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My Current Meal Plan 0

This post is titled "current" meal plan as the way we eat today has certainly evolved over the 40 years I've been cooking for my family.  From the first week as a new bride I diligently made out menu plans...in fact I still have that menu plan from the first weeks of becoming Mrs. Greene. I can assure you my menus today don't have bologna sandwiches on white bread.....I've come a long ways baby!

My husband and I still have a houseful when most everyone we know our age have an empty nest.  But with 5 adult children still living at home and each of them with a different work schedule I've really struggled to get into a routine and meal plan that works for the two of us or 7 or more of us (every day is different around here). 

We decided last month that we were going to make some changes in our diet and it has been a welcome difference from the "same old-same old" that I was getting so tired of making. As I said we've come a long ways from bologna sandwiches on white store bought bread and this is just another step in our journey of eating healthier.

This meal plan doesn't have a name and it is just what works for us and what we feel good about putting into our bodies. It does focus on less meat and LOTS more veggies than we were consuming before we determined to really eat a lot more vegetables and fruits daily.  It has simplified that age old question for me and probably you have said it too...of "what can i fix for meals today"? We are repeating week after week with my plan but still give way for freedom to change it up as we like or by what is in the pantry or refrigerator that day.

What I am avoiding or eating in very small quantities:
DAIRY including CHEESE
MEATS
SUGAR
BREADS 
My husband is already very ship-shape and fit at age 68 and weighs the same as he did in his twenties and works out with weights every day and runs, etc. (I am not even going to mention myself as it is pretty much the opposite of him in those regards) but for him he is mostly avoiding the dairy (due to his past problem with kidney stones) and sugar except what naturally occurs in fruits. He still eats my homemade bread as he burns a lot of calories in a day and he has to fill up on something. He also enjoys the same lunch with me each day and evening meal so is focusing on veggies rather than meat also. But we are not avoiding meat altogether.  We have simply drastically reduced the meat we were consuming and added in way more veggies than we were eating before.

WHAT WE EAT:

BREAKFAST Monday - Friday:
The night before I prepare his and my breakfast. You can see how I do it here.
We always eat this Monday - Friday. He eats his at 6 a.m. and I eat mine at 10 a.m. It just works that way for us. We take integral collagen everyday and so it gets mixed in with the oats.

BREAKFAST:Saturday
This day is a break from weekdays for me and I make caramalized onions using some olive oil and stir fry in shredded organic fresh brussel sprouts.  I use that for the base and top it with 1-2 fried eggs. I drink KEVITA Probiotic Tangerine flavored drink with it.  My husband LOVES his Breakfast in Bed Oats and he has it every day of the week. 



BREAKFAST: Sunday
Today breakfast is a TREAT for me and I enjoy it on our 30 minute drive to church. I steep 3 bags of YOGI BLUEBERRY GREEN TEA in a 24 oz YETI STAINLESS TUMBLER and add Natural Bliss Sweet Cream and my integral collagen to it. I might change it up when hot weather gets here and have my smoothie that is made with almond milk, OJ concentrate, Spirulina and collagen and ice. 

LUNCH: Monday - Saturday
 
Everyday for lunch it is a MEGA salad.  We don't do salad dressing but instead give the top of it a shake of MCT Oil (liquid palm and coconut oils) and Balsamic Vinegar along with coarse celtic salt. These are not boring and they are BIG!
I fill a large glass deep dish pie plate full of fresh goodness. It takes quite a while to eat this big salad and I was surprised that it fills me up. We have come to look forward to our lunch each day and even I am shocked I can eat this many fresh veggies without it drowned in high calorie salad dressing. 
I change it up a bit every day but an example of what I put in each salad is:
SPRING MIX
ROMAINE LETTUCE
CHOPPED KALE & CABBAGES
BABY SPINACH
CHERRY TOMAOTES
BLACK GRAPES
GRANNY SMITH APPLE
BROCOLLI or CAULIFLOWER RICE
RAISINS OR CRAISINS
PINE NUTS OR SUNFLOWER SEEDS
CASHEWS OR PECANS OR ALMONDS
RED OR YELLOW SWEET BELL PEPPER
CELERY
CUCUMBERS
On days where we want something a big more "comforting and warm" for lunch I add sauteed veggies on top of the salads...like zuchinni spiralized into noodles sauteed in a drizzle of olive oil with garlic or grilled asparagus, I just pile it on top and it is delicious!
Many days I make our salad for lunch and while everything is out I make another in 1/2 gallon glass jars so the next day all I have to do for lunch is grab it from the refrigerator and serve..making the next day's lunch absolutely quick & easy!

