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  1. Friday, November 9, 2018

    Friday Show & Tell: Wild Kratts Live, Imperfect Produce, Native Deodorant and Oatly Update

    Happy Friday! I have a few things I want to share with you, so I think it’s time for Show & Tell!

    Wild Kratts Live

    Wild Kratts Live Show with the Family

    A few weeks ago we had the chance to take the kids to see the Wild Kratts Live 2.0 show, (big thank you to PBS Kids for the tickets). My kids love the Wild Kratts (even Cate who is pushing 14!). Nate and I kept the show a secret and surprised them the day we went. When we arrived we discovered we even had VIP tickets, which meant we had the chance to meet the Kratt brothers after the show. It was such a fun day!

    Chris and Martin talk with my kids at the Wild Kratts Live show

    If you have kids that like Wild Kratts I definitely recommend the live show. The show itself was adorable and the sound of children’s laughter was non-stop. Owen (7) was completely engaged the entire time. Cate decided that watching all of the little ones in the audience was as much fun as the actual show. Meeting the Kratt brothers was awesome. Chris and Martin have boundless energy and are so kind, speaking to each child individually and really taking their time with all the kids. We walked away from the experience in a great mood, with positive feelings and happy hearts.

    Meeting Chris & Martin at Wild Kratts Live

    Click here to check out the tour dates and locations!

    Imperfect Produce

    In my ongoing effort to make the food I buy more environmentally friendly, I recently started ordering from Imperfect Produce. In terms of environmental impact, the very best thing we can do is buy local. After that, buying food that would otherwise go to waste is pretty awesome, too. Imperfect Produce sources “ugly” and surplus produce from farmers and producers and then sells it at a discount to customers. The box of produce is delivered to your house each week. I love their mission since wasted food is something I think about all the time.

    Infographic explaining how the company Imperfect Produce works - they source imperfect and surplus fruit from farmers and deliver directly to customers

    I am absolutely loving Imperfect Produce. There is minimal packaging and all of the produce we have received has been awesome and delicious. Each week an email arrives reminding me to customize my box. You can choose from whatever they have in stock that week and there is both conventional and organic produce. In addition, it tells you were each item is grown. The website is so easy to use and my new system works great: I keep a list on my phone that tells me what will be coming each Friday from Imperfect Produce so that when I go shopping at the farmer’s market and grocery store each week I don’t overbuy anything.

    Imperfect Produce is expanding across the country and San Diego was one of their latest additions. Click here to visit their website and see if Imperfect Produce is in your city. I highly recommend them! (Note: Links to Imperfect Produce in this post are referral links. If you sign up using this link you and I both get a $10 credit. I have no relationship with Imperfect Produce other than being a customer and once you are a customer you can refer people, too!)

    Native Deodorant Update

    Remember my new favorite deodorant? I’ve been using Native for over a year now and still love it. In fact, I’m kind of addicted and have never had such a large stash of deodorant before. Their scents are just so great! Anyway, Target started carrying Native. Woohoo! Keep an eye out next time you visit Target!

    Oatly Update

    A few months ago I sang the praises of Oatly oat milk. Since then Oatly has become nearly impossible to buy because it’s just so darn popular (with good reason!). They had a day a few weeks ago where you could buy one case on their website. It felt like buying tickets to a concert – I had to set a reminder on my phone and it sold out within 20 minutes (I succeeding in getting a case!). I have confirmed with the Oatly team that they are building a factory here in the United States that will be opening in early 2019, which means pretty soon it will be much easier to get Oatly. I CAN’T WAIT. Good work, people. Keep the demand up! We want Oatly everywhere!

    That’s all I got! Have a great weekend!


  2. Sunday, November 4, 2018

    Week 598 Weekly Menu

    Hey meal planning compadres. I totally didn’t plan a menu last week. My apologies! But I’m back. Let’s get this menu done. I’m sick of my kids asking me what’s for dinner and not having an answer!

    Weekly Dinner Plan for the week of 11/5/18: Monday - Rachel Sandwiches; Tuesday - Kebabs; Wednesday - Naan Pizzas; Thursday - Chicken Tortilla Soup; Friday - Leftovers; Saturday - Eat out; Sunday - Chili

    MONDAY:
    Rachel Sandwiches

    TUESDAY:
    – Grilled Chicken & Vegetable Kebabs
    – Roasted Potatoes

    WEDNESDAY:
    Naan Pizzas
    – Salad

    THURSDAY:
    Chicken Tortilla Soup

    FRIDAY:
    – Leftovers

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out night

    SUNDAY:
    Chili
    – GF Cornbread (I learned I have a wheat allergy…so going to find a good cornbread recipe that doesn’t use wheat flour, wish me luck! or share a link in the comments if you have one!)

    Can’t wait to see what you’ve all got cooking this week! Please share in the comments!


