Healthy Valentine’s Day *Kid Friendly* Menu Plan

Hi Guys!

I know how hard it is to come up with a healthy meal for my family, especially holiday meals. That’s why i’ve decided to write up a healthy menu plan for this Valentine’s Day.

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Before, for Valentine’s Day, we would most likely have donuts for breakfast. Don’t get me wrong i absolutely love a good donut here and there, but they aren’t healthy and they are packed full of sugar, and they don’t fill you up.

Instead, for a healthy breakfast option, how about Banana Oatmeal Pancakes!

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You could even make them in a heart shaped mold, to make them more festive. What’s great about these pancakes is they are; sugar-free, oil- free, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

For lunch, the Banana Dog Bites are super yummy!

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We have been making these for years, and all my kids love them. They are also super simple to make (only 3 ingredients)!

**If you are not a fan of peanut butter and bananas, you could do a tortilla roll up instead, with deli meat, cheese, and your favorite condiment (i love mustard on mine).**

Where we live Valentine’s Day is always chilly, so warming up with a hot bowl of soup always sounds like a good idea. This Cheeseburger Soup is a big hit with all of my children.

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Packed with veggies, even a secret one that was blended up that my kids still don’t know about (Shhh!), it’s creamy, delicious, and can be made in a pressure cooker!!

Of course it’s Valentine’s Day we are talking about ,so i can’t forget about dessert. Chocolate Covered Strawberries will always be a classic Valentine’s Day dessert for me.

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You can make them healthier by using a dark chocolate, and skipping out on the sprinkles.

I hope you have enjoyed this healthy sample menu for Valentine’s Day. What do you normally eat on Valentine’s Day?

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash.*

 

 

January Favorites

Hi Guys!

Today i’m sharing all my favorite things from January.

Jan favs 2019

Water w/ lemons – In December I was loving water with cranberries in it, but in January lemons in my water were my jam!

Mothering From Scratch – This was such a good book, filled with valuable information about mothering. I highly recommend it! (While i was finding it on Amazon to link, i noticed it was on sale for $5, it is regularly priced at $15. What a great deal!)

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Bullet Journaling – I love, love, love bullet journaling! Every morning in January i made time to spend bullet journaling. I have this bullet journal and i’m using these markers!

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Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation – This foundation is my new favorite, i bought it in December and have been using it ever since. It’s a little bit on the pricey side, but the coverage is amazing! It’s well worth the price in my opinion! (Tip: I recommend buying this at a beauty store {Ulta or Sephora} because Amazon’s price is like $20 more expensive!)

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Running on my Treadmill – That is all i did in January for my work outs, was running on my treadmill!! I love having a treadmill, because there is no way i could go to a gym regularly or run outside regularly. It’s so convenient to have a treadmill at home.

Ordering on Costco.com – Costco will ship non-perishable items to your house in 2 days with free shipping on orders over $75! I really enjoy this option in winter months, where maybe i can’t get out of the house (snowy days) or the flu is going around and i don’t want to risk getting sick. I took advantage of online ordering twice last month!

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Nature’s Bounty Hair, Skin, & Nails Gummies – Although i don’t see a major difference yet, i think my fingernails have been growing a little more quickly. It’s only been a month, so i’m going to keep taking them and see what happens. Plus they taste yummy!

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That’s all for my favorites for January. I hope you enjoyed this blog post.

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash. This post may contain affiliate links.*

 

Monthly Meal Planning

Recently I started making a monthly menu plan, my goal in doing so was to a.) have less shopping trips b.) stop eating the same dinners every week and c.) to *hopefully* save some money.

I shared a picture on Instagram, that had my January meal plan on it, and I got a few comments on it. So I thought I would just share how i’m monthly menu planning, in case you are wanting to start as well.

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I had been weekly meal planning, up until December, so i’m fairly new to this, but this is how i’m doing it.

I started out by making a list of all the dinners I could think of that my family enjoys. My goal in doing this, was to have a list of at least 35 meals. Once I had that list of dinners, I used my 2019 Planner (which includes a menu planning page for each month) and added in a different dinner for each day.

