Meal Plan Monday including Two of My Favorite Zucchini recipes!

Hello!! It has been way way too long since you all have heard from me! I guess we have gotten a little caught up in all the excitement that summer brings! But I finally got my shit together to update you all on our happenings and share some of the wonderful recipes we have been cooking up around here lately!

We have been busy. Busy, busy checking things off our summer bucket list! Now I am not one to sit still for very long and with the extra freedom and longer days of summer we have been taking full advantage of all our time together! Hikes, swimming, amusement parks, drive ins, live music in the park… we have been having so much fun! Add all of that fun to the work of keeping up with our tiny farm and working jobs outside of the home and that doesn’t leave much extra time in the day! But I am back and so happy to reconnect with you all!

I think our favorite trip so far this summer was last week when we spent the day at Hershey Park! We looove it there and had such a fun time this year! If you are ever in Pennsylvania plan a trip and don’t forget to hit up Chocolate World and the Great American Chocolate Tour! You learn all about how their chocolate is made! Always the most favorite part of our trip and you get a free candy bar! So fun and what isn’t there to love about a place that smells like chocolate!

Ooook enough about how busy we are and on to what we have been eating! On the meal front we have been keeping things super simple and seasonal over here! Our garden has been doing much better than we expected so we have been reaping the benefits of lots of fresh produce! Mostly green beans, zucchini, kohlrabi and cucumbers for right now, but so much more is coming soon! Grilled meats, veggies, salads and potatoes have been our staples! I do have a couple of delicious recipes to share with you this week that hopefully you can add into your summer meal rotation! I am also sharing with you two of my favorite ways to eat zucchini if you have an over abundance like we do! 

Check out these awesome recipes and clink the link and head over to the original posts to find them! Let me know what you you and what you all are loving to eat this time of year!

Recipes

 

  1. Greek Bowl with Meatballs– OMG this recipe was amazing! We subbed rice for the couscous and it was all delicious! Follow the link to Our Life Tastes Good and make this recipe! Your family and your taste buds will scream with delight!
  2. Paleo General Tso’s Chicken– I work weekends and I have been doing a pretty good job at batch cooking on Fridays so the fridge is stocked while I’m at work. This past Friday I made this delicious recipe from Ancestral Nutrition! Way better than takeout with the bonus of knowing exactly what you are eating! This was a huge hit with the whole family. I served it with rice and broccoli.
  3. Baked Parmesan Zucchini– This recipe from Damn Delicious has been the best side dish to all of our grilled meats lately! Easy and tasty, just the way I like it!
  4. Grilled Lemon Garlic Zucchini– Another great recipe from Damn Delicious and another great accompaniment for any summertime dinner!
  5. Kohlrabi, Potato and Sausage Hash- I can’t even include a recipe for this because I literally just threw things together. Sautéed some fresh picked, peeled and diced Kohlrabi from our garden with diced potatoes and some diced Mango Jalapeño Sausage in a skillet in everything was tender and cooked through. I served it as a main dish one night with a salad and ate it as a side the next night! So good!

 

 

So there is a little wrap up of what we have been eating lately and what has been keeping us busy! Stay tuned for more of our shenanigans! Hopefully you all are having a great summer and making amazing memories with you family! Take time to disconnect and really enjoy the quality time you have, I cannot stress how important that has become to us! Please feel to share your favorite summer activities and recipes with me, I would love to hear all that you have going on!

 

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Workout Wednesday

Getting back in shape after having kids is freaking hard, let’s be serious. Not all of us have personal trainers, chefs and nannies that give us the time and resources needed to bounce back at the drop of a hat. For us ordinary moms it’s takes a great deal of planning and plain old hard work. Lot’s and lot’s of hard work.

