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My Weekly Meal Plan



Okay so I took a little unplanned time off from blogging last week and very much enjoyed the break. Ryan was out of town with work all week so we didn't even meal plan. It was kind of fun to just wing it and be less scheduled and it may be like that off and on this Summer but this week I need at least some sort of a plan!

Here are a couple highlights from the past two weeks and then this weeks menu plan!

We had a Birthday Party for my Grandma who turned 80! I keep saying that I hope I have some of those genes......she definitely doesn't look, act or move like she is 80.  Aunt Em had a fun quiz game for the great-grand-kids. They learned lots of fun things they didn't know about grandma heck I even learned some things.

I have said for a long time that Summer's are for families.....so I really enjoy it when the youth camps and things are over so we have more time to just all be together. Both our little family and with extended family!

Cousins spent a lot of time together last week and it was lots of fun. I think the highlight though had to be the water balloon fight in grandma's back yard!

 I decided to start purging the house again and to try to be done with it before harvest time so then I will be able to focus on enjoying and preserving the harvest! I'm in hopes for lots and lots so I can refill my food storage room.

My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Zucchini Casserole - Dinner is already made tonight! We made two of these yesterday....YUMMM! Our zucchini is doing awesome.

Tuesday:
Tostadas

Wednesday: 
Herbed Quinoa Garden Veggie Salad

Thursday:
Grilled Veggie Sandwich

Friday:
Chicken Garden Veggie Quinoa Skillet

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock-pot Lasagna



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Mango Soft Serve Ice Cream


I cannot really take credit for this recipe because I totally got the idea from Laura over at Heavenly Homemakers.  Thanks Laura!  Her Pineapple flavor is really good too but Costco hasn't had their organic frozen pineapple lately (at least not the one we shop at). But they have the mango!

Ryan says he likes the mango best because it is so creamy but you could use other kinds of frozen fruit too. We want to try apricot, peach, raspberry and I know Laura tried strawberry also and it went over well.

Just to let you know this is thick stuff and blending in a regular blender may prove a bit frustrating. I think a food processor (a fairly large nice one) would probably work best. But since I don't have one right now I used my Blendtec with the large Wildside jar. It works really well but does take a little patience.

I have to stop and stir a few times before it really blends well. It still takes me less than 5 minutes though. Using my twister jar would actually work better but I would have to half the recipe and blend it in two batches and this way is just faster. But if I was only needing one or two servings I wouldn't hesitate to half the recipe and use that twister jar. It is the perfect thing for really thick blends.


Mango Soft Serve Ice Cream
1 can coconut milk, chilled  (I tend to always keep a couple cans in the fridge)
1 pinch of Real Salt
4 cups frozen mango
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
3-5 drops liquid stevia (optional, don't really need mango is nice a sweet but if you like it sweeter)

Place all ingredients into food processor or powerful blender. Blend until smooth (not higher than speed 3 if using a high speed blender, too high of a speed can potentially separate coconut milk and make it grainy). Also remember it is thick you will have to stop and stir a few times until the machine can pull it down.

My Weekly Meal Plan

You know I have some new recipes I have been itching to post and hope to get them posted in the next few weeks. Sorry but I have decided that this blog will fit my schedule not the other way around and this summer computer time is seeming to be limited. But don't worry recipes will come and will continue to come just maybe not as often. 

We had another wonderful good kind of busy summer fun week! Lots of work and weeding and gardening. Missy got the itch to wash the car and the front and back porches.....Maybe she just wanted an excuse to cool off in the water but that's fine with me it was needed! I hope she thinks washing windows this week would be a good idea. ;) We shall see.

For the holiday weekend we got out of the heat and spent a few days up the mountain in Brian Head. We swam, played games and more games, watched the rain and hail hit hard on the afternoon of the 4th, Ryan read us THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE, then went and ended up right under a spectacular fire works show.

It was great fun just being together as a family! Sometimes I think we don't getaway often enough....but it's always good to come home too.


