New Series ::: What’s for Lunch? ::: Week of 2/18/15

Along with my new love for Costco and my goal of transitioning to shopping once-a-month for groceries and necessities, I’m also moving toward making lunches once a week for the boys and me. I thought starting to meal plan for at least weekly lunches would be a good way to easily start getting used to making lots of meals at once so that eventually I can also do once-a-month cooking. I’m a big dreamer, huh? :-)

This is my second week of making pre-made lunches; I didn’t capture my plans last week because I was exhausted and my brain wasn’t functioning. You can see a picture of the lunches here, though. So, since I was more prepared (and rested) this week I thought that I’d start to share them on the blog. I will either post them weekly or bi-weekly at first, depending on how I plan them, and then will eventually post them monthly. For now, I make lunch for three days per week because I work from home the other two days and I make lunch on demand. Things will change once the new baby comes and I’m not working, but will pick up again once we have a good routine and B, our 7-year old, starts going to summer camp all week.

Here’s what we’ve having this week:

Boys: Day 1

  • Cheese Pizza
  • Orange slices
  • Salad w/ranch dressing
  • Animal crackers
  • Yogurt
  • Water

Boys: Day 2

  • No-Nut Butter and jelly sandwich
  • Apple slices
  • Yogurt and granola
  • Veggies
  • Strawberry slices
  • Water

Boys: Day 3

  • Grilled cheese sandwich
  • Chips
  • Applesauce
  • Banana
  • Veggies
  • Granola bar
  • Water

Me: All 3 days

  • Turkey and cheese sandwich
  • Black bean soup
  • Chips
  • Orange slices
  • Yogurt and granola
  • Applesauce
  • Water

There you have it. Making all of the lunches took me about an hour. Not bad if I do say so myself. By the way, we’re creatures of habit so our lunches will tend to follow a pattern however I will make an effort to shake things up a bit here and there. Hope you’re having a great week!

What's for lunch? | Week 2

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Updates Galore! This is a long one, peeps.

Friends, it’s been far too long since I’ve posted on here. I have a good reason, though. Life has been beautifully chaotic. Total oxymoron, right? Things are calming down now, so here I am, back at it again, breathing in between going on and on ’til the break of dawn.

Here’s what I’ve been up to:

My pregnancy 

I totally fell off vlogging my pregnancy on YouTube. There was always something getting in the way. My

32 weeks!

32 weeks!

camera stopped working on my iPhone, the timing wasn’t right, exhaustion took over… you name it, my efforts were blocked. Anywho, I’m almost 34-weeks pregnant and feeling great! Baby girl is growing very well and everyone is getting very excited for her arrival. My boys marvel at seeing her move in my belly and have already connected with her. She even starts squirming when she hears their voices. How cool is that? I’ve finally started buying her things and will be completely ready for her by March 1st. BTW, shopping for a girl is a trip. Anyone who has ever done it knows what I mean. Oy vey! I decided not to have a baby shower (I had one with my first. That’s enough for me. LOL!), but will be having two “baby dinners” later this month — one for our families and one for my friends. Oh yeah, I almost forgot… I met with my birth doula a couple of weeks ago and I’m super excited to be using a doula this time around. I feel so comfortable with her and look forward to the whole birthing experience. Well, the pain not so much, but I think you get what I’m saying.

On the home-front

Since Thanksgiving last year, my home has been a whirlwind of activity. When we found out we were expecting baby #3 we immediately started thinking about moving. We have an older home with three SMALL bedrooms and a lot of work that needs to be done all around. We looked at the pros and cons of moving and it made more sense to stay in our mortgage-free home and renovate than to move and have to take on a mortgage. So, since we’ll be here for a while, we decided to renovate the basement. Oh the joys and pains of living in a home while renovating. Having things everywhere + 2 energetic boys + being super pregnant = a test of patience and sanity unlike none other. It’s been a struggle to say the least, but everything will be back in order by the end of the month AND we’ll have a whole new level of living space to boot. I can’t wait!