I had my third little rugrat almost a year and a half ago. And finally over the past few months I feel that I am getting back to my old self. I’m not surprised it has taken me this long. It always takes me about a year to get into the swing of things again after I have a baby. That just seems to be the pattern for me. No matter how determined I am to get back into the workout and eating healthy routine, life never let’s that happen until after that year mark. Weird?!? I think that’s just life’s way of forcing me to slow down and enjoy all of the amazingness of that first year. It’s incredible how fast these tiny creatures can grow and I enjoy sucking up every moment!

But now that my littlest little has turned one it’s game on. Her birthday was in December and after a Disney trip late January I finally felt motivated to start putting more of a focus on me. Diet is always the hardest thing for me to change. Now we eat pretty well generally, but everyone slips off the healthy bandwagon sometimes. And as you all know the Whole 30 is my favorite way to get back on track. We ended up doing a Whole 50ish starting in March and this jump started getting me back on the healthy train. I lost about 12 lbs and that was major motivation for me to get back to my probably shape!

Exercise is something that I have always enjoyed. A good sweat session can put anyone in a better mood! After spending over half my life as an athlete I find comfort in a good workout routine. I enjoy running, swimming and spinning but I fell in love with Crossfit a few years ago when we were living in Texas. That style of workout is something that works for me. I feel strong, motivated, and pretty badass after completing a workout. The downside to Crossfit is that most boxes are super expensive! Worth every penny, but a little out of our budget right now. So thanks to a hand me down weight set from my Dad and a bunch of other equipment we have assembled over the years I have been getting in some pretty intense and awesome workouts at home.

There are millions of moms out there who are looking to get into shape, but most don’t know where to start. The workout planning process is enjoyable for me so I’m starting a weekly blog post summing up my workouts. Hoping to give you all a little inspiration and to help me stay accountable! I have a long way to go to get to where I want, but I am invested in this journey to a stronger, fitter, healthier and happier me.

Check out my workouts from the last week below. Included are the weights I used and the time each workout took to complete. I have not been lifting very heavy yet… I am slowly building back up and have been focusing on my form. In addition to my home workouts I also belong to an amazing, super motivating, all women’s gym close to my house. Local friends do yourself a favor and check out Sweat Like a Girl! Their Spin classes, Pilates, and Group fitness classes are so fun and really push me out of my comfort zone. So I try to add three or four classes weekly into my routine. So I noted what classes I attended each day. I also try to add one or two rest days in a week or I burn myself out!!

Hopefully this gives you all some motivation for find your inner bad ass and take charge of your health!

Workouts

 

Monday May 8, 2017

Warm Up:

800 M Run

10 Squat Cleans

10 Push Press

45lb Bar for both

For Time:

4 times through-

20 alternating Dumbbell Snatches (25lb Dumbbell)

10 burpees

10 Box Jumps (24 in box)

10 Knees to Chest

Time: 15:07

Abs:

4 times through-

30 Med Ball Russian Twist

10 V-Up

30 Flutter Kicks

1 Min. Plank

 

Tuesday May 9, 2017

Pilates and Sweat Camp Classes at Sweat Like a Girl

At home workout:

The Arm Workout on the Bottom is kinda hard to read but it is a favorite of mine

3 sets of 15 front raises, 15 bent over rows, and 15 overhead press

3 sets of 7 bottom to 1/2 bicep curls, 7 1/2 to full bicep curls, and 7 full bicep curls followed by

3 sets of 15 tricep dips, 15 skull crushers and 15 overhead tricep extension

*Be prepared to have trouble lifting your arms for the rest of the day!!

 

Wednesday 5/10/17

21-18-15-12-9-6-3

Thrusters

Wall Ball

400 M run between each Round

Time: 36:56

Weight: 45lbs

 

Thursday 5/11/17

Barre and Dumb Bell Classes at Sweat Like a Girl!

 

Friday 5/12/17

“Ivan the Terrible”

50-40-30-20-10

Lunges

Push-Ups

Sit Ups

90 second Jump Rope To start each round

Time: 26:01

Followed by my favorite Arm workout described on Tuesday 5/9 (I do this several times a week!!)

