Meal Planning – Week 2

Some Boy reviews from last week – since I’m thinking it might be helpful to have a boy opinion on these things:

“This is the best soup you have ever made” that was the ringing endorsement from the Boy as were enjoying Loaded Potato Soup from last week for the 3rd time.  The Boy does leftovers, but that he’s been willing to do this soup leftover time after time after time = note worthy. So if you haven’t made the Loaded Potato Soup from last week – I highly recommend it.

This week I made the controversial Warm Quinoa Salad from week 1 last Sunday night – it was super yummy and the Boy after his unwillingness to make it started this conversation:
Boy – Oh yeah, this one’s not bad.  I like the corn
Me – I know.  That’s what you said the last time.
Boy – How can you expect me to remember these things
Me – I don’t.  I remember for you.
Boy – Oh. I didn’t believe you.
Me – I know. I told you that too.

Onwards and upwards.

I didn’t actually get to Week 2’s meal list until Tuesday last week, since the leftovers (made and in grocery state) lasted us into the beginning of the week.  Sweet – making those groceries go further is always a good thing. When we ended up eating out Wednesday (date with mom) Thursday (multiple appointments for everyone + puppy school = sushi night) and Friday (date in Alliston with the fam), Saturday the Boy was reunited with friends and hockey and I was left on my own – week 2 quickly turned into week 3. I’m still trying to balance having enough ideas in mind and the fact that we’re on,y 2 people so maybe 6 recipes in mind is too many. Learning.

ANYWAY, Tuesday I made Raw Zucchini Pasta with Thai Peanut Sauce – I was really hesitant of the Boy’s review on this one.  I’ve had something similar so I wasn’t too worried about it and pretty intrigued (obvioulsy that’s why it made it on the list) but telling the Boy to think of raw Zucchini as pasta… I wasn’t sure how that would go.  I pre-made the sauce when I was home at lunch (the perks of working close to home) and after an evening skate we came home to a quick and easy dinner.  I added finely grated carrots and beets to the mix. Yum-o.

Raw Zucchini Pasta with Thai Sauce

I don’t know why the Boy was skeptical – Beets make it Pretty in Pink!

The Boy was as predicted very sketched out by the presentation – but he did admit that it was really tasty, not only that but that we could have it again. I’ll take that as “singing it’s praises”.

This week we had hamburgers, (technically not on the list, but we didn’t have chicken so – it all works out in the end) and the soup from Oh She Glows was a big hit with me, and the ably liked that he could put tortilla chips in it (since he’s not a big fan of beans – this too is practically singing it’s praises). Wednesday I made the Portabello and Red Pepper Mac and cheese but instead of the Yum Universe cheese sauce (which Sista found a bit bland) I turned to Oh She Glows again for her Vegan Alfredo sauce which is super yummy. Last night the sauce from the Raw Zucchini Pasta made another dinner for both of us plus a lunch. Love it when a little goes a long way!

I haven’t made the falafels yet, but given that they’re made with 2 cans of chickpeas – I’m thinking these will go pretty far and we’ll have some quick and dirty freezer falafels going forward. Score.

The Recipes:

Week 2:

Snacks – Morning Glory Muffins – Spilling the Beans.  In an effort to eat less wheat I made these with Gluten Free All Purpose Flour – straight up. They were still good, but they stuck to the paper like crazy and didn’t really rise.

We still had Peanut Butter Bars and Cheesy Hummus in the fridge, so I froze the muffins to make them last longer. Grab one in the morning and you’re good to go by first recess!

