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Ok, getting back on track! I don’t have an aversion to eating meat anymore, but the smell (especially stovetop or grill with lots of steam/smoke) still send me running. The slow cooker comes in very handy during these times: little to no necessary handling of ingredients and a fast and easy dinner on the table.

Breakfasts/Snacks: 

  • Oatmeal, Cereal, fresh blueberries and cherries, bananas/apples & almond butter, 3-ingredient pancakes, Smoothies

Monday

Tuesday

  • D – Gf ground turkey tacos (using brown rice wraps)
Wednesday
  • D – Leftover bbq chicken on gf buns (I like Udi’s) w/salad
Thursday

Friday

  • D – kosher beef (and gf) hotdogs (Udi’s buns), with baked beans & cole slaw
Saturday
  • D – Zucchini lasagna – my only Paleo recipe this week (I’m definitely not using low fat or fat free anything in my version, though!)
Sunday
  • D – Eat out and leftovers

 

I’m back!

I just got back from a serious blogging vacation! Hopefully I can get back into the groove again, but let me assure you, blogging wasn’t the only thing suffering in the past few months. Meal planning was non-existant, eating out and going over budget was a given, and a general tolerance for clutter reigned from March until now – almost the end of June! What’s the deal? We’re pregnant with baby girl #2!!!

20 weeks pregnant and feeling fine! LOVE 2nd trimester!

I’m partially kicking myself over a missed opportunity to blog during the first trimester (after all, I meant for this to be a new mommy blog), but the pregnant me doesn’t care. I’m just happy to be in 2nd trimester and over the misery that was all-day morning sickness! Blah. I really don’t think it was as bad the first time around. All my eating well plans went right out the window and I survived thanks to saltines, chicken noodle soup, and ginger ale. My poor hubby was a life saver during this time and was very  supportive, despite my perpetually tired, cranky, upset-stomach self.

Now I feel great, albeit a little tired, and am ready to get back to normal!

Here’s what’s on the menu the rest of the week:

Today (Thursday)

  • Fish tacos – cole slaw with chopped tomatoes, gf baked fish sticks, black beans w/salsa, gf brown rice wraps

Friday

  • Crockpot chicken and cornbread dressing (using Pamela’s gf cornbread mix and organic condensed chicken soup), with green beans and simple salad – Hey, I’m easing back into this… I haven’t said anything about “paleo” yet, have I? :)

Saturday

  • Date night! Aiken Brewery thanks to a gift certificate from a friend! I am not a beer lover even when not pregnant, but now that my meat aversion is calming down, I’m sure I can find something tasty.

Sunday

  • Leftovers and/or egg salad sandwiches – I had a major egg aversion all first trimester. Thank heavens that’s over with! Bring ‘em on!

This is my new goal. When I set up my meal plan, I want to plan at least two weeks at a time. It’s so much easier to set time aside every two weeks than every one. (Just remembered we’re going out of town the 2nd week, so that week’s meal plan is shorter.)

Now, as far as my diet and health are concerned, I’m back to trying to figure out what works for me yet again. The hubby absolutely LOVES eating Paleo, and he sticks with it pretty strictly. At first I thought I noticed an improvement, but alas, my tummy is still giving me issues. I’m currently going to try eating Paleo for dinner (since that’s when we’ll all eat together), but going back to anti-inflammatory gluten-free (maybe even veggie) for lunches. Baby K will eat what I eat, of course.

I’m also going to cut back on coffee. :( I only drink about 1.5 (it’s a large mug) cups of decaf, but I think it’s the acidity that is the problem. Ugh, my system is just high maintenance! Time to remember my love of soothing teas instead!