Then Abs:

4 times through 30 bicycles, 15 V-Up, 30 Flutter Kicks, 15 Leg Raises, 1 Minute Plank

 

Saturday 5/13/17

 

Sunday 5/14/17

Rest day!!!!

 

OK friends there you have it! Hopefully this gives you some inspiration for intense, kick butt at home workouts! We all have to start somewhere! Come back and check on my progress over the next few months! And please leave me a comment telling me what you think of these workouts!

 

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Meal Plan Monday

Hi all! I’m back with another installment of meal plan Monday! Hope you all had a wonderful weekend and enjoyed your first day of Spring today! We are currently still snow covered over here, boo! But the forecast calls for warmer weather this week, so we are hoping for a huge melt and green grass soon! I’m so over this winter and am soo ready for Spring flowers!

As you know we are currently in the midst of another Whole 30! Soooo again all of the recipes featured in this post are Whole 30 Approved, or I made a few tweaks to make them Whole 30. We are currently on Day 22 and I feel like this round is flying by. I have been thinking of extending this round out a little past the 30 day mark, because I have some skin issues I am hoping will improve with a cleaner diet, but we will see!

We have really been mixing things up this round and trying lots of new and delicious recipes. Which has really helped the time fly by and has kept us from getting bored. My husband even mentioned today that the foods we have been eating have been so delicious that he really has no desire to go back to eating Standard American foods. Now this is a huge step for my sweet treat loving man!

OOOk on to the recipes!

Recipes

  1. Best Ever Pork Roast and Sauerkraut– Lori at the Kitchen Whisperer has an amazing recipe for pork and sauerkraut! This meal is complete comfort food for me and bring back so many memories! I subbed a chopped whole apple and a smudge of apple juice for the brown sugar in this recipe to make it Whole 30 compliant.
  2. Shepard’s Pie with Sweet Potato Topping– I guess this week was all about comfort food for us. This recipe was another homey and delicious meal. I got grass fed ground beef on sale last week and this was a great way to use it up! Full of meat and veggies! Follow the link to Stacie’s recipe on the Real Food Dietitians site!! Sorry my picture is ugly, it really is delicious!
  3. Chicken Cacciatore– Purchase the Whole 30 book, it is filled with so manx amazing recipes! We made the Chicken Cacciatore with a whole roasted chicken that we raised ourselves and it was delicious. I served it over a baked potato for the hubby and I and over rice made with homemade bone broth for the kiddos! Check out my recipe for homemade broth here. Follow the link to the Whole 30 website for the recipe or just do yourself a huge favor and buy the book!

The rest of our meals I don’t really have recipes for! We made The Perfect Burger from the Whole 30 cookbook twice last week. We also had a ground beef and veggie stir fry and beef stew, both recipes that I am perfecting and should have up on here soon! Aidells’s Chicken and Apple Sausage with a side of veggies was another meal. And if you follow me on Instagram you know I have been on a salad kick lately so almost every meal has been accompanied by a salad. As well as leftovers with salads for lunch. Hey stick with what works!

Ooookkk so here are at least three hopefully new recipes that you can incorporate into your meal plan! Variety in your meals keeps things interesting and prevents you from getting bored.

Please leave me a comment and share your favorite Whole 30 recipes with me, I would loooove to give them a try!

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Meal Plan Monday 3

Back again with another Meal Plan Monday! Every week when I sit down to write this post I am astonished at how quickly the week has flown by! Scary! This past week we enjoyed several days of amazing weather! Playing outside at the park with the kids in jeans and a short sleeve shirt?? Pretty much unheard of for February in Pennsylvania. None the less we enjoyed every second of those beautiful days. And are back to more characteristic February weather today… cool 40 degrees.

