My Fab Fam

My Fab Fam
Photo by Thousand Hills Photography. Click on photo to visit their site.

Monday, October 20, 2014

On the Menu

Reality check.

So, I realize that my blog has become all about food lately, and let's just state the obvious: food is a priority in my life. We have to eat to live and I want to eat as healthy as I can, and I want my family to eat as healthy as we can. But I've come to realize from several convos I've had with friends and family lately that there is a perception out there that I am cooking wholesome, healthy meals, like every night. In this case, perception is NOT reality.

Let me try to paint a real picture: I am a walking contradiction, sometimes freaking out over my food and sometimes throwing my hands up in defeat as I pull in a drive-thru and sometimes just saying, "I don't even care," as I buy chocolate donuts. I want to eat food the way God created it, unaltered and without additives is busy and sometimes whole foods just take too long...whole foods are expensive unless you grow and make them all yourself and then that's time consuming...I've tasted some of the empty calories and they taste so, so good, i.e. Entenmann's chocolate donuts. I do the best I can, but I am far from eating clean 100% of the time.

I don't freak out over real sugar or real fat (butter, clean oils), because they are natural products, but I do have to watch them because the Mr's cholesterol is on the verge of being high. However, I do try to avoid MSG, preservatives, saturated fats, GMO's, artificial colors and flavors, and any other weird ingredients. Does that mean we never eat them? No. A very big, loud no. But I try to cook clean for supper and weekend meals. Breakfast and lunch is just whatever I can do with a semi-clear conscience. We do eat out some. And we can pretty much be relied upon for having pizza once every week or two.

Honestly, on weekdays we do well to get breakfast in bellies before getting to school, and most of it is eaten in the car on the way. It's usually a Kashi bar or Nature's Path version of a Pop-tart. I try to make my own granola, granola bars, and bread to use for toast, but that only happens maybe half the time. Lunch is usually a mix of any of the following: fruit (fresh or dried), some type of veggie (cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks, etc.), nuts, cheese, hummus, Sunbutter, and crackers (I prefer rice crackers, but will use others that don't have weird ingredients).

I know from all the convos I have with you all out there that I am super blessed to have a family that will eat left-overs. The Mr doesn't love them more than once, but even he can be persuaded to eat the same meal up to three times if I can find a way to vary it just a little each time. So, when I tell you all on here about the fun foods I might be making, don't think it happens every day. N to the O. I am notorious for fixing a meal that can be eaten for at least two or three days. Sometimes, if it's a recipe the Mr doesn't love, the girls and I will eat it for lunch. But the point is, momma ain't cooking every night. Noooo. Here's a quick glance at some weekly menus.

Last week's menu...

cooked pot of black beans to use in Monday's supper:  Spicy Spaghetti Squash (recipe here)

left-over Spicy Spaghetti Squash

More of Monday's black beans with cheese and sour cream and roasted sweet potato fries

A friend gave us some ribs and salad; I re-heated Wednesday's sweet potato fries to go with, and I made black bean brownies with the last of the beans. My man does not eat those.

We ordered pizza.

Spaghetti (a box and a jar) and re-heated frozen rolls

On the menu for this week...

We were all sick and stayed home from church so I got to fix breakfast, which almost never happens. We had homemade pancakes (recipe below) and scrambled eggs for breakfast,
Sonic BLT's for lunch, and
Jamaican pork tenderloin for sup (recipe found here)

The girls are home sick from school, so we are eating the left-over pork for lunch, and for sup:  French Onion Soup (recipe found here)

Here's the plan for the rest of the week...

left-over French Onion Soup

Veggie Omelettes (just eggs, milk, veggies, cheddar) and toast

Chicken enchiladas (I was going to make Sunday, but didn't have everything I needed; so, I'm making them later this week. Recipe found here.)

left-over Chicken enchiladas or something fast (...because it's Friday and who cooks on Friday? Maybe I'll have a date night with the Mr.)

Veggie soup (just throwing things in a pot)

Left-over veggie soup

See? It really isn't that exciting in my kitchen. I do love to cook. I do try to cook healthy. But I'm not cooking every night of the week. And we do love our pizza. Oh! And Entenmann's chocolate donuts. I know, I know, loaded with nasty stuff. Let's not talk about it; I'm not willing to give those things up. Yet.

I thank God for the garden goodies frozen in my garage freezer, for organic farmers who make up for my incompetence as a gardener, for conscientious food suppliers like Kashi, Cascadian Farms, and Nature's Path, for the times I get to make clean meals, and for the way whole foods taste and fill us up. But I also thank Him for the empty-calorie-tastiness of Entenmann's chocolate donuts. In heaven, they will be good for us.


Attitude of Gratitude, because it's been a year since I actually listed things at the end of a post. Wow. A year.

#291. Fall weather
292. windows open
293. bread rising
294. time with a friend
295. time at home
296. my girls home with me today
297. an amazingly patient man
298. items checked off my to-do list
299. scones I didn't have to make, and
300. Just this, our chalkboard door getting filled up with verses baby girl is learning in preK, one for every letter of the alphabet. And that is a door at the bottom of the door, drawn by baby girl herself.


Homemade pancakes:

1 1/2 c. all purpose flour
3 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 T. sugar
1 1/2 c. milk (or add until you get the consistency you desire)
1 egg
3 T. butter, melted

Mix all. Let rest a minute while skillet heats. Cook in a buttered iron skillet over med-low heat. Serve with real maple syrup.

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