Week of 04/23/17

This weekend might just go down as the most beautiful one ever. Seriously, it was so pretty! The weather was perfect — sunny and clear. We took full advantage of it and spent quite a bit of time outdoors.
423 Family
In fact, just between Saturday and Sunday, I tracked 3.5 miles on my bike and 7 miles worth of hikes & dog walks. To some, that may not seem like an achievement, but considering I could barely walk a mile without feeling the urge to pass out just a couple months ago, I’m pretty stoked. I’ve started some vitamin regiments lately, since I know for a fact I’m Vitamin D deficient, I’ve been paying extra attention to what I’m eating and I’ve slowly upped my physical activity. What a difference all of that has made!

We did some hiking at a local park and took pictures. So fun! The trails were beautiful! Greenery and flowers EVERYWHERE. I can’t wait to go back!

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Last week’s meal plan went great! It was definitely one of the better week’s we’ve had. Other than an impromptu lunch with my dad on Saturday, we didn’t eat out at all. Which is a feat for us. We stuck to the meal plan and not much went to waste at all. This is exactly what I’m after, so I’ll take it. I think the secret for us is planning things I know we’ll enjoy eating vs things that we don’t eat real often, if that makes sense. Nothing quite throws off our plans like me planning something out of the ordinary that ends up either not tasting good or just not sounding good when it’s time to eat.

If you remember, this week is the week we’re eating dinner out of our freezer. 423 FreezerI’ve been busy all month stocking it with extra things I’ve made and now it’s time to utilize it. My options are: Shredded Beef Enchiladas, Cajun Chicken & Rice, Teriyaki Chicken & Rice, Broccoli Chicken & Rice, Sweet Potato & Black Bean Quesadillas, BBQ Pulled Pork, Hot Dogs & Tater Tots, Meatballs & Pasta Sauce as well as an assortment of frozen vegetables, bacon and some cooked beans. Should be a good week! It’ll be simple too, since everything is already fully cooked. All I need to do is pull whatever we want to eat out the night before and reheat it when we’re ready for dinner.

Since our grocery budget is basically gone, we kept breakfast and lunch simple too. 423 Breakfast For breakfast, I made a blueberry baked oatmeal. I am OBSESSED with blueberry muffins. I swear, I could live off of them alone. I want to find or create a really good blueberry baked oatmeal recipe that is super tasty and has significantly less sugar than the muffins. I baked up a pan of it Sunday morning using this recipe, minus the lemon. It was really good right out of the oven, but was just kind of ok reheated the next day. I’d definitely make it again if serving a crowd immediately, but maybe not as a meal prep thing. I’m going to play with it and try a variation for the second pan we’ll need tomorrow night. Peaches were on sale, so we grabbed a big bag of those too. I wanted some more protein, so I hardboiled some eggs to either go with breakfast or as a snack for later — depending on when I’m hungry for them. 1/6 of the blueberry baked oatmeal is 262 calories, eggs are 70 each and peaches are 40ish, making it a 500 calories for all of it. I’m kind of splitting it up throughout the day though.

The other sale item that caught my eye was hamburger. 423 Lunch I like to make hamburgers for our lunch pretty frequently, so that was an easy decision. I roasted up a big pan of broccoli and we bought a few cans of baked beans to go with it. I made 8 hamburger patties Sunday and will cook up 6 on Wednesday to finish out the week.
I had some bacon grease still leftover from last week, so I roasted the broccoli using the rest of it. I’ll use olive oil next time. I kept it simple and only seasoned it with salt.
423 Lunch Prep AWe had 3 bunches of broccoli, which was a lot. I like to buy fresh vs frozen because it’s typically quite a bit cheaper. It only took me 15 minutes to chop all of this up, so not too bad. You can use the stalks too! Just chop off the bottom of the stalk where it’s tougher, peel with a vegetable peeler, then slice into pieces. I went ahead and cut up all of the broccoli and froze half of it. That will save me time later this week, when I’m ready to cook more.
I bought 4.5 lbs. of ground beef and made 14 hamburger patties with it — so about 5 oz. each. 423 Lunch Prep I like to bake all of my hamburgers at once, rather than pan fry them. It’s so much quicker! I just baked them at 400 for 12 minutes, flipped, another 12 minutes. They were well-done, but that’s alright. I wouldn’t serve these burgers to guests necessarily, but they work for us. I just form the ground beef into patties and season each side with salt and pepper — that’s it. I went ahead and formed the other 6 patties and froze them. That’ll save me time later this week. I’ll just pull them out to thaw Tuesday night and then bake them Wednesday night. It’s right at 550 calories for 1 hamburger patty, 1/2 cup baked beans and 1ish cups of broccoli.

And that’s it! Like I’ve said repeatedly, this week is a pretty simple week for us. Which is good, because I’ve got a pretty full to-do list outside of cooking, as well as some ideas for various blog posts I want to begin working on. 🙂

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