LUNCH: Sunday
This may change after a while but for now it just works! It is the day we get a treat of meat and I make certain the meat is thawed and I make a quick spaghetti sauce with meat when I get home from church. I spiralize a few large zuchinnis and stir fry them in olive oil with garlic. That works for our noodles/pasta and we have come to love it! I also make a small side salad not near as large or as many ingredients as the weekday salads we eat for lunch. It's easy to add to it if there are more than just me and my husband here to eat...I make a pot of pasta noodles for the guys and garlic bread and they can enjoy the meal with us and there is really no extra fuss for me to add those few things to make the meal suitable for anyone else here. 

SNACKS & SWEETS: If I get feeling like I've got to have a snack I choose celery with almond butter or sometimes popcorn and a KEVITA Tangerine. I also love KIND bars that are low on the glycemic index and are made with non-gmo whole foods. They are 200 calories each so I limit them to only 1 or 2 a week. Our treats for sweet stuff is Avocado-Sweet Potato Brownies with a few walnuts & a dollop of whipped cream (tsk tsk!) or Lily's chocolate bars sweetened with stevia (just a few squares .... not the whole bar!).

DINNER: Monday - Saturday
I've given each nite a theme and we usually have the same thing but as we continue on with this plan I am sure I will switch it up some. It has been so freeing to already know what is going to be on the menu and makes preparing so much easier! I'll just give an example of one menu to help inspire you with what I have served for each of these nites. We have loved ALL of it! 

MONDAY: SOUP NITE
Tonite I made a big pot of white bean chili and skipped the "meat". I did use a box of organic chicken broth for the liquid and it was very flavorful. We didn't even miss the meat.  I also left out the corn as I couldn't find any as it was hiding at the bottom of my chest freezer. It was still good and we made a skillet of gluten-free cornbread to go with it. 

TUESDAY: TACO/FAJITA NITE
Tonite I made Fajita Bowls. The bottom had a bed of jasmine rice. I stir-fried in a bit of olive oil 3 colors of sweet peppers along with 2 large onions and sliced mushrooms. This is the recipe that inspired me. It was absolutely DELICIOUS! The avocado made it very filling and satisfying. Some weeks I will switch it up and have a taco salad. 



WEDNESDAY: INDIAN NITE
Tonite I made up my own recipe for the main dish. It was simple and very tasty and satifsying...but then I LOVE INDIAN food so this is my favorite nite of the week. I cooked some red lentils, barley and chick peas together in chicken broth with garam masala spice, garlic and curry powder. When the mixture was ready I added in a lot of baby spinach and stirred the hot mixture until it wilted.

I served it over oven baked brown rice. I stir-fried (Frozen) Haricot Verts (skinny young green beans) in a bit of olive oil in a cast iron skillet as a side vegetable and made my husbands favorite, fried breaded okra (I pan fry it in coconut oil). 

THURSDAY: BEANS & RICE NITE
Tonite I made our family favorite of black beans with oven-baked brown rice. The boys got home and joined us so they loaded theirs with grated cheese and ranch dressing but I held back and just ate the beans on rice with salsa and restrained myself to only 6 tortilla chips. I always add "taco" type seasonings to my black beans and make them from dried beans in my Kuhn-Rikon pressure cooker. It takes less than 2 hours from start to finish. My brown rice is always oven-baked. Simply put 2 1/2 cups brown rice in an oven-safe large casserole that has a lid and add 5+ cups of water and a heavy dash of salt. Cover and set oven to bake for 1 hour at 415 degrees. Turn off oven and let rest covered in the oven until ready to eat. 

