Thursday, June 30, 2011

Campfire Chicken Fajitas

Last weekend, we headed out to Sleepy Hollow State Park for our first camping trip of the summer.  Of course, I planned out our food for the trip earlier in the week and had much of it prepped before leaving home to make the cooking around a campfire easy and fun.  I had originally planned to make some hobo dinners like we tried on our only camping trip last summer.  I had decided I'd use some chopped up chicken breasts since I had some in the freezer that needed to be used.  Then I got to thinking... why not do chicken fajitas instead of the typical hobo dinner?  So that's what I did.  These were super easy to prep and they tasted awesome!  We're not eating grains much these days, so we opted for no tortillas and just added some toppings to the fajitas and ate it all with a fork.  These will definitely be something I'll make often when we go camping - they were a total hit! 

Campfire Chicken Fajitas

chicken breasts, cut into strips/chunks
bell peppers, sliced
onions, sliced
other veggies are optional (we had asparagus in our since its in season)
taco seasoning
extra virgin olive oil, cold-pressed and unfiltered
toppings - diced avocado, homemade salsa, sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes, etc.

Cut the meat from your chicken breasts (or you can use boneless) into strips or chunks.  Place into an airtight container and toss with taco seasoning and olive oil.  The amount you use will depend on your tastes and how much chicken you are making.  I used two large chicken breasts and used about 3 Tablespoons of seasoning, plus enough olive oil to coat.  I didn't measure anything, just used what looked right.  Put the lid on your container and place it in the refrigerator or cooler with ice.  I prepped everything the night before we left, so my chicken marinated for about 24 hours or a little more. 

Next, slice up your peppers, onions, and whatever other veggies you like.  I added asparagus to ours since that's what was in season.  If you are taking these camping with you, do this step at home so everything is ready to go.  Then place the veggies in another airtight container or ziploc bag and place in the cooler on ice. 

When you are ready to make your campfire fajitas, tear off some large pieces of heavy duty aluminum foil.  You'll want big enough pieces to form into packets around your meals.  Place however much chicken you want in each meal in the center of the foil.  Then top with the prepared veggies.  Wrap up the foil around everything, into a packet.  Then wrap again with another piece of foil - double wrapping helps so the food doesn't get too charred on the fire. 

Finally, place the packets onto the hot coals in your campfire.  You should flip them and rotate them a few times.  Let them cook for 15-20 minutes, depending on how hot your fire is.  Once done, remove from the fire.  Unwrap the foil carefully - the steam escaping is very hot and can burn you if you're not careful.  We just dumped ours out onto our plates.  Then top with your favorite fajita toppings.  We kept it simple and just used some homemade salsa, diced avocado, and sour cream.  If you are ok with grains, serve with some tortillas.  Otherwise, enjoy with your fork - that's what we did and they were delicious!

This post is linked to:
Simple Lives Thursday at GNOWFGLINS
Pennywise Platter Thursday at The Nourishing Gourmet
Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop
Fight Back Friday at Food Renegade
Grain Free Real Food Carnival at Real Food Forager

Monday, June 27, 2011

Strawberry Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

Its strawberry season here in Michigan.  So that means we are eating strawberries quite a bit.  I'm always looking for new ways to use them.  With all the lettuce and spinach we're getting from the garden, we're also eating a lot of salads.  It dawned on me over the weekend that I should try making a strawberry vinaigrette dressing to eat on our salads.  So I just through a few things together in the blender tonight as I was processing an entire flat of strawberries... yes I got through them all last night... several trays of fruit leather, some frozen topping, some frozen puree, some frozen whole berries, and this dressing.  Not bad for about an hour and a half's work.  ;) 

So anyway, I didn't even look up a recipe.  I just pureed up some berries, added some vinegar, oil, and sea salt.  Then I tasted it.  It tasted great!  So here's what I did.

Strawberry Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

1 cup strawberries, hulled and chopped
3 Tablespoons vinegar - I used white wine vinegar
1/2 cup cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
sea salt, to taste

Place all ingredients in a blender and puree.  Transfer to a mason jar or dressing bottle and serve or refrigerate.  Enjoy!

