Family Life

Meal Plan July 27-August 2

This week’s plan is going to incorporate as many vegetables as possible from our garden and our CSA box.  This is my favorite time of year for food.  The fresh vegetables that are available are such a treat.  We have reached that “I am overwhelmed” by zucchini stage, so that is nice.  However, based on what happening in the garden, we will be feeling that soon.  Below is our week ahead for meals.

Monday July 27 – Coconut Lime Chicken

Tuesday July 28 – Chicken Salad and Buttermilk Dressing

Wednesday July 29 – Pesto Pasta Salad with Green Beans and Corn

Thursday July 30 – Ratatouille and fish

Friday July 31 – Vegetable Quiche (I will use whatever garden fresh veggies we have)

Saturday August 1 – Pork chops, corn, tomato and cucumber salad

Sunday August 2 – Husband’s birthday celebration! Steak, tomato and cucumber salad, potato salad, corn, cake and ice cream

two people holding cake with lit candles
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Family Life

2020 Goals Update

I have really let things fall apart over here in the last 7 weeks.  I recently saw a meme that said something to the effect of “When this is over, will you be a hunk, a chunk or a drunk?”  I plead the fifth!  I need to hold myself somewhat accountable and revisit those goals and see how I have been doing, which I assume is not good.

  1. My number one goal is to get my pressure back to normal.  Several of my goals have been set to help bring it down with the help of medication.
    • I checked my bp last night and this morning.  I continue to be on the high end of normal.  This is an improvement over the high end of high, which I was.
  2. Lose 20 pounds.
    • I have maintained since March 16, my first day of shelter at home.  Since I know people who have gained, I am counting this as a win.
  3. Continue to get 10,000 steps a day in.
    • Nope!  But, I do walk most days.
  4. Go to the gym 3 days per week.
    • This one makes me sad.  I had joined a really nice gym on February 16.  I am not being charged right now.  But, I was going very regularly for a month.
  5.  Eat more fruits and vegetables.  I eat a lot as it is, but it’s time to add more, especially potassium rich produce.
    • I am crushing this goal.  I make every meal at home right now so I am able to achieve this every day.
  6. Try to start trying to meditate at least 2 or 3 days per week.
    • I took a meditation CE class for work.  I realized in that class that a lot of the things I already do are considered meditation.  So, yes, I have been meditating.
  7. Get back into the yoga habit.
    • Nope
  8. Cut down on the alcohol.
    • Are you kidding me?  I am at home, every day, in Wisconsin.  I am not getting drunk, or even tipsy.  But, I am having some wine.   My husband and I have also enjoyed a couple of old fashioneds on our porch on some nice evenings.
  9.  Pay off the house.  We had every intention of paying it off December 31.  A couple of unexpected expenses put that on hold.
    • We are going to hold onto that cash for the time being.
  10. Read 110 books in 2020.
    • This one is easy for me.  I am currently at 44 books read for the year
  11. Read 3 classic books this year.
    • My number of classics stays at two.
  12. More dates with my husband.
    • We were doing this weekly starting in February.  It’s hard to have date night at home with two daughters at home moping that they can’t see their friends.
  13. We have a membership to the Milwaukee Art Museum that I plan on utilizing a lot more this year.
    • There’s always next year
  14. Spend more time outdoors.
    • This has been easy to do.
  15. Throw away 20 items per day.
    • Done
  16. More no spend days.
    • This is easy.  I have been trying to purchase from local businesses right now to help them out.
  17. Spend more time with my friends.
    • I have been doing Zoom chats on a regular basis.
  18. Finish a knitting project I started in November and start and finish another.
    • Done
  19. Learn how to can!
    • I am hoping to teach myself by making dandelion jelly
  20. Go on 2 weekend getaways with my husband.
    • Maybe we can do this in 2021

This is not as bad as I thought it would be.  How are your goals doing with our strange new normal?

people holding mask over a sculpture
Photo by cottonbro on
Family Life, Frugal Living

Meal Plan March 29 – April 4

Well, here I am a couple days late again with my meal plan.  Unlike last week, my tardiness is due to me actually doing stuff around the house.  Notice, we are eating more meat than we normally do.  I have found that during these weeks, I have wanted to make more comfort foods.  So often, those meals include meat.  I am being gentle with myself these days as we get through this.

