe all day without a planned activity, I try to schedule one thing per day during school vacations. This week’s activities include a “day of beauty” – hair cuts and manicures – for the two of us, ice skating with friends, and a tour of a local grocery store with my daughter’s Brownie troop. Friday afternoon, we’re heading to my sister’s house in Massachusetts for my nephew, Charlie’s, first birthday party on Saturday. We’ll stay with them until Sunday morning, and the following Monday, it’s back to school and work.

Weekly Meal Plan

Since I’ll be home all week, I don’t have any excuses not to cook. (Rats!) Here’s what’s for dinner at my house this week:

  • Monday: Spaghetti with shrimp scampi (from Barefoot Contessa Family Style)
  • Tuesday: Leftover scampi w/ sautéed spinach
  • Wednesday: Panko-Crusted Salmon (from Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?) w/ roasted sweet potatoes
  • Thursday: Black beans and rice (A request from my Chipotle-loving kid)
  • Friday: Away for the weekend!!
  • Saturday: Away for the weekend!!
  • Sunday: Probably picking up a pizza on the way home

What’s for dinner at your house this week??

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Monday Meal Plan #21

Happy Monday!! It’s looking like a real winter wonderland here, after we received about a foot of snow yesterday…

Weekend Recap

On Saturday, my daughter participated in a Harry Potter-themed engineering program at the local high school. My husband and I took advantage of some time on our own, and went out to brunch. Afterwards, we spent some quiet time at home reading, and even took a quick nap!

After we picked our daughter up, we all went to the library to borrow some DVDs in anticipation of being snowed in all day on Sunday. We happened to be at the library while Buck, a therapy dog, was listening to kids read, and my daughter eagerly signed up for a slot.

Buck, the therapy dog, is a great audience!

As predicted, we spent all of Sunday at home, watching the snow fall. (About a foot in total.) I did some chores, read the paper, and made some progress on my current book, The Case Against Sugar. It’s a little slow-going, but educational. I’m looking forward to reading something a little lighter, next.

My husband and daughter spent some time outside, building a snow fort.

The Week Ahead

This week is off to a love-filled start! My daughter’s Brownie troop is having their Valentine’s Day party after school today, and her class as their party tomorrow morning. She still loves for me to attend these types of events, and while they’re not always a barrel of fun for me, I know she won’t always want me there with her.

I was supposed to work today, Wednesday, and Thursday this week, but because our school district had a two-hour delay today, I ended up not going in today. At 6pm on Thursday, I’m bringing my daughter to a registration meeting for this year’s Missoula Children’s Theater this performance at her school. (They’re a professional theater group, and they spend a week rehearsing afterschool with the kids who participate, culminating a weekend play performance.) With the registration meeting scheduled for the super-convenient time of 6pm, we’ll be picking up a pizza on the way home.

This Week’s Meal Plan

  • Monday: Leftover lasagna soup w/ baguette
  • Tuesday: Chicken cutlets w/ garlic spinach (One of my least favorite things to make, but, my Valentine loves them…)
  • Wednesday: Leftovers
  • Thursday: Pizza and salad
  • Friday: Leftover pizza and salad
  • Saturday: Roasted salmon and Brussels sprouts
  • Sunday: Roasted pork tenderloin w/ red cabbage

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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What’s Saving My Life Right Now

I recently read a post on the Modern Mrs. Darcy blog, in which she asks her readers to focus on the positive. Rather than rattling off the things that are upsetting us, or making us unhappy/worried/sad/pissed off, she asks us to identify what’s actually giving us life right now. As someone who’s innate worldview is much more of the glass-half-empty type, it felt like a great way to reorient my thinking.

As Anne notes in the post, winter is often a cold, dark, and dreary time of year for many of us. Here in upstate New York, that’s certainly the case. For this reason, I’ve never been a fan of the winter months. Some years they’re worse than others – I still remember last year’s mild, El Nino winter quite fondly – but they all entail a lot of darkness, and a lot of time spent cooped up in the dry indoors.