This post is linked to:
Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist
Weekend Gourmet Blog Carnival at Hartke is Online
Fight Back Friday at Food Renegade
Pennywise Platter Thursday at The Nourishing Gourmet

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Meal plans and the week ahead

We are back from our first camping trip of the summer. We had a great time! Kevin got to do some mountain biking with his buddy, James. We took some family bike rides. We enjoyed the beach. We hiked. We made s'mores (our guilty pleasure while camping). We basically just had fun. :)

We've got another busy week ahead of us this week. We've been unpacking and getting the house back in order for the last few hours that we've been home today.  We're taking a quick break and then we'll all get back to work.  I've got to get some weeding done in the garden and flower beds. Tomorrow will be more of the same. Tuesday we're headed to another Silver Lake ski show. This time I believe our friends, the Fransons, may be meeting us there. And I think my SIL, BIL, niece and nephews are as well. Wednesday I am going to Livonia for a conference. Thursday we are meeting my SIL, BIL, niece, and nephews at Crossroads Village to see the Flint Symphony Orchestra. Friday is my milk and CSA pickup day. We also have another company coming over to give us an estimate on our roof. Saturday I am headed to Grand Rapids for a bachelorette party for my friend, Katie. Its going to be so fun! We'll be escorted around town in a party bus to 3 different wineries for wine tasting in the afternoon. Then we're headed to dinner at San Chez. And then we're headed out on the town! I'm really looking forward to it all!

I have been freezing and drying lots of strawberries during the last week.  I picked up another flat this afternoon on our way home from the campground.  I'll probably get another flat at the farmers' market in Lansing this week, too.  I want to freeze and dry some more.  And I'd like to make a batch of strawberry jam.  I'm also going to make some strawberry coconut milk ice cream and strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing this week.  Not sure when I'm going to fit it all in, with such a busy week... but I will figure it out. :)  I'm still making butter each week right now and sticking it in the freezer, too.  And I'm making water kefir again finally. 
So anyway... here's the plan...

  • Yogurt with strawberries
  • Kefir smoothies
  • Scrambled eggs with veggies
  • Muffins from freezer
  • Hard boiled eggs
Lunches and Snacks:
  • Leftovers
  • Salads with homemade dressing
  • Egg salad avocado boats
  • Frijole mole dip with veggies
  • Apples with almond butter
  • Sliced cheese
  • Fruit
  • Grilled chicken topped with cucumber avocado salsa; asparagus; peaches
  • Jimmy John's unwiches (picnic at ski show)
  • Spaghetti squash with pesto, peas, and grilled chicken; side salads
  • Meatloaf; asparagus; side salads; applesauce
  • Grilled steaks; asparagus; side salads
  • Leftovers

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Burger Lettuce Wraps

This is how we eat our burgers these days.  Since we're eating mostly primal, we're avoiding grains.  This means... no buns for our burgers.  At first, both Kevin and I thought it was going to be very difficult to eat our burgers wrapped in lettuce.  But it wasn't hard at all.  In fact, we actually tend to prefer our burgers this way... we seriously don't miss the buns at all.  Especially right now with all the yummy lettuce we're getting from our garden and that you can find at just about any farmers' market this time of year.  On this particular night, we had burgers topped with raw provolone cheese, pickles, mayo, and bacon... and I'm pretty sure I had avocado on mine (Kevin's is in the picture).  All wrapped in lettuce and served with a side of green and yellow beans from last year's garden (that we'd frozen).  It is a perfect summer time meal!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Homemade Poppyseed Salad Dressing

We went over to my in-laws' house to celebrate Father's Day yesterday.  The family had lunch together after church.  We just had a simple lunch of make-your-own salads.  It was perfect for a hot day and a quick-prep meal!  We had a great assortment of toppings to choose from and everyone got to put together the perfect salad for themselves. 

I made a couple of homemade salad dressings to contribute to the spread... ranch and I tried a new recipe for poppyseed dressing.  I've been wanting to make poppyseed for quite a while now - I think I found this recipe over a year ago... and I didn't write down where I found it, so I'm not sure what the source is for this.  I just never got around to actually making it until Saturday.  This was very quick and easy to put together.  And it was very tasty!  I think everyone who tried it enjoyed it.  Even my husband tried it and said he really liked it (the picture is of his salad). 

Poppyseed Dressing

1/2 cup homemade mayonnaise
1/2 cup organic Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons poppy seeds

Mix all ingredients together until creamy.  You can either whisk in a bowl, or put all the ingredients into a glass jar and shake them all up together.   Once ingredients are combined, your dressing is ready to use.   Pour over salad and toss just before serving.  If you are making the dressing ahead of time, you'll want to shake/stir it up well just before using it.