Sunday March 29 – pasta with sausage, salad and bread

Monday March 30 – grilled steak, asparagus, baked potato and salad

Tuesday March 31 – vegetable pot pie

Wednesday April 1 – vegetable fried rice

Thursday April 2 – minestrone soup and bread

Friday April 3 – fish, potatoes and salad

Saturday April 4 – chicken noodle soup

What is on your list for the week?

soup served on bowl
Photo by Buenosia Carol on
Family Life

Meal Plan March 22 – March 28

I did not get our meal plan out here on Sunday as planned because I was binge watching The Office instead.  It got my mind off of things which I think is more important.  I didn’t do it yesterday because I was trying to be productive around the house.  I made waffles for breakfast, tuna casserole for lunch, had dinner in the crockpot by 9:00 am and baked brownies.  I read for a couple hours, went on an hour long walk and tried to convince myself that my son continuing to go to work wasn’t going to make him gravely ill.  These are rough times we are living in.  And honestly, if that orange buffoon that we call president doesn’t learn to shut the F*** up, I am going to lose my mind.  Honestly, what the hell is wrong with him?  Anyway, on to my meal plan.

Sunday March 22 – pasta alfredo with broccoli and sun dried tomatoes

Monday March 23 – black bean soup, bread and salad

Tuesday March 24 – chili and salad

Wednesday March 25 – chicken au gratin, potatoes and salad

Thursday March 26 – vegetable pot pie and salad

Friday March 27 – Maybe takeout to support business. I have been really scared to do this, but I have a friend, who is a doctor.  She has assured me that it will be safe.  If not, I am breaking out the frozen chicken nuggets and fries.

Saturday March 28 – salmon, roasted potatoes and it will time to break out the frozen vegetables.

We are eating a lot of salad because I am trying to use up the last of our fresh lettuce before the expiration date.  At that point, we will pretty much be out of fresh vegetables and we are not going out.  I probably sound crazy because I won’t leave the house.   But, with the heart issue I have, which is very minor, it feels prudent to just not take any chances and stay home.  I am just a week away from the 14 day milestone that will signal that I am virus free.  I want to keep it that way.  Happy isolation everyone!

rocky shore with rocks on the shore during sunset
Photo by James Wheeler on


Family Life

Isolation-Day 3

I have been determined not to talk about the gigantic elephant in the room, coronavirus.  Honestly, do any of us need to talk about it anymore?  The only reason I am bringing it up, is that today, I finally accepted this as my new normal and got my shit together (sorry to those who don’t like profanity).  Today is technically my third day in isolation.  I was home all day Sunday, but worked on Monday.  The library was hopping, as people knew we were going to be closing up for the foreseeable future.  I was able to load up on books and DVDs with a due date of May 1.  A due date that far into the future really put things into perspective.

Yesterday, my son was laid off from his job.  Two weeks ago, this kind of event seemed impossible.  He has a job on campus while going to school full time.  His school is now online, but his job seemed stable.  He is maintenance and works alone.  But, the university has it’s first positive case, so he was laid off.  Thankfully, something literally came up within a couple hours and he started today.  It’s sounds like a company that is taking necessary precautions.  He needs the work not only for the money, but also for the mental health.  He was feeling really down, like so many of us.  Going to work will be good for him during this time.  I will constantly worry about him being out and about, but he takes the precautions seriously.

Last night, I fell sound asleep at 10:00 and slept until 8:00.  Ten hours of sleep is pretty much unheard of for me, so it’s obvious that a little bit of depression is setting in.  That’s not a shock, I spent two days watching TV, scrolling Facebook and CNN and going back and forth between feelings of anger, fear and sadness. Since the entire planet is in this mess, I am guessing that I am not alone in those feelings.  But, I can’t go on like this.  Projections are that this could go on 18 months, I simply cannot allow myself to feel like this for 18 months.  So, I got up this morning and made a good breakfast.  I got in the car and drove myself to the local county park that has trails and took a 4 mile walk.  I spent that time listening to music (Journey) and thinking about all this.  I spent the last mile on the phone with my mom.  Neither of us cried, but I think we both realized that it could be a really long time before we see each other again.  That is a hard reality to face.

