Oops! Posting this meal plan a day late. Sorry! Better late than never, right?
So the big events this week are:
My parents are visiting! They arrive tomorrow afternoon. They’re here for 10 whole days and I’m all atwitter with excitement! Our meals should be simple, summery and easy to prepare for a crowd. Hopefully the dinners I’ve outlined above will fit the bill.
Friday is Maya’s 4th birthday! She wants to go our family’s favorite Italian restaurant around the corner from our house. And afterwards, we’re throwing her a little surprise party with her friends and neighbors here at home, complete with a triple-decker chocolate cake from Blissful Bites. Oh man, I might be more excited that cake than she is! Actually, probably not; she’s ridiculously excited about her special day. Just like a very-nearly-almost-4-year-old should be!
You might notice that Saturday’s dinner is up in the air. That’s because Maya wants to visit a farm her birthday so we’re taking a road trip about 45 minutes south to Half Moon Bay. We’ll be hobnobbing with goats, chickens, horses and rabbits. And I have no idea how long we’ll be gone so I’m leaving dinner open that day. I’m sure we’ll figure out something yummy.
I was hoping to do a big grocery shop today in preparation for my parents’ arrival and the week ahead. But unfortunately, Dennis’ flight was delayed and he got home just before dinner so the shopping will have to wait until tomorrow. Hopefully mom and dad won’t mind tagging along.
This time 4 years ago, I was hugely pregnant (Maya was a week overdue!) and excitedly counting the minutes until we’d meet our baby girl. I totally expected that being a mama would be hard work, completely rewarding and a wonderful labor of love. What I didn’t anticipate was the fun, the joy, the bliss and all the laughing. Good lord, the laughing. I’ve never laughed so hard in my life as I have since the kids came along. This motherhood thing is hilarious! And every day just gets better and better. I’m pretty sure there’s no better job than the one I’ve got.
Good morning, friends! And welcome to the first weekly Mod Apron Meal Plan - Sunday Edition!
Why am I posting this on Sundays now? Read all about it here!
So this promises to be a very interesting (read: crazy) week. First off, the husband is away from Wednesday to Monday. And, Maya is off on a 2-week break in between the end of summer camp and the commencement of the preschool year. So it’s just me and the kids at home all day for the better part of the week? Yup, you read that right!
It’s not so bad. I’m actually kinda looking forward to it. Specifically, I’m interested in implementing some new parenting tips and tricks that I’ve recently gleaned from the new book I’m reading. I think this will be easier to do starting with just one parent in the mix, in order to maintain consistency. I’ll debrief Dennis when he gets home.
Also, I’d like to get quite a bit of organizing accomplished while husband is away. I’m hoping his absence will afford me a bit of extra time around the house, as I won’t feel guilty for taking my time away from him. I can also stay up late blogging, which is a one of my favorite things to do. My best writing inspiration tends to strike at night, but Dennis always makes me come to bed. Ha!
In terms of the meal plan, this means that from Wednesday on, our dinners will be nice and simple. I’m not going to slave over a hot stove just for the kids and myself. They enjoy simpler meals much more anyway. So you’ll see some easy stuff - omelets, grilled cheese sandwiches, veggie corn dogs - on the dinner menu this week. (Notably, mama might just skip the kid fare altogether in favor of some more civilized steamed veggies and salads.)
Also, notice that this week’s meal plan features a lunch menu on Saturday. That’s because I have a friend from my old Seattle life coming into town, and I’ll be serving her and her friends a light lunch at my home on Saturday afternoon. It’ll be a very simple, light, “throw together” lunch but with the warm weather and my little kiddos afoot, I think it has to be this way.
Notably, we will be serving my Seattle friend Gâteau au Yaourt for dessert and to give Maya a fun project, I’m going to let her make this cake ALL BY HERSELF, with only my vocal instruction to guide her. She loves to cook (just like her mama!) and she’s really excited about baking this cake.
We’ve got several playdates lined up, as well as a new daily schedule (sans the preschool part) happening this week. Today, I’ll be stocking up on groceries and getting the house in order to prepare for the insanity full week that lies ahead.
Here’s the ol’ meal plan for the week. Nothing too shocking here. In fact, a lot of this meal plan is a total repeat of last week’s.
You might notice that we are eating a lot of veggies & dip these days. It’s just so easy and the fam is totally digging eating our vegetables this way. Cali produce is amazing all year round, but especially this time of year. Everything just tastes so fresh and good, why not eat it raw?
Lastly, tomorrow (Tuesday) is Henry’s 1st birthday. My baby’s getting so big! We’ll be celebrating with birthday cake, which I’ll pick up tomorrow. But besides that, we’re not doing anything special for dinner. Henry’s favorite foods of the moment are raspberries and waffles with peanut butter, so he might just get that for his birthday meal. The rest of us with full sets of teeth will enjoy burritos and veggies. He’s only 1, so we’re keeping it nice and simple.
Hopefully, my long awaited camera will arrive tomorrow so I can snap some messy-faced cake eating pics!