This week is grocery shopping week for me. So today I am snuggling a sick baby and attempting to make a meal plan. The hubby and I also decided to start another Whole 30 today so all of my meals for the next few weeks will be Whole 30 approved. If you have been following for a little while you know we recently went on a family vacation to Disney. We completely enjoyed our time there, which included indulging in delicious food! Now not all of those foods were “healthy.” So we feel we need another little reset now that we are back home and back into our routine.

This morning I also started reading Melissa Hartwig’s Newest Book… Food Freedom Forever. I am only a few pages in and it is already AMAZING. Everyone has a connection with food. But, putting  yourself in control of the way you interact with food can be a challenge. Melissa’s Whole 30 program gives you a chance to “reset” your health, eating habits and your complete relationship with food. And “food freedom” is what you can obtain. I cannot wait to finish it!

Drawing on the cover thanks to my creative 1 year old!

Part of Food Freedom for me is our ability to enjoy our Disney Vacation whole heartedly!  We enjoyed food we do not normal eat, because it is what we wanted to do. We did not feel bad or guilty about one thing we enjoyed there. Now it’s time to do a Whole 30, because that helps us to feel good as well. Stay tuned for a post later this week detailing all of the deliciousness we enjoyed at Walt Disney World!

Now onto the recipes of the week. Oookkk I am going to be completely honest here… Last week I was a slacker in the kitchen. Two kiddos were and still are sick. We also enjoyed the weather a little too much and dinner became somewhat of an afterthought most days. But, I do still have two

amazing recipes to share with you this week! I was also a huge slacker in the picture department… so forgive me for the lack of food pictures!

The following recipes come from some amazing bloggers, follow the links to the original recipe!

  1. Halal Cart Chicken and Rice– We eat a fair amount of rice on a normal basis. It is gluten free and a grain that make us feel good, so a good amount of our meals contain rice. I have been searching for new and different recipes and came across this one from Sabrina at Dinner then Dessert. Great combination of flavors, easy to good, and enjoyed by our whole family!
  2. Easy Oven Fajitas– One pan meals are my favorite and Beth from Budget Bytes came up with this easy and delicious oven steak fajita recipe. We ate ours in a bowl with lettuce, salsa and guacamole and they were awesome! Her website is full of so many healthy and budget friend;y recipes we love!

Like I said before I was a cooking slacker last week so these are the only two recipes I have to share… sad face emoji. Our other meals consisted of a one pan chicken and veggie dish I am working on, leftovers and take out! But tune in next week for lots of Whole 30 approved recipes! Have a great Monday and please feel free to leave me a comment and let me know of your families favorite healthy weeknight dinners! I am always looking for new things to try!

 

 

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Meal Plan Monday

Happy Monday Everyone!! How is your week starting off? It is cold and windy over here and the kids had a 2 hour delay this morning. Now that gave us the opportunity to start our week a little less rushed, which was a welcomed change in this house. Although it does make the rest of the day go a little faster… more things to fit into less time.  The story of my life.

I’m attempting to take things a little easy today because my left foot has really been bothering me. Which means no gym this morning and some of those chores can wait. Now I’m not much of a complainer, but I know when things aren’t right with my body. My nurse judgement tells me it is nothing serious and something that a ice and rest will take care of.  Buuuut that is super hard to do when you are a mom of three littles with a hubby off at work for most of the day. But I’m trying my best!

In the spirit of resting I am currently watching two children destroy my house while I work on my meal plan for the next two weeks. With my foot propped on a stack of pillows with an ice pack. I am scouring Pinterest, my cookbooks and the grocery store circulars to make my list. Always searching for the best deal and new affordable recipes my family will love. I am all about cutting our grocery budget lately so all my meals need to be affordable but still healthy and delicious.

