Good morning, and happy Sunday! Another summer week is in the books, complete with pool time, fresh corn, and a couple of good books. 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...
We drove to Culpeper on Sunday, where there's a pretty park with a paved path so that the boys can ride bikes, scooters and hover boards while I walk the dog.
And of course, we grabbed iced coffee and donuts before heading back to Madison...
Keith grilled our favorite marinated chicken thighs for supper,
A hot, humid, and hazy Monday morning sunrise...
We spent plenty of time at the pool before the afternoon thunderstorms rolled in.
The two younger boys had a doctor's appointment that afternoon, so I planned an easy summer meal that I could prep in advance and have ready when we returned home: chicken salad sandwiches on croissants...
...along with potato chips and a fresh tomato basil salad.
I've got another great book to share this week, too! I finally read The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson, which came highly recommended by many of YOU, and also by my family. It's an intimate chronicle of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz—an inspiring portrait of courage and leadership in a time of unprecedented crisis. As Amazon puts it, this book takes readers "back to a time of true leadership, when, in the face of unrelenting horror, Churchill’s eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together."
And speaking of excellent non-fiction books, I wanted to mention this children's book that all three of my boys (ages 7, 10 and 11) have really enjoyed. Animalium presents the animal kingdom in such beautiful detail. The pictures are fun for younger kids to look at, while my older boys have gone deep in studying the scientific information about the different species. It would be a great gift if you have kids or grandchildren to shop for!
We met friends for a walk in the woods, and then my parents stopped by with Yoder's sandwiches for lunch.
Keith planted this willow tree as a tiny little stick when we moved into our house 13 years ago. It's been so fun to watch it thrive (in spite of the little boys who continually hang on its branches)!
...and a batch of fried okra because I had a beautiful basket full from the farmer's market.
We went to the pool for a quick swim on Wednesday morning, and then spent the afternoon at home waiting for an appliance repairman.
I served Mississippi Roasted Pork Shoulder for supper...
Hydrangeas behind the porch swing at sunset...
All three boys had dentist appointments in Charlottesville on Thursday, so the bulk of our day was spent dealing with that (not-so-fun) outing. I treated them to lunch at Chik-Fil-A while we were in town, though!
We also picked up about a dozen ears of corn from my neighbor. I love when we're the lucky recipients of over-abundant crops!
I haven't served a casserole for supper in ages (thanks to the 90+ degree heat), but I decided that my Farmhouse Chicken Cornbread Casserole sounded good that night. Plus, it's easy. We paired the casserole with steamed broccoli and some homemade rolls that I bought from some of our other neighbors at the farmer's market.
Friday included a date with friends at the pool, which is one of the few ways to stay cool outside right now.
The crepe myrtles look so pretty at the moment!
We took advantage of a beautiful, less-humid Saturday morning and went for a hike in the mountains...
...followed by subs for lunch on the way home, since these growing boys are always starving and couldn't possibly wait a second longer to eat!
Keith's parents stopped by for a visit that afternoon, and then we had a clean-out-the-fridge kind of dinner: grilled hamburgers from the freezer, roasted potatoes that I bought at the farmer's market last week and never used, and a sliced bell pepper (that needed to be enjoyed) with hummus for dipping.
There you have it, friends -- another week of easy dinner ideas! I hope that you've found something new to serve on your own table in the days ahead. Thank you for being here, and have a wonderful Sunday!