For years, starting in about late August, I’ve dreaded the start of winter. “I hate the cold!”, “Why do I live here?”, and “Wake me in May!”, were common utterances of mine. I spent the fall dreading winter, and the winter complaining about it. More recently, I did some basic math, and realized that this meant I spent half of the year focusing my mental energy on hating winter. That’s a lot of time – a lot of life – to be unhappy. Over the last couple of years, I’ve become very conscious of this negative focus, and decided to do my best to change it.

I lived in California for almost two years during my twenties, and it really wasn’t for me. One of my biggest complaints was the lack of four, distinct seasons. The trees looked basically the same all year-round. Without the change of seasons, marking time felt much more difficult to me.

As I thought more about how the lack of seasonal change affected me, I also noticed how excited and uplifted I feel in the spring. Every day, I walk around my yard and look for new signs of life – which shrub has leaf buds, which bulbs are peeking out of the ground, and what animals are becoming visible again. This routine brings me great joy. I love my spring-time high. When I lived in a place without much seasonal change, I didn’t experience my spring-time high. I didn’t feel exhilarated by the changing sights, sounds, and smells of the new season.

I finally connected the dots, and realized that, without the cold, dark, and dreary winter, there would be no spring-time high. Without the low, I had no reason to experience the high. Without winter, there was no spring.

This all crystallized for me last fall. As I started to slip into my annual season of dread, I did something I’d never done before: I pushed back against it. I started to focus on the beauty of winter, rather than just the barrenness – the color of the sunsets, the sparkle of the frost on the grass, the wonderland of snow on the trees. I have noticed a huge shift in my mindset this year. I don’t grumble every time I check the forecast. I’m not counting the weeks until daylight savings time begins. I haven’t felt the desperate need to order my garden seeds in January.

When Anne asked her readers to share our list of what’s saving us now, I’m pretty sure she had an actual list in mind, rather than just one thing. But when I asked myself the question, it wasn’t hot tea, fleece clothing, or cozy blankets that I came to mind. No, what’s saving me now is this change in mindset, this acknowledgement that winter plays an important and beautiful role in the seasons of my life.

What’s saving your life right now?

My 2017 Goals: Check-In #1

Some people are motivated by rewards. Some people are motivated by fear. Others are internally motivated. Me? I’m motivated by public shame. I do not want to be embarrassed, and that’s what typically gives me the push I need complete things.

It helped keep me focused when I trained for two marathons in my younger years. I joined Team in Training, which, in exchange for participants raising funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, provides coaching, support, and organized, group training runs. Those group runs were critical for me – in particular the weekly “long runs.” Knowing that I would be running 16 miles with a group on Saturday, helped keep me motivated to train on my own throughout the week. I knew I’d never be the first, but I really did not want to be the last person to finish the long runs.

What does this have to do with my 2017 goals? I’m going to use it to help keep me on track with my goals. I’ll be sharing monthly check-ins on my progress to keep me focused, and as a form of accountability.

Check-In #1

(You can read more detailed descriptions of each of my goals here.)

Read at least 24 books that I truly want to read. In January, I read 2.75 books. I completed Lilac Girls, and I Am Not Myself These Days, and nearly finished The House of The Dead: Siberian Exile Under the Tsars. I also created this page to track my 2017 reads – current, past, and future.

Try at least three new (to me) activities, preferably active ones. I didn’t actually try any new activities in January, but I looked at the group fitness class offerings at my local YMCA, and got some great ideas. I’m particularly interested in spinning, “Strength Train Together”, and “Zen Sculpt.” I’m currently very out-of-shape, so I need some time to get into better shape, before subjecting myself to the public humiliation of a group fitness class!

Run at least three 5K races. No progress here.

Find a way to dread meal planning/cooking less. I’ve been working more days per week than usual this winter, which means meal planning has been particularly important. My clear reliance on it helped me dread it a bit less in January, but I can’t say the same about cooking. I never enjoy cooking, and I’m even less enthusiastic about it after having spent the day at work.

How are you doing with your 2017 goals/resolution?

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Monday Meal Plan #20

Happy Monday! I hope you had a fantastic weekend!