I grocery shop every two weeks and usually meal plan for about 12-13 dinners during that time. I figure we will eat dinner out once and will rely on leftovers another night. Each dinner also usually makes enough leftovers for lunch the next day for most of us. I have also been leaning towards meals that are easy to throw together. Casseroles and One Pot meals are all the rage in our house lately!! We also generally stick to Gluten Free meals that are full of tons of veggies! Stating today, each Monday I will share a few of our families favorite meals from my most recent meal plan! Hopefully these will add a little inspiration and variety to your week!

 

  1. Teriyaki Chicken Casserole– Holly’s blog Life in the Lofthouse is one I follow and I have been meaning to try this awesome recipe for quite awhile now. I made a few substitutions to make it gluten free and it turned out absolutely delicious and a family favorite! We will definitely be making this one again!
  2. Gluten Free Tater Tot Casserole– We lived in North Dakota for several years while my husband was in the military and there was the first time I haven ever even heard of “Tater Tot Hotdish.” Holy Comfort Food! Brianna from Flippin’ Delicious created an awesome gluten free version with homemade cream of mushroom soup! Not full of crap, easy and delicious, what more can you ask for?!?
  3. Sausage and Kale Soup– I seriously make this soup every week! We love it and the leftovers are even better! This is my adaptation of Zuppa Tuscana soup and it is the perfect weeknight meal!

    Sausage and Kale Soup
  4. Chicken Apple Sausage Skillet– Aidells Chicken Apple Sausage was on sale last week, woohoo! So I stocked up and searched for yummy recipes! I can across this one from Leah at Simply Made with Love and it was delicious! The kiddos even gobbled up the peppers, score!
  5. Spatchcocked Chicken– We butchered our own chickens in November and still have a few left in the freezer. I am always looking for new ways to cook them and this cooking method from Michelle at Nom Nom Paleo is a delicious and quick way to do it! I seasoned ours a little differently that she does in her recipe but the end result was great!

    Spatchcocked Chicken

The rest of my meal plan basically paired a meat with veggies. We do eat rice and potatoes so those make an appearance at most meals as well. Tune in next week for our favorite meals of the week!

 


 

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Back and ready to take on 2017!

Wow it’s been a while since I connected with you all! But I am back from our Disney Vacation and feel like I am rejuvenated and ready to tackle this new year! Not that the trip was relaxing or stress free, I mean seriously how can a 16 hour car ride each way and 8 days in Disney World with a six, four and one year old be stress free?? More posts on all things Disney to come, stay tuned. Back to what I was saying… I am ready to kick the crap out of 2017 and make tons of positive changes over here!

I feel like everyone has the same goals at the start of every year. Lose weight, save money… blah blah blah. But, I am totally jumping on those bandwagons this year. I have big plans to get into my best shape ever after having all these babies! After having Little Miss I feel I am struggling more then ever to “get my body back.” Thankfully my amazing hubby listened to my hints and got me a new gym membership for Christmas annnnnd the gym has daycare, which is freaking amazing! Before our trip I was going consistently and feeling great! Consistent healthy eating and working out are a priority for me this year. Not just for me for the whole family too! Thankfully the kids are such great sports and will eat almost everything I cook!

Next… Saving money and paying off debt are also on the list of things to work on this year! We just started Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover and are really excited to get started on this journey! More to come on this as we get further into it, we are only just starting Baby step 2 for those of you who know the program!

Shorty is excited for the New Year!

Next on my big list of changes for the New Year comes more dates with the hubby! Seriously, I never see that man! Sometimes I feel like he is just a roommate that I pass the kids off to now and again, hahaha. But seriously, not anymore… date night are becoming a priority!

My list of things to do/change/accomplish in 2017 is long… like 20 things longs and I won’t bore you with each thing. But, I plan on sharing more with you on here, making positive changes in myself and my family, becoming more self sufficient on our little farm and possible adding some new things to our homestead! I love this time of year when the excitement is still high and everyone is still so positive! I will update you in a few months on how everything is going once the newness has worn off!!

