Good morning and happy Sunday! I'm checking in today after another week of staying at home. We've finally fallen into a bit of a routine, and while it might not be very interesting or exciting, it sure allows for plenty of delicious (homemade) food! All of the highlights from the past few days, along with our easy dinners, are included in today’s roundup of Our Week in Meals.
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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…
Sunday started in the best way -- with homemade donuts! If there's one food we've missed most while being stuck at home, it would definitely be doughnuts. As a result, I've finally mastered the homemade old-fashioned sour cream doughnut...which is more time consuming than I usually like, but these are unusual times! They're really not hard, either. If you can make cut-out cookies, you can make these (no yeast necessary).
We took a walk as a family on some back roads on our friends' farm after lunch for a change of scenery.
Running races against Casey never ends well for me. He looked over at me at this point and said, "I'm just jogging, Mom." 😂
We had Marinated Grilled Shrimp for dinner, along with sautéed spinach and garlic dinner rolls (both from the farmer's market), as well as couscous.
Monday started with a rainy walk while chatting with a friend, then home for school work with the kids, tacos for lunch, and the weekly kitchen deep-clean.
When the sun finally peeked out later that afternoon, the boys and I headed outside for a little bit of fresh air before supper.
Scenes from my morning walk up the road on Tuesday...
Then we were back to the grind of another day at home, including a morning of work with the boys. At this school, we use Lucky Charms to create patterns for math lessons!
I picked up eggs from my neighbor's farm, and then made one of the boys' favorite meals for lunch that day: baked pancake squares, bacon and eggs. We usually eat lunch around 11:00 anyway, so it's really more like brunch!
Casey had a zoom call with his classmates that afternoon, Gibbs and Spencer jumped on FaceTime calls with their friends, and I prepped dinner for the evening. We had grilled hamburgers...
...with a side of steamed broccoli and baked potato wedges (I'll share my recipe for the potato wedges in the coming weeks).
I took the dog for a walk on Wednesday morning while chatting with my girlfriend on the phone, and then returned home for our regular morning school routine.
My parents came by for a "socially distant" picnic lunch, and brought take-out sandwiches from Yoder's Country Market. This was roast beef and cheddar with Thousand Island dressing.
And dessert was another treat! I recently found out that the local bakery in town, Cake Krums, is now delivering its baked goods and coffee to Madison residents since we're all stuck at home. This is a huge deal, since there isn't a single restaurant in our rural county that offers delivery. My kids have never seen pizza delivered (or anything else, for that matter), so they were very excited when they could get their favorite cookies, cupcakes and donuts brought to our door. Hah!
Afternoon hike with the boys...
I pulled dinner from the freezer that night (as I continue to work through the stash in our deep freezer). We had my Italian Sausage Pasta Bake, along with garlic bread and a side salad. This casserole is always a hit with my family, and it's one that I often make to share with friends since it transports and freezes easily.
Not too much to report from Thursday! It was rainy and cool, so we stayed inside for most of the day and took care of the usual work, house chores, and so much laundry.
I finished another book that evening: The Brutal Telling. This is book #5 in Louise Penny's Inspector Gamache series, and I feel like her murder mysteries just keep getting better and better. They're not scary or gory -- just very artfully written stories and characters that leave you on the edge of your seat in anticipation of solving the crime. Such a great escape right now, too!
Dinner that night was a casserole geared towards my taco-loving kiddos: Doritos Nacho Cheese Taco Bake (you could also use regular tortilla chips for this recipe). Plus a green salad on the side! I actually put my taco bake on top of my salad and it totally reminded me of this Doritos Taco Salad (which I loooooove).
My big adventure on Friday morning was our weekly trip to the grocery store (face mask, gloves and all). It's crazy how much food we need now that everyone is at home for 3 meals per day...and the snacks! Holy cow, my boys go through a lot of snacks. My cart was overflowing, and I was so embarrassed that the other shoppers might think I was a crazy food hoarder!😂 Nope, we just eat a lot...
The rain cleared up by the afternoon, so I took Teddy for a walk while I squeezed in a phone chat with my friend.
We had Skillet Pork Chops with Zucchini and Squash for dinner, except Keith grilled the pork while I cooked the veggies in a skillet.
On the side, I also prepared a batch of Garlic Mashed Potatoes and warmed some dinner rolls from the farmer's market.
Saturday morning was both foggy and sunny -- so pretty!
I spent the morning in the kitchen working on a recipe for a client, while Keith and the boys picked up our farmer's market order and some beef from a nearby farm.
Keith recently got a new pit barrel smoker, so he spent most of the afternoon on the front porch of the general store building tending to our dinner (and watching the NFL draft...so basically he was in heaven).
We had the smoked barbecue ribs (you can use my Crock Pot recipe, too, which the kids adore)...
...and paired them with Cheddar Biscuits,
Cowboy Baked Beans and corn on the cob. It was like a summer feast -- even though it was chilly and rainy by the end of the day.
So there you go -- another week of meals for your home cooking inspiration! Let me know what's on your menu this week, and tell me how you're doing during this odd, difficult time. Sending you all healthy and happy wishes!