Weekend Recap

Last week was supposed to be a four-day work week for me – my first in quite a long time – but thanks to a snow and ice storm on Monday night, I ended up staying home with my daughter on Tuesday. Since several of the student appointments I had scheduled at work that day were resume reviews, I was able to do a couple of them electronically, and managed to bill for a couple of hours of work, anyway. Getting paid to review resumes in my pajamas? Definitely a win in my book!

Anyway, my weekend started with Friday off, and I got a lot of errands and cleaning done that day. It was our turn to host the weekly, afterschool play date for my daughter and two of her friends, and, once again, I was amazed by how loud three second-grade girls can be.

I had no plans on Saturday, with the exception of a couple of very quick errands. My husband and I went out to dinner that night, at a restaurant we hadn’t been to since before our daughter was born. It was fine, but not great, and we may wait another seven years before going back. (If you read this post, you know that one of the things I love most about Saratoga Springs is the large number of great restaurants there are.)

Yesterday, my daughter and I spent a couple of hours selling Girl Scout cookies door-to-door. This isn’t my favorite way to spend a Sunday afternoon, but it’s a good experience for my shy girl. Also, she’s very motivated by rewards, and likes to study the list of incentives she’ll receive for selling different quantities of cookies. Only eight boxes to go to get the next prize…

Over the weekend, I also made a lot of progress on the book I’m currently reading, The House of the Dead. It’s fairly dense, and while I’m learning a lot, I don’t think I would call it a page-turner. But my next book is being held for me at the library for just a few days, so I’m extra motivated to finish.

The Week Ahead

The weather forecast looks clear, so this will likely end up being a four-day work-week for me. I’m scheduled to work Monday through Thursday, which makes for a more chaotic week at home. My motivation for cooking is much lower on my work days, so having a well-planned meal plan is extra important.

I have a couple of things going on this week, aside from work. On Tuesday evening, I’m attending a Mindful Parenting workshop led by our school district’s superintendent. (If you read last week’s meal plan post, you may remember that this event was originally scheduled for last Tuesday. Alas, it ended up being a casualty of Tuesday’s snow day.) On Friday night, I’m going out to dinner with some girlfriends – a first in quite a while! And on Sunday, there’s some sports event happening, I think…

The Meal Plan

Here’s what’s for dinner at my house this week:

  • Monday: Tortilla soup with raw veggies (This soup was on the last two weeks’ meal plans, but hasn’t happened, yet. I’m confident that the third time will be a charm, though!)
  • Tuesday: Leftover soup with rice and roasted carrots
  • Wednesday: Modified spinach & sausage one pot pasta
  • Thursday: Leftovers
  • Friday: I’ll be out with friends, so my husband and daughter will have a dinner date out, probably at Panera.
  • Saturday: Crab cakes with roasted sweet potatoes
  • Sunday: My husband will want to pick up “football food” for watching the game. A night off from cooking? It may be the only thing I like about the Super Bowl…

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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Five Things I Love About Saratoga Springs

I live in the Capital Region of New York, meaning the area surrounding the state capital, Albany. This is pretty much the heart of upstate New York. (Check out this post for my thoughts on the definition of “upstate New York”.) While it isn’t technically true, I tell everyone that I live in Saratoga Springs. In reality, I live in a town that borders the city of Saratoga Springs, and is a part of the Saratoga school district. Plenty of people have heard of Saratoga Springs, but no one – even locally – has heard of our town.

Our town has no real downtown or business district, but it’s a lovely place to live. We were drawn to it for the larger, more private lots, and because one can get a good bit more house for the money here. I consider myself a resident of the town we live in, but Saratoga Springs is the community with which I identify. I fell in love with Saratoga many years ago, and when my husband and I decided to move out of the New York City area, we quickly zeroed in on it as our new home.