The next day we went up to the highest peak in Brian Head. It was a perfect sunny day for it. We also had fun trying to identify all the birds and herbs around the area!


You can see for miles and miles from Brian Head Peak! But now we are back down to lower ground and ready for another week with another week of meal plans. Hope y'all are having a great summer! (Oh did I mention we visited with some people from Texas up on the peak! I told Ryan that if I ever lived in Texas I would for sure pick up the accent. ;)




My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Rainbow Veggie Stir Fry

Tuesday:
Fajitas

Wednesday:
Layered Salad in a Jar with this salad dressing recipe (I have been wanting to try some salads in a jar what better time then on our salad day this summer)

Thursday:
Flatbread Falafel Sandwich

Friday:
Black Bean and Sweet Potato Packets (cooked outside of course)

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Roasted Veggies in the Crock Pot



Grow Your Own Food

My Weekly Meal Plan

This past week was another simple and fun summer week! Plenty of work in the yard and garden. There has been Kale to add to green smoothies, we have been picking peas, tomatoes and peppers are starting to set and the squash is blossoming.

My Sister and her kids came for a quick visit! Cousins had lots of fun playing and my Em and I had lots of fun chatting......Sisters are the best aren't they I sure love it when I get to spend some time with my Sisters!



Yesterday we decided it was time for a little dutch oven cooking. I love it when we cook outside! We get a nice home cooked meal without turning on the stove or oven.

We changed up the menu for the day and made our veggie lasagna in the dutch oven and we tried some no knead sourdough bread. Ryan has been wanting to get good at making bread in the dutch oven.....I'd say this was is best one yet. Don't worry we will share recipes once they are perfect!

An all around fun lovely week and with the holiday this week I think this week will be just as good. I have kept the 4th of July in mind too while planning this weeks menu so it may not follow our summer plan exactly. ;)



My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Sweet and Spicy Cabbage

Tuesday:
Veggie Burger (wanting to try a new one maybe one of these will work or at least spark some ideas)

Wednesday:
Chickpea Salad Filling over a big green salad

Thursday:
Burritos

Friday:
Nachos, 4th of July Muffins

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crockpot Quinoa Chili

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Hearty Vegetable Chili with Lime and Cilantro


I came up with this recipe years ago. We will try other fun chili recipes but we always come back to this one. To this day it is still a family favorite and by far the chili we make most often.

So I'm not really sure it's taken me all these years to get a decent picture of it. It's far from professional but I think the tips I learned from Tasty Food Photography has helped me to greatly improve it. That old picture was the only one I had before and it has bugged and bugged me that it looked like.....ummmm who knows what. But I kept forgetting to take a picture every time we had it. Which like I said has been often. ;)

If you want to see the original post you can go here. I also got an updated baked potato bar picture that isn't super but I know will look better than the one on that post. I can't decide if I just want to update that post with new pictures and add the new with the old or just get rid of it entirely.....I don't know that could cause broken links. I'll have to think on it. The old pictures are kind of fun to compare with. I actually get hungry when I see this picture.....the other one mostly made me nauseous.....maybe I will take it down. ;)

I don't really consider myself a food blogger because I refuse to make a dish just to get a picture of it and blog about it. I make food for my family to sit down and have a meal hopefully more nights than not. If it's a recipe I have been wanting to share I try really hard to remember to get hopefully a decent looking picture of it.

I consider myself a wife and mother who likes to make healthy food for her family and share it with others.....maybe you could call me a share my recipes wife/mom blogger.....mostly I hope you will just call me a friend.

Anyway enjoy this good old recipe with a much more appealing picture and be sure to share it with your friends!