Good morning folks! Check out the new meal plan design! Yeah, I tried to make it look like a piece of loose leaf school paper. Adorbs, right? Oh my cup runneth over with meal plan designing talent, DOES IT NOT.
You’ll notice I took out the noise. I like to think it’s a cleaner, more streamlined, dare I say sophisticated meal planning situation. I’m happy with it. Hopefully you like it too!
And as for this week, there’s only a few little deets to report:
Some of our dinners look familiar and some are new. Note that ALL of them, even our old family favorites, are getting a total nutritional makeover. I’m revamping absolutely everything with an eye to reaching my health goals. (Have you checked out my other blog yet? Good stuff over there.)
Yes, it’s true: Coffee is back. But it’s DECAF! I swear! I am happy with this compromise for now. A girl has to have at least one vice, right?
My friend Kendall is coming over for dinner on Wednesday. I’m making salmon burgers. Should be fun!
On Thursday afternoon, we’re attending a family event at Maya’s school. We’ll probably get home pretty late so dinner will need to be fast and furious. I’m making a spinach & kale pie (basically a healthier version of spanakopita) ahead of time so I can just pop it in the oven when we get home. I’ve never made this before (I’m totally winging it, actually) so I’ve really got my fingers crossed for this one.
Saturday night is Date Night! I have no idea what we’re doing or where we’re going yet, but I’m excited. Keep ya posted!
This lovely lady came for a visit the other day. I threw together a couple of berry-cherry-yogurt-homemade granola parfaits for our brunching pleasure. And afterwards, we had hot tea and homemade bread and jam for dessert!
Hey now! It’s a very special episode of Meal Plan Monday! Why? Because it’s Dennis’ birthday week! [confetti!]
My darling husband is turning 40, dudes. As in FORTY. Let the festivities begin!
Actually, we’re not planning that much. Den detests a fuss and has practically forbidden me to make one. So we’ll probably just have a nice dinner (of the birthday boy’s choosing, which he has not done yet) and I’ve got an idea for a special secret dessert. Hee!
Other than the big birthday this week, it’s business as usual. Have a fabulous week, everybody!
After my massive shopping trip last Monday, you’d be right to assume I was done buying groceries for the week. But then, 2 things happened:
We started running low on produce. With all this clean, healthy livin’ I don’t think I properly accounted for all the extra fruits and veg I’d be nomming on. I partially blame California and its incredible produce - year round, but especially this time of year - on this. Plus, Den and the kids have certainly been helping to make a dent in our fruit and vegetable stockpile.
I received a “spend $15, get $5 coupon” in the mail yesterday from a market that I don’t normally frequent because it’s not on my usual walking route. But for $5, I’ll definitely walk the extra 3 blocks! That’s a good deal!
a bulb of garlic
a giant head (this sucker is SOLID) of green cabbage
2 boxes of squeezable applesauce pouches (Okay, so these aren’t the most budget-friendly at 50 cents per pouch. We’ve just been out of the house so much lately, and I’ve needed food that I can throw in my bag for Hungry Henry. He’s still a bit too young and too toothless to eat most regular food, so applesauce is the perfect take-along snack. And I love these pouches because no refrigerator, spoon or bowl is required. I justify this purchase because they really do save me time and make my life much easier.)
4 pink lady apples (used to be 5, but I ate one while unpacking these groceries. Ha!)
box of button mushrooms
2 Cashew Cookie Lara Bars (my little pre-gym treat)
2 cans organic garbanzo beans
bag of organic baby spinach
a bunch of organic green beans
bag of organic carrots
4 Cali yellow peaches
box of cherries (I’d like to make a batch of my homemade cherry jam out of these but I suspect Dennis will get to them before I have a chance.)
large box of organic Cali strawberries
My cupboards and fridge were pretty bare before today’s shop, so I went a wee bit over my $50 per week budget. My total today came today $64.46.
I am OK with the overage. We really needed a bunch of stuff. Next week, I’ll try to cut my grocery budget to $35.54 to make up for going over this week. Or maybe not. I may just give myself a pass on this one. Haven’t decided yet.
July, is that really you? Wow, you’re still weeks away in my head. This year is flying!
After a week of visitors and then a week of chaos, we are back on track with a brand new meal plan here at Apron Headquarters. Did ya miss it?
This meal plan is ever-evolving, it seems. Now that I’ve committed to improving my health, you’ll probably see some subtle changes on my meal plans. White stuff like bread, sugar and refined grains will be taking a back seat to vegetables, vegetables and more vegetables. And while a lot of the meals will look the same as always on paper, I’ll be making a much healthier version in real life.
I’m excited to do a big shop. Trader Joe’s, here I come! We are out of practically everything! (And as usual, the Grocery List has exceeded its parameters and has spilled over in to the To-Do column. I put the Grocery List in lavender to alleviate any confusion.)
One last note - if you ever want to see a recipe for any of my meal plan meals, please feel free to email me and I will post any recipes requested. Most of these meals I could practically make in my sleep, but I will do my best to type out some coherent directions.
Happy Monday, folks! And Happy Canada Day to my friends up north!