FRIDAY: CHINESE NITE
Tonite I made a vegetable stir fry with zucchini, broccoli, snap peas, onions, squash, carrots and peppers. I seasoned it with fresh ginger and garlic and Braggs Aminos. I served it over jasmine rice. We LOVE my homemade eggrolls and so they made the meal extra special! They are filled with carrots, cabbage, bean sprouts, ginger, garlic, spring onions, and browned ground venison. 

SATURDAY: BURGER NITE
Tonite I made vegetarian burgers and seasoned potato wedges. Ketchup was our treat for the wedges and I had sliced tomato and avocado along with crunchy dill pickle spears and sliced onion for the burgers.  For the guys I made venison burgers and had homemade buns for them. I froze the extra vegetarian burgers so next Saturday will be easy-peasy! For my veggie burgers I roughly followed a recipe online and added to it liberally and with what was on hand...it basically was a mixture of carrots, black beans, oats, chickpeas, parsley, onion along with spices and salt and pepper. I mixed it all up in a food processor, formed patties and baked them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. The outside was crispy and they were really flavorful. There are lots of wonderful recipes online to be tried for a vegetarian style burger.

SUNDAY: SHAKE NITE
Tonite I go light and easy and we drink a Juice Plus Chocolate Protein shake made with nut milk in the NutriBullet. It is just about as creamy and yummy as a Wendys Frosty! 

How blessed we are to enjoy such good food...made from scratch...eaten at home surrounded by those we love the most! 

 

  • Martha Greene

Marmee Dear & Bosch Are Cooking Up New Healthy Recipes In 2018 0

I have been using a BOSCH mixer for almost 30 years now, so I was delighted when Bosch reached out to me to collaborate on a healthy, made-from-scratch, recipe interview. I was joined by four other home cooking bloggers and we all shared one of our favorite healthy recipes so readers can give it a try in 2018.

For my own contribution, I shared my Breakfast-in-Bed Oat Cereal.

“My man is an early bird! This is his favorite heart-healthy breakfast…and no I don’t serve it to him in bed. I call it “Breakfast-in-Bed” because I don’t have to get up and out of my cozy covers to serve it to him. I’m really not lazy but do love easy-peasy and it only takes me 5 minutes or less to do it the night before. He gets the benefits of soaked fresh whole grain cereal and I get the luxury of sleeping in ‘til at least the sun is up!” I like cooking to be accessible and simple when possible as well as always healthy. The other blogging chefs seemed to feel similarly to me, so I am pleased to present a review of our collaborative efforts with Bosch.

Be sure to check out my entire Bosch interview after you look through the recipes below. 

- - - - - - - - -

Monique Volz - Ambitious Kitchen

“It’s also wonderful to learn about spices and herbs and how they all work together to make the dish flavorful.”

                                     Yellow Curry Chicken Recipe

Ambitious Kitchen’s Full Interview

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Camille Walker - My Mommy Style

“Whether it is a risotto or a grilled cheese sandwich I always enjoy spending time with my family.”
                                  Keto Low Carb Two Meat Spaghetti

                                    My Mommy Style’s Full Interview

- - - - - - - - -

Maryea Flaherty - Happy Healthy Mama

“I find great value in making my family's meals from scratch...I also think homemade food simply tastes better!” Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Spaghetti Squash With Chicken

                                Happy Healthy Mama’s Full Interview

- - - - - - - - - 

Teri Hutcheon - A Foodie Stays Fit

“Making meals from scratch is a great way for me to relax and take time away from devices.
                                        Whole Wheat Flax Bread

                                  A Foodie Stays Fit’s Full Interview

Keep Your 2018 Healthy By Cooking From Scratch

I would never have been able to afford to feed my family so well and healthily if I did not learn to cook from scratch. Even if you don’t have a large family like mine, it is much more cost-effective to cook from home. Also, it puts you in complete control of everything that enters your mouth!

I would like to thank Bosch for the opportunity to contribute to this healthy eating project as well as all the other ladies who adding in from their blogs. Together, we have cooked up a useful resource for those looking to dip their toes into healthy cooking and I hope you all try one of the recipes we brought together.

