Back to Pittsburgh


We’re back from Florida!  Did I even mention that we were going? The boys and I went to Florida without Aaron for 5 days to visit my parents.  I got sunburnt.  Oops.  I don’t typically get sunburnt so this was surprising.  Of course the boys were completely covered in spf 50 so they’re good.


We had a fun time!  And we missed the last bit of awful weather in Pittsburgh.  Sam and I just cut the grass this afternoon while Tucker napped and now he’s watching Inside Out for the millionth time this week.

We’re going to have BLTs for dinner tonight and soup.  We took a family trip to Trader Joe’s last night to get groceries since we had pretty much nothing.  I have no idea what Aaron ate while we were gone.  We spent $243!  That’s a lot for us!  Aaron got some groceries of his own for lunches at work plus I planned 5 dinners to make.

We’re going to have:

Tuesday: BLTs on sourdough with roasted red pepper and tomato soup

Wednesday: Grilled chicken salads with hard boiled eggs & roasted sweet potatoes

Thursday: Chicken fajita pasta skillet

Friday: out

Saturday: hamburgers on homemade rolls & roasted broccoli



Weekly Meal Plan #6

Yesterday morning, Sam and I decided to go to South Park and play for a bit.  The weather was cool but nice.  We did some walking, lots of sliding, and some swinging.  I’m starting to really like that park.  It has a really low key vibe to it for some reason.

We stopped at the grocery store on the way home and picked up groceries for the week plus ingredients for 3 freezer meals.  After a bit of a grocery store meltdown (we were both tired and hungry), we made it home, had a quick lunch and then we both took a nap until 4 PM!

We hung out on the couch together after we woke up then got to cooking dinner.

Here’s the tentative meal plan for the week.

weekly meal plan sticker

Monday: Healthy Stuffed Pepper Soup (from Six2Eleven) <<We just had this for dinner and it was really good!  I followed the recipe exactly except used yellow, red, and orange peppers instead of green.  I was a bit skeptical because there are very few spices in this recipe (just chili powder, salt and pepper) but it was great.  I made a double batch and it made a TON.  I didn’t add the rice to half so that I could freeze it and just add cooked rice and simmer when we thaw it.

Tuesday: Chicken Salads with Roasted Sweet Potatoes <<I just make a salad with spring mix, cucumbers, peppers, feta, hard-boiled eggs and onions.  I marinate the chicken in a bit of salad dressing and then cook it in a pan on the stove.

Wednesday: Slow Cooker Quinoa Turkey Sweet Potato Chili (from Iowa Girl Eats)

Thursday: Leftovers or maybe homemade pizza

Friday: Out or whatever we can find (or maybe I’ll be having a baby by then in which case, hospital food!)

After some initial rejection and requesting of cheese, Sam ate the stuffed pepper soup too and seemed to like it!

The GIANT batch of soup:

How did last week’s meal plan go?  I made the zucchini lasagna.  I thought it was pretty good but not great.  To be fair, I didn’t grill the zucchini.  I just roasted it for a bit before putting it into the lasagna.  It does make a huge amount though but sadly, we ended up throwing away a bit in the end.

I didn’t make the slow cooker cashew chicken or the caramel apple energy bites.  I bought the ingredients for the energy bites and then Sam and I were snacking on some of the dried apples and then a bug found it’s way into the bag!  So I threw them away.  Fail.

I made some pulled chicken in the slow cooker last week and we ended up eating taco salads with that a couple of times.  The goal is to cook three dinners this week. 1 down, 2 to go!

Weekly Meal Plan #5 & New Upcoming Events Widget

Sam and I went to the grocery store this morning so we’re all set for meals for the week.

weekly meal plan sticker

Monday: Zucchini Lasagna (from Skinny Taste) (Determined to finally make this since I bought ricotta a week ago)
Tuesday: Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken (from Sally Cooks)
Wednesday: Homemade Pizza & Salad
Thursday: Home Group maybe or leftovers
Friday: Out or leftovers
Saturday: Hummus/veggie wraps
Snacks: Caramel Apple Energy Balls (from The NY Melrose Family)

How did I do with the meal plan last week?  I made the soy dijon chicken thighs and wasn’t really a fan.  I think I’m just not a fan of chicken thighs.  We ate it but probably wouldn’t make again.  I also had to bake mine way longer than the recipe suggested.

I made the slow cooker beef stew and we all loved it.

I made the Mediterranean Tortellini Salad except I didn’t follow the recipe at all and just made a pasta salad with random stuff we had in the fridge and bottled dressing.