Speaking of making positive changes I recently made a huuugge change in my real life job. Ok well maybe not that huge, but it is a big deal for me! I have worked night shift for over five years now and recently accepted dayshift position! Ahhh I am excited and nervous at the same time. I think this will be great for my personal well being, because honestly sleep deprivation doesn’t help any part of my life. But I will solo greatly miss all of my amazing night shift coworkers! I start days this coming weekend so send some good vibes my way!

As I’m attempting to finish this post I have a one year old little miss bouncing on my lap and big bro and sister begging me to play Headbandz! Making these kids my priority is on the tippy top of my list this year! So thanks for tuning in to my little life update! I plan on being way more active on my little slice of the internet and sharing tons of recipes, adventures, stories, tips and tricks with you all. I am working on putting our Disney trip into several posts… including the top 10 things we ate, my tips for doing Disney with little kids, and much much more so check back soon! Thanks to all of you for supporting the launch of Halfway Wholesome in 2016 and I cannot wait to see what 2017 will bring!


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School Lunches Vol. 2

Happy Monday Everyone! Hope your week is off to a wonderful start! I just got home from a 12 hour nightshift and am hanging with Little Miss, while the big kiddos are at school. Hoping to get a nap in soon but I wanted to share Big sister’s lunches from last week first!

Here is our round-up from last week. And I am proud to say I got her to eat a few raw carrots!! If you read my post from last week, find it here,  you know I was struggling to find some kind of veggie to pack her. She kept sending them back home so that’s huge  step in the right direction for us! I am also grocery shopping Wednesday so expect to see some new things in the round-up next week! Only four lunches this week we had a half day last Monday.

 

School Lunch
Mini Ham and Cheese Sandwich, Carrot Sticks and Spinach Dip, Carrots, Boom Chicka Pop, Grapes, a Clementine and a Baby Lara Bar for snack

 

sl-3
Grass Fed Uncured Hot Dog, Cheese, Grapes, Pineapple, Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies, Pretzels and Dark Chocolate Chips

 

sl-2
Leftover BBQ Meatballs, Cheese, Apples with Almond Butter, Grapes, Clementines, Animal Crackers and Yogurt Raisins

 

Big Sister got to share a wonderful Veteran’s Day breakfast at school with Daddy so lunch was snack today. Boom Chicka Pop, Apple with Almond Butter, Pineapples, Animal Crackers and Yogurt Raisins

 

So there you have it, hopefully next week I will have some more creative lunches to share! Hope this gives you some inspiration! I am still looking for veggie ideas and would love to hear what your kiddos love! Leave me some comments with you favorite things to pack!

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Happenings on the Homestead Volume 1

Man this week has been long! What’s the saying.. When it rains, it pours? Well isn’t that the truth?! And I am not referring to the Election results what so ever. When we made the decision that homesteading was something we wanted to try we realized it would be a lot of work.  And we knew there would be trials and tribulations along the way. Homesteading is a lifestyle choice for us. Although some days and weeks are harder than others, it is still a choice we are happy we made.

Although some of this really has nothing to do with homesteading, it’s what has been going on in our lives! This week has been a particularly rough one for me!  With the kids in school they are pretty much huge germ collectors, bringing all that junk home. Both our girls had Pink Eye last week and despite my excessive disinfecting and hand washing I got infected as well! Then Monday afternoon I did something to my left foot and have barely been able to bear weight on it since. Sooooo despite my huge To Do List I attempted to take it easy. Cleaning and the countless projects I have on my plate have taken a back seat as I attempted to get back on my feet, literally. I am feeling much better today thankfully!

makenzy-and-her-girl
Big sister with her girl

To top off my awesome week a rotten hawk ended up killing our favorite chicken. This is the second chicken we lost in the past week. Although we have about 30 laying hens, this one was special. My oldest daughter had a particularly hard time losing her girl. She got her frustration out by screaming “I really don’t like you Hawk!” into the sky. But, we used it as another important life lesson. She understands  that the hawk didn’t know any better and was just getting his dinner. We know losses are a part of homesteading, but it’s still tough.

shorty
Shorty!! With a braid courtesy of    Big Sister!

