Sunday, February 28, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 2/29 - 3/6)

So as I suspected last week, I didn't totally stick to my menu plan.  Actually Monday I went to cook our dinner and realized there was no way I could get it done in time for our evening activities (this is why prep is so important for me!)  Thankfully I had tortellini and everyone loved having that for dinner.

This week the focus is on catching up for me.  I have been behind pretty much all of February and have been running and super busy.  Our schedule is a little lighter this week (no more hockey!) and we have nothing on the schedule next weekend.  My goal is to be caught up by next Sunday, which includes filing our taxes and prepping for our spring break trip to Texas.

I'm also hoping to make some freezer meals this weekend, although I haven't figured out what I want to make yet.  I better get on that before I make my grocery list.  For now, here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Roasted Whole Chicken with potatoes & broccoli
Tuesday - Taco Stuffed Peppers - didn't get to this last week
Wednesday - Shrimp Alfredo over Zoodles
Thursday - Santa Fe Chicken Pasta
Friday - Squash Stew
Saturday - Chicken Pot Pie - with the leftover chicken from Monday.  I may freeze this and have leftovers this day.
Sunday - Pistachio Crusted Tilapia with sweet potato fries

Water Flavor - Lemon - I'm still working thru the free bag of lemons from Giant Eagle - that was a lot of lemons!

Meal Prep - I set up the flavored water, hard boiled eggs and made protein Ranch dressing for lunches.  I also thawed out the chicken for tomorrow and have everything I need for Mon-Weds dinners. 

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Feb Birthday Parties)

As I have mentioned a few times on my menu plan blogs, this month was jam packed with birthdays, parties and celebrations.  We were blessed with two February babies, Zak on the 8th and Daniel on the 10th.  We celebrated for a full week for both of them, plus we had the Super Bowl, Valentine's Day & my niece Isabelle's birthday in that week too.  It was a blast!

Our week started on Sunday with presents and cake for Zachary.  He wanted ice cream cake and I was excited to find him one with Snoopy on it.  He was very excited about all of his presents, especially his new Mario sheets & his Mario guys.  We also watched the Super Bowl that night.  The boys made it about one quarter which is pretty good for them.

Monday was Zak's actual birthday and although it was a crazy day, we still celebrated.  I went into his classroom for a while where we had a special snack (cheese, crackers & strawberries) on birthday plates and then I read "Pete the Cat and his Groovy Buttons" to his class.  That night after we ran all over the place we finished up his ice cream cake.
Tuesday was the calm between the birthdays and mostly just caught our breathe and prepared for the rest of the week.

Wednesday was Daniel's actual birthday.  I went into his school & had lunch with him in the cafeteria then went back to his classroom to celebrate with cupcakes.  AJ begged to skip hockey that night so we let him so we could have a little more time together as a family.  We opened presents and had Oreo ice cream cake to celebrate.  Then we spent the rest of the night playing with the new Lego Dimensions characters that he got.

Also on Wednesday Zachary had his class Valentine's Day party and they did a Valentine's Day parent program.  They sang a few songs, gave us gifts and then we had snack together.  It was really cute although Zak didn't sing any of the songs.  That seems to be a theme with all of my kids and their preschool programs.

 Thursday AJ and Daniel had Valentine's Day parties in their classrooms.  AJ's class practiced their cursive writing by bringing in blank cards & addressing them in the class.  They also made and decorated sugar cookies.  Daniel's class had fruit and cheese and exchanged cards that they filled out at home.  They both had a great time!

Friday the boys had off from school so we had some doctor appointments and ran some errands.  We finished up the busy day with Jets pizza for dinner.  Both Zak and Daniel asked for it for their birthday meal, but we were so busy during the week we waited until Fri so we could do it as a family dinner.  We also had leftovers to help us get thru a busy weekend.

Saturday started with Isabelle's birthday party at a local kids chef academy.  Zak wanted no parts of making his own pizza, but the other boys really enjoyed doing it.  Zak of course didn't have a problem eating the pizza.  That afternoon Daniel had a birthday party for his friend, so he went to a local gymnastics place for that. We were all exhausted after all of that and slept good that night!

