Category Archives: Meal Plan

Meal Planning & Chalk Markers {Giveaway}

Photo Mar 10, 3 02 21 PM

Every week I write out a meal plan for our family of 6. Joe bought me this cute chalkboard menu from Target a while back but the chalk that came with it kind of sucks. But I didn’t even realize there was another other until I heard about Chalkola. Chalkola Chalk Markers are make writing our my weekly meal plan so much easier. There are 2 different size markers for writing on chalkboards, whiteboards, glass, or plastic.

Photo Mar 10, 3 03 22 PM

The smaller makers are great for teachers, moms, artists. I have started using them on my white board for our homeschool work. I love that they come in a variety of fun, vibrant colors (including metallic) and are easy to wash away.

The kids use the Jumbo markers for creating art pieces. (Note: These marker work best on non-porous surfaces. The reason being that Porus surfaces have small holes which can absorb the liquid chalk ink and sometimes it gets difficult to completely erase them.)

I can’t wait to share what fun creations we make with our colorful selection of Chalk Pens from Chalkola.

Give them a try!
Discount Code: Save 15% off all Chalkola Products – Use Code: 15OFFSTR

One lucky reader will win a set of Chalkola Markers. Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. Giveaway Ends 3/24/17.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway ends on March 24, 2017. The winner to be chosen at random. Winner will be notified by email and has 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. See giveaway rules for more information.

This post has been sponsored by Chalkola. All thoughts and reviews are my own.

How to Store Fruits and Veggies & Meal Plan Monday

Joe and I cleaned out the refrigerator on Friday night. (We know how to have exciting nights!) We threw away somethings that were more “science experiment” than food. We also did some research on the best way to store food (apparently I’ve been doing it wrong).

how to store fruits and veggies

Here’s what I learned:

Onions – store in a dry dark place like a brown paper bag in your pantry
Potatoes – also store in a dry dark place
Mushrooms – Do Not store in the crisper drawers, store on a refrigerator shelf in a brown paper bag
Celery – Store in a plastic zipper bag away from other foods because it absorbs flavors from anything it’s near
Squash/Zucchini/Cucumber – store in a zipper bag, unwashed, in a crisper drawer
Apples/Pears/Oranges/Bananas – do not refrigerate (keep bananas away from most other fruit as it cause them to rippen quicker)
Tomatoes – Also do not refrigerate
Lemons/Limes – Store in plastic zipper bag in refigerator
Peppers – Store in a plastic zipper bag in crisper drawer
Lettuce/Cabbage – Also store in a plastic zipper bag.
Carrots – You guessed, zipper bag in fridge.

Pretty much store most vegetables in a plastic zipper bag to ensure they stay fresh longer.

I like our newly cleaned and organize fridge so I’m pretty excited about this weeks meal plan because I plan on using more of our fresh veggies simply because they look so pretty.

Last night I made Chicken Pad Thai using cabbage, broccoli, broccoli slaw, bean sprouts, and peanuts. The boys loved it, they love anything with noodles.

Pad Thai Toddler

Monday – Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potato and sauteed squash
Tuesday – Slow Cooker Korean Beef
Wednesday – Spaghetti Squash Bolognese
Thursday – Chicken Chili
Friday – Flatbread Pizzas
Saturday – Burritos
Sunday – Chicken Curry

I might rework the latter party of the week based on our produce box but I’m still researching recipes with field peas and half runner beans.

Do you know of any good recipes that use Field Peas or Half Runner Beans?

Whole30 Week 2 Meal Plan

Grocery Shopping – DoneNow it’s time to Meal Plan for this week. Meal Planning helps me SOOOO much, not only does it save us money but it helps us choose healthy options. This week I’m only going to plan lunches and dinners since Joe is off work this week.

Lunch – Rotisserie Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Dinner – Paleo Shredded Chicken with Summer Vegetables

Lunch – Avocado Chicken Salad
Dinner – Grilled BBQ Ribs with bacon wrapped okra

Lunch – Leftovers
Dinner – Chicken Fajitas

Lunch – Deli Lunch
Dinner – Burrito Bowls

Lunch – Leftovers/Stuffed Sweet Potato
Dinner –  Chicken Curry

Lunch – Leftovers/Deli Lunch
Dinner – Spaghetti Squash Bolognese

Lunch – Leftovers/Salad
Dinner – Grilled Kebabs

Lunch – Chicken Fajitas
Dinner – Barbacoa

I’m going to be putting together a bunch of packed lunches this week for our family vacation outings. Some of them will include leftovers but I’m sure many of them will just be an assortment of paleo friendly foods. I really love the Bento trend but can’t really afford any of the fancy boxes or accessories so I’ll make do with what I have.


Whole30 Challenge 2.0 Starts Now

Whole30 Challenge

We’ve started our Whole30 Challenge round 2 today. I’m not as prepared as I hoped I would have been. Jude’s surgery last week threw me for a preparing loop but I’m playing catch up today.

I usually do my grocery shopping on Saturday so this week’s meal plan is going to be short until I go shopping.

Thursday – Chicken Fajitas (If you will remember I started our last Whole30 with chicken fajitas and I ended up in the ER, let’s hope that doesn’t happen again. Lesson learned.)
Friday – Spaghetti Squash Spaghetti
SaturdaySlow Cooker Mongolian Beef

I still need to plan out breakfasts and lunches like I usually do but I plan to do that over the weekend.

Also, exercise schedules are being worked out too.

