Monday Meal Plan #4

Monday Meal Plan

Hey, look at that… it’s Monday again! How did that happen so quickly?

Weekend Recap

I hope you had a wonderful weekend. My weekend felt like a bit of a blur. Friday evening, my daughter had her first hip hop dance class. She took ballet for several years, but this summer announced that she’s “a sporty girl now”, and wanted to try something else. She started out slowly during the first class, but by the end of the class she had really warmed up and was strutting her stuff. I think she’s really going to enjoy this class.

She was supposed to have her first fall gymnastics class on Saturday morning, but we had to hit the road early to get to my sister’s house outside Boston, for my nephew’s fourth birthday party. The drive is roughly four hours each way, so I spent a significant amount of the weekend sitting in the car. I used my time to get in some naps, and to read Columbine, which I started about a week ago. (You can see my full fall reading list here.)

The party was a lot of fun, and I always enjoy catching up with my sister in-person. (Now that we both have families, it’s so much harder to schedule visits.) I also got to see my parents, and got in some snuggles with my younger (seven months) nephew, who will be having surgery this week. Please send lots of positive thoughts his way!

The Week Ahead

Life gets just a bit more complex for my family this week, as I’m returning to my (very) part-time job at a college, after a four-month summer break. I work two days a week, although I may add a third day as our office gets busier. I feel silly saying this, since there are lots of mothers who work full-time and have more kids than I do, but life at my house feels much more chaotic on my work days, and I always experience a brief period of readjustment when I go back in the fall.

With that in mind, here’s what’s on my dinner meal plan this week:

  • Monday: (Brownie pick-up at 5:00) Baked ziti with salad (I’m going to add some Italian sausage to the sauce.)
  • Tuesday: (First day back at work!) Leftover baked ziti with frozen peas
  • Wednesday: Slow cooker beef brisket with roasted carrots and parsnips
  • Thursday: (Work) Leftover brisket and roasted veggies
  • Friday: (Home from dance class at 6:30) Cheese quesadillas and 7-layer dip
  • Saturday: Leftovers
  • Sunday: Garden vegetable lasagna soup w/ bread

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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Monday Meal Plan #3

Monday Meal Plan

Happy Monday! I hope you had a fantastic weekend!

Our weekend was fairly uneventful. My husband had to work in Utica on Saturday, so my daughter and I were on our own for most of the day. We met friends at a playground in the afternoon, before going out to dinner with my husband, when he got home. Yesterday was a lazy day at home for me, and my husband ran a few errands. My daughter and husband also started decorating the house with fall decor. I’m okay with leaf, pumpkin, acorn, and other autumn decorations at this point, but nothing Halloween before October.

The Week Ahead

This week is the first full week of school, plus we have a couple of evening activities on the calendar. On Wednesday evening, we have open house at my daughter’s school. It’s a chance to meet her teacher and get an overview of what to expect from second grade. Unfortunately, it starts at 6:30, which is an awkward time to plan around. Since it’ll be almost bedtime when we get home, we’ll eat dinner before we head over to the school. On Friday evening, my daughter has her first hip hop dance class, which run from 5:00 to 6:00. We’ll get home from that at almost 6:30, but at least it’s not a school-night.

We’re heading out-of-town on Saturday morning, to celebrate my nephew’s fourth birthday in the Boston-area. We’ll spend Saturday night at my sister’s house, and head home in the late morning on Sunday.

With that in mind, here’s what’s for dinner at my house this week:


  • Thursday: Grilled salmon or swordfish, with grilled veggies
  • Friday: Leftovers/fridge clean-out
  • Saturday: Out-of-town!
  • Sunday: We’ll be arriving home from Boston late in the afternoon, so dinner will be some form of takeout.

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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Monday Meal Plan

Monday Meal Plan

Happy Monday! I hope your holiday weekend has been fantastic!