  • Martha Greene

Free Summer Fun for Children 0

Who doesn't like free fun! This type of fun is basically mess free...well I might should say stain-free? And a little water never hurt anyone...the frock will dry sooner or later!
Let them paint with water!

It sparks their imagination and creativity.
My grandchildren love to paint on our porch! If you don't have a porch...try the sidewalk? All they need is a big bowl of water (let's pretend its a paint bucket!) and a paint brush! Elizabeth had loads of fun creating circles, alphabet letters and 100 leg centipedes! She even used her imagination and told me which color she was using! First we would pretend it was pink, then yellow, then black! It's a great way to teach them to spell their name....so Grandma...go get a bowl of water and an paintbrush and let them have some fun!

  • Martha Greene

Remembering Momsy 0

My Momsy saved keepsakes in a very organized fashion! She had large envelopes filled with every letter and card we had made her over the years in her cedar chest with each daughter's name on it for us to find when she was gone.
She was filled with the gift of giving... her time and anything extra she had...it was her love language. It sums up how she loved us girls and our families
She grew up with very little of the "extras" of life. She was born during the Great Depression. By the time her girls had married and started their own families, she was able to share with us from her abundance and it gave her great joy to help meet our needs even though they were usually just "wants".
She had an uncanny way of knowing just what one of us would "LOVE" to have or what we might really need and surprising us with it. 
I found one of these keepsake letters this week. I had hand-written her -- yea! Way back then we didn't even have email. I was 24 years old, had been married 6 years, and our family was growing with #4 on the way. There wasn't much extra tho' we always paid the bills, but Momsy always added to the magic of our ordinary days by giving and giving and giving. 
I wrote to her at the end of 1983,  from our little famly of 5 with one more expected:
"To a loving and generous Mom & Mimi: We want you to know how much we have enjoyed, used and appreciated the following:
(1) Little undershirts to keep our tummies warm in the Winter
(2) Tapes with books that are fun to listen to
(3) Comfy white sandals
(4) Crisp new bed sheets to make climbing into bed a pleasure
(5) Big boy panties to help me go potty like a big boy
(6) Lush green outdoor carpet to make our front covered porch pretty
(7) Red Tip bushes to plant and hide our ugly wall
(8) Teddy bear fabric to make us new nite gowns
(9) Little white sandals to keep our toes cool 
(10) A wonderful mini tape recorder to enjoy listening to our cassettes
(11) 2 pretty plants in planters
(12) "Herman" for lots of good sourdough bread
(13) A soft tiny blanket for our new baby
(14) Magazines you save and pass on for us to enjoy too
(15) Beautiful new silverware that will set us a pretty table
(16) A lovely hanging geranium to add color to our front porch
(17) Poison to keep all the "micies" AWAY
(18) New socks for Roger's stinky feet
(19) New unders, with NO holes, for Roger too
(20) A little red seat that folds up, just - our- size!
(21) Everything else I forgot to mention and write down.
We want you to know you make every time we see you like Christmas and we know it's just one way you like to say how much you love us and we want you to know WE LOVE YOU TOO and THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!
You are definitely the best in the east, west, north or south when it comes to being a "MOM" and a "MIMI". 
Love, 
Roger, Mar, and the little people: Mara Melissa, Erica, Adam and Little ?

{When I read this long forgotten letter from 34 years ago, it made me realize how blessed I am today and that we were really struggling way back when to just get by...I mean reading over this list of what she was gifting us makes me chuckle today, but remembering that each of those things she gave were really needed or something I really wanted but had no extra in the piggy bank for it.} 

If you mom is still with you today have you told her you love her and thanked her for what she has done for you? 

Love Somebody Lots? 0

Enjoy a Printable Version Here
for Somebody That You love LOTS!

Print on Cardstock and Fold in Half to Make Your Own Card!
Don't U Luv It?
  • Martha Greene
Family Thanksgiving 2016 Memory Book

Family Thanksgiving 2016 Memory Book 0

  • Martha Greene