Hearty Vegetable Chili With Lime and Cilantro
2 cans black beans (I usually use 3-4 cups cooked black beans, I like the more homemade flavor it gives it)
1 can pinto or garbanzo beans
1 can kidney beans
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced
1 large or 2 medium onions
1 orange bell pepper or color of choice
2 stalks celery w/ leaves, chopped
½ summer squash, chopped
1 small zucchini, chopped
2 cans diced tomatoes
1-2 cups frozen corn
1/4 cup Sucanat
2+ Tablespoons chili powder
½ -1 ½ Tablespoon sea salt (to taste)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pepper
Juice of ½ -1 whole lime (to taste)
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Be sure to drain the beans well you can use canned or cook your own dry. Use whatever variety of beans you want. In large pot saute garlic, onion, bell pepper, celery, squash, and zucchini in olive oil for a 3 or 4 minutes. Add the drained beans, diced tomatoes (DON'T DRAIN), and corn. Add rest of ingredients except cilantro, bring to a boil and boil off a bit of the liquid until it is a chili consistency. Remove from heat stir in the cilantro, can reserve some to sprinkle fresh on top. We had this chili on baked potatoes with sesame dip, some fresh sliced tomatoes. With fresh cilantro on top!



Tasty Food Photography eBook

My Weekly Meal Plan

This past week was less than typical but so, so much fun. On Monday Ryan and Curtis left for scout camp and where gone until Saturday morning. They came back with lots of fun stories and seemed to have a great time.

On Thursday morning my teenagers left for a Youth Conference Trek and where gone until Saturday evening. Again it sounds like they had a great time and I have been enjoying their fun storied too!

But that left Charly and I home by ourselves for a little bit of time. That does NOT happen very often and when it does it is just for a few hours not a few days. Can I just tell you we had a lovely time.

I had her make a list of all the things that she would like to do during that time. We then planned when we would do them. You should have seen Charly just light up as we were planning and doing these simple little things.



Of course there was some fun impromptu things too like dressing up like an Indian while reading about some and helping her Aunt with some painting. But some of the things that were on our list were thing like:
  • Go to Grandma's and sew skirts for us and her favorite stuffed animal.
  • Learn to knit
  • Crochet a rose
  • make a green smoothie from a book of hers (all her idea)
  • Watch a Raw Family video on how to make green smoothies (I promise it was her idea...I didn't even hint about it.
With all the fun we were having you may have noticed not much happened in the way of posting around here. But that's okay when I'm not busy posting I usually find more time to create in the kitchen that inevitably leads to more fun recipes. Charly and I spent one morning working on a new spiced pancake recipe that we think has a lot of potential.


I'm thinking less posting with less need to have it perfect on my part may be in order here. You see it just takes me so long to put a post together that I'm finding more time seems to be spent trying to perfect a post and it's pictures then actually creating great recipes. So I'm going to relax a bit. And focus more on what I love. I think I kind of mentioned this in my last post.

Don't worry I still plan to keep sharing favorite recipes I'm just thinking of doing it in a more relaxed easygoing kind of way.

Although last week was fabulous it's so nice to have the family all back together....everything is just right with the world when we are all together.



My Weekly Meal Plan:

Monday:
Veggie Stir Fry with Garlic Sauce - Sorry I don't yet have a recipe for this. I have one in my head that I'm going to try out tonight if it's good I of course will share.

Tuesday:
Smothered Chimmichungas - I'm going to just pan fry these in a little coconut oil instead of turning on the oven and heating up the house to bake them.

Wednesday:
Mediterranean Chickpea Salad - of course I will adjust it a bit but it looks like a fun salad to try.

Thursday:
Spaghetti - Okay I know this isn't a sandwich.....but my Sister is bringing some of her homemade sauce and well we have a little change of plans.

Friday:
Tomato, Cucumber, Sprout, Avocado sandwich with garlic herb spread and hummus - Since the garden still has a few weeks to go before we get much out of it and we aren't having sandwiches on Thursday.....just roll with it. This sandwich just sounds good to me and yep I'll share it if it tastes good too. ;)

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock Pot Sloppy Joes


A passion for organics

My Weekly Meal Plan

Simply Scheduled

Last week was such a beautifully simple week. I just love weeks like that! The garden just needs a little tending to keep the weeds at bay but it's doing well. The kids where all home and Ryan was working hard as usual but home every night.

