|Posted by dawnlefler on July 24, 2009 at 10:35 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted by dawnlefler on July 20, 2009 at 11:47 AM||comments (0)|
I can't stress how much time and money planning your meals in advance can save! When you are considering your meals for the week, think about how you can prepare the ingredients for more than one meal at a time. For example, if you are having steaks one night, grill an extra one to slice for fajitas another night. Better yet, have grilled chicken another night and grill extra chicken so you can have chicken & steak fajitas! This will take no extra time the night you do the grilling and will save time on the night for fajitas.
Need Something Special?
If you have to buy a special ingredient for a dish, but don't need to use all of it for the dish (i.e. buttermilk), plan to make something else that week that uses that ingredient too. This works well for items that could spoil within the week. Not so important for those that won't spoil right away (i.e. balsamic vinegar).
Make time for substitutions!
Many proteins can be substituted for each other in different recipes. For example, ground turkey or chicken can be substituted for ground beef (and vice versa). Boneless, skinless chicken breast can be substituted for pork chops or cutlets. Switching it up will add variety to your monthly menu!
Some recipes call for specific spices, don't worry so much about following recipes word for word, and experiment with different flavors. If you bought the Asian 5 spice for the Lettuce Wrap recipe, try adding it in different stir fry/Asian style recipes.
Spice Shelf Life:
Whole spices----2 to 5 years
Ground spices---6 months to 2 years
Leafy herbs-------3 months to 2 years
dehydrated vegetables---6 months
Write the date of purchase on the spice label; then check them once a year and replace as needed.
When using spices while cooking on the stovetop, allow them to sit open for a few minutes after use so that any moisture that got inside can dry before you close them and put them back in the cabinet.
Store sour cream containers upside-down in your refrigerator. This prolongs the shelf life by at least two weeks; and if you buy the larger size (which is usually less expensive per ounce) you can save two ways! Don't worry; the upside-down containers won't leak.
|Posted by dawnlefler on July 20, 2009 at 11:39 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted by dawnlefler on July 19, 2009 at 5:23 PM||comments (0)|
As you may know, on June 20th I announced that I would be taking a break for a bit on posting new recipes, with that also came no new menu plan for the month of July. Have no fear! I have fixed the June menu, so that it is read-able and posted a menu plan for August! I am slowly getting into the swing of things, so for now, enjoy the menu plan! I will ALWAYS promptly respond to questions, comments & orders. Enjoy the rest of the summer!
|Posted by dawnlefler on June 7, 2009 at 5:48 PM||comments (0)|
So, I am not sure where I have been all this time, but did you know that Home Depot has a Kids Workshop the first Saturday of every month? By George they do and it is so cool! Daddy took Mia (4) and the neighbor boy (7) to it yesterday and I was truly amazed at what they came home with! Not only did they get to make a project, but they got a nice workshop apron with a pin for the project that they completed! Best of all… it’s FREE!! Check it out, here’s the link: Home Depot Kids Workshop
To recap last week, I was on the road Tuesday & Wednesday. On Thursday, I was invited to meet with a Mom’s group and talk about traveling with children and how many of the items in my store can help make it easier/less stressful when traveling. I truly enjoyed meeting with them and hope to keep in touch with them in the future!
The week ahead involves me hitting the road once again. This time it’s Tuesday through Friday, so once again, its Daddy’s turn to work it out in the kitchen!! You may recall last week’s menu being inspired by a recipe that I discovered on $5 dinners, well I made the breadsticks on Wednesday and they were such a hit, that I made the dough again on Friday; only this time I made them into clover style rolls! I posted my enhanced version of the recipe on my website, so you should be able to find it here, if not, check here!
Here’s our meal plan for this week…
Monday: Mexican Pasta Casserole & side salad
Tuesday - Friday: Leftovers or whatever Dad wants to cook up!
Saturday: Grilled chicken, veggies, rice & side salad
Sunday: Pasta w/veggies & sausage with a side salad
Have a fantabulous week!
|Posted by dawnlefler on May 31, 2009 at 10:45 PM||comments (0)|
Here we are, week 2 of three weeks of travel for mommy! It’s a short trip this week, I’m only going to be gone for one night. Last week everyone survived even without me here to make dinner every night! I am proud of daddy for maintaining my organized chaos while I was out! Oddly enough, the wonderful casseroles that I had made and froze a couple of weeks ago are resting exactly where I left them, in the freezer… hmmmm… well… There are two good things about that: 1.) They will freeze up to 3+ months and 2.) I can make one tomorrow and leave them with leftovers for Tuesday!!
