Meal planning, recipes, and budgeting

Sounds like fun, right? I started meal planning because I was bored when we first moved here and I needed something to do other than fill out job applications. It is now a habit; typically BLT and I meal plan on Sundays after I get the newspaper with advertisements and coupons. I use this printable sheet for writing down my meals and making a shopping list:

This week’s meals are as follow:
Monday: steak, spinach, and corn bread (BLT was craving corn bread)

Tuesday: crispy cheddar chicken and green beans (recipe here: I don’t make the gravy for the chicken

Wednesday: Breakfast (sausage balls and 7up biscuits)- for the sausage balls, I just take a package of Jimmy Dean sausage, mix it with about 2 cups of Bisquick and 1-2 cups of cheddar cheese, and then roll them into balls, bake at 350 for 25 minutes. The 7UP biscuit recipe can be found here:

Thursday: Leftover white bean chicken chili (from Sunday) I essentially use this recipe, but leave out 1 can of beans so only making it with 2 cans

Friday: Going out

Saturday: Chicken Mac

Sunday: Chicken Rollatini (haven’t made it before, but here is the recipe


I have created a Family Budget Binder and printed pages 5, 7, 9, 11 from this site

We also use a budgeting tool in excel that is a simple monthly planner. November budget

The meal planning, recipes, and budgeting help keep me under control. If I come home from work and there isn’t a dinner planned, then I am likely to give into McDonald’s or let Brandon get a pizza. It was hard to remember to take chicken out in the morning but now we have the hang of it pretty well.


nail color of the week: DS Extravagance by OPI

Random thoughts this week

BLT and I decided to go to NC in January for my birthday, even though it is in February. This will be an awesome birthday trip! I’m super excited to see friends, feel sunshine, hit up Bojangles, GK Café, the beer fest, and a few other places I know I’m forgetting!

I’ve really caught onto a few things in life regarding weight and women being deemed “overweight”. 1- comments that are made to women who overweight such as “you have a pretty face” or “you have such a great personality” as if the person who is saying these comments wants me or others to feel better about the way I look. I’m really starting to see these comments as a slap in the face. I have loved ones that do say these to me and they aren’t trying to be hurtful but the end result is hurtful. 2- shopping for clothes that aren’t the “normal or average” sizes is next to impossible unless you go online. I like to try clothes on before buying them but that is hardly the option. Target has a plus sized section but it is typically in the back of the store, after maternity and is often hard to distinguish between plus size and maternity until you see the front panel of the pants or a label. Come on Target, I spend enough dang money in there on other things, can you just please me and not put things in a very small section in the back of the store? Thanks.

Final thoughts for Wednesday- yesterday Kip and Bentley got their hair done (groomed). These dogs are back to stud muffin status and not looking like ragamuffins. It always blows my mind when I get them back because they look like different dogs and often resemble the puppies they once were. Bentley will forever have a puppy face! Kip always looks like he is a starving dog when he gets his hair cut. I’m hoping the hair grows out a tad for our annual Christmas card. Maybe we will have a wintery backdrop over Thanksgiving in Michigan!


Jumping in Head First!

I’ve been toying with the idea of blogging. While at work today, I realized I didn’t have much to do to fill my time so I started searching why I should start blogging. Fast forward 3 hours, now I have my own blog. I wasn’t sure if this would be dedicated to me ranting about every day life, taking pictures of makeup things, cooking/baking, or about my cute dogs. My original thought was to do makeup related things and then hopefully some makeup businesses like MAC, Urban Decay, and the like would send me huge amounts of samples so I could showcase their product on my hugely successful blog. Probably NOT going to happen.

Every now and then I have a good recipe to share (probably from Pinterest), pictures of Kip and Bentley being funny, or a nice seasonal nail color someone may enjoy. I figure this can be my sounding board about being newly married, meal planning, financial planning, job searching, and just trying to navigate life. Here are my babes:  Kip and Bentley

Right now, my honey and I are trying to figure out our future. We have been in Kansas since June (all of 5 months!) and are already planning what’s next. I’ve been catching myself not calling Michigan my home and saying that I miss North Carolina often. I’ve lived in 4 different states up to this point, born in IL, moved to MI, went to NC for a job, and now in KS for BLT’s new job. Michigan will always draw me back as my family and best friends live there. North Carolina was my previous home. Kip and I ventured there and learned to live on our own. He and I changed so much in those 4 years and really grew close to people there. I think of my former students so often that it sometimes makes me teary. I do miss the people, diversity, FOOD, and sun. We will figure it out in time.



P.S. The nail color of the week is Cara Mia Crimson by OPI.