The weather was fabulous and we spent lots of time outside read, playing and weeding. We spent some time sewing with grandma at her house in preparation for a trek the older kids will be going on. For the most part just a wonderful simple uneventful week.

I enjoyed the full moon last week too....although I think I need to get me some blackout curtains for my bedroom because whenever it's that bright outside I have a hard time falling asleep.

Beautiful evenings!

Yesterday we had a fun time celebrating Dads! I made Ryan a healthified version of the Boston Cream Poke Cake that is pinned on my Healthify it Tammie Pinterest Board. It was super tasty but will need some more tweaking to be worthy of posting here.

I also finally got some half way decent pictures of my chili and baked potato bar recipes. I have decided that even though I have learned what makes better food pictures I don't see me ever being what I would call a photographer. But I find myself often comparing myself with others who do claim to be photographers.....so then I'm kind of embarrassed to post and share many of my food photos on social media or even my blog.

But yesterday as I was quickly snapping a few pictures before we ate dinner I decided if I am going to keep enjoying food blogging I need to not be so worried about having the best pictures. Some just turn out better than others and I have never claimed to be a photographer anyway.

I like good tasting healthy food and sharing good recipes and some sort of picture is better than nothing. But I just don't have the time and money to spend on trying to become amazing at photography and this blog hasn't ever made enough money to justify paying for a food photographer.

My goal has always been to provide great tasting healthy recipes that will encourage families to sit down often and have family meal time. I think that goal is being met and that will continue to be my focus. So I'm going to work really hard at not comparing my very amateur pictures with all the amazing ones out there and just focus on my strengths. One of which is I KNOW HOW TO MAKE HEALTHY FOOD TASTE GOOD!



 Homemade Veggie Burger

My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Orange Veggie Stir Fry

Tuesday:
Best Burritoes

Wednesday:
Summer Strawberry Salad with a Kick

Thursday:
Veggie-Bean Burgers

Friday:
Hawaiian Haystacks

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Roasted Veggies in the Crock Pot




Coconut Berry-Caramel Ice Cream

So I came up with this soft serve coconut ice cream that you don't need to have an ice cream maker for! (You will need a blender.) Oh boy it's super yummy....especially when you add berry syrup and caramel sauce and some chopped nuts......and anything else you think would be good.

I'm sharing this recipe as a guest post over at Live Simply. Also you will read a little story of me back in the day of my soft serve frozen yogurt cravings.

So go check it out and while your there look at some of the other great recipes she has. And oh those photos! I wish I could take food photos like that..... actually scratch that I wish I had someone like Kristin to take photos of my food for me. ;)


I'm the type of person that really can appreciate a well done photo because I know it isn't a matter of simply point and shoot. I keep trying but mostly it's not something I really enjoy or that I'm very good at.

I do love spending time over at Live Simply just looking at her amazing pictures. Not to mention any of the recipes of hers I have tried have always been way good!

Hop on over there and give this recipe a try then let me know what you think.





My Weekly Meal Plan

Simply Scheduled Meal Plans
Wow what a week! I'm feeling pretty bummed that I didn't take one single picture all week.....so I'm going to be sure to write a little about it for memory sake. It was crazy busy but a totally fun week. And the weather although on the fairly hot side has been pretty near perfect for me.

Sorry I was too busy to even get another post in last week but I've got a fun new recipe that I came up with recently that I'm sharing as a guest post but more on that later.

Last Monday we celebrated another birthday this time it was Ryan's Mom's birthday. Even though some of Ryan's family live right here close by we don't seem to spend a lot of just fun down time together.....so it was nice to just visit and watch the kids play.

Wednesday some of our very best friends came for a visit. We had not seen them for over 6 months and it was so good to see them and spend some time. Some of our kids spent the weekend near Zions at a youth conference called YFF and those who didn't go stayed here.

All in all it was a great week and I'm determined to not let 6 months go by before we see our friends again.