  3. Monday, October 22, 2018

    Week 597 Weekly Dinner Menu

    Oh man, it’s almost Monday night. I need to make a menu and I need to go to the store. Here we go…

    Week 597 Weekly Dinner Menu: Sunday - Rotisserie Chicken; Tuesday - Naan pizzas; Wednesday - Tacos; Thursday - Kebabs; Friday - Leftovers; Saturday - Eat Out; Sunday - Frittatas

    MONDAY:
    – Rotisserie chicken from Sprouts
    – Roasted potatoes & salad

    TUESDAY:
    Naan Pizzas

    WEDNESDAY:
    Cora’s Mexican Ground Beef Tacos

    THURSDAY:
    – Kebabs on the grill
    – Salad

    FRIDAY:
    – Leftovers

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out night (Halloween fun in our cute village)

    SUNDAY:
    – Breakfast for dinner, probably Vegetable Frittatas

    Apparently I was a cooking slacker last week because I’m pretty much using the same menu, with a few tweaks. It’s one of those weeks I suppose!

    You know the drill, share your own meal plans in the comments to help all of us get inspired! Thank you!


  4. Sunday, October 14, 2018

    Week 596 Weekly Dinner Menu

    Hello all! We’re off to see Disneyland decked out in Halloween decorations! But before hitting the road I’m getting the week’s menu square away…

    Week 596 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Leftovers; Tuesday - Naan Pizzas; Wednesday - Orange Chicken; Thursday - Kebobs; Friday - Leftovers; Saturday - Frittatas; Sunday - Eat Out Night

    MONDAY:
    – Leftovers

    TUESDAY:
    Naan Pizzas

    WEDNESDAY:
    Grammy’s Orange Chicken
    – Rice and Vegetable (whatever I find at the farmer’s market)

    THURSDAY:
    – Kebabs on the grill
    – Salad

    FRIDAY:
    – Leftovers

    SATURDAY:
    – Breakfast for dinner, probably Vegetable Frittatas

    SUNDAY:
    – Eat out (Family Concert at the San Diego Symphony!)

    Done! Now off to say hi to Mickey and Minnie! Be sure to share your meal plans with us in the comments below. Thank you and have a delicious week!


  5. Sunday, October 7, 2018

    Week 595 Weekly Dinner Menu

    I’m getting this week off to a good start by getting my menu done Sunday morning. Woohoo! And we’re surprising the kids by taking them to the Wild Kratts Live show today (thanks, PBS!). Cannot wait and will report back on how the show is!

    Week 595 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Carnitas; Tuesday - Brats; Wednesday - Roast Chicken; Thursday- Leftovers; Friday - Nachos; Saturday - Eat out; Sunday - Breakfast for Dinner

    MONDAY:
    – Pork Carnitas Tacos

    TUESDAY:
    – Brats
    – Salad

    WEDNESDAY:
    Roast Chicken
    – Roasted Potatoes and Veggies

    THURSDAY:
    – Leftovers

    FRIDAY:
    – Bean Nachos
    Guacamole

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out

    SUNDAY:
    – Breakfast for dinner (details TBD)

    You know the drill, share your own meal plans in the comments below! Thank you all for sharing week after week!


  6. Sunday, September 30, 2018

    Week 594 Weekly Menu

    Happy Sunday! We had a wonderful birthday week but it was busy. Now that birthdays are done, all of the travel and events and craziness of the last 3 months is pretty much over and I am looking forward to a quiet, steady routine. Of course, the holidays are not far off! 😉

    Week 594 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Kebabs; Tuesday - Carnitas Tacos; Wednesday - Grilled Salmon; Thursday - Leftovers; Friday - Spaghetti; Saturday - Eat Out; Sunday - Veggie Egg Scrambles

    MONDAY:
    – Chicken Kebabs
    – Grilled Vegetables

    TUESDAY:
    Pork Carnitas Tacos

    WEDNESDAY:
    Grilled Salmon
    Crispy Rosemary Roast Potatoes & Salad

    THURSDAY:
    – Leftovers

    FRIDAY:
    – Spaghetti
    – Salad

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out night

    SUNDAY:
    Roasted Vegetable Scrambles

    Meal planning friends, please post your menus in the comments below! They are incredibly helpful and inspiring to all of us!


  7. Thursday, September 27, 2018

    Super Cute & Super Easy Minecraft Slime Birthday Cake

    If you’ve been around this blog for a while you know that I love making fun birthday cakes for my kids. Owen just turned 7 and it was a family year for him (the kids get friend parties on their even-numbered birthdays). In addition to it being a family year I also turned 40, so I kind of forgot about making him a cake. (WHAT?!?!?) Then, the day before his birthday, Owen was talking about his Minecraft Slime birthday cake. And I realized, “OH. I need to make a birthday cake.” There may have been a bit of panic on my part, however Minecraft saved me from a full blown panic attack because SQUARES. I looked up what Minecraft slime looks like and I was especially relieved.

    Picture of a Minecraft Slime Birthday Cake (instructions for assembly included in the post)

    This Minecraft Slime birthday cake is so easy to throw together, even a mom who forgot that she makes awesome cakes for her kids every year and had to throw together a cake last minute could do it. So, if you have a kid (or grown up) in your life who loves Minecraft, you should totally suggest this cake to them. Because you’ll knock their socks off and won’t even break a sweat doing it!