This post is linked to:
Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist
Weekend Gourmet Blog Carnival at Hartke is Online
Traditional Tuesdays at Delicious Obsessions

Homemade Mayonnaise

I've been making homemade mayonnaise for quite a long time... for at least a year now on a regular basis.  As I was getting ready to post a recipe for a salad dressing (coming up next) I made this weekend, I went searching for my mayo post to link it to the new recipe... and I couldn't find it.  So here it is.  I got the original recipe from The Nourishing Gourmet.  I've tweaked it a bit for our tastes (as written below).  My SIL, Mary, also has a great version on her blog for something closer to Miracle Whip if you prefer that.  I'll have to try hers sometime, as Kevin likes Miracle Whip... but he also always liked Hellman's which was always my favorite.  So I usually just make plain mayo.  It really does taste very much like Hellman's. 

You'll notice that this mayo is quite yellow.  This is because I use farm-fresh, pastured eggs.  These are the most nutritious eggs... with very orange yolks.  The contrast between pastured and conventional yolks is amazing.  You'll also see that the yolks remain raw in this recipe.  Please don't make this recipe with eggs you don't trust.  If you are using farm-fresh, pastured eggs from a farmer you know uses sustainable practices... you are most likely safe.  That's who I'd trust, at least.  :)

Homemade Mayonnaise
4 egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon mustard
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1-2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar (we do prefer ACV, though)
1 teaspoon celtic sea salt
3/4-1 cup oil - I usually use all olive oil, but sometimes will add in some grapeseed oil

Combine everything EXCEPT the oil. I use a quart sized wide-mouth mason jar.  You just want something that fits your immersion blender.  Mix with a stick blender until creamy.

While blending, add the oil in small increments and mix until it’s homogenized. Make sure you lift the blender up and down as it’s blending- the quick up and down motion helps the mixture to homogenize, and it will thicken right up.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Meal plans and the week ahead

Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful fathers out there!!  I hope you all are able to do something fun with the special dads in your life today. 

Today we're headed to my in-laws' church.  My SIL, BIL, niece, and nephew are visiting from Grand Rapids and we're very excited to see them!  They are bringing us some of our grassfed beef that we ordered together - I'm very anxious to try the beef!  We'll have to run home after church to stick it all in the freezer.  Then we're heading over to my in-laws' house for lunch.  We'll be heading out to my aunt's house on the lake for some water skiing later in the afternoon, probably around 3:00.  That will be Kevin's special thing to do today - water ski.  :)  It's what he loves to do and wants to do.  Carson says he wants to give it a try today, too.  So we'll see how that goes. 

The rest of the week will be sort of busy, too.  We don't have anything on Monday.  But Tuesday, we may be headed up to the Silver Lake Ski Club ski show again.  Wednesday I have to go out to Hadley/Lapeer area to pick up 5 fresh chickens.  Thursday a friend from work is coming over for dinner - he spends 4 days at UM-Flint every 6 weeks or so for his MBA program.  So he's coming over for dinner and to hang out for a bit on Thursday night.  Friday is my flex day.  I am hoping to be able to hang out with Kati and baby Tony in the morning - doing something active.  Then I'll be packing up the car in the afternoon.  As long as the weather holds up, we're going camping at Sleepy Hollow State Park this weekend.  Our friends, the Chapmans, are going to join us, and possibly a few other friends, as well.  It should be a fun weekend!

In between plans, I need to do some serious weeding in the flower beds up front and in the veggie garden and berry patches.  We're also going to be picking up a bunch of sand to lay the foundation for the pool.  Hopefully we can at least get the sand in, spread out, and tamped down.  Then next week we can get the pool set up finally. 

So here's the plan... I still need to figure out what I'm going to make when Chris is over on Thursday night...

  • Yogurt with fruit
  • Kefir smoothies
  • Scrambled eggs with veggies and sausage
  • GF muffins from freezer
Lunches and Snacks:
  • Leftovers
  • Salads
  • Fruit
  • Apples with almond butter
  • Veggies with dip
  • Sliced cheese
  • Pickles
  • Grilled salmon; asparagus; carrots; peaches
  • Stir fry with leftover beef roast, snap peas, carrots, onions, zucchini
  • Grilled steak; asparagus; broccoli from freezer; applesauce
  • TBD
Camping food:
  • Yogurt with fruit
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Salads with homemade dressings
  • Egg salad with avocado
  • Sliced cheese and local, organic, pastured beef jerky
  • Fresh fruit
  • Local, organic, pastured brats; home canned baked beans; asparagus; applesauce
  • Hobo dinners; applesauce

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Blueberry Banana Muffins

Here's another recipe that I've made quite a few times now.  I've made them as written below.  I've also substituted the blueberries with strawberries a couple of times, too.  Both are excellent!!  These are very quick and easy to throw together - perfect for making them with a child.  Carson loves to help make them!  He also loves to eat them and requests these often.  We all love them. 