Lunches – Quinoa and Lentils Mandarin Salad – Quinoa 365

Big Salad with Falafels – Plant Powered Kitchen
Raw Zucchini Pasta with Thai Peanut Sauce – The Healthy Ginger
Black bean, Red Quinoa and Sweet Potato Soup – Oh She Glows
Portabello and Red Pepper Mac and Cheeze – Yum Universe + Oh She Glows Cheeze Sauce
Whole Chicken, Protein Mashed Potatoes and Veggies

Meal Planning -Week 1

True to my word I started meal planning this week.  The Pinterest inspiration that I saw involved colour coded cue cards in 10 different colours for 10 weeks of meal plans.  There was a grocery list attached to the top, so in theory one would just have to grab a stack head out to the grocery store and one would be set for the week.  This would work swimmingly if one was, a. Martha Stewart or b. Crazy OCD like the Boy, or c. actually devoted an weekend to planning 10 weeks of meals, printing them on colour coded cue cards, printed out the corresponding grocery lists and then displayed them beautifully for their esthetic beauty and to be showy about how ridiculously organized one was.
 
I am none of these things.
 
So I thought I’d start small, one week at a time.  I have done this before, but the lovely Pinterest post did highlight one small detail for me – save the lists.  Brilliant.
 
Week One was done on the fly while the Boy was in the shower 10 minutes pre-grocery shopping.
 
I grabbed everything from some of (mostly one of) my favourite veggie blogs – ran through what we had already in the fridge (nothing) and in the pantry (surprisingly a lot) and off we went. The only item we’re short – I didn’t buy enough Basil which will require a grocery stop tonight. No biggie.
 
It’s Friday and so far we have been pretty good. The Boy nixed the warm quinoa salad, claiming not to like it even though he’s had it before and definitely did like it. Instead he made pasta and red sauce, a la Boy. But at least he was funny about it…

The Boy Cooks

For those that may be following along, I give you Week 1.

Week 1:
 
Lunches Soup – Carrot Ginger and Apple – Oh She Glows

Snacks:
Cheesy Hummus – Oh She Glows
5 minute No Bake Peanut Butter Bars – Fannetastic Food  – I make these with Sunflower butter so that the Boy can take them to school – I also added mini chocolate chips so that the Boy will consider them a treat, and not some “crunchy good for you thing I’m trying to pass off as a granola bar”
 
 
Dinner:
Sundried Tomato Pesto Pasta – Oh She Glows – yummy, quick and easy.
Warm Quinoa Salad – Oh She Glows
Steak, Sweet Potatoes and Veggies – a la Boy
Loaded Baked Potato Soup – Peas and Thank You –  I made this last night and after taking another look at the ingredients – 1 cup of cheese into the pot, plus more on top? That is loaded. I don’t think so Mama Pea.  I skipped the 1 cup mixin’ and just added someme shredded on top. I’ll be sure to report back.
Lentil Loaf – Oh She Glows –  I make these in mini-loaf pans, then we can have 1 each for dinner and the other 8 go in the freezer for lunches (mostly mine – the Boy generally takes leftovers from dinner the night before) – but since we didn’t make it through all the recipes this week, I’ll probably push them over to next week.

and thrown in at the last minute –
Pasta and Red Sauce with left over steak chunks and veggies – a la Boy

Before and After

The Boy and I just enjoyed a full 2 weeks off of work for the holidays.  It was much needed and completely glorious.  We spent time with family and friends, between Christmas and New Years, but the bulk of our second week was spent turning our house into a beautiful after from a very blank, very white before.

We had some help, my mom’s interior designer came over and helped us pick colours.  Some people might love working from a completely blank slate, but I found it really overwhelming and was very grateful for the help – and the ability to choose from bigger swatches than just the 2×2 inches you get at the paint store.

When we bought our house, all the walls were builders white. Personally, I don’t know how the people we bought from lived with builders white for a 5 years.  It was driving me crazy! It might be because it was the crappiest paint job I have ever seen. I might have been able to live with a decent looking builders white for a while, but really – for me the starting point is paint on the walls.  I’ve lived with white walls before, many of my apartments were white walls, but for some reason, likely because it’s our house (and did I mention the crappy quality and dinginess?), I couldn’t do it. It didn’t feel like we should bother hanging many pictures or find a rug, or even organize our small book shelf before we put a some colour on the walls.

Before CollageSo over the last week we did just that.

Day 1 – ceilings.

