Menu Plan Monday :: 2.29.2016

Monday, February 29, 2016
If there were ever a week when a meal plan was necessary, it's this week.
Fajita chicken kebabs
We have a busy one coming up, and it's a must for me to be prepared. I really need a week like this where I'll be super busy, wearing many hats, and juggling many balls. I like to be busy. Last week I had a week where I didn't have a whole lot going on, motivation was no where to be found, and the weather was absolutely dreadful. I found myself in a very serious funk. Thankfully by the end of the week, the weather improved as did my mood.

Enough about that! Here's what we'll be eating this week:

Monday - Taco salad

Tuesday - Meatball Parmesan sandwiches with a side salad

Wednesday - Hamburger soup

Sale Searching: Kate Spade Sale

Sunday, February 28, 2016
Kate Spade is one of my favorite designers, and when she has a sale, she has a SALE. She offers deep discounts on her best merchandise, and it's your chance to grab a fabulous purse, apparel item, piece of jewelry, or tech accessory at a great price.

Here are some of my favorite Kate Spade items on sale now.

Friday Fresh Picks

Friday, February 26, 2016
Is anyone else completely thrilled that it's Friday? I've got my entire weekend mapped out from what I'll eat for breakfast to what I'll be binge-watching on Netflix (Hello, Fuller House!!!) to Sunday's Oscars and red carpet coverage. On Sunday afternoon I'm heading to a pre-Oscar fundraising event being thrown by the Garden State Film Festival. I'll be attending with Carly, and we are both excited to support a mutual friend who is the Executive Director of the GSFF.

In today's Friday Fresh Picks, I'm sharing a few of the things I am currently obsessed with. Hope you find something you like as well, and have a fab weekend. xx

Current Favorite Magazine
Although Sunset magazine features destinations in the western United States, I have quickly grown to love it. Whether you live there or are planning a trip to the west, Sunset highlights the best in accommodations, restaurants, and shopping.


Best Online Reads

Thursday, February 25, 2016
The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Fifteen email-etiquette rules everyone should know via Business Insider.

2. The stigma of doing things alone via Huffington Post.

3. Thirty-eight pairs of shoes that look expensive via Buzzfeed Style.


Two Years: Living With Type 1 Diabetes

Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Today marks the two year anniversary since Harper was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. These two years have been filled with many highs and lows (no pun intended). We've had good days and bad days, and we've found a new normal.
Harper's first meal, post-diagnosis, in the hospital

There are so many things that come back to me when I recall that day. It's still a very vivid memory, and I can't imagine a day when it won't be. Everything from what I was wearing to what Harper was wearing to the nurse who helped us check in. I can clearly recall almost every second of it.


My Favorite Smoothies

Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Smoothies are my favorite way to get the daily allowance of fruits and veggies I need. They are quick and easy to prepare, taste great, and make great meal replacements.

Today I'm sharing my five favorite smoothie recipes.

1. Green Monster Smoothie
I was skeptical about this smoothie at first. I wanted one that incorporated spinach, but the entire combination of ingredients (spinach, banana, peanut butter, milk) in this smoothie seemed off. However, as soon as I tasted this smoothie, I knew it would soon become a favorite. The peanut butter balances the spinach so that you get the health benefits of spinach without a heavy taste.

Get the recipe here:


Menu Plan Monday :: 2.22.2016

Monday, February 22, 2016
Menu planning has been a bit challenging during this Lenten season since my husband has given up bread and pizza. He's still eating pasta. Because he doesn't eat seafood, he'd have very few options on Fridays if he had given up pasta as well.
Mexican stuffed peppers
I've been trying to keep the menu plans well-rounded but they have often included many soups and/or pasta and meal dishes. Bear with us for a few more weeks. ;-)

Here's what's on the menu this week.

MondayMexican stuffed peppers

Tuesday -  Tortellini in light broth with a side salad

WednesdayPasta with Spinach Tomatoes and Parmesan Cheese Recipe


Win a Family 4-Pack of Tickets to Liberty Science Center

Sunday, February 21, 2016
Last weekend we were invited to explore the Liberty Science Center. We love the LSC and look forward to any opportunity to visit. This past weekend was especially fun since the LSC was playing host to a weekend-long Star Wars party. While we were there, we explored the new Sid the Science Kid exhibit as well as Titanic: The Artifact Exhibit.

Our visit started off with a private meet and greet with Star Wars characters. R2D2, Stormtroopers, Obi Wan Kenobi, it was pretty incredible for this Star Wars fan!