Five Things I Love About Saratoga Springs

I am incredibly happy living here, and there are many things I love about Saratoga Springs. Here are the top five:

  • Broadway. When my husband and I decided to leave New York City, we wanted to find a place with a decent-sized, walkable downtown. I’m not talking about a couple of nice blocks, but a generous commercial district, with lots of different kinds of business. Saratoga’s main street is called Broadway, and it has many restaurants, shops, salons and spas, boutiques, and other businesses. It’s well maintained, and has lovely, seasonal decorations throughout the year.
  • Restaurants. While I’m not fan of cooking, I’m a big fan of eating! When my husband and I left New York City – a city chock-full of amazing restaurants of all kinds – we were looking for a place that had a similar variety of great eateries, but on a smaller scale. From my fancy favorite, 15 Church Street, to the tiny, takeout-only Falafel Den, to Druthers Brewhouse and Restaurant and many others, Saratoga is full of great dining options.
  • Library. I didn’t really appreciate Saratoga’s public library until my daughter was a baby, and I was looking for places to take her. Like most libraries, they have a fantastic selection of books, DVDs, and music that patrons can borrow. But in addition to this, they have a great playroom for toddlers and young kids, amazing classes and programs for all ages, community spaces, a used bookstore, a coffee shop, and much more. It’s truly a community gem.
  • Farmers’ Market(s). Prior to moving to Saratoga, my main experience with farmers’ markets was the Union Square market in New York City. Saratoga’s doesn’t match its scale, but it’s a pretty fantastic market. In fact, stopping by the farmers’ market on a Wednesday afternoon or a Saturday morning is a pretty standard summer activity for us. And a few years ago, a second, Sunday market came to town, and it rivals the original in terms of size and quality.
  • Proximity. I’ve lived in New York, Boston, and Oakland, and I don’t miss living in a big city at all. However, I enjoy visiting big cities and taking my daughter to experience them. Saratoga is well-situated, in that one can drive to New York, Boston, and Montreal in four hours. We’ve visited all three cities multiple times, and will continue to do so throughout the years.

What do you love most about Saratoga Springs, or your own hometown?

What’s Up Wednesday: January, 2017

What We’re Eating This Week

As I described in this week’s meal plan post, it’s a busier week for my family than usual. Therefore, we’re keeping it pretty simple this week, and eating an easy favorite (spicy peanut noodles), a crock pot soup, chili, and pizza.

What I’m Reminiscing About

The other day, my husband asked our daughter if she remembered the first – and last – birthday party we had for her at our house. It was her second birthday, and since she was born just a few days before Halloween, it was a costume party. She wore her jockey costume, and we invited lots of family and friends, bought WAY too much food, and spent what felt like a lifetime cleaning both before and after the party. Afterward, my husband said, “Never again!” We’ve had her birthday parties at other locations – the local YMCA, a farm, and a nail salon – since then!

Trick-or-treating in the jockey costume
What I’m Loving

The relatively mild winter weather we’ve been having. Sure we’ve had a handful of very cold days and a couple of snow and ice storms, but for most of January and looking ahead to next month, our high temperatures have been in the 30’s and 40’s. For January and February in upstate New York, that’s pretty darn great!

What We’ve Been Up To

I’m working more than usual this winter, since it’s the busiest time of year in my office, and we’re down a full-time staff member. My daughter has gymnastics on Saturday mornings, and Brownies meetings every other week. It’s cookie season, so we’re getting everyone their fix!

 What I’m Dreading

Ugh – my first colonoscopy is scheduled for April. I have a family history of colon cancer on both sides, so I need to start getting screened fairly early. While the procedure itself sounds pretty gross, what I’m really, really, really dreading is the prep. Enough said, right?

What I’m Working On

My current projects include making activity plans for February break, lining up summer vacation plans and summer camps, and getting everything together for our taxes.

What I’m Excited About

Ordering seeds for my garden! I’ve been a little distracted by other things lately, but soon I’ll be going through the catalogs, and placing my order for seeds! I’m going to focus my veggie gardening efforts on tomatoes, lettuce, herbs, and winter squash this year. For flowers, I adore zinnias! I like to plant as many varieties as possible, and fill my kitchen window sill with vases of them all summer. Botanical Interests is my favorite source for veggie and flower seeds.

What I’m Watching/Reading

We don’t have cable or any streaming service, so we’re always WAY behind  on the new shows. My husband recently started us watching The Americans, and I’m loving it!! (We’re still in season one.)