Day 2 – living room – October Mist

Day 3 – kitchen – Windham Cream; small bathroom – Wheat Penny

Day 4 – entrance and up the stairs – Raintree Green; upstairs ceiling.

Day 5 – trim

Day 6 – new IKEA wall unit –  installation and filling/decorating

Day 7 – just as God did when creating the world – we rested.

In between we had a small break for New Years Eve and we (and by we I obviously mean the Boy – I showed up for unpacking) moved the Brother.

My God, we are tired.

In Progress CollageBut it was totally worth it.

Now we’re decorating, choosing a rug, looking for pictures and it generally just feels so much warmer and more homey.

Seriously love it.

A sneak peek at the after - some better ones to come.

A sneak peek at the after – some better ones to come.

What was your first project in your house?

Happy Anniversary

Just taking a small break from our painting marathon to officially wish the Boy a happy anniversary. Nope, it’s not our wedding, or the day we met, our first kiss, or engagement.

The Boy has been clean and sober of McDonalds for 13 months today. That means the Boy didn’t eat that nasty stuff once in 2012, and in my books that means he’s officially kicked the habit – which deserves both mention and celebration.

We are officially a McD’s free household. AWESOME.

Congratulations buddy!

Next up – Taco Bell?!

Do you have any bad food habits that you’ve kicked? The Boy went cold turkey – does that work for you?

Random Check in

  1. The Boy just told his Grandpa that he has 3 more weeks of school and then he’s off for 2 weeks.  This gave me heart palpitations. Not because of Christmas, but because of work.  That means year-end is in 3 weeks.  I have so much to do.
  2. Gordon is growing up so fast.  We took her for her last booster shot last night and she weighed in at a whopping 2.8kg or 6lbs 2oz. What happened to our little 2.5lb baby?
  3. Yes, we are those pet owners.  She is our child – without a doubt or apology.
  4. We’re still a 1 car family. For the most part it’s fine, except when it’s not.  Both the Boy and I go back and forth between being fine with it and needing a second car TODAY.
  5. The Boy has finished his first Long-Term-Occassional position.  It was great having a consistent morning routine, it sucks walking to the gym at 6:30am. See #4.
  6. The gym is still going well – it must be I’m walking there for goodness sake!  I haven’t remeasured yet, but I did put on my skinny jeans this week with minimal dancing and no need to lie down to do them up.
  7. Everyone does that right?
  8. The Boy is currently watching the Chinese News on OMNI1.  He says he’s trying to learn the language.
  9. The Boy and I went curling with Sista and the Physicist. The Boy said I should wear my bike helmet.  For the record I did not fall on my head once.  I did return with some bruises though.  Mainly from when I fell… on my hip… on my first rock.  It all made me feel very Canadian
  10. We decided not to go away over Christmas. Instead we’re painting our house and have made the definitive plan to go somewhere far in the summer.  I say Europe – anywhere in Europe.  The Boy says he likes the idea of the East Coast – Cabot Trail area. It is a beautiful area. But does anyone have suggestions for a “first trip to Europe” tour?

What’s new and random in your life?

 

You’re a Cutie

Picture this.

I’m sitting in a chair with a certain little puppy on my lap.

Boy – “Hi cutie”

Me – “Hi!”

Boy – “I wasn’t talking to you.”

Me – “Oh. So I’m not cute?”

Boy – “Well, you are.  But come on, you’ve got to admit – she’s cuter.”

Me – “Thanks.”

Boy – “Sorry, but it’s the truth. Look at her!”

You can’t argue with the truth.

Cute puppies who love to play on the computer make blogging more challenging.  But I’ve got a bunch in the arsenal – stay tuned.

 

 

ChChChChanges

I got a new haircut recently. This may not seem blog worthy – especially for someone who’s blog posts are as limited and sporadic as mine seem to be these days months.

I’ve got 2 reasons. 