This recipe comes from Nourished and Nurtured.  Be sure to check out her site for lots of GAPS-friendly recipes.  While we're not doing GAPS at our house, many GAPS recipes are also paleo and/or primal friendly, as well. 

Blueberry Banana Muffins
Makes 12 muffins
1/2 cup butter or unrefined coconut oil
1/2 cup honey
3/4 tsp celtic sea salt
6 eggs, preferably pasture-raised
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup coconut flour
1 ripe banana, mashed
1 heaping cup frozen blueberries
Melt butter or coconut oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Turn off heat and allow to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, combine the eggs, salt, vanilla extract, and almond extract in a large bowl. If using an immersion blender, pulse a few times to combine. Otherwise, mix to combine with a whisk or mixer.

Add the honey to the butter (or coconut oil) and stir slightly. Pour this mixture into the wet ingredients and blend well with immersion blender or mixer.

Pour the coconut flour into the bowl with the wet ingredients. Use an immersion blender or mixer to thoroughly combine all ingredients, making sure there are no lumps.
Add mashed banana and mix to combine.

Line a muffin tin with paper cups. Scoop the muffin batter into the paper cups.
Add about 8-10 blueberries to the top of each muffin. Push them down slightly into the batter. If you try to fold the blueberries into the batter, they tend to sink to the bottom of the muffins during baking, making everything a bit soggy.

Bake muffins in 325 degree oven for about 40-50 minutes, until muffins are set and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. If you are in a time-crunch, you could bake them at 350 degrees initially, but you'll need to reduce the heat after a bit so they won't burn before being set in the middle.

Remove from oven and cool.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Organic Gardening - Asparagus

I have been doing a lot of research on growing asparagus and I just wanted to share what I've been learning. I use my blog as my resource for information, so it will be helpful for me to have the info here. Plus, I hope others may find it useful at one point or another, as well.

Last year, I planted 25 crowns of Purple Passion Asparagus in our garden. We love asparagus and tend to eat it every other day when its in season. I want to eventually have enough to not only eat fresh as often as we like, but also to blanch and freeze so that we can enjoy our own home-grown asparagus in the fall and winter months.

Find a Source
The first step in growing asparagus is to find a good source for crowns. I ordered my crowns from Fedco. You'll need to decide what variety you are interested in. There are many to choose from. I chose an all male variety, as I have read they are most productive since they're not wasting energy producing seeds like females.

Planting Asparagus
Plant asparagus during the dormant period - for me that meant early spring. To plant the crowns, you need to dig a trench about a foot deep and about a foot wide. Make sure you also amend your soil, if necessary. Remember, asparagus is a perennial, so you'll want a good, nourishing soil to grow it in. You should add some good compost as you are planting the crowns, too. I also added some manure as I was planting mine.

You will want to space the crowns about 18 inches apart and then cover with a few inches of soil. As your plants sprout and grow, you should fill in the trench with more soil so as to provide a good, strong growing base.

What to Plant (and Not to Plant) Near Asparagus
Good companions for asparagus are: basil, parsley, and tomatoes.  Bad companions for asparagus are: onions, chives, garlic, and leeks.

Harvesting Asparagus
I have read mixed things about when to take your first harvest after planting crowns. Definitely do not harvest any asparagus spears the first year you plant the crowns. Just let them grow. I think asparagus is actually quite pretty. I never realized how pretty the asparagus ferns could be. The ferns get quite tall - like 5 or 6 feet - so make sure you also take this into consideration when you are planting your crowns.

Some sources say that you should not harvest the second year, either. And some sources recommend leaving them alone a third year, even. Many sources say you can harvest the second year, but only a light harvest.  I've decided not to harvest mine yet this year.  I will harvest some next year, but only a light harvest.  I figure I will harvest 2 or 3 stalks per crown next year and leave the rest to grow into ferns, as I want my crowns to really get established and growing strong. 

Harvest asparagus when the spears are between 6 and 8 inches long and the tips are still tightly closed. Cut off the spears just below the surface of the soil using a sharp trowel/shovel.  You'll want to leave the very thin spears to grow into ferns and nourish your roots.

