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  • Menu Plan Monday: Week of February 16, 2015

    Last week’s healthy dish was Cauliflower, Romanesco & Broccoli Gratin – I didn’t get a picture, and I don’t think you could have made out the Romanesco cauliflower anyway, since everything was mixed into a white cheese sauce. The casserole was a little bland but a nice way to eat some really healthy cruciferous veggies. The Romanesco retained more of its body than the cauliflower and broccoli, so it had still had a nice crunch after baking. I would definitely be willing to cook it again, but I don’t know that I would go out of my way to get it when cauliflower is so readily available.

    This week, I’m going to try once again to conquer my fear of dried beans. People cook with them all the time, I know, so they shouldn’t be so intimidating – but I’ve worked with them in the past and not loved the results. But I’m determined to master them this year.

    With apologies to everyone trying to dig their way out of winter, it’s been crazy hot here in Southern California, with temps hitting the 90’s in my area. Soup has suddenly become unappealing, and I’m focusing on baking that can be done in my toaster oven instead of the big oven to minimize heat production. Hopefully by the end of the week, temps will start coming down! In the meantime, here’s what I’m planning for this week:

    Monday Dinner – Pasta with Cauliflower, Raisins and Anchovies

    Breakfast – Blueberry Muffins
    Dinner – Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese, Garlic Knots

    Breakfast – Granola and yogurt
    Dinner – Meatloaf Burgers {didn’t get to these last week}, some kind of veggie

    Breakfast – Jam Tarts
    Dinner – Tamale Casserole using leftover frozen Sriracha BBQ Pulled Pork, Slow Cooker Refried Beans, salad

    Breakfast – Bagels and Cream Cheese
    Dinner – Tuna Melts, Sweet Potato Fries

    Saturday Dinner – Gruyere Popover Sandwiches with Fried Eggs and Creamed Spinach

    Sunday Dinner – Dinner out

    See more weekly menus at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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    Menu Plan Monday: Week of February 9, 2015

    Last week was a messy week as far as cooking and trying those new healthy products went. I only sorta stuck to my meal plan, and I only tried one of the three products on my list, kefir:

    Trying kefir |

    Kefir is a “fermented milk drink” that contains many strains of probiotics, which supposedly aid digestion, immunity, and more. I decided to try Lifeway ProBugs, because a woman in line behind me at Whole Foods raved about them, and I thought it would be sweeter since it’s aimed at kids. It was really tangy though – in fact, too tangy for my taste, although maybe I’ll get used to it. My fourth-grader hated it, and I didn’t even make my sweet-toothed second-grader try it.

    This week’s new healthy dish will involve a new-to-me vegetable called Romanesco cauliflower, which is coming in my CSA box. According to the farm, Romanesco “florets have the same texture as a white cauliflower, but the flavor is more earthy, with a slightly nutty flavor.” We’ll see!

    And here’s what I’m planning for the whole week:

    Breakfast – Pancakes
    Dinner – Spaghetti Bolognese, Sauteed Green Beans, Garlic Knots

    Breakfast – Bagel Breakfast Sandwiches
    Dinner – Miso Chicken, Rice, some kind of veggie

    Breakfast – Oatmeal
    Dinner – Pan Bagnat, Chips, and Fruit

    Breakfast – Best Ever Blueberry Muffins
    Dinner – Meatloaf Burgers, Cauliflower, Romanesco and Broccoli Gratin, Garlic Knots

    Breakfast – Yogurt Parfait with Homemade Granola {recipe forthcoming}
    Dinner – “Un”Stuffed Cabbage Soup, bread

    Dinner – Leftovers It’s Valentine’s Day! We can’t have leftovers!
    -> New plan: Lobster, Steamed artichokes, Chocolate Mousse

    Dinner – Dinner out

    See more weekly menus at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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    Menu Plan Monday: Week of February 2, 2015

    I am feeling very much in a funk as I prepare this week’s menu – it’s been a stressful, difficult week with one of the kids, and that in turn affects other areas of life. I’m also predicting a migraine sometime this week as a result of the stress, so I think it’s my best interest to keep things as low-key as easy as possible.

