Menu Plan Monday

I realize it isn’t Monday. We spent Labor Day at home playing and cooking. But here is my menu for this week:

Breakfast
Waffles x2
Creamy cheesy eggs x2
Cereal, granola bars x2
Muffins

Lunch
PB&J x2
Leftovers x 4
Snack-type lunch

Dinner
Tacos, rice, refried beans
Savory pork (crockpot), potatoes and gravy
Chicken fried rice
Pizza
Mac and cheese casserole, green beans
Bbq pork, carrots, salad
Creamy potato soup, homemade biscuits

What is on your menu this week?

Spiritual Legacy

We have had quite the Summer. Six deaths of family and friends. I cannot remember another two months when we had so much death around us. Every time we got a call or text, I sort of wondered if it was going to be more bad news. On top of the already crummy situation with our old house and not being able to do a short sale, we were receiving news each week of someone we know/loved dying.

The last funeral I went to was just nine days ago. It was for a great aunt. My most vivid memories of her are from the time my brother had a paper route. Great Aunt Doris’ house was on the weekly route, so almost every Wednesday afternoon we saw her. She would give us cookies and juice or candy and hot chocolate. She had such a nice smile and a sweet voice.

At her funeral, one of her nephews spoke. He gave some stories of her younger days and some funny things about her. But the thing that was shared most by him was about her relationship with God. She prayed for her family daily. She spent time reading the Bible daily. Aunt Doris was not shy about her faith.

I have not seen Aunt Doris in several years. But I am so happy to have known her and have been at her funeral. What a woman of God! And things I didn’t think about as a child mean so much to me now as an adult. I knew she was a Christian bit how awesome to hear about her dedication to church and sharing her faith and being open about her prayer life!

I have learned just how amazing my family’s spiritual history is. I have been born into an incredibly faithful family, who made every effort to bring their children up in church. As a kid, I did not even think about people not knowing the Lord because every last one of us went to church, heard about God, went to church functions, talked about reading the Bible and praying. It was a part of everyone’s daily life. Just now, as an adult, I am seeing how rare that is- to have a family with that kind o spiritual legacy. It encourages me to do all of that as an adult, just as my immediate and extended older family members did their whole lives. A lot of that older generation has passed away. I love knowing they are with Jesus now. And I hope my spiritual legacy is as theirs is. I pray my kids and grandkids can get up at my funeral and be able yo say I was a faithful prayer warrior, a persona who unashamedly shared my faith, a mom who encouraged her kids to seek the Lord’s guidance, a wife that serves her husband faithfully and her God even more faithfully. My parents, my grandparents, my aunts and uncles, and so on….such great examples of having a heart for Jesus.

Something to consider: what is our legacy?? What will our kids and grandkids say about us when we are gone?

Bake It Tuesday

I am not in the mood to heat my oven for hours on end like I was last week. The humidity this week is just nuts. So, I opted to only heat it up and make a small pan of brownies. When I did my homemade mixes last week, I made up three batches of chocolate brownies. In an effort to NOT sweat today, I used one of the mixes. Now, we will only sweat while the house is heated by the oven. ;)

I love making things ahead of time, so the brownie mix is great for me! If you know you will have a busy week, plan out some mixes that cut your prep time in half. The only thing to add is the wet ingredients and then just bake it! So simple. And three bags of the brownie mix took me just a few minutes. SO easy.

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup flour

1/3 cup cocoa

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking powder

mix the above and keep in sealed quart size bag til ready to use. then add:

2 eggs

1/2 cup oil (we used coconut today)

1 tsp vanilla

mix thoroughly then add to greased 9×9 baking pan. bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. We tossed some chocolate chips on top because I saw that idea on Money Saving Mom’s site, when she posted about this recipe! Great idea. :)

And now, to eat my brownies while I sweat! Mmmm.

 

Menu Plan Monday

I planned an easy cooking week for myself. Just a bunch of yummy, filling foods. :)

Breakfast

Pancakes
Waffles x 2
Eggs x 2
Cereal
Redhead Bars

Lunch

Leftovers x 3
PB&J x 2
Mac and cheese
Lunch at a birthday party

Dinner
Pasta with meat sauce
Chicken fried rice
Frozen Pizza
Chicken and veggies over noodles
Sloppy Joes
Chicken Taco Casserole
Honey wings from the grocery store (so unhealthy, yet so delicious! Haha!)