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When planning out where to put all the meals, I kept these things in mind:

  1. Makeover/Leftover meals – For example: If I cook a whole chicken one night, there will be leftovers that I can then use the next night for a different meal, like chicken pot pie.
  2. Themed nights – For example: We eat Mexican type meals on Tuesdays, and Asian inspired dishes on Fridays.
  3. Meatless meals – I try to make at least 1 meal a week without any meat. (Baked potatoes, rice & beans, cauliflower chowder; to name a few)
  4. Special occasions/holidays – We let the kids pick the meals on their birthdays, so when I am planning I need to keep that in mind.

 

If you notice, my monthly meal plan is just dinners. That’s because I don’t plan out breakfast and lunch. I usually just keep on hand breakfast and lunch type foods; cereal, oatmeal, bread, yogurt, etc. And lunch for us is usually leftovers from the previous nights dinner, or we will make sandwiches, some pasta, soup, beans, etc…

Once I have my menu for the month, then I work on a monthly grocery list. I do grocery shopping twice a month. I do a big shopping trip at the beginning of the month, and then a smaller fill in shopping trip half way through the month.

Things I buy in my beginning of the month shopping trip:

  • Meats – All the meats i’m going to need for the month, I buy now and freeze.
  • Bread – I buy enough for the first 2 weeks only.
  • Pantry Items – All the the ingredients for the recipes, things that won’t go bad.
  • Frozen foods – All the frozen items we will need for the month.
  • Produce – For the first 2 weeks of the month only.
  • Dairy/Refrigerated – Mostly just for the first 2 weeks, with the exception of cheese. I buy enough cheese to last the whole month.

Things I buy half way through the month:

  • More dairy/refrigerated products – yogurt and milk mostly.
  • More bread
  • More produce – fruits and veggies to get us through the rest of the month.
  • And anything else I forgot to buy at the beginning of the month.

That’s it, that’s how I meal plan for the entire month. I think it has been working out really well for us. I like having all the meals thought out ahead of time, and having all the groceries on hand is really convenient.

How do you meal plan? Weekly or Monthly?

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Morning Routine {For A Mom Of 5}

Hi Guys!

Today I thought I would share what my morning routine looks like, as a mom of 5.

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Usually my body just wakes up around 5 o’clock, but if it doesn’t then my alarm goes off at 5:30 and I get up. That’s when I will let the dogs outside, use the bathroom, and weight myself.

Then I go into the kitchen and turn on the coffee pot, and then pour myself a cup of coffee. After getting my coffee, I walk back into my bedroom, sit down at my desk, and enjoy my cup of coffee, while chatting with my husband (who is also enjoying a cup of coffee).

Once i’m done with my coffee, I grab out my bullet journal and work on that for a little while (my husband is usually leaving for work at this point). In my bullet journal, I keep track of all my health/fitness stuff so that’s usually what i’m entering into my journal in the morning.

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After that, I try to get moving. I start with picking up my bedroom. I make the bed, pick up stuff off the floor, put away any laundry laying around, etc..

Then, at this point, I am just waiting for 7 o’clock to come around (when the children wake up), so I might; read a book, watch a YouTube video, write a blog post, or check my social media accounts, to kill some time.

7 o’clock rolls around, and all the children start to wake up. That’s when I start making breakfast, after some morning snuggles with the littles. By 7:30 we are eating breakfast.

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After breakfast, I clean up the kitchen (dishes, wipe down counters, etc.), then I start a load of laundry for the day. Once my morning chores have been done, I help the 2 youngest get dressed and ready for the day.

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Then I get myself ready for the day, and then once i’m done it is usually almost 8 o’clock (which is when we start school). I call the 3 oldest to get their schoolwork and come to the table. We get started with math first (which we do for 1 hour) and while I go back and forth helping the 3 oldest with any math problems they are struggling with, I am also working with my 4 year old with his preschool work.

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Then the rest of my morning is spent helping children with schoolwork, keeping the toddler entertained, and trying to move around as much as possible (so that i get my 10,000+ steps every day).

