Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Meal Mashup {menu}

Copper's look totally describes how I felt about waking up early today.
Our weekend was great but a busy, working blur.
After snow days, three day weekends, and spring break I've been spoiled with frequent breaks and find myself tempted to play hooky since this week is almost 80 and sunshine everyday. 
I will say my class and I hit the ground running this morning and I feel like we got so much accomplished but I'm worn out. Is it Friday yet?!

Here's the menu for us this week and so excited to join in on the link-up:

Sunday: grilled pork shops marinated in beer, steamed broc, and salad
Monday: grilled salmon (we'll see how this goes) over whole grain rice with a mango salsa that Drew made and leftover steamed broc.
Tuesday: grilled burgers with the bro and sis in law! Some tots on the side :)
Wednesday: grilled chicken over salad with lots of veggies
Thursday: Small Group
Friday: kitchen closed!
Monday Meals Mashup
Look over at Life On The Parsons Farm for more dinner ideas!!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Let's Do Breakfast!

Around here breakfast can get pretty boring Monday-Friday.
Saturday morning we always have coffee with a splash of Bailey's and cook something good that usually keeps us full all day. 
During the week we don't have time to cook a full out breakfast.
(and our coffee isn't near as fun)

I could live on boiled eggs and toast every day for breakfast but for the sake of my husband I branch out a bit. Breakfast is generally something simple with fresh fruit. We both love most all kinds of fruit and it taste great in the morning, it also is easy to toss into his lunch bag.

A few of our breakfast staples are:
-fresh fruit (I try to buy what is seasonally fresh)
-Greek yogurt, I like the 100 calorie portioned cups and try to buy the brands with less sugar
-protein Fiber One bars, we don't eat these super often but they are great on the morning we are in a rush
-instant oatmeal, I love the handy oatmeal packs and they are great for us to take to work while the steel cut oats are great for us and keep me full all morning
-rice cakes, with a tbs of peanut butter these crunchy cakes go great with yogurt or a banana 
-cereal, Drew loves cereal but I have a hard time eating just a "cup" of cereal and tend to refill my bowl. I tend to avoid cereal for that reason and try to pick something else for myself. 
-toast, by far the best and most underrated food
-boiled eggs, I love the egg whites and they keep me full and I'll also toss one into my lunch for later

Sometimes I'll feel ambitious and make homemade muffins or bake some breakfast like casserole for us to reheat during the week. I cook dinner almost every night so I keep breakfast pretty simple. 
I'd love to know your easy or go-to breakfast, maybe even a simple recipe to try!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Five for Friday

This week has been spring break for us here. 
Every morning I got up and packed Drew's lunch and breakfast told him bye with a kiss on the cheek and then went back to bed. Later, Copper and I would get up and cuddle on the couch while getting the last of Good Morning America. Yes, that is worthy of a Friday shout-out. So nice and I enjoyed it every day.


This morning after my loved coffee and GMA, Copper and I went to my classroom to straighten up and be half way ready for Monday. We ended up spending more time playing with this soccer ball he found and running down to the play ground. So nice to be able to enjoy the day and sunshine.


If you follow on IG you saw my pic about our laundry room. It wasn't necessarily a mess, just didn't have anywhere to put things. All we had was the top rack that was really so high I couldn't reach it well so I did some Pintrest research (like any DIYer) and decided on this easy fix. Less than an hour spent and less than twenty bucks I love the outcome. The shelves were  $6 each at Home Depot and the baskets from my local dollar store. I'm already loving having a place to put things and keeping the area with a bit of order.

Today is sunny and 70. My parents are going to go check out my classroom (they haven't visited my new school yet) and get some breakfast. Then Drew and I are taking off on the motorcycle and heading towards the mountains. I love days where we just take off! Then this evening we are planning a small bon fire on the shore of the lake while the water levels are so low. So excited for this fun filled day!

I've been on a make-up kick. (more than usual) I went to Ulta to check out this amazing sell they are having with my coupon in hand. I tried several different BB creams and couldn't decide on anything so left emptied handed. I just couldn't make a decision. So I'm going to try again this weekend. Lame I know but I LOVE new make-up and could spend hours just wondering around Ulta. 