OK, Whole30 let’s do this.

Real Women Eat Steak

real women eat steak

When I was growing up eating steak was considered unladylike.

And Ribs or Chicken Wings… well that was completely disgusting.

Women ate grilled chicken breasts with a side of veggies. Or small salads with light dressing. Or just glass of Diet Coke. Basically, it was considered unladylike to eat in public.

For years I ordered my boring chicken breast with a side of boring steamed carrots every time we dined out. It was boring.

Who decided that chicken was the appropriate food for women and that steaks were too manly? Was it a calorie counting thing? Is it too mess? Is using a knife at the table too dangerous?

Then I discovered that steak tastes awesome, and so are ribs and wings. Screw being ladylike, eat a steak. Real Women Eat Steak.


Next Whole30 Challenge – Coming August 2013

We’ve decided to do another Whole30 Challenge in August. We had such great success with our Whole30 Challenge in January that I’d like to do it again. Since our 1st challenge we have adjusted the way we eat and even though we don’t eat entirely Paleo we do eat “real food”. On the occasions that we don’t eat well we can clearly feel the difference in our bodies. We often get achy shoulders, headaches and just a general feel of ick. It’s amazing how our bodies communicate to us, when we feel bad it’s because our body is trying to tell us sometime. Like, don’t eat that crap.

For this Whole30 challenge I am going to meal plan and document what we eat as well as document exercise (something I didn’t do last time). I’m hope to discover some new recipes that I can share.

Until then here is my REAL FOOD Meal Plan for the week. Jude has VBS in the mornings, Joe’s mom is coming to visit and Jude has his surgery on Friday so it’s a busy week but I hope to try some new recipes and eat pretty healthy when possible. As you can see this coming week is filled with carbs and cheese but everything is homemade with fresh ingredients. Whenever I knew we’ll eat out a lot I try to make our other meals lighter (vegetarian) so we can indulge a when we go out.

SundayEggplant Rollatini

MondaySlow Cooker Country Ribs with Roasted Potatoes & Peas

TuesdayCouscous with Mushrooms and Herbs

Wednesday – Black Bean & Sweet Potato Burritos

Thursday – Food Truck Rodeo

Friday – Spaghetti with Meat Sauce and Salad (Jude’s favorite meal for his post surgery dinner)

Saturday – Out with family

I’m pretty excited about our Whole30 Challenge, I’ve started research new recipes and I’m working on a printable Paleo Grocery shopping list and workout calendar. I’m training for a 5K (I’m not really a runner) so I really need to be more consistent with my exercise routine and charts always help.

Does anyone want to join me on my Whole30 Challenge in August?

Weekly Meal Plan

I just went grocery shopping so I’m pretty excited about this week’s meal plan. Over the past few weeks I’ve been working on some new recipes that I hope to publish very soon. I think I’ve mastered a homemade spaghetti sauce that I can’t wait to share. And I just discovered cooking en papillote (in paper) and it’s awesome.

I’m also checking out a local produce delivery service for the first time, hopefully it’s as awesome as I’m hoping.

SundayCuban Chicken with Mango

Monday – Mahi en Papillote (recipe to come!)

Tuesday – Barbacoa

Wednesday – Chicken Curry

Thursday – Spaghetti **Special request for Jude’s birthday**

Friday – Burgers & Sweet Potato Fries

Saturday – Pizza & Salad to celebrate Jude and Noah’s birthday w/family

What’s on your menu this week?

How to Make a Weekly Meal Plan

Making a meal plan is a huge lifesaver, time saver and money saver for us. It takes a little bit of planning but the benefits of knowing what you will make for dinner each night is totally worth it.

Here is how I create my weekly meal plan.

  1. Research Recipes – There are always new recipes I want to try (on Pinterest) but I never have all of the ingredients. So I do a little research and select 1 new recipe to try (not every week). Once I’ve selected a new recipe I add the ingredients to my shopping list.
  2. Make a shopping list – We have a list of essentials that we buy each week like bananas, milk, orange juice, etc…
  3.  Shop the sales – If Harris Teeter has a special on London Broil I’ll buy one or two and freeze them.
  4. Survey your stock and make a list of possible meals – After I’ve gone shopping I make a list of all the possible meals I could make.
  5. Select meals based on your calendar of events for the week. – If we have a really busy day I usually plan a slow cooker meal for that day. On weekends in the summer we usually grill out.
  6. Write down your plan and post it on the fridge, calendar or somewhere everyone can see it.
  7. Every morning look at the meal plan – I look at my meal plan each morning so I can set out meat to thaw, prep food or pick up any extras I might need. This prevents a 5 o’clock panic.

It’s really simple and such a huge help with keeping my family well fed. PB&J every night gets old.

My Meal Plan for this week….

Possible Meals

  • Chicken Tacos
  • Spaghetti
  • Slow Cooked Cuban Pork
  • Sandwiches
  • Pork Ribs
  • Stir Fry Beef

This week:

Monday – Pork Ribs (because they are thawed and need to be cooked)

Tuesday  – Sandwiches (because Jude has a swim meet)

WednesdaySlow Cooked Cuban Pork (because it’s a busy day) *new recipe

Thursday – Spaghetti (because the kids love it)

Friday – ? (This is usually family movie night with a pizza and popcorn)

Saturday – Beef Stir Fry

Sunday – Chicken Tacos (Because Pastor Tyler talked about them at church this morning and we haven’t had them in awhile.)