Sunday was Daniel and Zak's birthday party.  We hit a local (and new to us) burger spot for lunch before the party, then headed over to World of Bounce to meet up with friends.  We had a great group of kids who had a blast jumping in the bounce houses for just over an hour.  Then we had snacks & opened presents.  Daniel and Zak both had a great time and were very thankful for all of their gifts. 

We ended the week with a family viewing of the "Charlie Brown Valentine's Day" special and leftover pizza.  I am very thankful we had the next Monday (President's Day) & Tuesday (Snow Day) off to recover from all of the fun!!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 2/22 - 2/28)

I had grand plans of blogging during this past week but honestly the week got away from me.  The guys all had Monday off (I still had to teach 2 classes) and we spent most of the day catching up around the house.  Tuesday ended up being a snow day and the boys and I laid around and were lazy.  It was awesome!  The rest of the week was super busy as was the weekend.

The good news is that I stuck to my menu plan again this past week!  I love it when I do that!  I did a bunch of prep between Monday and Tuesday and the rest of the week cruised with the meals.  This week I already feel behind, it's late on Sunday and I'm just deciding on the meals for the week.  No shopping or food prep happening over here.  I added pasta and sauce to my food list so I'm ready in case I don't make something.  It's a good fallback meal that keeps us from eating out.

Here's what I'm planning for this week:
Monday - Sausage & Peppers Casserole - I'm SO excited for this.  It looks so good!
Tuesday - Taco Tuesday - the boys favorite!
Wednesday - Slow Cooker Potato Chowder
Thursday - Sausage & White Bean Chili
Friday - Taco Stuffed Bell Peppers
Saturday - Chicken & Pasta Alfredo - I have 4 hours of Zumba this day so I need something quick & filling.  This dish with a salad sounds perfect!!
Sunday - We're having dinner with my brother & his family.  Not sure if he's cooking or I am so I'm not planning anything yet.

Water Flavor - Lemon/Grape - I'm still working thru the free bag of lemons from Giant Eagle and I had a small bunch of grapes that got lost in the (over full) fruit drawer and was starting to turn so I threw the good ones in the water for the week.

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 2/15 - 2/21)

Whew!  This past week has been a blur of parties & sugar!  We are at the end of a marathon week and this mom is exhausted.  But I survived two birthdays, Valentine's Day parties, three birthday parties, a Valentine's Day preschool program, doctors appts for all 3 boys, plus our normal busy schedule.  I'm ready to sleep for a week!

We had the boys' birthday party today and are now having a relaxing night at home for Valentine's Day.  We have the Charlie Brown Valentine's Day special on our Tivo that we'll watch before the kids go to bed, then probably just veg with some TV before we also head to bed.  I'm thankful we are all off tomorrow, will be spending the day catching up and cleaning up and getting ready for another week.

Our menu plan this week is a mix of all the meals we didn't make the past two weeks, leftovers and a few easy meals with the staples we have on hand.  I took last week off from counting my calories but I'm back to it starting tomorrow.

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Meatball Monday (the boys request) - they will have spaghetti & meatballs & we will have zoodles & meatballs
Tuesday - Mixed Berry Crepes & Fruit Salad - recipe left from my 5 day clean eating group
Wednesday - Buffalo Chicken Chili - carry over from last week
Thursday - Pizza Casserole - carry over from last week
Friday - Leftovers - We have a date at the Y.  We're working out for an hour, then doing a couples painting workshop.  Should be fun!
Saturday - Noodles & Co for a school fundraiser
Sunday - Steak & Baked Potatoes - we wanted this for Valentine's Day but we're just too tired

Water Flavor - Orange/Lemon - Thanks to Giant Eagle for the free bag of lemons!

I did no food prep this weekend, other than to cut up fruit.  I don't even have my water set up yet.  Hoping to do some tomorrow.

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!  Happy Valentine's Day!!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 2/8 - 2/14)

Last week didn't go anything like I planned because the stomach bug that I thought was over hit me like a ton of bricks.  I was basically out of commission Weds and Thurs.  Thankfully we had a lot of leftovers and fresh fruit and veggies so the guys survived while I was down.