You can extend the harvest of your asparagus by allowing 3 or 4 spears per crown to grow into ferns. By doing this, your crowns are always producing enough energy and food via photosynthesis. This will extend your harvest by weeks. Once the diameter an the spears is thinner than a pencil, its time to stop harvesting and let them grow into ferns.

After 4 years of good growth, your plants should be producing strong for about 8 weeks.

Diseases and Pests
Asparagus is susceptible to asparagus rust, which looks like orange/yellow spots on the foliage. Make sure you are selecting varieties that are resistant.

Another common issue are asparagus beetles. They usually appear later in the season and eat the ferns. This will weaken the crowns. Hand-pick off the beetles and squash them, or try applying soap spray directly on the beetles. After the first frost, remove the dead ferns and destroy so as to eliminate a place for the beetles to over-winter. A good defense against asparagus beetles is to plant tomatoes, basil, and parsley next to your asparagus plants.  They will deter one another's pests. 

To make a soap spray, mix 1 teaspoon Dr. Bronners soap in 1 quart of water. Shake it up and spray.

Cutting The Ferns As You Prepare For Winter
Asparagus fronds should not be cut until very late in the fall.  By this time, the ferns should be dry and brittle.  You want to leave the ferns as long as possible, as the roots need the top growth to enable them to make spears the following spring.

After you cut the ferns back, you will want to spread a layer of compost or manure over the asparagus bed.  Then top with a thick layer of straw. 

This post is shared at: Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop

Pecan Crusted Chicken

I've made this quite a few times now, but I just haven't gotten around to posting it yet. I've made chicken and fish this way and want to try it with pork chops sometime, too. I've also made it with other crispy nuts - almonds and walnuts.  All are great, but pecans are my favorite! It's delicious, fast, and so easy! Perfect for a weeknight meal. I originally got the idea from a recipe I saw in my Everyday Paleo cookbook - you can also view the recipe on the Everyday Paleo website. I've made it exactly as written in Sarah's book/site, but it tastes just as great the way I've written it below. Plus its even easier.

Pecan Crusted Chicken (or Fish or Pork Chops)

4 pastured chicken breasts
1/2 cup organic/natural dijon mustard
1 cup crispy pecans
sea salt, to taste
coconut oil or butter, for greasing the pan

Preheat your oven to 350. Grease a glass baking dish with some coconut oil or butter. Set aside.

Place the pecans in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are finely chopped. Pour the chopped pecans into a pie plate or shallow/wide bowl.

Squeeze the dijon mustard into another pie plate or shallow/wide bowl.

Take each chicken breast individually and dip into the dijon mustard. Make sure to coat on both sides. Next, dip the chicken in the chopped pecans. Again, make sure to coat both sides.

Place coated chicken into the greased glass baking dish. Sprinkle each chicken breast with just a little sea salt.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until the chicken juices run clear.

This post is shared at:
Grain-Free Tuesday at Hella Delicious
Traditional Tuesday at Delicious Obsessions
Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Meal plans and the week ahead

Ok, so I am writing this before our weekend in Wisconsin and scheduling it to post on the normal day. So no updates on how the weekend is going in Wisconsin. I hope it's going fabulously and that we're having wonderful weather! It didn't look so great as of Thursday... but one can hope, right?! :) 

UPDATE:  We are having an awesome weekend!  The family reunion yesterday was so fun!  There were 42 people there and it was great to meet lots of my cousins that I'd never met.  I've heard many many stories about them all, so it was good to put names and stories with faces.  Today's weather looks very nice... a little cool still in the high 60s, but it's nice and sunny today.  We're looking forward to enjoying some time at our beach and exploring a little more today.  Tomorrow looks great, too.  We might come back a little later than we had originally planned, so we can enjoy a little more time here.  We'll see how it plays out. 

So obviously, we're in Wisconsin still. We're getting up tomorrow morning, packing up the car again, and heading home. We should be home before dinner. Tuesday afternoon, I'm going to our local WAPF chapter meeting. Then on Tuesday evening, we're meeting up with our friends, the Franson and Parks families, out at the Silver Lake Ski Club ski show.  Wednesday night I'm getting my hair done. And I am debating about taking Friday off... we'll see how the weather looks and what is going on at work. If I do take the day off, Carson and I will probably be meeting up with our friends Kati and baby Tony to do something fun. And Saturday, we're headed out to my Uncle Dave's lake for the Jason Amy Memorial (JAM) slalom ski tournament. So it should be another fun week!

