Menu Plan Monday 8/31/15

Does it seem like August has been a long month to you? It feels like it here! Florida just dodged a bullet with the first potential hurricane of the year, although things are very wet and soggy at the moment. I am keeping my fingers crossed that we will have another storm-free year this year! Otherwise we could have spent this week eating canned Ravioli!

Here is our menu for the week (providing nothing surprising happens and our power stays on!

Monday: Stuffed Shells

Tuesday: Rosemary Baked Chicken

Wednesday: Tacos

Thursday: Spinach Bacon Mac and Cheese

Friday: Crock Pot Herb Chicken

Thanks for stopping by for Menu Plan Monday! See you next week!

Menu Plan Monday 8/24/15

As the last week of August is upon us and summer draws to a close, I find myself looking back on all the fun we had with a smile! We are wrapping up our vacation with a visit from the grandparents this weekend, prompting me to make a special dinner this Friday, a Southern favorite! It’s a pretty decadent meal, so I don’t make it often, but its a definite treat when I do! I hope you guys have a great end to your summer as well! Have a great week!

Monday: Lemon Garlic Chicken
Tuesday: Stuffed Zucchini

Wednesday: Baked Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Thursday: Red Wine Seared Pork Chops

Friday: Shrimp and Grits

Thanks for stopping by for Menu Plan Monday! See you next week.

Baked Lemon and Garlic Chicken

Have you ever watched the show “Everybody Loves Raymond”? It was on TV when I was in high school and now I watch it occasionally on Netflix. Debra’s famous dish is Lemon Chicken, and after hearing it mentioned so many times, I decided I wanted to try and make it myself!

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 lemons
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbsp. chopped thyme
1 tbsp. chopped rosemary
2 tbsp. olive oil

1. Combine the juice from two of the lemons with the minced garlic, salt, pepper, rosemary, and thyme in a bowl.
2. Place the chicken in a large Ziplock bag and pour the lemon mixture in with the chicken.
3. Marinate the chicken for at least one hour.
4. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray and place the chicken in the dish.
5. Brush the tops of the chicken with the olive oil.
6. Bake at 450 degrees for one hour, until the chicken is cooked through and the tops are browned.

7. Serve the chicken with the remaining lemon sliced thin as a garnish.

This dish had a lot of flavor and I loved the combination of the citrusy lemon and the garlic.

Thanks for stopping by! Check out more recipes here:

Menu Plan Monday 8/17/15

It’s halfway through August and the heat is definitely on! The heat index is regularly in the 100’s around here and if you are lucky it is 90 degrees in the shade. We do our best to keep cool by staying in the pool and finding a lot of indoor entertainment. I am definitely looking forward to fall! This is what’s on our menu this week:

Monday: Italian Chicken and Mushrooms

Tuesday: French Onion Steak

Wednesday: Corn Chowder

Thursday: Chicken and Black Bean Enchiladas

Friday: Dinner out 🙂

Thanks for stopping by for Menu Plan Monday! See you next week.

Finishing Strong

Well, here we go. As we prepare to begin school this year we are also preparing to start my son’s senior year of high school, and my last year of homeschooling him. Part of me finds this so hard to believe. My first baby. The boy who made me a mom. The one who made me want to homeschool. The one I have fought with, laughed with…the one who challenged me to work harder to be a better person, forced me to dig deeper inside myself every day, and constantly questioned everything. He stands before me now as almost a man, and while I am so very proud of him, I am also feeling very conflicted. I am wistful for those days when his hands were so small they fit in mine. When he could crawl into my lap for a nap or a story…for when mama was the center of the world.

My heart knows this is how it is supposed to be. We spend these years pouring ourselves into our children to prepare them for life beyond our homes. And a part of me is so excited for the plans I know the Lord has for my child. I know He loves my son even more than I do (although that is still hard for me to imagine) and that my son has a path all his own to follow…but this letting go part…yeah, that’s going to be hard for me. One of the things I love about homeschooling is the fact that I have been able to be the one in charge. I admit, I kind of have that type-A personality, and relinquishing control is not really my thing, so this is going to be a big challenge for me. And with my younger son following closely behind, I am faced with a fear-inducing question…What do I do with myself when I don’t have children to homeschool anymore??

So I sit here with my papers, and I try to work out what credits we have left to fill. And I think about transcripts (my son has already earned 15 college credits through dual-enrollment), and my mind wanders to how much “together” time I can cram into this year. As a senior, my son is pretty independent in his learning. Mostly, I just supervise. I look forward to our late-night conversations about our school (since he is working many of our conversations occur late at night), but really, I look forward to any time we have together. And I pray, I pray a lot. I pray that God will guide me in the time I have left to steer my son in the direction He wants him to follow. I pray that God will give me strength to recognize those moments when I need to let go and give my boy independence. I pray that God will give my son wisdom as I give him the power to make his own decisions and take over responsibility for his own life. I pray for God’s blessings over his life, I pray for his safety…I pray a lot. And I have a feeling that as the year goes on, the time I spend in prayer is only going to grow.

I love this boy with all of my heart and soul. And as much as I wish I could plan out the rest of his life and tie it up in a neat little bow, I know I can’t. I am fast getting to the point where I have to let go, and trust that God has got this. I know that his father and I have taught him well. I know that in homeschooling him we have laid a firm foundation for his future. I know that God has got his hand on his life and I trust in His plan for his future. I want this year to be fun for both of us, and mostly, I want to feel like we both finished this race strong.

Italian Chicken and Mushrooms

So I love weeknight recipes that you can throw together in about 30 minutes using things you already have in your pantry. As a busy mom, recipes like that are my best friend. This particular recipe happens to incorporate mushrooms, which are one of my favorite ingredients!

1 lb. chicken tenderloins cut into 1 inch pieces
1 can white beans
2 cans diced tomatoes with garlic and oregano
12 oz. sliced mushrooms
4 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup tomato pesto
1/2 sliced yellow onion
12 oz. spaghetti sauce
1 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
chopped parsley for garnish

1. Heat some olive oil in a pan and season the chicken with salt and pepper.
2. Add the chicken to the pan and brown on each side. Remove and set aside.
3. Add the onion to the pan and cook for 3 minutes.
4. Add the garlic and tomato pesto and cook for 2 more minutes.
5. Stir in the spices, tomatoes, beans, and spaghetti sauce.
6. Return the chicken to the pan, cover, and cook until the chicken is done.

7. Remove from heat and sprinkle the parsley and Parmesan on top.

I served this with some garlic bread and a Caesar salad to make a complete meal! Quick, easy, and delicious! Want to see more delicious recipes? Check out Try a New Recipe Tuesday here:

Menu Plan Monday 8/10/15

It’s another Menu Plan Monday! After our party last weekend we have had our fill of pork leftovers and are looking forward to getting back to regular meals again! Here’s what’s on our menu this week:

Monday: Mexican Chicken Skillet

Tuesday: Stuffed Peppers

Wednesday: Spaghetti and Meatballs

Thursday: Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Casserole

Friday: Calzones

Thanks for stopping by! See you next week.