On a happy note we welcomed a new animal to our tiny farm. Meet Shorty! He is a 9 year old miniature horse, with some special needs. We adopted him from friends of ours that were looking to rehome him. They took in turkeys from us last year, so they asked if we would be interested in giving him a loving home. My children have met him before and when we discussed the possibility with them we really didn’t have much of a choice! He is acclimating to his new home and     family very well!

family
Family Photo!!

The goats are adjusting to their new friend well and everyone is happy. In other happenings around the farm our meat chickens are getting HUGE. Check back next week for a post on our second Month with them! Also egg production from our laying hens has slowed drastically over the last few weeks. I’m pretty sure it’s a combination of the days getting shorter, the cooler weather, and the fact that most of them are molting now. We don’t do artificial light in our coop during the winter, I think it’s better for the girls to get a little break and do what’s natural for them.

So that is pretty much a round up of our happenings this week. We have soooo much going on in the next few months and I can’t wait to share it with you all. I am in the midst of planning a first birthday party and a big family trip to Disney. So I will have tons of tips and tricks to share coming soon! I have also started planning things out for Spring happenings on our tiny homestead. So lots of excitement coming up and lots to share! I hope you all have a wonderful and relaxing weekend! Talk to you soon!

 

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School Lunches Vol. 1

Hi Everyone! Soo it’s Monday again… already?!? These weeks are just cruising by! I am starting to prepare for a big First Birthday for Little Miss!!! And… Christmas is just right around the corner, so I guess I need to start planning for that?!  With a few months of school under our belts I feel like we are finally on some sort of a schedule. Our days are still super busy, but they are a little easier to navigate when everyone knows what’s going on. Most days I also feel like I am getting a hang of this whole packing launch thing.

Some days I am super prepared and pack her a wholesome and healthy lunch the night before. But let’s be realistic here!  Packing a school lunch is another chore added to the huge list of things we have to do daily.  I am totally guilty of throwing a bunch of random things in her box at 7:20 AM as she is rushing out the door. On the days that I do have it together I try to pack her something that is not full of tons of crap, that will keep her full, and that she will like. See my post for tips for packing a great school lunch here!

My biggest lunch box challenge recently is trying to figure out a vegetable to pack. Big sister isn’t very picky, but uncooked veggies aren’t her fave. Up until a few weeks ago she loved cherry tomatoes. Buuut mom of the year here must have included a bad one and now she refuses to eat another tomato ever again! Five year olds are so dramatic! I have tried carrot sticks, cucumbers, and sweet peppers, but they keep coming back home. So any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!! We have done cooked veggies from time to time, maybe I will keep doing that?

Most of the time we eat gluten free.  So I try to stick to gluten free breads, corn tortillas, and gluten free crackers as part of her meal.  But there are times that I include non gluten free foods and some treats. This past week I have been packing a small treat from our Halloween goodies. I know it is my job to pack her a healthy meal, but it is also my job to also make her day. So I usually include a little note as well to make her smile.

Most meals include a main dish, which is usually meat, cheese and crackers, a corn tortilla stuffed with something or a sandwich. I also send leftovers of whatever we had for dinner the night before from time to time. Like I said before most of our breads and crackers are gluten free and we use corn tortillas. I try to buy organic cheeses and grass fed, organic or preservative free meats when the budget allows. A fruit or two and something snacky like popcorn or animal crackers is usually part of her lunch as well.

I feel it’s important to include something that she looks forward to.  So everyday she gets a little treat, usually yogurt covered raisins or dark chocolate chips, but lately it’s something small from their halloween baskets. Then I also throw an extra snack in her lunch box for snack time, this usually is an apple sauce, Lara bar, or yogurt. I also send her a drink in an insulated water bottle. She is allowed to keep this on her desk and refill it at school as she needs.