I'm sure the yard is a jungle again, so we'll need to mow and weed whack this week. Maybe tomorrow after we get home, if the lawn is looking too bad. I'll need to weed out the flower gardens and veggie garden, too, I'm sure. We're still working on cleaning out a section of our backyard - cutting down some trees, removing brush and overgrowing things, removing cement blocks that have been buried under the top layer of soil, etc. So hopefully we'll make a little progress on that project this week, too. I think that's about all we'll have time for this week.

As for meals, here's what I'm thinking...

  • Breakfast cupcakes
  • Smoothies
  • Yogurt with fruit
  • Avocado cream cheese frittata
Lunches and snacks:
  • Leftovers
  • Frijole mole dip with raw veggies
  • Asparagus basil salad
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Homemade beef jerky
  • Crispy nuts
  • Fruit
  • Salad with hard boiled eggs, bacon, roasted chicken from the freezer, bell pepper, carrots, cucumber, avocado, vinegar & oil
  • Beef short ribs; asparagus; side salads
  • Paleo tuna cakes; asparagus; strawberry rhubarb coconut ice cream
  • Grilled chicken kebabs; side salads; fruit
  • Meatza

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Meal plans and the week ahead

This is going to be a busy week. We're going away this weekend, so we have lots of preparation... packing, making some healthy snacks for the car, cleaning the house, etc. Its a good thing we don't have many plans early this week. We don't really have anything going on until Thursday.  Scratch that.  Kevin told me this afternoon that he has to pick up a rental car tonight.  He's headed to Ohio tomorrow and won't get home until very late.  Tuesday he's headed to Canada, but hopefully won't be home too much after regular time.  I have to attend an MDOT public meeting on our state rail plan on Thursday evening in Flint. And I'll be going out to pick up our milk on Thursday night since we can't get it Friday, but I can't go until after the evening milking at 8:30. That's about it for the first half of the week.

Then we'll be loading up and heading out around 6:00am on Friday morning. We're going to Sheboygan, Wisconsin for a family reunion with my maternal grandma's family. My grandma was from Sheboygan, but I have never been there. It will be fun to see the town she lived in, see the places I remember her talking about, and meet some of my cousins from that side of the family. I really wish we would have done this before my grandma passed away. :(

I hope we have nice weather while we're in Wisconsin (doesn't look too great now, hope it changes). My grandpa, his girlfriend, my parents, my aunts/uncles, sister, some of my cousins, and us have rented one big house on Lake Michigan for the weekend. So I just hope the forecast changes and its sunny and warm so we can enjoy the beach!! We'll be coming home on Monday next week, so no posting for me next Sunday. I'll post the plans for next week a few days late after we get back.

We've had amazing weather this weekend (finally!). Yesterday was nice and hot! Hopefully today is as well. I have about 2/3 of the garden planted at this point. I will be finishing it up today. We did a lot of yard work yesterday and will do more today, as well. We're working on cleaning up a section of the backyard so we can till it and seed it.

I took my last dose of those dreadful antibiotics yesterday. I'm very glad to be done with them. Now I can get my gut back in order. I'm looking forward to feeling back to normal soon. And I'm really looking forward to milk and cheese again! I figure I'll try them again on Wednesday. Let's hope they go over better than the slice of cheese did last weekend.

Ok, so here's what I'm thinking for meals:

  • Fried eggs; bacon
  • Grain-free muffins from freezer
  • Fruit
  • Smoothies
Lunches and snacks:
  • Leftovers
  • Salads
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Apples with almond butter
  • Raw veggies with ranch dip
  • Fruit rolls
  • Crispy nuts
  • Grilled burgers wrapped in lettuce, topped with bacon, cheese, pickles; green and yellow beans
  • Grilled balsamic glazed pork chops; green beans; cauliflower; peaches
  • Split pea soup
  • Stir fry
  • Grilled marinated chicken breasts; salad; applesauce
To pack in the cooler for WI:
  • Milk... Can't go w/out our real milk!
  • GF power bars
  • GF granola
  • Yogurt
  • Apples
  • Fruit rolls
  • Crispy nuts
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Butter... I just cannot stomach the idea of not having good, quality butter
  • Bacon... our contribution for family breakfasts
  • Sweet breads from freezer... another contribution to family breakfasts (and a good way to use them up since we don't eat them anymore)