Menu Plan 9/6/2010

Not only is it Meat Free Monday, it is also Menu Plan Monday. :)  Normally I plan my menus on Sunday, but I was a bit lazy this week. And we had so many leftovers that we just had leftovers Saturday night, and I made the fish tacos last night...

It's been a good week menu-wise. Dinner has been done in a timely manner, and there hasn't been any scrambling. And since we are homeschooling again this year, that has been a huge help. Hopefully this week will go as well. And since we are talking about homeschooling...we are still using the Virtual Academy through k-12.  Last year was crazy because we started in the middle of the year, and then discovered that we were expected to complete a year's worth of studies in a semester. Well, we were up for the challenge. And the new challenge this year is that school started last week, and there have been some last minute schedule changes, i.e. they've placed my son in some high school classes (he's in 8th grade), which aren't completely loaded yet. So I expect we will be playing some more catch-up this week. So MENU PLANNING IS CRUCIAL!    :)

So, without further ado, here is this week's menu:

Corn Salad

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
(I know this is a repeat, but this soup is so good, 
and I got yet another bunch of celery in my Bountiful Basket...)


(this one sounds weird, but the reviews are all good)

Roast Beast

Swiss Chard Manicotti

Spaghetti Supper with Friends

Hopefully this will be an awesome week. It's a busy one, that's for sure. And just while I'm mentioning daughter turns 21 today. Of course, she lives 2 hours away from me, so no cake and ice cream, but I wanted to mention that I'm thinking of her, and of course I've called. her. :)

Menu Plan (Week of 8/29/10)

This week in our Bountiful Basket, we have broccoli, celery, sweet potatoes, lettuce, tomatoes, green beans, champagne grapes, oranges, plums, nectarines, mangoes, and bananas. I also got the italian pack which has basil, oregano, rosemary, parsley, onions, mushrooms, eggplant, and zucchini.

Sunday: Broccoli Chicken Dijon with a Green Salad

Monday: Herbed Eggplant Souffle with Sauteed Green Beans

Tuesday: Cream of Celery Soup with Grilled (Ham &) Cheese Sandwiches

Thursday: Broccoli & Zucchini Pasta with a Green Salad

Friday: Meatloaf, Steamed Carrots, Mashed Potatoes

Saturday: Fish Tacos with Corn Salad

Hopefully it will be a tasty week. :)

Yes, I really am a slacker :)

 I know I've been MIA for quite a while, but life has been just kinda crazy. :)  Anyway, I wanted to share one of the things I've been up to (see below!), and that ties in to what's going on now: School's Starting! Which means I have to get on the ball with menu planning. Keep in mind that I'm Vegetarian for a Year, but my family still eats meat. So, I will be posting my weekly menus here--which will be veggie heavy, but there will still be some meat entrees as well.

I've joined a fruit and veggie co-op called Bountiful Baskets. The basic premise is this: At the beginning of the week (Monday - Tuesday OR Tuesday - Wednesday depending on what state you are in) you go to the website to make a contribution. On Saturday you drive to your pick-up site and pick up your produce. The produce is sorted into two laundry baskets--one for fruit and one for veggies. You need to bring your own container to bring the produce home in, as the baskets stay at the site.

When we first started this, the closest site was a 45 minute drive away, and that site was every other week. The next closest site was Las Vegas, which is a 60+ minute drive. I was hooked after the first time, though, and decided that this was something that needed to be in my neighborhood, so I contacted BB to figure out how to get a site started closer.

The fruits and veggies have pretty much saved me this summer. As a veg with almost no inspiration on veggie meals, it's no big deal to roast up some veggies or throw together a salad. And that funk is starting to pass, and I'm starting to get inspired by the produce I'm getting--some of which I don't normally buy because of expense (example: pineapple), and some which I've never even had the opportunity to buy (example: white asparagus).


The interesting thing about starting homeschooling in the middle of the year is that we have to get caught up with the year. K12 doesn't start in the middle. We've spent a lot of time doing unit tests and semester tests to get caught up, but there are some things that just have to be started from the beginning.

So, what I am trying to say is...this semester has been SO MUCH WORK!! Spring break is in another week or so, and we are both looking forward to the break. Next year will be so much easier. :)

So between homeschooling, my new vegetarian diet, and working for the newspaper, (oh, and that stint on the Little League Board), life has been so crazy. But worth it.

And the financial aspect is improving as well. Which is good, because the last year has been extremely stressful...

So, we're here. Busy, but we're around. I'll try to post more, but I'm not promising anything. :)


Life, the Universe, and...

I am trying to keep a great outlook on this year. Things haven't gone to hell in a handbasket, and I have a good feeling about it. We are *this close* to getting our lawsuit filed (sorry, more info perhaps after its said and done), and while I am hopeful about it, I am also a bit scared.

We are back to one car--I am pretty sure you saw the great pics of my car taken the day after Christmas. My daughter is doing fine, even though we are both currently carless. We've found a new engine for her car and we're currently saving to purchase it. My dear hubby will be the lucky one installing it.

The insurance company paid off my car completely except for my deductible (which was a relief!), and hopefully another new/used car is in my future.

I am still writing for the newspaper, and I love that. Affordable Baby Organics (whom I also write for) is for sale, and that job is up in the air. Hopefully the new owner will love the writers work and keep us on. I occasionally write for Demand Studios, but I've gotten a bit frustrated with their sorting system, so I only browse titles when I have a lot of time (which isn't now--since we've started homeschooling). I need to get out and start soliciting more work, which is in my plan for the year, but hasn't happened yet as we are still working on a routine for the major (schooling) change in our lives.

Homeschooling. Hello! So far we are still in get the routine down mode. Because we've started in the middle of the year, Steven has been doing a lot of testing to get caught up for the new semester. *k12 works on a yearly basis, so even though Steven was in school for the 1st semester, he has to show mastery of the 1st semester stuff for his grade to move on. That involves taking all the unit assessment tests as well as the semester tests. Which isn't too much fun, but we've been trying to break it up with more fun stuff like Spanish and Art...and Runescape--all electives! Well, Runescape isn't really an elective through k12, but it is a fun game, and far be it from me to ignore Steven's need for some downtime!

And we decided to go vegetarian this year. Well, I did, and the rest of the family is kinda just following along. If you are interested, you can read about my journey at my vegetarian blog: Vegetarian for a Year. The fun thing is that once we get our school routine down, we will be traveling into Vegas a couple of times a month to go to the Farmer's Market and go see Grandma...which I'm sure Grandma will appreciate.

I think I've gotten you pretty much caught up. And this break was made possible by the fact that Steven is in an online class with his teacher/mentor right now (on the awesome computer they sent to us!), so I have a bit of a break. Take it where you can get it!

See ya soon!
"Never, ever stop believing in magic, no matter how old you get. Because if you keep looking long enough and don't give up, sooner or later you're going to find Mary Poppins. And if you're really luck, maybe even get a purple balloon."
~TC Keller (Steve Kluger)

From My Most Excellent Year - A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins, & Fenway Park

My Most Excellent Year: A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins, and Fenway Park