I have spent the afternoon making candles.  I also put some almonds in the crockpot with spices and siracha sauce.  I am not sure how those are going to turn out.  I will only post the recipe if they are edible.  They smell terrible, but I hate the smell of siracha so that could very easily be the problem.  The candles turned out well though and I have been meaning to make some for awhile.  I made lavender lemon for myself and a couple of citrus scented ones for my daughters.

Eric and I started watching Malcolm In The Middle again on Hulu.  Thank goodness that show exists.  We laughed very hard last night and expect that Malcolm will get us through this situation we are all in.  I have also started to watch anything by Judd Apatow.  The 40 Year Old Virgin on Monday night was just the medicine we needed.  I say that during this event, let’s not worry too much about whether or not something is offensive, if it makes you laugh, just watch it.

Let’s remember we are all in this together.  For everyone of us who stays home, that’s possibly 10 less people who get infected.  It’s going to be worth it the end of this journey, it’s just going to be really hard to get there.


The view on my walk.  It was cloudy, but it was outside.


Grapefruit candle


Family Life

Meal Plan March 15 – March 21

Here is our meal plan for the week.  Last week was the first time that I stuck to the actual meal plan, with the exception of Friday and Saturday, when our plans were changed.

Sunday March 15 – fish, brussels sprouts, potatoes and salad

Monday March 16 – bean burritos, tortilla chips and guacamole

Tuesday March 17 – shepherds pie

Wednesday March 18 – broccoli and kale casserole, salad

Thursday March 19 – spinach quiche

Friday March 20 – spaghetti, french bread, green beans

Saturday March 21 – chicken au gratin, broccoli and potatoes

table on wooden plank
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Family Life, Frugal Living

Saturday Stuff

This morning my daughter and I took a walk in our county park.  The fresh air was a much needed start to both our day and our weekend.  Getting out of the house was certainly something that we both needed.

I set up a corner in our living room with a table and lamp for board games and puzzles.  I used items I had on hand.  An old card table, a pretty tablecloth and dining room chairs.  It might not be pretty, but it is doing exactly what I need it to do.  Provide a space for free entertainment.  My daughter is already busy putting together a puzzle and eating some snacks.  Like her mother, she ran before I could get a photo of her.  But, this is our little area to keep ourselves entertained.

Have a good Saturday!



Family Life

Enjoy The View

IMG_0625Can you imagine have a day where you can stare out a window and enjoy the view.  I was watching my dog do just that this morning.  Nothing brings this little girl more enjoyment than spending her days watching the leaves blow by and the birds dancing around the front yard.

It made me think about how quickly we get caught up in the minutia of our daily lives and we miss out on what is going on around us.  Take a moment today and look out your window, there is so much to see.

Family Life

Happy 50th

My parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Saturday night with a fantastic party.  Honestly, isn’t this a milestone that we all strive for?  50 years!

The food was amazing (it was an Italian buffet).  The company was so much fun (my parents have really cool friends).  Finally, it was a reminder of why we are all on this big blue rock.  Family and friends are everything, the rest really doesn’t matter.  My parents and I all gave speeches.  But, I have to give a GREAT BIG shout out to my 22 year old son who wrote a beautiful speech for his grandparents.  Honestly, we do not give millennials nearly enough credit for the amazing people that they are.

Happy anniversary mom and dad.

Family Life, Frugal Living

Meal Plan March 8 – March 14

lunch table
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Below is our meal plan for the week.  When I plan ahead, I save so much money and I am never asking myself, what am I going to make for dinner.  It makes my days so much easier.  Tuesday is leftover night.  I am really hoping that we have enough on hand to make that possible.  We have my daughter’s chorus concert that night with very little time for cooking with our work schedule.

Sunday March 8 – pesto ravioli, salad and bread

Monday March 9 – crockpot taco soup

Tuesday March 10 – leftovers

Wednesday March 11 – lasagna

Thursday March 12 – chicken noodle soup

Friday March 13 – date nigh

Saturday March 14 – potluck with friends

What is on your menu for the week?