K (18 mos.) enjoying her "honey tea" (Chamomile & honey)

Week 1: Feb. 27-Mar.2

Breakfasts/Snacks: 

Monday

  • L – Leftover Asian Chicken Brussels Sprouts Soup (Btw, if you’re going veg, skip the chicken and use an extra firm tofu. You may want to fry it first to make sure it keeps it’s form.)
  • D – Almond-Crusted Chicken (Use 1 cup almond flour) with sautéed spinach, onions, & cashews

Tuesday

Wednesday
  • L – Leftovers for N & Paleo bread sandwiches for K and I.
  • D – Chicken Fajitas with Guacamole (K and I will also have rice. Total-Paleo Hubby will not.)
Thursday
  • D – Salmon Burgers (Costco – frozen, wild caught) with vegetable sauté. K will also have quinoa pilaf, which N may have a hard time resisting though it is indeed a grain. I have a girls’ night! Woohoo! :)
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
Week 2: Mar. 5-7 (Leaving town the 8th for a family vacation.)
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
  • D – Almond-crusted chicken & salad

Thursday – Family Vacation Time! Yay!


Meal Plan Monday

We’re still sticking with the paleo plan. We feel good. :)

Breakfasts/Snacks: 

Monday

  • L – Salmon burgers & spinach sauté
  • D – Curried chicken soup (I skip the rice, add diced sweet potato, and use coconut milk instead of cream.)

Tuesday

Wednesday
  • D – Leftovers (I’m sure there will still be curry soup left.)
Thursday
  • D – Paleo Chicken Alfredo (I’m so excited to try out kelp noodles! They’re full of calcium and trace minerals and low on everything else. I’ll let you know how it goes.)
Friday
  • D – Baked fish (salmon or cod) with sautéed vegetables & fresh green salad
Saturday
Sunday
  • D – Beef and vegetable stew (I’m using this recipe as a template and making this a crockpot stew with more of everything.)

Organization Station

Being a SAHM now means I officially have a new job. Unlike my old job (teaching), this one is much more confusing. What the heck do I do with my time. Here are the basics for an average day:

- diapers, lots of diapers

- shower (makeup & hair are too often neglected)

-play with/feed/read to/talk to/sing to a toddler, pick up clutter/try to teach toddler to pick up clutter by singing a Barney song

- more diapers, and laundering diapers (cloth – definitely more work, but so worth it for the money saved!)

- make breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and clean dishes, sink and counters after each

- call/text/email/facebook friends and family as I’m now desperate for adult interaction

- walk dog (getting a stroller, baby, and myself ready for this take much longer than I ever would have thought.)

- sweep/vacuum/clean bathroom all with toddler “help”

- laundry, dishes, laundry, dishes, laundry, dishes…you get the point.

- garbage, recycling, paper … (I’m still working on the paper clutter. I have yet to create a filing system, so it’s pretty bad. That will be a future post.)

- play with/feed/read to/talk to/sing to a toddler, oh and pick up after, and try to teach her to pick up

- bathe, dry, diaper, read to/sing to/pray with a sleepy toddler who gets very grumpy when tired

It is essentially a service job. It’s one that I’ve always wanted, but now that I’m in the middle of it, I can get a bit overwhelmed. So, with the help of some friends nearby and some online helpers, I’ve been following a system for the past few weeks. It’s really helping me!

As my bff from high school said when she saw it, “Wow. This really is about staying sane, isn’t it?” Haha, yes, it is!

I'm not a control freak. I swear. But, since this stuff doesn't come naturally to me, checklists help!

I’ve seen the whole “planning station” idea on many a mom-blog, and I got the lists from this website. She’s really good at this stuff. It’s her job. I wasn’t into the design of the free printouts though, so I re-made them and added a few of my own specific needs as well. But, aside from a couple tweaks, these lists are entirely hers. I also followed her suggestion of getting them laminated and using a wet-erase marker. Oh, how satisfying to check things off of a list!  It’s three weeks going now, and I’m still sticking with it!

Meal Plan Monday

Last week was awesome! We ate paleo and felt great. Christmas eve and day were both awesome too, though about as far from paleo as it gets. Remember, the basic idea here is lean meat with lots and lots of greens, so casseroles and cakes don’t really fit into that plan. Do I feel it? Yes. Definitely. Do I regret it? Nope. We’ll just get back on track this week. :) It’s so much easier with the two of us working on it together!

K isn’t exactly following our plan. With just one molar, I don’t feel comfortable giving her tougher things like meat to chew on yet. Just doesn’t seem like she could digest it well. She is getting lots of veggies (steamed/boiled) and tonight she tried salmon. She’s a fan! She still loves fruit, but I have to go easy on that one with her…as I discovered after too many fractured naps and dirty diapers later!

