Weekly Menu: A New Flow

standard June 12, 2017 Leave a response

I love cooking. Creating. Serving. Eating. Stirring a big pot of risotto is calming to me, and having a prepped and stocked fridge makes me insanely happy. However, some seasons are just not easy for finding time to mix and stir and simmer and bake. My child’s bedtime routine takes up most of the time I used to use to make dinner. And we now eat at 9 pm after she is in bed. Cooking at that point is out of the question. This mama is hungry! So how to make meals easy without getting takeout all the time?

1. Stock that freezer!

As we started depleting the freezer reserves once we got home from the hospital, I started taking a few hours one day a month to make 3-4 more meals to restock for the coming weeks. Having an ever stocked freezer makes last-minute meals super easy, and any dinner can be freshened up with a quick side salad.

Looking for fresh and easy freezer meal ideas and planning tips? Check out these posts:

2. Get a meal delivery service.

We get a vegetarian Hello Fresh box almost every week. I can easily add an extra protein for the husband and omit any cheese for me. Meals are simple enough they can be made in 30 minutes or less, and if I’ve prepped everything before bedtime, dinner takes even less time to get on the table after baby is asleep.

Want to try Hello Fresh for yourself? Use this link to get $40 off your first box. And let me know what you think! (Disclaimer: This is an affiliate link).

3. Use prepared grocery items.

The best time saver for easy, healthy lunches? Bagged salad kits from the grocery store. I usually ditch the dressing and make my own simple vinaigrette with oil and vinegar or swap in salsa or tahini. Toss some precooked lentils or beans in, and a hearty, filling, and fresh meal is ready in 5 minutes. Most grocery stores have a ton of prepared convenience foods in the produce section that can be taken advantage of. Yes, it costs a little more for someone else to chop and season and assemble, but sometimes the time savings may weigh out the winner.

 

Be Present: June

standard June 9, 2017 Leave a response

Hello friends! Happy summertime! The past three months have been so full of adventures into the world of motherhood, and it’s been a hard, wonderful, sleepless, joy-filled time.  As I had every intention of being back to this space in May, I’ve spent a bit of time considering how I want to make the most of this space while still enjoying what I do, without pressure of being pulled in a million directions. So for now, fewer recipes, some weekly menus, more running and minimalist living, a sprinkle of life and food with a baby. And most definitely still goals! Even though I have not shared April or May goals, I did set some. A little progress, a lot of grace. But most of all, plenty of motivation and direction setting in this new season. Let’s jump right in!

March in Review:

1. Allow help. Say YES to offers and ASK when needed. (This is hard for me!)

I’ve definitely gotten better at saying yes to offers of helping, but asking is still so hard. Even with the husband. I sometimes just do it all without even thinking I don’t have to. But we’ve slowly worked out a rhythm that makes life with a baby much easier. Patience and time and lots of communication is key!

2. Go one ONE date with the husband. Even if it’s just a walk outside.

Thanks to Nana being in town each month, we’ve managed to actually go on a real date every single month, not just in March. Thanks, Mom!

3. Practice positive self talk and self-care every day.

After finally being cleared to workout after 8 weeks, being able to run and do yoga/core work has really helped with the positive self talk. The scale may not budge for a while due to the combination of breastfeeding and running hunger (pretty much starving 24/7!), but I feel 10 times better being able to get out and move more than walking around the block.

June Goals:

  1. Enjoy the Summer.
  2. Take one morning a week out of the house for self-care time.
  3. Stick to office hours with Celebration Nutrition work.
  4. Complete couch to 10k training 3 times/week + yoga every day. (loving Jasyoga right now!)

Be Present: March

standard March 1, 2017 Leave a response

Hello March! Baby Darby’s arrival is coming soon, so as intentionally restful and slow as February was, March will be even slower. Including signing off here for a while. No pre-scheduled posts or guest content. Just a much-needed time away being present with my new little family. I may pop in once a month with goal updates, but only as I am able. See you all in May!

February in Review:

1. Read 3 parenting books.

Managed to not only read three parenting books, but two other non-baby related books to keep me from going baby crazy. There is a LOT of information out there on how to get babies to sleep, stop crying, stick to a schedule, etc. My goal was to be as informed as I could to make the best decisions on these topics for my family. Now that I have the strategies, lets see what happens…

Also, go read Present over Perfect by Shauna Niequist. I love love love Bittersweet, but this one hit a similar nerve for a completely different stage of life.

2. Connect with 2 friends.

In keeping my schedule more open this month, I was able to do this easily. I was also able to make room for last-minute lunch with ladies at my house, help friends in need, and still feel relaxed and restful. Wins all around.

3. Do 1 thing for myself each week.

I actually had to schedule this in my planner to make sure I carved out time that wasn’t walking or exercise related (I also consider that self care time, but I wanted to keep it separate from this goal this month). This space looked a little different each week, but I fit it in, and it was wonderful.

4. Delete 1 item from my to-do list every morning.

This actually got hard as I started putting less and less on the to-do list to begin with. My last day of work ended up being the 17th, so these past weeks have been getting slower and slower in terms of tasks. Which was glorious and horrible at the same time. I am definitely addicted to checking things off my list!

5. Walk 3 miles every day.

This honestly has gotten too hard in the past couple weeks. Once I realized it, I managed to focus on finding 45 minute/2-2.5 mile routes in my neighborhood that have worked well in keeping me going without overdoing it.

March Goals:

  1. Allow help. Say YES to offers and ASK when needed. (This is hard for me!)
  2.  Go one ONE date with the husband. Even if it’s just a walk outside.
  3. Practice positive self talk and self care every day.

Having any sort of goals might sound ambitious this month, but as someone who thrives on structure and accomplishing things, even these small things will help keep me mentally and physically healthy through the next month and beyond.

 

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