I didn’t make the zucchini lasagna (but it’s on this week’s plan again) or creamy black bean chicken soup.

Also, I switched WordPress themes over the weekend.  I wanted a cleaner and wider format so hopefully this looks better to you!  I’m still tweaking it a bit.  I’ve also been messing with creating blog graphics like the pink one above.  I’m hooked.

Events Widget
Lastly I added an Upcoming Events in Pittsburgh widget over on the right side of the page (unless you’re looking at the mobile version).  I created a google calender with family-friendly events in the city and they’ll be listed there.  I also included all the upcoming consignment sales.  I hope this is helpful to you. If you know of an event to add, please let me know!

Weekly Meal Plan #4

It’s Tuesday.  It’s nap time!   

I’m a little late posting a meal plan for the week since it’s already Tuesday but we just went to the grocery store today so there was no plan until this morning.

Monday: Last night, we had pizza with onions and Trader Joe’s turkey meatballs on top and roasted (from frozen) green beans for dinner.  We all just finished the leftover pizza for lunch today.

Tuesday: Soy Dijon Chicken Thighs w/ Sweet Potatoes (from Budget Bytes) <–this will be my first time cooking chicken thighs.

Wednesday: Slow Cooker Beef Stew (from All Recipes)

Thursday: Zucchini Lasagna (from Skinny Taste) if I go to the farmer’s market and get zucchini tomorrow OR Slow Cooker Creamy Black Bean Chicken Soup (from Pass the Fresh)

Friday: Out or leftovers

Saturday: Mediterranean Tortellini Salad (from Eats Well With Others)

And 37 weeks pregnant (and Sam creeping by with the hair dryer): 

Weekly Meal Plan #3 & Pigeons

Well it’s Tuesday and I’m just now posting a meal plan for the week so.. a little behind.  I’ve already made Monday and Tuesday’s meals.  Here’s the plan:

Monday: We had Oven Fajitas, Budget Bytes which I’ve made 3 or 4 times now and we love them every time.  Sam even loves them.  (A lot of times we supplement his dinner with yogurt or cheese or whatever we can get him to eat).  I also cooked some brown rice and added a can of pinto beans and some taco seasoning for a side.

Tuesday: Vegan Pot Pies, The Minimalist Bakers (see below)

Wednesday: Slow Cooker White Bean Soup, Budget Bytes & Corn Bread Muffins, Allrecipes

Thursday: Church Home Group, we’re ordering pizza

Friday: Probably out to eat or leftovers

Snacks: 5 Ingredient Vegan, gluten-free Fig Bites, The Lemon Bowl (see below)

The Pot Pie and Fig Bites 

I’m bringing a vegan friend who just had a baby a meal tomorrow so I worked that into our meal plan.  I’m going to bring her vegan pot pie and some fresh fruit plus the 5 ingredient fig bites listed above.

For the fig bites, I ended up making them apricot/cashew bites instead of fig/walnut.  I used unsulfered apricots so that’s why they’re a darker color and raw, unsalted cashew pieces in place of walnuts.  Otherwise, I followed the recipe.  They’re really easy and pretty much a homemade Larabar in ball form.  Mine were really sticky.  I found having damp hands really helped with the rolling.  They taste great and were really fast to make.  The recipe ended up making 30.

For the pot pie, I made a double batch so we could have it for dinner.  I followed the recipe exactly and made an 8×8 pan and a round pan of pot pie.  I made a double batch of their vegan biscuits too and ended up having a ton leftover so Sam got to play around and help out.  Vegan cooking is great because Sam can help and if he happens to take a bite, it’s no big deal.

I baked the round pan for us to have for dinner and froze the square pan, uncooked for my friend to just bake from frozen tomorrow.

Here is the round pan, uncooked:

And here it is fresh out of the oven.  It GREW!  Definitely bake these on top of a baking sheet because there’s a good chance it’s going to bubble over.  It tasted great though!  I used low sodium veggie broth and then just tasted my filling and added salt as needed.

This recipe requires very few ingredients and it’s cheap and completely from scratch. Next time I make this, I’ll probably double the recipe and make it in a 13×9 pan because Aaron, Sam and I almost finished off the dish below.

I also wanted to mention that we did eventually taste the pickles I made and they were surprisingly great!  I guess we were expecting them to be kind of weird and not taste like what we’re used to, but they tasted just like pickles.  I’ll definitely make them again.

And one last thing, we went to check out another house today for a possible investment.  It’s for sale for $22,000 so you can imagine the state of this house.  It’s three stories and we got up to the third floor and there were PIGEONS living in the house.  Oh my.  So that one’s out.  Too big of a project for us.