I just finished reading I Am Not Myself These Days, and I’m currently reading The House of the Dead. (You can see all of the books I’m reading, have read, and plan to read in 2017 here.) I’m always slowly working through my huge pile of magazines – The New Yorker, O, Money, Real Simple, and Kiplinger Personal Finance.

What I’m Listening To

Podcasts, of course! The usual suspects – Scavenger Life, Sorta Awesome, Happier With Gretchen Rubin, etc. – plus lots of the Commonwealth Club. The Commonwealth Club interviews so many interesting people, and I added several books to my list after the last few episodes I listened to.

What I’m Wearing

Business casual (slacks and sweaters, mainly) for work, plus jeans, fleece, and cozy sweaters. And I wear my insulated Bogs boots pretty much every time I step outside my house.

What I’m Doing This Weekend

It’s going to be another quiet weekend here. I have a couple of errands to run, and my husband and I are going out to dinner on Saturday.

What I’m Looking Forward to Next Month

Valentine’s Day fun, sunset after 5:00, and February break!

What’s up with you??

Beekman 1802

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Monday Meal Plan #19

Happy Monday!!

Weekend Recap

Once again, I have little to report about my weekend – which is just how I like it! On Saturday, my husband took my daughter to gymnastics in the morning, and we went to meet with a new accountant during the afternoon. For our wild Saturday night at home, my husband and I watched an episode of our current show, The Americans. (We don’t have any form of cable or streaming, so we’re always way behind on the cool shows. We’re still in season one of this one, but I’m loving it!)

Sunday’s big highlights were finishing reading, I Am Not Myself These Days, and taking my daughter to a party for the book, Spy Ski School at our local bookstore. (See all of the books I’m reading in 2017 here.) Oh, and of course I sat down and put together this lovely meal plan – always a weekend highlight for me <insert eye roll>.

The Week Ahead

This is the first of two consecutive weeks when I’ll be working four days in row. (I hear you snickering, full-time working mothers!) I’m working Monday through Thursday both weeks. Other than that, my daughter has a Brownie’s meeting after school today, and on Tuesday evening, I’m attending a mindful parenting discussion led by the superintendent of our school district. (Attendees will receive a copy of the book, Every Blessings, and we’ll reconvene in March to discuss the book.) Of course, this may be complicated by the forecast for snow Monday night and into Tuesday. The last anticipated total I saw was five to eight inches, which means there will likely be a delay or snow day on Tuesday, which could lead to the cancellation of the district’s evening activities… And on Friday, it’s my turn to host my daughter’s weekly playdate with a couple of her friends. I’ll spend the day grocery shopping and cleaning the house in anticipation.

Meal Plan

I planned my grocery shopping trips poorly for this week. I did a produce run last Friday, and opted not to go over the weekend. Unfortunately, I hadn’t thought about this week’s meal plan yet, and am therefore limited to what’s in our house for most of the week’s dinners.

  • Monday: Weeknight black bean chili w/ raw veggies
  • Tuesday: Spicy peanut noodles from Simple Vegetarian Pleasures w/roasted butternut squash
  • Wednesday: Leftovers
  • Thursday: Probably a pizza…
  • Friday: Tortilla soup in the slow cooker (I planned to make this last week, but didn’t get to it.)
  • Saturday: Date night dinner out!
  • Sunday: Sautéed shrimp and veggies w/ jasmine rice

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

Lessons From A Propane Tank

My husband and I were first-time homeowners when we bought our house in July, 2009, and there were plenty of things that we were completely clueless about. Heating a home with propane was one of those things. We knew there was a propane tank on the side of our house, and that a local propane provider owned it. We knew that our heat, stove, hot water heater, and gas fireplace were powered by propane. What we didn’t know was how quickly we would use propane in the winter, what a good price for it was, and just how much of an advantage the propane company had over us, by owning our tank.

Our first few months in our house were a blur. I was seven months pregnant with our daughter when we moved in, so we were pretty focused on preparing our home and our lives for the arrival of a baby. It was also the summer, a time when we used very little propane. But we knew we had a nearly full tank, because we had reimbursed the seller of our house for what was in the tank at the time of our closing.