  1. I now have bangs.  I have never had bangs before.  Never. I always thought my face was far to round for bangs.  That and I do not have a fivehead, that is a forehead that is large enough to REQUIRE bangs.  Turns out the round face is not an issue. And so I mention it because I have had this conversation with fellow round-facers who have reacted with “ME TOO!!” when I have said “I’ve never had bangs because my face is too round” They’ve all be very surprised I was able to pull it off.  As was I.  So as a public service announcement to all the round-facers of the world – I’m letting you know – I have bangs
  2. The Boy’s reaction. Let’s face it – we all know that when the Boy says something entertaining it needs to be documented.

I picked him up from work with my fresh new haircut. He got in the car (knowing full well that I needed the car that day so that I could get my haircut)

Boy – “It’s SHORT!”

Me – “Not really.”

Boy – “It’s different. It’s really different. What’sgoingon? It’sreallydifferent. Isitshorter?It’snotshorter? It’snice.It’sreallydifferent.Whatisit?” (his short outside voice questions got quicker and quicker as he tried to process what this GREAT change was he was looking at)

Me – “it’s bangs”

Boy – “It’s BANGS!!!”

Me – Yes.

Boy – You’ve never had bangs!

Me – I know.

Boy – Like never.

Me – Nope. Never.

Boy – BANGS!

Me – Okay, we’ve established it’s bangs – what do you think.

Boy – It’s different!

Me – Is that a Boy code for I don’t like it/think it’s weird but I’m being polite kind of different? (this is a real thing for the Boy FYI)

Boy – No. It’s just really different.

He then proceeded to stare at me while I was driving us home.

Boy – I like it.  It looks good. 

Another long pause while he processed this drastic change I’d brought to our lives.

Boy – You look like you belong on TV!

 

Nice save buddy.

Foreshadowing

An update on the cutest puppy you’ve ever seen? She’s great. Still cute.  Cries less. Loves her bed.  Still not a big fan of being left in the crate.  Slept through the night Friday and Saturday night – woke up once Sunday and up early Monday morning – of course. But since then she’s been sleeping through the night and minimal crying in the crate at bedtime – we’re such proud parents.

She’s very cuddley, when she’s not trying to eat your hair, your ear or generally biting your face.

FYI puppy teeth are SHARP!

People say that a puppy is good practice for a baby. I don’t really know who these people are – but I’ve been told, “people say it.”  Being a new puppy parent, I can say there might be some truth to that, but don’t think it’s really practice so much as foreshadowing.

The Boy is VERY fond of Gordon. He’s very protective of her, worries she’s going to fall off the couch and hurt herself.  Tells me frequently where she is in proximity to my feet so I don’t step on her.  When I do catch her while I’m walking and she goes sliding across the floor he says “you have to be careful! She likes to stay right with you!”

 

He says she likes me better – not necessarily true, but there is one difference between us.  I get up with her and the Boy does not.

Actual conversation after night 2 with puppy.

The Boy – I’m not a morning person

Me – I know.

The Boy – I don’t know how you do it

Me – What?

The Boy – get up with her at 4:30 and 5 in the morning.

Me – She needs to go out. And I don’t want my day to start at 4:30 while I listen to her cry for 2 hours, so I get up let her out play with her and then we have a nap for another hour or so.

The Boy – I know.  I can’t do it. I’m sorry, but I can’t get out of bed and get up with her.

Me – I’ve noticed.  I’m sensing some foreshadowing here.

The Boy – Are you? Good.  Me too – at least you won’t be surprised.

Here’s the thing about puppies, they’re pretty much sleeping through the night by about day 4. Maybe getting up once until Day 10. That is a small but significant difference between dog babies and human babies. I informed The Boy that while I am fine with getting up with our furry little puppy-child this should in no way be taken as solidifying our roles once we have little humans to take care of.  Babies do not sleep through the night by day 10.  And while I can handle a few days of sleepiness while we get our puppy acquainted with her new home – I am by no means prepared to take the night shift entirely by myself for any humans that may come our way. No dice my friend.