Alright now I'm excited to share a fun idea that I have come up with about our Summer time meal plans! I have been noticing a bit of a lag when it comes to dinner ideas and I want to come up with more truly simple and tasty main dishes to share here.

So this is the plan......for the Summer I don't want to run my oven any more than needed. So I want to have plenty of stove top, crock pot, grill or no-cook ideas. This is what I have come up with as I'm menu planning each week.

Monday will be Stir Fry night - I want to have more of a variety of stir fry type dishes including more curry's etc. It's so easy to put rice in the rice cooker and stir fry a few things on the stove top that cookes up super quick and doesn't heat things up much.

Tuesday will be Taco Tuesday - I know a lot of people like to do Taco Tuesday. Again for us tacos don't use the oven just the stove top and/or crock pot. I want to come up with a variety of tacos, wraps, nachos or other similar type things. I'm not going to limit myself to just tacos but something kind of along those lines.

Wednesday will be Salads - I keep telling myself I want to have more then just the boring same old salad so I decided to have a entire meal based on a new salad I want to try. I also want to make it huge enough to have along with the other meals throughout the week or at least extra stuff to throw more together. We will see how it goes.

Thursday we will have Sandwiches - We really like our current sandwich and burger options, I just would like to have more. I think it's time to add some new ones along with also fixing some of the favorites.

Friday is Garden or Grill - Missy and I are excited to find or create some fun dishes that use up extra garden produce when that season hits and/or more outdoor cooking and grill type recipes.

Saturday we will still be eating the leftovers!

Sunday we will try to focus on using the crock pot - Old favorites and hopefully lots of new favorites will be found too. We love our crock pot around here and next to the Blendtec it is one of our most used small kitchen appliances.

Now for this weeks plan!

Tacos on the Menu Plan

My Weekly Meal Plan


Monday:
Stir Fry

Tuesday:
Tacos

Wednesday:
Warm Balsamic Kale Salad

Thursday:
Creamy Cauliflower Sandwiches

Friday:
VeggieKabobs

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Baked Potato Bar - I'm going to "bake" my potatoes in the crock pot.



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The Effortless Life

My Weekly Meal Plan

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Alright so before I ramble a bit about last week and share my meal plan. I want to encourage you to sign up for The Bundle of the Week Newsletter. It's free and every Monday you will hear about that weeks fun bundle and bonuses.

And just between you and me my breakfast book is included in this weeks bundle! It's a super fun helpful bundle full of ideas and recipes for every meal of the day. Sign up now and see all that's included.

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Last week was another great week! I liked it because it was nice and warm and not a lot was going on. We did celebrate Curt's 12th birthday which brought back a lot of memories of the struggles and asthma issues and things that we dealt with when he was just a baby.

Part 2 of that story is here
Part 3 is here

That was a really hard time for me but really felt that I had been prepared, taught and guided on how to best help him. He did get his infamous cough a month or so ago when there were colds going around. But this time it only lasted less then a week and he didn't wheeze at all. In fact he hasn't had any wheezing in over 2 years and even 2 years ago it was very mild.

Ryan and Curt Yesterday


It's been a long road but I feel that his immune system gets stronger all the time. He was pretty sickly those first few years of his life. But I believe that a wholesome diet and lifestyle and lots of prayer has him becoming a very strong healthy young man who is happy and active. It's the miracle I prayed and prayed for.

Summer busyness is knocking at our door and although it's a pretty busy time of year for my family I still try to keep myself from becoming overly busy. I try to focus on the garden and enjoying long days, while trying to support my kids in the activities and things they want to be involved in.

But I'll talk more about that next week. How about this weeks meal plan!

Chickpea Salad Sandwich


My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:

Leftovers from our Luncheon Yesterday (See Sunday on last weeks meal plan)

Tuesday:
Chickpea Salad Sandwich

Wednesday:
Quinoa Burgers

Thursday:
Falafel Flatbread Sandwich

Friday:
Taco Sundays

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock Pot Lasagna

Macaroni Salad

Classic Macaroni Salad Made Healthier
When I was posting this weeks meal plan I went to link this recipe and searched and searched and couldn't find it. I thought I had posted it years ago. Come to find out......I hadn't.