This week is a marathon around here!  Both Zak (tomorrow) and Daniel (Weds) have birthdays.  We also have their party next weekend as well as my niece's party & one of Daniel's friend's party.  Plus throw in Valentine's Day and the Super Bowl and there is a lot of partying going on over here!  Then add in our normal life, plus a four day weekend for the boys so they are off on Friday.  And just for good measure we have a few doctor appointments and a preschool screening for Zak.  If I survive the next seven days & everyone gets where they need to be with everything they need it will be a miracle!

Our menu plan reflects this craziness.  It is a mix of easy meals, leftovers, take out and using up all the fresh veggies and meals I had planned for last week that I never got around to making.  Wish me luck!

Monday - Asian Crack Slaw with Sausage Egg Rolls in a Bowl - carry over from last week
Tuesday - Taco Tuesday
Wednesday - Buffalo Chicken Chili - carry over from last week
Thursday - Pizza Casserole
Friday - Jets Pizza (the boys request for their birthday)
Saturday - Leftovers (we have 2 parties this day)
Sunday - Leftovers (we have our party this day, plus church & swimming lessons)

Water Infuser Flavor - Strawberry/Lemon

I am doing some food prep this weekend.  I already set up my infused water for the week and cut up all the fruit I bought on Friday.  Today I am making chicken salad with the leftover chicken from last week's whole roast chicken and broccoli salad.  I'll eat both of those for lunch this week.  I am also hard boiling some eggs and possibly doing some of the prep for tomorrow's dinner. 

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!  Enjoy the Super Bowl today!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Keeping Up With...My Fab 40! - Jan review

So Jan has been pretty up and down in our house, but I have managed to stay very focused on my goals for this year.  I think I've got a pretty good start on this year, now to keep the momentum up!  Here is where I'm at after about one month.  I have broken them down into two categories (on-going & one time) so it's easier for me to update.  I'll be adding a third category (finished) in upcoming months.  The goals are in black and my current month comments are in red.
1.  Lose 40 pounds - one for each year - Lost 5 of the 40 lbs
2.  Read 12 books - I was so close last year! - Read 2 of the 12
3.  Go on 12 dates with Adrian - Went on 1 of the 12

4.  Get rid of 12 bags of stuff - Donated 2 bags and threw out at least one.  I'm going to say 2 of the 12 are gone.
5.  Take 1 picture every day for the year - Up to date on this 33 of 366
6.  Go on 2 special dates with AJ - Went on 0 out of 2, but he wants to see Kung Fu Panda 3 so we're doing that soon.
7.  Go on 2 special dates with Daniel -
Went on 0 out of 2 
8.  Go on 2 special dates with Zak - Went on 0 out of 2, I'll be saving these for the 2nd half of the year when he's in preschool everyday.
 9.  Do a 365 day exercise streak - 23 days of 365, every day from Jan 11-Feb 2
10.  Finish the 30 Day Shred - Did 0 days of 30
11.  Attend one class each week that isn't mine - Did this 3 weeks out of 52
12.  Teach an average of 5 classes each week -
Did this 3 weeks out of 52 
13.  Menu plan and prep our dinners each week - Did this 3 weeks out of 52  
14.  Go to church every Sunday - Did this 5 weeks out of 52.  We didn't let the stomach bug stop us this past weekend, Adrian & I went to different services so we both still got to attend.
15.  Do one blog post each week - I did 6 posts in Jan and this is my second so far in Feb. 

