Hey, friends! We've celebrated the New Year, we're finishing up the kids' last week of Christmas break, and it's Sunday -- which means that it's time for another 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…
Sunday was New Year's Eve, but we laid low and definitely didn't do any crazy midnight partying!
I spent the morning taking care of house chores, including cleaning my refrigerator (exciting, I know). This was Day 1 of my 10-Day Kitchen Organization Challenge, and it's SUCH a good feeling to have this task taken care of.
If you want to join the Challenge, you can do so for free any time HERE.
Even though it was only about 20 degrees outside, we needed to get the kids outdoors for some exercise, so we bundled up and went up to Culpeper for a walk.
And then headed indoors for a cozy lunch at Chili's (the kids' request).
I had a very cheesy bowl of Chicken Enchilada Soup and a House Salad. Followed by a mug of hot cocoa once I got home...because I was still cold!
As I mentioned above, we didn't have any big NYE plans, so we pulled together a tasty dinner and had our own party by the fire that night.
I made my 3-Ingredient Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Bites,
followed by Slow Cooker Beef Chili and cornbread (chili recipe is coming to the blog tomorrow).
Plus...CHAMPAGNE after the kids went to bed! Of course! And yes, I was asleep long before midnight.????
I managed to clean out my freezer on Monday morning (I think Keith's response when he saw all of the food on the counter was something like, "OH MY GOSH!"). Let's just say that I had my work cut out for me. But here's the finished overhead shot of the pull-out drawer, and it may be hard to tell, but this is a huge improvement!
My frozen veggies are on the right (with ice cream on top????), frozen meats are on the left, and breads/rolls are in the top drawer (which you can't see here). Day 2 of the Kitchen Organization Challenge complete!
Keith's parents stopped by for a quick visit mid-day, and then we headed out to our friends' annual New Year's Day party in the evening.
Hope and Matt took care of the chili for dinner, while the guests brought the appetizers/snacks, sides, and desserts potluck-style.
I contributed a big batch of homemade Chex Mix, as well as a variety of cookies from Costco's bakery that the kids picked out. This is always a fun way to finish off the season of holiday celebrations before everyone heads back to the "real world" on January 2!
I just had to snap a pic -- Melanie's pomegranate-encrusted cheese ball was so festive and pretty!
This Barbecue Chicken Pizza was also delicious,
and the Ping Pong Tournament was intense!
The boys' friend, Henry, came over for a play date on Wednesday and I got to catch up with Mollie over tea while the kids played.
I also cleaned out our snack cabinet (Day #3 of the Kitchen Organization Challenge), which has been on my list for ages. Phew!
I had a call with one of my college soccer teammates after lunch. We caught up on life and also chatted business, since Dana recently launched Bandleballs. So, so exciting!
I then dragged the boys to get New Year's hair cuts. Not their favorite activity, but definitely necessary before sending them back to school!
The boys had basketball practice that evening, so I fed the kids chicken quesadillas beforehand and made Keith's quesadilla for him when he got home from work later. Eating in shifts again...
For these quesadillas, I used a new recipe for Mexican Instant Pot (or Slow Cooker) Chicken, which a reader shared with me. I'll post the full details on the blog soon, because Rachel's recipe is delicious -- and SO easy!
In my best attempt to keep these kids entertained and busy again on Wednesday, we headed south of Charlottesville to visit my parents for the day.
But first -- we took advantage of the fact that we were driving through town and stopped in Costco on the way...
We had grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato basil soup for lunch,
and then Aunt Barbara joined us for a walk.
This was one of the only days all week that the temps reached into the 30's, so these boys were ready to run. We have been cooped up for way too long!
We made it back home in time for dinner. I served Garlic & Herb Poached Salmon with pasta and Caesar salad on the side.
This was a big hit with the family, so I'll share the recipe soon! The salmon only took about 15 minutes to prepare, and I just tossed the pasta with a jar of store-bought pesto sauce. So easy!
I took the boys back to Charlottesville on Thursday for a lunch date -- they chose the Hibachi Grill & Buffet.????
We followed our meal with a quick trip to Target and an afternoon at Jump Cville trampoline park.
It's the best way that I've found to wear out 3 little boys -- especially when it's too cold to be outside!
Dinner that evening was a new recipe for Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches. These were delicious, and they'll be on the blog soon!
I served the sandwiches with baked fries + carrots and cucumbers with hummus.
Spencer went back to preschool on Friday morning (he wasn't too happy about that)!
It was sunny and cold, so I grabbed an almond flavored coffee for the ride, and then dragged the older two boys with me to Yoder's to pick up deli meat and a fresh loaf of bread for the week ahead.
The post-holiday "spring cleaning" continued that afternoon, as I did 6 loads of laundry -- on top of my daily clothing loads (washing bed comforters, etc.). I also spent time scrubbing my kitchen cabinets.
Thank goodness for these gems, which I buy in bulk at Costco. They're the only product I've found to keep my kitchen cabinets white.
The older boys had basketball practice that evening, so I fed them my Dump-and-Bake Bourbon Chicken early before we headed out the door. Served with rice and Southern Green Beans!
When Keith got home from work later that evening, I took the leftover chicken and put it on a sandwich bun for him. The chicken recipe will be coming to the blog next month.
Saturday morning started bright and early with an 8:00 a.m. basketball game.
This team has been such a blessing for the boys this winter, since it gives them a reliable outlet for indoor exercise 3 times a week -- even when we're experiencing sub-zero temperatures outside! There aren't really any other indoor options for the kids in Madison (no pool, no gym, etc.), so the basketball is KEY!
We went into Charlottesville to run a bunch of errands on Saturday afternoon, including Dick's Sporting Goods for new basketballs, new basketball shoes, and a football. We grabbed a few groceries at Kroger for an upcoming post, and stopped at the stove and fireplace shop across the way.
We were scoping out a new gas stove for my office, but Keith was really drooling over the smokers and grills. The kids were just happy to get Tootsie Pops...
Before heading home, we had an early dinner at Texas Roadhouse.
The boys loved the peanuts and rolls to start, while Keith was happy with the steak and the football that he could watch on all of the TV's.
I ordered the grilled barbecue chicken, which came with a sweet potato,
and a side salad.
I hope that you all enjoy the rest of your Sunday and have a great week ahead! I'll see you back here tomorrow with Casey's favorite dinner recipe!
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