    Birthday cake that looks like slime from Minecraft (assembly instructions included in the post)

    If you’re going to make this cake, I highly recommend reading my post An Amateur’s Guide to Making Super Cute Cakes before jumping in as it has lots of great tips. In addition, I used the frosting and cake recipes included in that post for this Minecraft Slime birthday cake.

    How to Decorate a Minecraft Slime Birthday Cake
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • A 1- or 2-layer 8 inch square cake (I halved the cake recipe and only did a 1-layer cake, but a regular 2-layer cake works perfectly)
    • Buttercream frosting (I one-and-a-half timesed the buttercream recipe I linked to above for a 1-layer cake; if you do a 2-layer cake I would recommend 3 timesing the recipe)
    • Fondant
    • Green food coloring (I used Wilton's Leaf Green gel food color)
    Instructions
    1. Please read the "Amateur's Guide" post to get tips about frosting the cake (which includes freezing the cake, doing a crumb coat, etc).
    2. Frost your 8-inch square cake with light green frosting. Use a long icing spatula to make the buttercream look as flat as possible.
    3. Add a lot of green food coloring to a handful of fondant - the fondant will be the same green color as the icing, but it should be darker, so keep adding color until it is darker. Massage the fondant in your hands until the green food coloring is fully incorporated.
    4. Using a rolling pin, roll out the fondant into an even, semi-thin layer. When rolling the fondant, place waxed or parchment paper on the cutting board and then another piece of waxed or parchment paper on top of the fondant before rolling. Also, rolling the fondant out once and then balling it and rolling it out again is a good way to get the color to look even.
    5. Cut two 2-1/2 inch squares out of the fondant using a pizza cutter. Cut one 1-1/2 inch square. Click here to download a template for the squares and placement on the cake. Place the large squares on the cake about where you would place them for eyes if the square was a face. Place the small square around where you would put a mouth, but be sure to offset the square to the right a bit.

     

     


  8. Monday, September 24, 2018

    Week 593 Weekly Menu…and HELLO 40!

    This week brings my FORTIETH BIRTHDAY. 40. Wow. It’s also Owen’s 7th birthday! We started celebrating this weekend and the celebrations continue this week. So basically I’m a mess in the meal planning department. But I figure you only turn 40 once, seems like a good excuse to slack off for a week! So, my menu is kind of lame…but I’m at least getting this post published so you guys can share your menus. I’m not even bothering with my usual menu graphic because my menu is straight up useless. As a 40th birthday menu should be! 😉

    MONDAY:
    – Leftovers from eating at Liberty Public Market

    TUESDAY:
    – I am taking Owen to Disneyland to celebrate our special day!
    – No clue what Nate and the girls will eat. 😉

    WEDNESDAY:
    – It’s Owen’s family year (no friend party), he has requested PF Chang’s (i.e. dumplings) for his special family dinner

    THURSDAY:
    – No clue

    FRIDAY:
    – No clue

    SATURDAY:
    – No clue

    SUNDAY:
    – No clue

    HA! The laziest menu I’ve ever written! I’m so proud!

    For real, we REALLY need you all to post your menus this week. Please provide us with much needed inspiration! Have a great week!


  9. Monday, September 17, 2018

    Week 592 Weekly Menu

    How is it the start of another week already? Was about to make lunch and realized I needed to get my menu act together, so here we are.

    Week 592 Weekly Dinner Menu from This Week for Dinner: Monday, Chili; Tuesday, Carnitas; Wednesday, Kebabs; Friday, Rachel Sandwiches, Sunday, Grammy's Orange Chicken. Leftovers and eat out the other nights!

    MONDAY:
    Chili

    TUESDAY:
    Pork Carnitas Tacos

    WEDNESDAY:
    – Chicken Kebabs
    – Rice and Roasted Vegetables

    THURSDAY:
    – Leftovers

    FRIDAY:
    Rachel Sandwiches

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out night (It’s my 40th Birthday Celebration that night!)

    SUNDAY:
    Grammy’s Orange Chicken
    – Rice and Carrots

    Your turn! Share those menus, simple or fancy, it’s all helpful! Have a great week!


  10. Monday, September 10, 2018

    Week 591 Weekly Menu

    Happy Monday! I’m finally sitting down to get this week’s plan together. I’m really loving being back into a regular routine, and it’s the first year my kids are all in school all day…which is decidedly bittersweet, but I am loving all the time to get my work done.

    Week 591 Weekly Menu from This Week for Dinner including Pressure Cooker Pot Roast, Jerk Chicken and More

    MONDAY:
    – Pressure Cooker Pot Roast
    – Mashed Potatoes + Another Side Veggie

    TUESDAY:
    – Leftovers (Pot Roast or Chicken Kai Pa Lo)

    WEDNESDAY:
    – Hamburgers
    – Corn on the cob and fresh fruit

    THURSDAY:
    Jerkish Chicken
    – Salad and Rice

    FRIDAY:
    – Pancakes (Anna cooking!)

    SATURDAY:
    – English Muffin Pizzas (Cate cooking!)

    SUNDAY:
    – Eat out night

    I love that as the school year is getting into gear more menus are appearing each week…keep it coming! Your meal plans are incredibly helpful for the rest of us. Thank you for sharing and have a great week!