16.  See 2 movies that aren't animated - Saw 0 out of 2
17.  Pay off our Best Buy card and not incur any new debt - No new debt so far, and on plan to pay off best buy card in 5 months
18.  Have a family board game night once per month - Did this 1 out of 12 months
19.  Have a family movie night once per month
- Did this 1 out of 12 months
20.  Have a family video game night once per month - Did this 1 out of 12 months
21.  Go to 4 Zumba jams this year - Signed up for my first one in Feb!
22.  Make one homemade breakfast for us each month - I made 2 (muffins & bars) in Jan and already did 1 (breakfast burritos) in Feb

One Time
23.  Go on a family trip to Dallas - Planned for March
24.  Go on a family trip to NJ
25.  Go on a family trip to Tennessee - Planned for July
26.  Go zip lining
27.  Go on a family hike in Hocking Hills
28.  Get 1 fitness certification - Signed up for Silver Sneakers in March
29.  Go to the doctor for routine check up and tests - Make appt is on my to do list for this week
30.  Go on family camping trip
31.  Host an alcohol exchange with my girl friends
32.  Power wash and stain our play set
33.  Renovate our downstairs bathroom
34.  Conquer the Lynd's corn maze in the fall
35.  Tour Dallas Cowboys stadium - Planned for March
36.  Go to Dollywood - Planned for Aug
37.  Go to Six Flags Great Adventure
38.  Go to Six Flags Over Texas - Planned for March
39.  Renew our Zoombeezi Bay passes and go at least once every other week over the summer
40.  Do something special to celebrate mine & Adrian's 10 year wedding anniversary

So all in all a pretty good start.  I'm pretty much on track with everything so far.  And I'm enjoying doing all of this!  Here's to month two of the celebration!!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Updates)

So it's been nearly a month since I caught you up on what's been going on with us as a family.  I was going to do a recap of our Christmas break but we really didn't do anything super exciting and I ran out of time so I never did one.  The past month has been incredibly busy but also not much going on.  It's that weird time for us between all of the Christmas craziness and the multiple February birthdays (2 of my boys & my niece).  So I figured I'd just do a quick, bullet-style list of updates for the past month or so in the Jones house.  Check back tomorrow for an update on My Fab 40 goals!

- AJ, Daniel & Zak have all started back up with swimming lessons.  We go every Sunday to the Gahanna YMCA.  They are all making great progress, including swimming unassisted at times!
- AJ and Daniel are back in a bowling league.  This may be AJ's last league with the bumpers.  Their scores seem to have regressed from where they were, but they are using the bumpers less so I know that is progress.
- AJ has about one month left of ice hockey.  He will be taking the spring off to focus on baseball but will probably go back to hockey camp this summer.
- Daniel competed in his first Pinewood Derby with his Cub Scout pack.  His car looked pretty cool and he placed 9th out of 12 boys.  He was thrilled!!
- Zak is still playing soccer and loving it.  He has decided to take a break from ice skating for now and will do baseball & football (and probably still soccer) in the spring.
- Daniel will also be trying baseball in the spring.  I have no idea how we're getting all 3 of them where they need to be.  Thankfully AJ & Daniel will be on the same team.
- Adrian has joined a basketball league at our church and is enjoying getting back to playing.  He's also enjoying spending time with other men.
- All five of us went to a Columbus Blue Jackets game this month.  It was Zak's first hockey game!  We planned on only staying for the first 2 periods but it was a great game so we stayed until the end, which ended up being overtime.  So fun!
- We had a head cold and a stomach bug come thru the house recently.  Tis the season for germs!
- We had two snow days this month, one for snow and one for it being too cold to start the buses.  We spent both days keeping warm and relaxing around the house.  We also had a holiday (MLK) and did basically the same thing.
- Adrian took a few of my Zumba classes this month and he loved them!  He's hoping to get back once in a while.  He liked regular Zumba more than toning, he said it was much more fun.
- AJ & Daniel got their 2nd quarter report cards and both are still doing great.  AJ got all A's & B's and made the honor roll for 2nd quarter.  He is working very hard to try to get all A's this quarter.  Daniel is right where he should be and continues to be a role model in his class.  He earned an award for demonstrating being Responsible during the 2nd quarter.

I think that's about all from here.  I'll leave you with a few pictures from the past month.  Hopefully it won't be another month before I update all of you!
Hockey Selfie

Enjoying ice cream
Daniel's award for Being Responsible
AJ & Daniel swimming
Couch Selfie
Cub Scout Pinewood Derby