Thursday, September 29, 2011

Zoo!!

Yesterday, we went to the zoo! It was free for all Tacoma residents - so we took full advantage of the opportunity! We went after Ben got off work, so we got there around 1 pm, and they closed at 4 - so we had close to 3 hours to see everything.I won't bore you with words.... but I took 145 pictures & videos during our 3 hours.... so I'll try to showcase some of the better ones, haha!




video
Well, folks - now you know. THAT'S what a monkey says! Haha

That's a Tapir!

 
Ben's pretty proud of this shot... poor monkey got caught doing his 'business'!

These fish make holes in the sand, and then pop in and out!
Can't do the zoo without taking advantage of the shark's mouth photo opp!

This was the best shot we got of the 3 of us. Seriously.
  video

 
Monster's hand compared to a polar bear paw print!
Armadillo
Reindeer

That's one big fish!

video

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Monday, September 26, 2011

Plan It - Don't Panic: Week 1

The "Plan It - Don't Panic Meal Planning Challenge" has begun! Today is the day that everyone is sharing their first week's meal plan - so here's mine! 

My meal plan contains only dinners.

I always make a large enough meal for dinner, that both Ben & I take leftovers for lunch to work the next day. That makes lunch planning a breeze! And on the (rare) days that we don't have leftovers, we keep the sandwich essentials on hand - bread, peanut butter/jelly, lunch meat/cheese. 

And breakfast -we're on our own! Since Ben wakes up at 3am for work (and I, um... don't.) we don't eat breakfast together. We have fast breakfast stuff on hand: eggs, cereal/milk, sometimes oatmeal, etc. Weekends we eat the same stuff, or if we're feeling especially un-lazy, we might make pancakes or french toast on a Saturday morning. :)

To start the meal planning process, I sat down and thought up every meal that we regularly enjoy, that are fairly easy/fast to make. I ended up with a list of over 30 meals. A lot of these "meals" are broad-ended, too. For example, one might be 'sandwiches'. This could be BLT's, Reuben's, grilled cheese... the sky's the limit. If I draw "sandwiches" when putting together the meal plan, we get to decide then which kind of sandwiches we'd like that week. :) We also have a 'homemade pizza' option, and 'soup' option. Those are also open-ended, and I can choose what kind of pizza, or what kind of soup, to make. This means our 30 meal options is really more like 50 options or more! Meaning... we should be able to go about 2 months without repeating meals! :)

So, without further ado, here's this week's plan! I've included links to recipes where applicable, in case you're interested in trying one out for yourself!

Monday (today!): Taco Salad
Thursday (lazy, fast day):Chili Mac
Friday: Southwestern Chicken w/ Rice
Saturday: Breakfast for dinner - bacon, eggs & hashbrowns
Sunday: Dinner at Ben's mom's house - a standing invitation every Sunday afternoon

Well there you have it! What we're eating this week. Thursdays are a day that we need to leave the house within an hour of me getting home - so those are always going to be super lazy/fast meal days. Chili Mac is obviously not the healthiest option - but its fast and everyone likes it, so it's a winner in my book for nights like that! 

Be sure to head over to Keeper of the Home and check out everyone else's Week 1 Meal Plans!

~If you enjoyed this, don't miss any future posts! Please find a way to follow - options are over on the right side of the page. Don't forget you can also "like" the Urban Granola Facebook page, too! I'd love to see you back!~

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Plan It - Don't Panic - 6 Week Meal Planning Challenge!

If you read my last post, about things I've been meaning to do, you might recall that one of those things was to put together a meal plan. Well, guess what? I still haven't done it. And there has been that panic feeling every weeknight as I head home, wondering what I'm gonna throw together that night. 

So imagine my delight when I stumbled across THIS blog post this morning! Stephanie at Keeper of the Home is having a "Plan It - Don't Panic" meal planning challenge!

It will be a 6 week long challenge of creating and sharing meal plans for our families. I already know that getting started is the hardest part about Meal planning. But after 6 weeks of being held accountable to the other women joining in the challenge - and all of my blog readers(!), that I should have the habit formed, and be able to continue going strong with it.

Each Monday, I will be sharing my meal plan for the week, right here on my blog. If you are interested in joining up, please do! If you just want to follow along and maybe get some new ideas and recipes for your family's meals, then make sure to check back in with Keeper of the Home once we get started, as that's where the big link-up will be listed. :)

Wish me luck as I start this new challenge! If you currently meal plan, will you share some tips in the comments below? If you don't meal plan, let me know if you plan to join this challenge, too!


~If you enjoyed this, don't miss any future posts! Please find a way to follow - options are over on the right side of the page. Don't forget you can also "like" the Urban Granola Facebook page, too! I'd love to see you back!~

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Things I've Been Meaning To Do!

Linking up with The Lazy Mom for the September edition of "Things I've Been Meaning To Do"!

1. I'll be completely honest here. I've been meaning to join the "Things I've Been Meaning To Do" link-up since the first month that Stacey started doing it. But now that I'm finally doing it, I guess it doesn't really belong on this list? Oh well, I'm too lazy to go and erase all those words that I worked sooo hard to type out for you. ;)

2. Buy some plastic bins to store all of these baby clothes in.
 I sorted and bagged all of Monster's old clothes a few weeks ago. The bags have been on the chair/couch since. I don't want to put them outside in our shed in only plastic bags - bugs and rodents could get in! Yuck! But I don't have any plastic storage bins, other than the ones currently in the shed, full of Christmas supplies. So I must go to the store, buy the bins, and then put the bags in them.
That, my friends, is the reason it has already been a few weeks since I bagged them up.

3. Make a meal plan.

I actually started writing out meals that I like and that we'd like to eat on a regular basis. The goal is to then create little magnet thingys with them and put this "calendar" on my fridge, and use the meal magnets to plan our weekly meals in advace. We used to use the e-mealz system, and LOVED it, but with the tight budget lately, we decided to take advantage of our church's food bank, which is open to all church members once a month (otherwise they only serve certain zip codes - where we don't live!)
So now we have all this meat and canned goods to use - and no recipes or any clue what to make.

Which is why I've been meaning to make our meal plan...

So, I guess it's not a terribly long list at the moment. Either that, or I'm in denial about some things... haha.
Now let's just see if this post is motivation for me to actually DO the items on this list. :)

Do you have a list of things you've been meaning to do? Please share them so I don't feel so alone in my laziness!

~If you enjoyed this, don't miss any future posts! Please find a way to follow - options are over on the right side of the page. Don't forget you can also "like" the Urban Granola Facebook page, too! I'd love to see you back!~
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