We have enjoyed this recipe for many years now. It goes great with picnics or for luncheons or barbeques. Fun and simple and reminds me of the original classic macaroni salad.

Like with most any recipe, don't be afraid to adjust ingredients to fit your tastes and even taking your family's traditional macaroni salad and adjusting it from there. Be sure to give it a try this Summer!

 


Macaroni Salad


Macaroni Salad
1 box macaroni noodles, shells or elbows, cooked
¼ red onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2-4 dill pickles chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh or dried parsley
1 cup olives, sliced
½ cup matchstick size carrots, optional


Cook noodles according to package directions. Let cool completely. Combine the ingredients above in a large bowl. Make sauce and stir it in, mix well.

Sauce:
½ cup water
1 cup raw cashews
¼ cup lemon juice
1 clove garlic
½ teaspoon dry mustard
2 Tablespoons agave or honey
¼ teaspoon celery seed
¼ teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons mustard
½ cup Vegenaise


Blend everything but Vegenaise until smooth in blender, fold in Vegenaise.


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My Weekly Meal Plan

We had a most wonderful weekend and as you can see I didn't even turn on the computer so sorry the meal plan is a day late.

We went south and spent Friday night at my parents house. Ryan worked with my dad on some finishing touches of a remodeling project he has been working on. It looks amazing! My Dad has done a fabulous job with it makes me want to live there again now that it's all fixed up. ;)

Fun at Grandma's

We were fortunate enough to have my sister's family there for a few hours that evening too. The cousins had a great time playing. The next day Ryan took our teenagers and went over to the temple for baptisms.

Matt had found a bunch of family names and their youth group help get them all done. Now we have a whole stack of names to finish the work on. I think it's so fun and rewarding to do temple work for family.


Fun with Grandma

Saturday evening my other sister's kids came over and again lots of fun cousin time was had. It's so fun to see what good friends the kids have become with their cousins. We went home that night and had a beautiful, peaceful Sunday.....that is after I spent my 2 hours in the nursery. ;)

Curt turns 12 this week and had his interview with Bishop. He's going to be ordained a deacon next Sunday....It's so crazy! The kids are growing so fast. I'm trying my best to just enjoy every moment.

That evening we went with Grandpa and Grandma Nelson to the cemetery to place flowers on family members graves. Then we came home and enjoyed the beautiful evening and I got excited about finishing planting our garden.

BFF

The next morning we were up bright and early and started planting. We planted over 30 tomato plants, 18 Cabbages, a whole bunch of pepper plants some pole beans and some more lettuces to go along with all the other things we planted last month.

I didn't take any pictures with my camera but I do now have an instagram account that I posted a few pictures of the garden too. You can follow me here! It's not much to look at right now but I hope and pray that the wind will be nice and that the garden will be beautiful and productive this year.

Yesterday we made some simple dairy free grilled cheese sandwiches and salad for dinner. After a long day of gardening we didn't want to make a huge mess of the kitchen . We have made these before but it's been years and I don't think I have shared how we make them. I'll have to share the recipe soon.

This week we will have Curt's birthday dinner and then he wants a little luncheon with family on Sunday after church....it will be another wonderful week. Be sure to note that even when I don't always post it there is always a salad and/or fresh veggies of some sort to go with dinner.

Sweet Potatoes, Chickpeas, Curry Dish


My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Dairy Free Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Big Tossed Green Salad

Tuesday:
Mac and Cheese with leftover Salad

Wednesday:
Creamy Cauliflower Sandwiches

Thursday:
Burrito Casserole

Friday:
Sweet Potato and Chickpea Curry

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock Pot Sloppy Joes, Crunchy Cabbage Salad, Macaroni Salad (recipe coming soon), Crackers, Veggies and Homemade Hummus, Peanut Butter Bars, Blondie Brownies, Ice Cream