Lesson 1: Keep An Eye on The Level in the Tank

We learned our first lesson in November, about a month after our daughter was born. A friend from out-of-town was in the area, and she stopped by to catch up and meet our daughter. We hung out with her on the couch in our living room, with a fire going in the gas fireplace. A little more than an hour into her visit, I noticed that the room felt cold. Then I noticed that the fireplace was off, and the room temperature was lower than the temperature I’d set on the thermostat. We had run out of propane. On a Friday night in late November. In upstate New York. A space heater and lots of blankets got us through that chilly night, and we received an emergency delivery the next day.

We’ve never run out since then, but I check our tank level regularly throughout the fall and winter, and occasionally request a delivery, when it looks like we could run out before the propane company has our next delivery scheduled.

Lesson 2: If You Don’t Own Your Tank, The Propane Company Owns You

The propane tank that was at our house when we bought it, was owned by a large propane provider in our area. This meant that we could only fill it with their propane. There are many home heating fuel providers in our area, but we were locked into using this one.

After a couple of expensive winters, we started asking other people who provided their propane, and how much it cost them. From those conversations, we learned that (1) we were paying more per gallon than most people, and (2) the people with lower rates owned their own tanks and/or belonged to a local co-op.

Lesson 3: Threatening to Leave Gets Results

Learning that we were over-paying motivated me to negotiate with our propane company. (Somehow this had not occurred to me before.) I called them before the next rate lock-in period, and asked if they could lower our rate. I was told that we were already paying a low rate, and they simply couldn’t go any lower. Then I told them we would be leaving for a new provider, and suddenly they were able to discount our rate by $0.25 per gallon.

I was so excited that I had secured a lower rate, I didn’t really consider that it was still higher than our research told us we should be paying. Actually, this did cross my mind, but the thought of leaving our existing provider, buying our own tank, and starting with a new provider felt really overwhelming. We took the lower rate, and stayed with our provider.

Lesson 4: It Feels Really Good to Say Buh-Bye

Even with the lower rate, we were still paying at least $600, every time our tank was filled. (During most winters, our tank is filled about six times.) After another season of this, my husband and I sat down and took a hard look at the numbers. We researched the price per gallon paid by members of the local co-op who owned their own tank, and we were shocked. Our “discounted” rate was more than a $1 more per gallon than the co-op price. We felt like complete fools for having overpaid for so long, and resolved at that moment to purchase our own tank, and switch to the co-op.

We did just that early the next fall, and I gleefully made the call to our old provider to tell them the news. I was a little disappointed that they didn’t ask why we were leaving, or at least try to get us to stay. Still, it felt great to say goodbye to those greedy bloodsuckers.

How do you heat your home? Are you happy with the rate you pay?

Monday Meal Plan #18

Happy Monday, and happy Martin Luther King Day!!

Weekend Recap

I just had my most uneventful weekend in a long time. After picking my daughter up from an after-school playdate on Friday, we had dinner at home, then watched the (awful) Shopkins movie. She and my husband had a sleepover that night, so I spent my alone-time creating this page for tracking my 2017 reading, then did a little magazine reading in a hot bath. (I’ve accidentally dipped corners of magazines into the tub water many times, so I don’t read books in the tub.)

I ran a couple of quick errands on Saturday and Sunday, and spent the rest of both days reading, listening to podcasts, and lying around. It was a great winter weekend!

The Week Ahead

I’m officially back at my job for the winter term! This is the busiest time of year in my office, so I’ll be working three and four-day weeks. This week is a three-day week. I’m working Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. My daughter is off from school today for MLK Day, but my husband is not. My daughter has another afterschool playdate on Friday, and she’ll be staying a bit later to have pizza and watch a movie with the host family. If my husband can get out of work a little early, we may try to grab a quick dinner out together.

Meal Plan

Between the holidays, school vacation, and our travel last week, I’ve been on something of a meal-planning hiatus. While I liked not having to sit down and rack my brain for dinner inspiration, I found myself staring at the fridge and wondering what on earth we could have for dinner many nights. (There were also a couple of nights when we had cereal for dinner – something I swore I would never do while I was a parent.) All of this is to say, it’s good to be back at it – sort of. Here’s what’s for dinner at my house this week:

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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