We also decided to move the boys into one bedroom, leaving the third bedroom empty for now. Doing this required closing up the small closet that is in their room, but I came up with a generous amount of storage for them, so they’re comfortable with room to grow. More than that on another post! Speaking of organization, during the renovation I decided to continue my quest to declutter the rest of the house and BABY I kicked some butt on that front. I’ll be completely done with decluttering every room by the end of the month. It’s been a long haul, but I’m finally at the end of that goal. Granted, staying organized requires effort, but upkeep is nothing like establishing the system.

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New goal for 2015

With everything going on, the topic of efficiency has been on my mind. I’ve been wondering how I’ll manage

Prepped three days worth of lunches for the boys following my Costco trip!

Prepped three days worth of lunches for the boys following my Costco trip!

working full-time, homeschooling, homemaking, and being a wife and mother of three 7 years old and under with all of the other plates I have a’spinning. What came to mind was this: honor the season I’m in by making my priorities crystal clear. One of the ways I’m doing this is by transitioning into grocery and necessity shopping once-a-month by the end of the year. Having more time and saving money are two of my highest priorities so this goal is very important. While it may sound intimidating, I assure you that I’m moving at a snail’s pace in this transition. Grace-based movements all the way!

I decided to simply start with meal planning. If I can make meal planning a habit that will be a big accomplishment. I got a glimpse into how this goal can be realized this past weekend after a trip to my local Costco. We decided to renew our membership and I was blown away by not only the savings (bought at least two weeks worth of food for $200 — we usually spend $125/week at the grocery store), but by the amount of organic food they have available. I can totally see it being our go-to grocery store for most things. Needless to say, I was beyond thrilled. Even my husband was kinda pumped at the prospect. I look forward to finding ways to shop once a month and will continue to share my journey here.

Homeschooling

I’ll be posting an update on our homeschooling journey this week. Look for it on my other blog, www.homeschoolingintheD.com.

So, that’s it y’all. My life as of late in a nutshell. If you read this whole thing, bless you. I have lots of topics to talk about and will be posting more often! I just gotta. Talk to you soon! <3

How We’re Doing Christmas This Year

Our journey towards a more minimalist lifestyle doesn’t exclude the holidays. We usually celebrate with gifts under the artificial tree, my husband and I looking on as the kids open lots of new toys from us, family, and, of course, Santa. However this year there’s no tree — it stopped working last year so we pitched it. Even if we wanted a tree there’s no space as we’re renovating our basement and all of those things are upstairs. Clearing out the basement gave me the opportunity to evaluate what we want to keep, sell, or giveaway. It also helped me think about how Christmas giving would go this year.

Then I found this on Pinterest:

4 gift rule

Awesome, right? I love how simple this makes gift giving for the holidays and even birthdays. It gives a handful of gifts that are intentional, useful, educational, and wanted. Following this rule, plus purging the old toys, clothes, and books definitely meets our minimalist standards. This also inspired me to start a new tradition of giving the kids a new backpack (each Christmas if needed) that will contain some, if not all, of their gifts. Zero waste gift giving for the win!

Since the boys don’t read my blog (yet!), I’ll spill the beans on what they’re getting this year.

  • They both get Kindles and reading tents.
  • My oldest will get a few books from the Not for Parents series, a Minecraft game for the Xbox One, and undergarments.
  • My youngest will get a dinosaur book, dinosaur figures, and some undergarments.

As for gifts from family and friends, I send an email annually giving gift suggestions for the boys. This year I asked for experience-based gifts or gift cards, and gave over 10 options that are free, inexpensive, and local. I used to feel weird about asking for specific gifts, but I’ve found that it makes it easier for family and friends to get exactly what the boys would like. From the list, the boys (and the rest of the family) will receive our zoo, MI Science Center, and Henry Ford/Greenfield Village annual memberships as gifts. Believe me, those alone are some of the best gifts to get! We stay at those places throughout the year. Even though there’s no tree and not tons of gifts, I think this will be one of the most memorable Christmas’ to date.

Happy holidays from our family to yours!

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