    In that vein, I won’t actually make a healthy dish this week – instead, I’m going to sample some items that are common but that I’ve shied away from because they just sound unappealing: kombucha, kefir, and rice milk. I’m sure I could add to that list, but nothing else comes to mind at the moment (let me know if you think of any). I’ll report back at the end of the week with my results/opinions. (Check out last week’s healthy dish.)

    And here’s what I’m thinking for simple, familiar dinners that won’t stress me out:

    Monday – Roasted Cauliflower and Sardine Pasta

    Tuesday – Clam chowder

    Wednesday – Tuna sandwiches

    Thursday – Salmon Furikake, rice, veggies

    Friday – Egg salad sandwiches

    Saturday – Overnight Caramel French Toast, Sausage, Fruit

    Sunday – Dinner out

    I would normally prep breakfast for school days, but this week the kids will just have to endure with cereal, toast, bagels, and/or yogurt. I just don’t have it in me to plan on baking delicious things right now, but hopefully that will change by mid-week.

    Note: A menu plan – especially one with easy-to-make familiar meals – is particularly handy during low-energy, stressful times like this. It takes the thinking out of planning and making dinner every day!

    See more weekly menus at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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    Menu Plan Monday: Week of January 26, 2015

    I had one kid home from school for part of last week, and that completely threw off my grocery shopping and therefore my menu plan. I was able to get to Trader Joe’s with him in the middle of the week, and then to Ralphs (mostly to get prices so I could update the Mega Sale list) once he went back to school. By the time I felt back on track, I just couldn’t get around to this week’s new healthy dish. Bu I’m picking back up this week with some chard, which is coming in my mid-week CSA box. Here’s what I’ve got planned:

    Breakfast – Bagels with cream cheese, fruit
    Dinner – Sashimi, rice, some kind of veggie

    Breakfast – Best Ever Blueberry Muffins
    Dinner – Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Sriracha BBQ Sauce, Sweet Potato Fries

    Breakfast – Apple Cinnamon Coffeecake
    Dinner – Orecchiette with Sausage, Chard, and Parsnips, Garlic Bread

    Breakfast – Oatmeal
    Dinner – Homemade Gravlax, bread, Cauliflower with Anchovy Breadcrumbs

    Breakfast – Cereal or some baked good from the freezer
    Dinner – Cheesy Mashed White Beans With Kale, Parmesan, and a Fried Egg

    Saturday Dinner – Beef Chili with the fixings, Cornbread

    Sunday Dinner – We’re going to a Super Bowl party, and I will make Slow Cooker Spinach & Artichoke Dip, which has really become a staple around here

    See more weekly menus at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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    Menu Plan Monday: Week of January 19, 2015

    As part of my breakfast meal planning for school days, I tried making these English muffins but they came out more like a dense bread. I’m not quite ready to give up, as I love the idea of making a breakfast sandwich for the kids before school, so if you have a trusted English muffin recipe, please share it with me!

    Last week’s healthy dish was Quinoa Salad with Cucumber, Feta and Shrimp, and it’s a definite keeper.

    This week, I’m tackling dried beans. I haven’t bothered with dried beans for a long time since canned beans are so readily available, but dried beans are cheaper and freezer-friendly. And a huge pot of homemade refried beans would be a hit with my kids, especially if I can master Mexican rice. But one thing at a time …

    Dinner – Slow Cooker Spinach & Artichoke Dip with carrot sticks, celery and pita chips, Bacon-Wrapped Dates

    Breakfast – Cinnamon Raisin Bread Pudding {I have some bread in the freezer that will be perfect for this}
    Dinner – Miso Chicken, Rice, Sauteed Zucchini

    Breakfast – Baked Oatmeal
    Dinner – Pasta Bolognese, salad, garlic bread

    Breakfast – Best Ever Blueberry Muffins
    Dinner – Chicken Enchiladas, Crock Pot Refried Beans, Salad

    Breakfast – Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake
    Dinner – Crock Pot Loaded Potato Soup, garlic bread

    Saturday & Sunday: We will be out and about both days so we’ll have to eat out, but if we’re home, we’ll have leftover soup or breakfast for dinner.

    See more weekly menus at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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