Since I came up with June’s menu calendar early on in May, I need to rethink the weekly menu due to travel plans (that were not in the original menu thought!). I was inspired for this week’s menu by Erin’s Pasta & Spices give away on her 5dollardinners.com blog (I also subscribe via email, highly recommended, she’s wonderful!). Want to post your weekly menu or get more ideas for your meals? Join Menu Plan Monday at I’m An Organizing Junkie!
|Posted by dawnlefler on May 24, 2009 at 7:30 PM||comments (0)|
I am so clueless as to where the month of May has gone... where the year has gone for that matter!! So this week marks the beginning of a "new beginning" for me and my family! Here's the short of it... I worked for 11 years for a company and was laid off in March. Loving the ability to focus on my girls and the home, but needing to still have an income. Opportunity knocked and I answered. I'll be working from home (eventually) but first I need to get some training out of the way. For the next three weeks, I will be going through various trainings to help me be a success at this new venture, so wish me luck!!
The menu for this week is really up in the air! Since it is up to Daddy to do the meal preparation while I am out, I can only provide him with the tools, he has to choose to use them!!
Here's to another fan-tabulous week!
|Posted by dawnlefler on May 17, 2009 at 6:15 PM||comments (4)|
So, here we are at week 2 of my weekly menu planning. I am really trying to follow the same monthly calendar that I have posted, but I am finding that I am needing to be a bit more creative here lately! I have recently started a new career that will require a bit of travel in the upcoming weeks. To make sure that the family still has the yummy (read
nutritious not McDonald's) meals that they would when I am home, I am making meals to freeze! Of course, that also meant that I needed to have a quick "101" course on how to prepare and heat them with daddy! It also meant printing very explicit directions and lables just incase he forgets the lesson on preparing them!
With that being said, I am altering my weekly menu to flow with the ingredients that I need to make the freezer meals (I'd be crazy not to take advantage of the opportunity to save myself some time!)
Monday: Chicken Louis Sandwiches (glorified chicken salad sandwiches)
Tuesday: Pasta Alfredo with Chicken & Broccoli
Thursday: Steak Salads
Friday: Sloppy Joes
Saturday: Chicken Wellington w/rice stuffing
Sunday: Mexican Shepherds Pie (I think...)
Cheers to another fabulous week!
|Posted by dawnlefler on May 12, 2009 at 9:27 AM||comments (0)|
So, I have been at this website since January 2009 as part of my unspoken New Year's Resolution to make my life less stressful and hopefully do the same for others! I am happy to say that it has grown into something.... not quite sure what that something is, but it's something and I am loving every minute of it!!
Late yesterday afternoon, I stumbled upon a cute website called "I'm an organizing junkie". I thought with a name like that it must be up my alley! So today, I have taken a bit of time to dive into it and see what it's all about and would you believe I ran across over 300 fabulous people who blog about their weekly meals on Monday's?? Where in the world have I been all this time?!?! So, here is my first blog on Menu Plan Monday (so it's Tuesday, oh well, better late than not at all, right?). Even though you can find over 16 weeks worth of meal ideas on my Mealtime Calendar, I thought I'd take this opportunity to share with you what we're doing this week!
Tuesday: Grilled BBQ Chicken, coleslaw, corn on the cob
Wednesday: Leftovers (again)
Thursday: Oven-Fried Talipia, rice, steamed veggies, side salad
Friday: Enchiladas, rice & beans, side salad
Saturday: Teriyaki Chicken, rice, side salad
Sunday: South of the border steaks, sweet potato fries, veggie of some sort, side salad
(Dearest Daddy started night classes again this week, so that changed up what I had originally thought out for the week - hence leftovers twice in one week!)
So, here's to a fabulous week!
|Posted by dawnlefler on May 3, 2009 at 11:09 AM||comments (0)|
First things first, I hope all the Mom's out there get two things for Mother's day:
#1 A bottle of your favorite wine! Why?
#2 A box of chocolates! Why? The chemicals in dark chocolate may reduce your cance risks by helping ward off the cell changes that can lead to tumors (according to Sally Scroggs, R.D., from the M.D. Anderson Cancer Prevention Center).
So, any Dad's out there reading this, take note and go shopping for a Happy & Healthy Mom's day gift!
Now on to what Mother's day means to me. Mother's Day is just around the corner and that means I need to get crackin' on the gifts for Grandma and Grammy! The girls had their pictures taken last week, so of course I will incorporate their beautiful faces into the gifts! That's the best way that I can think of to say "Thank you! Thank you for helping to make us (the girls? parents) who we are... The proud parents of your beautiful grandbabies!"
Every day I look at their faces and I am simply amazed that I am their mother. I gave them life and made such beautiful little girls! Then, I get scared to death!! hmy: Will I be able to protect them and provide for them the nurturing that they need to grow into strong, beautiful, independent women??
Although my life experiences have helped to mold me into the woman that I am, I don't want to even begin to think that my girls will need to go through the same things in order to be strong & independent. Am I strong enough to use my own experiences to help them, so they don't have to experience firsthand? What if I am not here (heaven forbid) when they need me the most? (Not trying to turn this morbid, so we'll move along).
Reality check, of course I am strong enough to use my life experiences to help my girls grow! That's what the experiences were for, for me to use to help others. I have shared my experiences (good and bad) to help others and to touch the lives of others. Heck, I assume I have touched your life in some way or another (you've read this far, haven't you?)!