Here’s our plan for the week:

Breakfasts/Snacks: 

Monday

  • L – Butternut Squash Soup & Salmon Cakes with sauteed kale (didn’t get to this one yesterday).
  • D – Get together with friends.

Tuesday

  • L – Leftovers
  • D – Meatloaf with sauteed greens & mashed cauliflower and parsnips (faux-tatoes) (I got this particular recipe from a Cuisine “Slow-cooker special” magazine.)
Wednesday
  • D – Stuffed peppers. So, delicious. To make these more paleo, I’m cutting out the rice and adding two large portobellos (food process – chopped), more onions, garlic, and some fresh herbs: parsley & rosemary.  Serve with leftover mash from Tuesday night.
Thursday
Friday
  • D – Crispy baked cod with vegetable sauté. We’re subbing almond meal for the breadcrumbs and cornmeal, but basically following this recipe.
Saturday
  • D – Stuffed cabbage! Woohoo! A family favorite (well, my family that is…) Going to try this layered & unstuffed in the Crock pot. Yes, it’s lazy. Could be a disaster, or it could be fabulous! Only one way to find out.
Sunday
  • D – Cuisine Slow-Cooker Special Magazine’s Pot Roast with mashed cauliflower & parsnips.

It’s official. I am addicted to sugar. I’ve always been a salty-foods person, but somehow it snuck up on me during pregnancy. Actually, no it was after that. During pregnancy I craved fruit, but after baby K was born I still wanted sweets but cookies, donuts, chocolate etc., along with fruit and such. Hormonal changes definitely played a role, but I think it was mainly physical exhaustion tricking my body into desiring a quick sugar (energy) fix. Of course, this became a vicious cycle of high then crash. I’ve had this possibility of sugar addiction in the back of my mind for a while now, but haven’t really felt like going there. For one thing, I still like thinking of myself as the one who just isn’t interested in sweets. But, it’s become glaringly obvious over the past week that I am indeed an addict.

I’m not getting all into the paleo philosophy and such, but the basic plan of cutting of sugar and grains and eating unprocessed whole foods seems pretty legitimate. If something works, it works. And, as I mentioned last week, I have so many tummy issues that I’m willing to give anything a try. Anyway, last week we ate paleo meals. N stuck to the meal plan and was feeling great. I, on the other hand, was searching the pantry and fridge for sweets. I didn’t have many options. Did you know that if you eat a couple of tablespoons of Betty Crocker “cream cheese” frosting, the tip of your tongue goes numb?! Yeah, it was that bad. That was the point when I couldn’t deny it any longer: I’m an addict.

So, what to do? I want to gradually wean myself off instead of kicking it cold, but that’s easier said than done. Especially being that it’s Christmas in a few days.

I know this probably isn’t the right decision, but here goes. I’m going to go as paleo as possible this week, then be a sugar, grain, etc. glutton on Christmas eve (we’re having the big Xmas dinner with friends on Sat. instead of Christmas day), and pay the consequences for the next week of trying to get back on a paleo-style plan. That’s just what’s going to happen, so sorry for not coming up with a cool paleo Christmas menu. :)

Almond crusted chicken with sauteed swiss chard & cashews

N chose the majority of this week’s menu from http://www.paleoplan.com. I wouldn’t have chosen this site because there are no pictures, and as a novice, pictures play a big role in motivating me to even try the recipe. However, the first recipe used for tonight’s dinner turned out to be easy and delicious, pictures or not.

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

  • Lunch – Christmas eve celebration with friends. Yummy yummy, oh my tummy…
  • Dinner – Baked salmon w/pecans & rosemary (sounds fancy but only takes about 15 min.) & either a salad, or greens sauteed

Sunday

  • Christmas Breakfast – Fried eggs & Elana’s Pantry Cinnamon Bun Muffins w/cream cheese frosting
  • Lunch/Dinner – Butternut Squash Soup (Crockpot style) w/salmon patties & sauteed kale – I’m following the basic recipe using leftover salmon with eggs and coconut flour, but will probably improvise from there on seasonings to better match the whole butternut squash soup idea. We’re going for light, easy, yet healthy and satisfying.
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