Items to make this week:
Roasted Marinara Sauce
Pickles – either for fridge or canning

Any special plans for your menu this week??

Mama Wisdom

It doesn’t matter if everyone uses the bathroom the second before you walk out the door…one of the kids will need to go as soon as you get to your destination. And more than one will need to go if the location is outdoors and has no bathroom.

Every time you think you have seen a child do the most disgusting thing ever, another child will surprise you with something even more ‘special.’

The days I feel most ambitious and ready to grocery shop nice and early…is the day it starts to downpour first thing.

When people comment “your hands are full!” about how many kids we have makes me want to punch them in the face. BUT I am working to just remind myself that my heart is even more full!

Do not believe anyone when they say boys are not as vocal as girls. I have two toddler boys that can out-scream any of my girls. :)

Controlling Our Tongues

I am going through a Proverbs 31 study on my own. I have done it several times since I purchased the book about 10 years ago. Each time I go through it, something new jumps out at me. Today was about verse 11…”she brings him good not harm all the days of her life.” The author of the study got into detail of how we, as wives, can “bring harm.” It was more than the typical saying hurtful things or lying to our husbands. She wrote about pushing our husbands to live beyond our financial means by constantly talking about things we wish we had. I do not walk around saying I wish I had a million dollars, but I am extremely guilty of saying things like “we should do _____” or “look, that ______is on sale this week.” I also tend to talk about wanting a patio and going camping and other random and unnecessary objects. Things we don’t need but things I really want and my husband might just get if I talk about them enough. Then I justify the purchase by telling myself “well, he wants to get it.” As if my prodding had nothing to do with it.

What an eye-opener today. The author mentions several things I need to be careful talking about. These things have no place in building up our marriage and will ultimately just build a wall between us:

-burdening him with things I really want but we cannot afford
-gossip about what I read on social media (ugh!)
-trivial things about my day that have no consequence(i stubbed my toe….a waste of breath to report on that)
-complaining about the children
-angry words (that, in turn, put him in an angry mood)
-whining or nagging about something he did or did not do around the house.

All those are things I have a problem with. I always feel the need to unload every bit of info on my husband in the evening. As if he does not have enough going on in his mind.

Two verses that spoke to me today:

Proverbs 19:13
“…A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping.”

How annoying I must be some days!!

Ephesians 4:29
“Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

Looks like I need to bite my tongue A LOT more!

What I am learning is that God wants to hear everything I worry about or desire or am upset about. My husband is human, too, and he has his own worries and desires. I shouldn’t burden him with every thought that pops into my head. Instead, my goal should be to edify him, make him feel loved, and be submissive. Our home is my job, and blabbing in his ear is a distraction from what my purpose is. I cannot be the wife he needs and wants if I spend every breath grumbling or deceiving to get what I want. AND I am teaching our girls the wrong way to build a marriage.

Time to regroup and build up my wonderful husband! :)

Recipe: Tomato Paste

With all the tomatoes we have had this Summer, I was forced to get creative with how I preserved them. After freezing about 40 or more cups of marinara sauce and canning several pints, I decided to try tomato paste. I searched online for a good recipe and found a few interesting ones. The first I found said to use sweet red peppers with the tomatoes, but I didn’t like that idea. I just wanted plain old paste….nothing seasoned or different. I read through several of the recipes’ steps and decided to make my own recipe based on what I read. It turned out tasty, and I am happy with the results.

Tomato Paste

Tomatoes (Roma is best, from what I read, but I used all kinds. I had about 5 lbs)

Olive Oil

1. Rough chop the tomatoes and place in large stockpot with about 2 TBSP olive oil. Heat and stir until soft enough to push through a sieve by hand.

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2. Run all tomatoes through sieve to remove skin and seeds. Discard skin and seeds. Return juice to stockpot.

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3. Heat juices to boiling and simmer for several hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes to keep from sticking. Sauce/juice should reduce by at least 1/3 and thicken (like paste from a can, or close to it). It will darken as well. Once thick and dark and at desired consistency, turn off heat and let cool in pot.

4. Put into storage containers and freeze or can.

I ended up filling 3 pint jars with 6 oz in each jar (since that is the measurement of a small can I use from the store).

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You start with a TON of tomatoes and end up with this tiny amount of paste. It almost seems like a waste. Happy I tried it, but I would probably just make a sauce or can the tomatoes next time to feel like I was able to use more of them!