I am planning on doing this post every Monday to give you a little weekly lunch box inspiration. This is just works in our house, so just use it as a guide!

 

Monday-

School Lunch
Almond Butter and Apple Butter Sandwitch, Boom Chicka Pop Popcorn, Animal Crackers, a Clementine and Yogurt Raisins

 

Tuesday-

Packed Lunch
Ham and Cheese Quesadilla, Annie’s Cheese Bunny Crackers, Apple Slices with Apple Butter for Dipping, Boom Chicka Pop and dark chocolate chips

Wednesday-

lunch2
Ham, Cheese, Pickles, Apples and Apple Butter, Boom Chicka Pop, and Organic Goldfish

Thursday- 

lunch3
Leftover Chicken and Cheese Quesadilla, Boom Chicka Pop, Grapes, a Tangerine, and Reeses Pieces

Friday-

lunch4
Grilled Ham and Cheese, grapes, a clementine, Boom Chicka Pop, M & M’s and a Lara Bar

 

So hopefully this gives you all some ideas! I would love to hear some of your favorite things to pack for your little monsters! Happy Monday and Hope you all have a great week! Stay tuned next week for another lunch box update!

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Whole 30 Go To’s for Lazy Days

So far today has been a struggle! Usually I am on top of my mom game. The house is clean, dinner always made, kiddos groomed and happy… but these past few days I have been LAZY! I am attributing it to running my half marathon on Sunday, combined with little Miss A and big brother not sleeping so well lately. I’m talking up every hour with one or the other. Being a mom is rough.

It’s so easy for bloggers to put only the best of their lives out there for everyone to see.  But seriously no one is perfect, everyone struggles. I am no better than anyone else, and am just trying to get through each day! Some days are harder than others… like today!

Things are far from perfect in our house. Today the laundry is piled way too high, dishes are in the sink, and instead of completing all my mom chores I snuggled on the couch with baby girl for her nap and indulged in a few episodes of Criminal Minds. I feel guilty because there is so much that needs to get done, but I have learned that I need to listen to my body and mind when I get in this mode.  Usually I’m telling myself to chill out.

So today I am going to rock my leggings and a baggy T-Shirt and relish in my laziness and snuggle my babies. And the cherry on top of my struggle is that I am in the middle of my Whole 30 and I don’t feel like cooking at all! So today I have been turning to all of my easy grab Whole 30 foods. Take a look at my favorites below!

 

Quick and Easy Whole 30 Foods-

 

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  1. Eggs- I think this one is so easy for me because we always have eggs on hand. I usually always hard boil a bunch and have them in the fridge.  Or it takes me 2 minutes to fry up a couple a eat them with a baked
    potato or some leftover veggies.
  2. Larabars- These awesome bars have always been a favorite for our family. So yummy, kid approved and not full of crap.
  3. Fruit and Almond Butter- Apples and bananas are my favorite! And lately I have been subbing Cashew butter for almond butter because it has been cheaper. Whatever works! Just be sure to check you labels for added junk
  4. Dump Ranch and Veggies- My
    favoriterecipe for Whole 30 approved Ranch is from Nan and Nicole at Whole Sisters, find the recipe here! I always have some in the fridge and pair it with whatever veggies I have on hand cucumbers, celery, bell peppers, carrots… whatever!
  5. La Croix Sparkling Water- I enjoy and Diet Pepsi now and then… agh I know how horrible they are but I do my best to stay away! During my Whole 30 these babies help satisfy my soda craving!

 

There are so many others I can add but these are for sure my top 6, and are all included in my Whole 30 meal plan pretty much daily. Hopefully this list helps some of you when you are in a bind and looking for something quick and easy to grab! Here’s to hoping the second half of my day is more productive than the first! Happy Tuesday 🙂

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