Good morning, and happy Sunday! We celebrated New Year's and enjoyed another busy week of vacation before the kids return to school on Monday (phew)! I’m sharing all of the highlights, along with our easy dinners, in today’s roundup of Our Week in Meals!
For those of you who are new to the blog, Our Week in Meals is where I share a little bit about what we’ve been up to over the past week — as it relates to our dinners each night. This series gives you a glimpse “behind the scenes” at some highlights from our life, shows you how I balance a busy schedule with feeding my family, and offers a few new ideas for your own weekly meal plan. Now let’s back up to last weekend…
We ran a few errands on Sunday morning, and then I spent some time in the kitchen while Keith took Spencer to the John Deere dealer to check out the equipment (this is seriously Spencer's favorite thing to do)!
Casey and Spencer joined me for a short hike later in the afternoon, before we returned home to get dinner organized.
Keith wanted to smoke a Garlic & Herb Turkey Breast, so I took care of the sides.
I made a batch of Aunt Bee's 3-Ingredient Buttermilk Biscuits,
as well as my 3-Ingredient Cranberry Orange Sauce. I also included some sauerkraut and macaroni salad that I bought at Yoder's Country Market, plus a simple green salad to get in some veggies. It was like a miniature Thanksgiving feast!
Our former babysitter, Rebekah, came for a visit on Monday. She still lives up the road from us on her family's farm, but "Bek Bek" has moved on to become a school teacher, so we don't get to see her as much as we used to.
She brought cookies, too!
We had a New Year's Eve party to attend that evening on our friends' farm, and since the weather was rainy and nasty, boots were the attire of choice. Gone are the days of sequins, glitter and high heels on New Year's Eve!???? I'll take cozy vests, jeans and rubber boots any day...
The party was held in their barn, with catered barbecue from Shawn's for supper.
Brisket, smoked pulled chicken, green beans, coleslaw, and baked beans.
Since a Coca Cola Cake is traditional for a Southern pig pickin', I figured it would be a great dessert to share at the party. This shortcut recipe from my Great Aunt Bee is such a classic (and always a crowd pleaser)!
We then had to leave the party by 5:00 in order to get Gibbs to his 6:00 basketball practice. Rockin' New Year's Eve, right?!
Poor Spencer cried when we had to pull him off of the hay trailer to go home!
New Year's Day was pretty quiet around here. It started with an early dog walk in the 60-degree weather...
and we made it back outside later for a hike with the kids. Nerf guns are the key to entertaining boys in the woods!
Our New Year's dinner was a classic Southern good luck meal, just like I was raised on! My mom has always served pork, Hoppin' John (or other black eyed peas), greens, and cornbread -- so that's what I do, too!
First, we started with Mom's 10-Minute Holiday Crab Dip and a variety of crackers. This is one of Keith's favorite appetizers, and since we didn't have a chance to make it for Christmas, I figured New Year's was the next best excuse!
The rest of the meal included my 4-Ingredient Pork Loin Roast,
Collard Greens (I finally took the time to photograph my recipe, so I'll share it here in a couple of weeks),
and corn muffins on the side!
Plus a Southern treat for dessert: my Hummingbird Cake! This is so good -- and so easy, because it doesn't involve multiple layers or a bundt pan. It's more like a "snack cake," and heck -- with the fruit and nuts, you can even serve it for breakfast with a cup of coffee!????
Then Keith and Casey were out the door for a 7:00 basketball practice. 'Tis the season!
The weather wasn't great on Wednesday morning, but that didn't matter -- I needed to get the boys and the dog outside for some fresh air and running around.
We went to one of their favorite playgrounds near Charlottesville for a change of scenery, before returning home at lunchtime.
We took Teddy to the vet that afternoon for his final round of puppy shots, and then ate an early dinner around 5:00 so that I could get Gibbs to basketball by 6:00.
We had an easy dinner from the freezer: my Spaghetti with Meat Sauce and broccoli on the side (recipe for the spaghetti sauce will be on the blog next month -- in the meantime, you can try our favorite Quick and Easy Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce)!
The dog had a grooming appointment on Thursday morning, so while he was occupied the boys and I spent time running errands in town. Yes, I try to make most of our meals at home, but my kids still love a good fast food burger and fries!
I treated them to McDonald's for lunch before we had to pick the dog up.
I then dropped the boys off at the house to stay with their babysitter, Mary Kate, while I went to Charlottesville for a checkup at the dermatologist.
Meanwhile, our dinner was slowly simmering on the countertop! I knew that we would need a quick dinner right at 5:00 before basketball practice, so I prepped my Slow Cooker Chicken Corn Chowder earlier in the day.
Served with dinner rolls and side salads, this was the perfect cozy meal on a chilly, gray evening.
The boys and I spent a rainy Friday at my parents' house in Nelson County.
My dad and I poked around our favorite antique store while Mom played Monopoly with the kids...
...and for lunch we had Sloppy Joes, chips, coleslaw, fruit and veggies.
Plus Mom's brownies for dessert!
We made it home around dinnertime, so I threw together a quick meal before Keith and Gibbs headed back out the door for yet another basketball practice.
I served 5-Ingredient Dump-and-Bake Meatball Subs, along with French fries and broccoli.
On Saturday morning, Keith took Spence to his first basketball practice while I stayed home with the older boys.
I did some cooking, and Gibbs joined me in the kitchen to grow his Sponge Bob Chia Pet. Hah! These things have been around since I was a kid...and they just won't go away!????
I made a weekly run to Yoder's that afternoon for lunch meat and bread, Keith and the boys washed the cars when the sun finally appeared, and then it was time to prep a tasty dinner.
My parents gave Keith steaks from a local farm for Christmas, so we had a few of the Ribeyes for supper, along with potatoes and veggies. Better than a restaurant!
That's where I'll leave it for the week, friends! I hope that you've had a wonderful first few days of 2019. Thanks for checking in, and enjoy the rest of your weekend!
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