My family has enjoyed doing a whole lot of nothing this weekend. We considered driving to visit various people and places, but opted to keep it low-key and home-based. My husband has been putting in a lot of hours at work lately, so he needed some time to relax and recharge. He did some yardwork, I finished school supply shopping – what, me procrastinate?? – we took our daughter to play mini-golf for the first time, and did some planning for the upcoming months.

One weekend highlight was a party with good friends last night. We met when  our daughters were in the same kindergarten class, and fortunately we, the parents, are as good friends as our daughters are. And as a bonus, all three girls are in the same class this year!

The Week Ahead

This week is kind of a sweet-spot week. My daughter starts second grade on Wednesday, but her extracurricular activities don’t start until next week. Also, I have a couple of additional weeks at home, before I return to my part-time job in a local college career center, on the 20th. Basically, this week is about gently easing into the new school year, before things get hectic again.

With that in mind, here’s what’s for dinner at my house this week:


Yesterday I shared on Instagram this great meal planning tool I found on Amazon. It’s the Mead Organizher Magnetic Shopping List. I can jot down my meal plan and shopping list together in one place, and display it on the fridge throughout the week. (I know there are higher tech tools for this sort of thing, but I’m a low-tech gal and prefer writing things down by hand.)

How was your holiday weekend? What’s for dinner at your house this week? 

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Monday Meal Plan

Monday Meal Plan

I do not enjoy cooking, I’m not a creative person, and I consider grocery shopping to be a real chore. As a result, for around 18 months, I religiously created a weekly (dinner) meal plan for my family. On Sundays, I sat down with the calendar for our week ahead and my favorite cookbooks and recipes I’d recently found online, and jotted down a list of what we’d be eating for dinner for the next seven days. At the same time, I put together my weekly grocery shopping list. I dreaded doing this every week, but it made my life a lot easier. I no longer found myself at 4pm, wondering what on earth I was going to make for dinner. I no longer came up with an idea, only to discover that I didn’t have all of the ingredients I needed. I no longer ran to the grocery store three times a week.

So, a reasonable person might ask why I stopped this sanity-saving drudgery activity. I don’t have a good reason, other than that I got tired of forcing myself to do something I dreaded, every. single. week. But I find new school years invigorating, and I’m excited to get back to a more scheduled and organized way of life. Thus, the weekly meal plan is making a come-back! And publishing them here will give me some accountability, so thanks for coming along for the ride!

First, a few guidelines:

  • My meal plans are a framework. While I might say that we’re having pot roast and mashed potatoes on Monday, I just might make it on Wednesday, instead, if that ends up making more sense for our week. I’m crazy like that, people.
  • My meal plans are dinner-only. My husband rarely eats breakfast, and I’ve got making school and work lunches down to a pretty simple system. It’s dinners that are a struggle for me.
  • I aim to make reasonably healthy, well-balanced meals most of the time, but sometimes a high-fat, high carb, and/or high sodium dinner will show up on my meal plan. Please avert your eyes, if necessary.

Okay, without further ado, here’s this week’s plan!!

Monday: Pasta Florentine (This is my somewhat loose interpretation of Chicken Florentine Pasta from Ree Drummond.)

Tuesday: Southwestern oven omelet with toast (Brinner – breakfast for dinner – is one of my absolute, favorite dinners! What I make depends a bit on what’s in the fridge and freezer, but pancakes, bacon, and/or eggs are generally involved.)

Wednesday: Macaroni and cheese with squash from my garden (m&c recipe from Real Simple Easy Delicious Meals)

I LOVE this cookbook.

Thursday: Leftovers (Can you hear the angels singing??)

Friday: Chicken enchiladas (I don’t like chicken very much, unless it’s in small pieces and covered in sauce and cheese. Plus, I have a bunch in my freezer, that I have to use up.)

Saturday: Grilled fish, farmers’ market veggies, and couscous (Why does cooking on a grill seem so much easier than cooking in the kitchen??)

Sunday: Burgers on the grill, with leftover veggies

Do you meal plan? What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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