Hope everyone has a great weekend and enjoys some sunshine!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Praying for Your Husband

This year has I've taken the journey (and challenge) of reading the Bible cover to cover, I'm learning how important prayer is.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Philippians 4:6 

The Bible teaches us to always be in prayer. Yes, our God knows the worries, concerns, hopes, and dreams of our heart--our job(s) as Christian followers is to talk and share these through prayer.

Pray without ceasing. 
I Thessalonians 5:17 

One area that I particularly love learning more about is how to grow as a Christian wife and within in my marriage. Marriage was designed to endure all things,  I personally wouldn't want to endure anything without the power of prayer. Marriage is no exception.

The Bible teaches that husbands are the spiritual leaders of the house.
I feel that is a lot of responsibility, especially when the time comes for us to grow our family. 
Because the husband does play the lead spiritual role doesn't make our role as wife any less important.
As a wife I feel it is my duty and privilege to pray for my husband in his role as spiritual leader.

But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.
I Corinthians 11:3

I pray that Drew always feels loved and supported.
I pray that he makes prayerful decisions.
I pray that Drew continues to listen and grow within both his personal faith and our faith together.
I pray that his heart is always at peace.
I pray that he safely gets to enjoy the hobbies he loves.
I pray he gets blessed with children eager to learn from him.
I pray that in times of stress and anxiety that he gets led in the right direction.
I pray that our home be more than four walls and a rough, but a place for us to share our lives and build lasting memories.
I pray that together our lives reflect our faith.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

{Tastey Tuesday} Cheesy Stuffed Shells

This two pan dinner is as yummy as it is easy!
I got this recipe originally from Kraft foods that I found on Pintrest.

All you will need is the jumbo shells cooked according to the box (about 17 of them), 16oz of cottage cheese, one chopped up frozen spinach "box" thawed and well drained, your choice of spaghetti sauce, Parmesan, and your favorite Italian Spices.

{Click here for a link to my post about my favorite spices and how I love this Italian grinder}

Mix the spinach, cottage cheese, and 1/4 cup of Parmesan together. I added a generous amount from my Italian spice grinder.

Once shells are cooked I filled each one with a spoonful of spinach and cheese mix. Covered in spaghetti sauce and sprinkled with Parmesan. I did a couple of grinds of Italian spices over the top just because we like it so much.

Bake at 400 covered with foil for 20 minutes then uncovered for 5 minutes.
Excellent with bread and salad....and wine!

So good! I made this for Small Group once and they liked it too! Not to mention the leftovers are even better the next day!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

{Tasty Tuesday} Grilled "hobo" dinner

This is the most simple grill recipe, ever!
Also, this is very delicious and pretty darn healthy too.

This time of year and especially with the weather we have been having the past few days we like to pretty much live on the back deck and grill out as much as possible. This is a favorite with us because it is so easy and the leftovers are awesome for lunch the next day.

All you will need is about a pound of chicken ( more or less depending on your preference), celery, carrots, potatoes, bell pepper, onion, and "mini" corn on the cobs.

First, chop up all the veggies. 
I try to get the all bite size so they easily cook all the way through. 

Next, cut up your chicken into small bites.

Drew loves to play with seasonings, this is what we used tonight lightly on the chicken.

Use the heavy duty foil and pull out a piece that will hold all the goods and still be folded over. 
More is better with the foil.

Fold up so all ends and openings are closed.

Put on grill for about half an hour to 45 minutes--enough time to cook all the way through.

When they are done all the veggies juices and spices will smell yummy and taste heavenly. 
I highly recommend this simple grilled dinner, goes great with a cold brew too!
Drew calls these "hobo" dinners because we toss a bunch of random things together but I'm sure you can think of another name!

Martinis & Bikinis

Martinis and Bikinis and Green Fashinoista
Recipe Swap! Check them out for even more yummyness!

What I'm Currently Loving {must haves}

Since this weekend it has been so nice outside! 
Today was 74 and perfect sunshine, I can't get enough of it!
Sadly tomorrow will be a bit cooler with a cold front pushing it but I have high hopes that it will warm back up in time for my spring break next week.

Here are some {random}  items that I'm loving and can't wait to use on spring break!