So that’s what my mornings looks like pretty much every day, with the exception of the weekends. However, i still wake up at the same time on the weekends, and do most of the same things in the morning, with the only exception being schoolwork with the children.

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash.*

 

Homeschooling In Small Spaces

Hi Guys!

Last year we moved from a 2,600 Square feet house into a 1,900 square feet house. In downsizing, we lost a dedicated school room, so now we’ve been doing most of our school work at the dinning room table. I know, from first hand experience, that homeschooling in a small space can be tricky, but it’s also completely doable.

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Here’s how we have been doing it…

  1. Find a spot for your curriculum/books/Supplies (Tip: Think outside the box) – We have this little area at the top of our stairs, which i refer to as the “book nook area”, where we keep all our curriculum, books, and supplies.

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If you don’t have a space like that, use a closet, or a bookshelf, or a cabinet, or keep             your curriculum in containers that can be easily stored under furniture or a bed.

2. Only buy/keep what’s necessary – I’ve had to get rid of a lot of things that we just              really didn’t need and things that were taking up space. Would it be nice to have a              model skeleton? Sure, but the space it takes up makes it not worth it, when we can              just look up pictures in books or online. Also i have to be very picky about what i                buy and bring into our house, because we don’t want to add more clutter.

3. Mini white boards – My big white board is probably the thing i miss the most.                    However, i found some mini white boards at Walmart that were only a couple of                dollars. They work great to work one on one with each child, and can be easily                    stored.

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I hope you enjoyed hearing about my tips on how we manage to homeschool in a small space. Are you also homeschooling in a small space? I’d love to hear some of your tips.

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash.*

 

 

Baby Fever {Will We Have More Kids?}

I think I will be 70 years old and still have baby fever.

It’s just a part of who I am.

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When I was a little girl, most of my fellow classmates dreamed of being; doctors, lawyers, teachers, etc., while the only desire in my heart was to be a mom. I used to proclaim I was going to have 13 children.

As I grew older that number of desired children slightly changed from 13 to 6.

After having my 5th child, I told everyone that we were done. That was it, no more kids. But I really only said that because I knew that’s what everyone wanted to hear. People today don’t seem to like big families.

Truth be told, I don’t know if we are done adding to our family. I will tell you that sometimes when we are all together hanging out, I will all of a sudden get this feeling like someone is missing. I then start counting the children, only to see that all 5 of them are there, but yet this missing feeling still lingers inside me. My husband believes that feeling comes from the baby that we lost.

Who knows what God has in store for us for the future. I would absolutely love to have another baby, but if that doesn’t happen I know i’m incredibly blessed with the kids I have been given.

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash.*

December Favorites 2018

Hi Guys!

Today i’m sharing some of my favorite things from December 2018.

december favorites 2018

Water & Cranberries – I’ve been adding a couple cranberries to my water lately and i’m loving it. It gives it just a slight sweet taste, which helps me drink more.

 

Perfectly Posh Lotion – This is the only lotion that doesn’t sting when i apply it to my dry cracked hands. Plus the smell of Posh Boss is amazing. (*No, I do not sell their products, just sharing what i like.*)

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Olay Face Moisturizer – My skin has been so dry because of the winter weather, that i am so glad i found this product. I just started using it so i can’t give a full review yet, but the times i have used it, i sure to feel a difference.

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Jesus Calling For Christmas – This book is very well written and the pictures are breathtakingly beautiful. I really liked how short each message was, because i was so busy last month that it was nice i could just get a minute or two here to read each message.

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Bernat Super Chunky Yarn – I’ve been working on making each of my children a blanket, and i am really loving the super chunky yarn. Right now i’m using a Sea Foam Print on a blanket for Lincoln.

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WOW Hits 2019 – I switched over to Christian music almost a year ago. We got this CD for Christmas and i really do love every song on it.

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DAVIDsTEA – We did the 24 Tea Advent Calendar and found some really yummy teas. The Candy Cane Crush was probably my favorite out of them all.

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That’s it, i hope you enjoyed hearing about some of my favorite things. I’d love to hear what some of your favorite things are right now.

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*Stock photo provided by Unsplash. This post may contain affiliate links.*