So while I don’t think that looking after a puppy is the same as looking after a baby – the saying is not without some truth.  We’re getting an idea of what battles may lie ahead – and since they also say to pick your battles – I guess Gordon is helping us man our  stations. 

Closing Time – You can’t stay here

Today’s the day!!! It’s Closing Day! Hurrah!!!!!!
It’s a little bittersweet – just a little.  As I’m looking around our first home there are things I’ll miss and things I won’t.  In honour of our first home 5 fast things I won’t miss and 5 fast things I will.

  1. Not controlling the heat. Our apartment is in a century home that has been split into 4 apartments.  It’s water radiators are efficient – when they’re on. The heat is controlled by the apartment downstairs.  The first winter we were here the people in that apartment didn’t know they controlled it for the whole house and turned the heat off whenever they weren’t home – we froze for a good couple of weeks before we found them.
  2. Not controlling the temperature of my shower. Similarly to heat, in an old house we all have the same hot water tank. If you’re showering and someone else decides to do laundry – you better be quick or get out of the way!
  3. Speaking of laundry – The Boy and I are thrilled to not have to cart our laundry all over Ontario.  Spilled something on yourself? Now we can wash it right away!!
  4. Nosey neighbours. Okay, so they’re not that bad, but we do live across the street from our landlords and while they are lovely people, it’s just a bit…. close.
  5. The draft.  We love the old character of our house, but an old comes with old windows and in the winter – those windows are really crappy.  Our apartment is super cute but in the winter – it’s small and it’s cold.

 

But there are things we’ll miss too:

  1. The character.  We really love the large window frames, 9 inch base boards and old wood floors.  Our new house is new – and that’s going to be great too, but we really loved that we lived in an old house with lots of history.
  2. The neighbourhood.  Even though we’re only moving about 1 km away, we’re in a new neighbourhood.  Sure that means we’ll find new houses to lust after, but we really like looking at the all the other old houses in our current area.
  3. The “lake”.  Part of the neighbourhood is a really nice central park, with a big “lake” (not a lake at all, it’s a pond but they call it a lake – I don’t know why).  We walk around this “lake” every night and look for the beaver, check in on the ducks. Again, our new house will come with a new walk route but until we find it we’ll miss our old one.
  4. Muscle Beach.  Our square-footage basically doubled in the summer with Muscle Beach – our rooftop patio and container garden.  Our new house will get a new deck next summer – it’s already on the Boy’s to-do list. But there’s something about a roof top that’s just so much cooler. Maybe it’s the lack of railings that made it feel more badass. HA!
  5. The neighbours. Our family friends, and priest live one street over. We’ll miss running into them on our daily walks and it’s been nice to have someone we know living so close.  It gives our neighbourhood a small town feel when you run into people on the street, or have someone throw rocks or an apple core at your window to get your attention.

Good-bye little apartment.  We’ve loved you while we were here – but it’s time to go.

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary

Did you notice that the wedding posts (and all posts for that matter) fell off the planet? Yeah, me too.  What can I say… the summer’s been a little nutso.

But today’s the day. One year later. First anniversary.

“They” say the first year is the hardest. If that’s the case I can happily report the Boy and I are in for years of smooth sailing. I read a post the other day from Fumbling Towards Normalcy about fairy tales and happily ever after. It made me laugh. Shana always makes me laugh. But she opened this post reflecting on a friend’s status on her anniversary and I really couldn’t agree more.

For richer and poorer – check – (got a new job; bought a house)

In sickness and in health – check (only the odd man cold; for the most part we’re pretty healthy)

For better for worse – check and check.

Sure we’ve had an argument or too, but we also had a lot of fun. It feels different than when we were engaged or dating. And still any time the Boy refers to me as his wife it feels a little strange but it also makes me feel really loved.

But as I remember what we promised each other last year, it makes me remember how lucky we are. Lucky to have found each other. Lucky to have had such a perfect wedding day. Lucky to be supported and loved by so many people. Lucky to have such a happy life together.

Happy Anniversary Buddy. 1 year down, lifetime to go. 🙂

XOXO