08 March 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Well somehow another week has gone by. This week seemed to fly. As I turned off my computer on Monday (my goal for every week this Lent) every day I felt I was a day off. Anyway, the meals this last week were really good. I expcetally enjoyed the meatloaf from Frugal Recipes.com Although I only used a pound of beef while the recipe calls for 1 1/2 pounds. My husband said it could use the extra 1/2 lb in his opinion. We didn't get to the lasagna as I was sick on Friday. I've added it to this week, because I really want to try out the recipe. Plus I still have all the ingredients.

Monday:Mushroom, Spinach & Artichoke Lasagna, bread
Tuesday: Baked Chicken, Bacon & Tomato Couscous and green beans
Wednesday: Pi Day Church Potluck- bring Broccoli and Bacon Quiche
Thursday: Chicken Pot Pie, bread, fruit salad
Friday: Homemade Hamburger Helper
Saturday: leftovers
Sunday: Crepes

For more menu ideas and recipes be sure to visit I'm an Organizing Junkie.

05 March 2009

The power of soap and water

I have been doing major cleaning in my kitchen this week. I have to admit I'm horrible when it comes to deep cleaning my house. I take care of the basics (usually) but really deep cleaning just slips by me. So this week I decided my kitchen really needed some major deep cleaning. I've started with just the outside. I've cleaned off the outside of all the cabinets and walls. I moved the stove and swept and mopped behind it. My kitchen sparkles now. It feels really good. And I only used hot water and soap. Oh and lots of elbow grease. :) There was so much build up on some of the walls (like behind the stove) and cabinets. And I'm sure I could have gone to any grocery store and found ten products claiming that they would just wipe away the grim. But really, why bother. Hot water, soap and a old tooth brush in hard to remove areas did the work just as well. And without all the added chemicals. According to Green Clean website "Simple castile soap (made with olive oil) and vegetable-based soap (such as Murphy’s Oil Soap) have a neutral pH. Soap cleans by attaching to soil at the molecular level, so that the soil can be rinsed away with water." I am currently using Ecover Aloe Vera Dishwashing Liquid I have enjoyed it. Although I might try making my own once I'm done with this bottle. One of my many pet peeves with society is our constant need of antibacterial products. True there was time when I half heartily bought into that mindset. And sure there are times when I make sure to disinfect a surface. Like when handling raw meat I tend to zealously clean the surface afterward. But it is through the use of all these antibacterial products that we create strands of bacteria that can withstand such chemicals. Plus the real kicker is we kill all that good bacteria along side the bad. This all leaves our immune systems weaker not stronger. I'm not saying we shouldn't clean. I'm saying that I am constantly amazed at the power of simple cleaning products. Plain soap and water, along with baking soda, vinegar and others, do amazing jobs and both cleaning and disinfecting. And they don't pose problems toward the environment or towards creating super bacteria. So if you're not already, look into natural, alternative cleaning products. Make sure your soaps are derived from vegetable oil and not petroleum. Check out the below sites for tips on using vinegar and baking soda to help clean your house. Or check out your local library for a copy of Green Clean. Some of my favorite homemade recipes are from there. We currently use the Borax Kitchen cleaner and the dishwasher detergent. Although you have to be careful about the amount of detergent used. Too much will leave residue on your dishes.

Vinegar Tips- cleaning

GreenLivingtips- baking soda

There are lots of other resources out there. Look around, your bound to find other great information.

01 March 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Last weeks meals went very well. I ended up enjoying the Green Spaghetti all by myself. :( My husband had a stomach virus. And for what ever reason, my son decided not to eat that night. Oh well, I enjoyed it and will have to make it again. I didn't end up cooking today. We had so many leftovers that I decided we needed to eat what was in the frige. And I didn't end of making the tuna pasta for potluck this morning. I brought fruit jello instead. I was mostly just being lazy. :) Well here is this weeks meal plan.

Breakfast: cereal or oatmeal, eggs if I feel I have energy

Lunch: leftovers, pb&j, or hot dogs (have I mentioned I hate hot dogs. My husband loves them so I figure since I make him come up with his own lunch most days he can have them.)

Monday: Confetti Meatloaf, roasted potatoes, and green beans
Tuesday: Bacon Potato Chowder, with muffins or bread
Wednesday: Church meal
Thursday: Small Group meal- bring bread
Friday: Mushroom, Spinach, & Artichoke Lasagna, garlic bread
Saturday: out to eat (I'll be at a La Leche League conference till late afternoon.)
Sunday: Leftovers

Check out I'm an Organizing Junkie for more menus and recipes this week.