Something about warm days with the windows all open that just makes me feel obligated to "spring clean." I absolutely love the Meyers line of cleaning products and they smell amazing! I found some on sale at Kroger and Fresh Market recently and got stocked up!

With the nicer weather I tend to wear less make-up. My go-to on the hurry item is this L'oreal Voluminous Lashes. A couple swipes with this magic wand and I'm good to go. This will be all the make-up needed for the next week.

I'm not big on perfumes but this one is just right. I love the light and feminine fragrance and it has been my favorite for years. 

This paired with some pita chips and carrots is my idea of the perfect snack. I can't get enough of it! I keep this in our fridge at all times.

My other current food addiction are these cute little Cuties. I have one with my breakfast and lunch almost everyday. The perfect little side item!

Lastly, the dafadills are blooming are so beautiful! A open field down the street from us is filled with them so I keep taking a few and have them in small vases throughout the house. I love the way fresh flowers look and the bright yellow is so fun!

Remember to follow on Instagram and enjoy Spring!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Weekend, Weekly Menu, & Catch Up

Well this past week has been wonderfully busy and lacked in the blog department.
This past week was packed with lots of catching up at school, a baby shower for a sweet teacher, hosting small group and cooking a fajita feast for it, and little things in between. 
Busy was an understatement. 
To top it all off Friday was a special day at school and we got to dress up like our favorite book character. I whipped together this "costume" for under $7 and half an hour. I was decently pleased with it. I went at "Fancy Nancy", one of my favorite little characters!

I was literally worn out after such a great day at school on Friday that I would have been perfectly satisfied staying home and going to bed at 8 but Drew suggested the Cheesecake Factory and I couldn't say no to that. It was delicious and reminded me of why I use to love it so much.

After dinner we met up with Drew's brother and sister-in-law at a new bar in Knoxville and enjoyed catching up with them. In typical Saturday fashion we cooked breakfast the next day and spent the day working around the house. 

When it is warm out we eat almost every meal outside, we love being on the deck and grilling out. 
(and I love the easy clean-up and break from cooking every night)
After working all day we decided to grill burgers and do tots-delicious!

I've really enjoyed our weekend and I'm hoping this pleasant weather sticks around. So nice to take Copper out and not have to either bundle up or freeze your butt off.

This week should be a tad bit less busy and I'm looking forward to taking advantage of this time change and being outside as much as possible. Here's what's on our menu:

-Sunday, baked sweet potatoes and salad
-Monday, grilled chicken and veggies
-Tuesday, grilled pork chops, salad, and steamed broccoli or stuffed pasta shells with salad
-Wednesday, chicken quesadilas 
-Thursday, small group and swinging by a local campaign fundraiser
-Friday, beer

This fun home-filled weekend has worn us out!
My wine glass need a filling and my pj pants are calling my name!
Have a great week!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Weekend Recap and Dinner Menu

This weekend was so nice that mother nature decided to throw some ice our way and make it a three day weekend. Not complaining but at some point we are going to have to start making up all these day but in the mean time, I'm enjoying these cozy days.

Friday night we had a nice date night to Longhorn's and it was absolutely delicious. 
I was so tired from such a busy week it was nice to sit down and enjoy dinner then come home and relax.
Saturday morning we were up early {cause we are now old and 7:30 is sleeping in} and made some pancakes and sausage. I love our Saturday morning breakfast coffee- simple and something I look forward to each week. 

Now I'm home as the sleet is hitting the windows doing a little bit of cleaning and trying to grade some papers. Of course sweet Copper is by my side and makes this fuzzy sock day even better.


This week I have lots of yummy and healthy dinners planned. 
I always {well most of the time}love cooking but sometimes I get in a super cooking mood and that is happening now. Just feeling like cooking!

Monday~ Red Pepper & Parmesan Tilapia over rice pilaf and salad with lots of veggies

Tuesday~ Butternut squash and spinach pasta with grilled chicken
(this is so delicious!)

Wednesday~ trying to make one of my restaurant favorites Carrabba's Sausage and Lentil Soup with grilled cheese or salad

Thursday~ small group is over at our house so I think I'm going to make oven baked chicken fajitas with rice and chips and salsa.