Friday Fresh Picks: Favorite Pins of the Week

Friday, February 19, 2016
I'm getting around to this post a little late today. It's 6 pm, and I am just now sitting down to write it. It's been one of those days that didn't go as expected. Our powder room toilet broke two weeks ago, and when our plumber showed up to fix it this morning, he thought he might have been sent the wrong part. He had to spend a few hours here, and that threw off my whole day. I was late getting to the gym, and everything after that suffered.

Anyway, here we are Friday night, I have a big pot of minestrone on the stove and a tall glass of wine poured. Finally, this weekend is off to a good start.

This week afforded me the opportunity to spend a little more time on Pinterest than I normally am able to do. I had to wait at the orthodontist's office, and I arrived at a blogging event a little early, so I opened the Pinterest app and started pinning away.

In today's Friday Fresh Picks, I am sharing my favorite pins of the week.

How cute are these layered Rice Krispies treats for Easter?


Best Online Reads

Thursday, February 18, 2016
The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Secrets of people who don't have clutter via PureWow.

2. How to find the best dress for your body type via InStyle.

3. Things not to say to an extroverted introvert via Elle Decor.


Sale Searching: Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale

Wednesday, February 17, 2016
The Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale is in full swing, and you won't find better prices anywhere. Whether you are in search of a bargain on a winter item or looking for a deal on something new for spring, the Winter Clearance Sale is your answer. Today, I am rounding up a few of my favorite items from the sale. I hope you find a few things you like as well.



Menu Plan Monday :: 2.15.2016

Monday, February 15, 2016
Happy President's Day! I am still in weekend mode as my girls have a school holiday today. It's nice to have a slow, easy start to my Monday. I am recovering from a jam-packed weekend filled with a blogging event at the Liberty Science Center, my youngest daughter's tenth birthday celebration, and a Valentine's Day celebration. Today's holiday is a welcomed respite from the busy days behind us.
{Lemon broccoli pasta skillet}
To kick off the week, here's the meal plan for the days ahead.

Monday - Dinner out

Tuesday - Cheesy stuffed Mexican peppers

Wednesday - Slow cooker lemon garlic chicken


Sunday, February 14, 2016
Yesterday was Harper's tenth birthday. Ten. 1-0. A decade.

How can ten years have gone so fast? I remember the day (June 25th) I took the pregnancy test in the bathroom of a Wegmans. I had to know. I couldn't even wait until I got home to take the test. When those two little lines showed up, I was ecstatic. We were going to be parents to another little one, and Emma was going to be a big sister. The best big sister!


Friday Fresh Picks: On My Wishlist

Friday, February 12, 2016
It's Friday!! {Happy dance}

We are gearing up for a celebratory weekend (and a cold one. Brrr!). Our youngest daughter Harper turns ten tomorrow, and of course, Sunday is Valentine's Day. And Monday is a holiday. We have a weekend of fun planned, and I am hoping to squeeze in some downtime as well. I mean, a girl's gotta catch up on Netflix, right? Have a great weekend. xx

In today's Friday Fresh Picks, I'm sharing a few of the items that I've added to my personal wishlist this week after spending a little too much time on Pinterest (shhhh!).

This desk sign though {swoon}. Available here.

Best Online Reads

Thursday, February 11, 2016
The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Eight signs you are an ambivert (somewhere between an introvert and an extrovert) via Epoch Inspired.

2.  Creative ways to save money in 2016 via Apartment Therapy.

3. The best wine pairings for Girl Scout cookies via Gizmodo.


Casual Outfits for Valentine's Day

Wednesday, February 10, 2016
My husband and I were never big on going out for dinner on Valentine's Day. Most restaurants are overcrowded and serve mediocre prix fixe dinners. We've instead preferred to stay home and make a favorite meal together. It makes for a more intimate evening with a lot less pressure.

But just because you stay home doesn't mean you should be wearing sweats or yoga pants and a tee. I've put together two casual outfits that are comfortable, stylish and are perfect for dinner at home or a casual brunch or lunch on Valentine's Day.



4 Tips For Preparing For A New Baby

Tuesday, February 9, 2016
In light of my youngest turning ten years old this week, I've been looking back on where I was ten years ago. I was nervous about parenting a second child. With a four year old tugging at my leg, I wondered how would I be able to handle a newborn who required constant, round the clock care.
This little one caused me many sleepless nights! ;-)
If you are expecting, the chances are you are starting to worry about the care of your baby. Every expectant parent goes through this stage, and it’s perfectly natural. If you are starting to panic with thoughts that you won't be able to cope, stop right there. Although it’s not always a walk in the park, you will be surprised to find you cope a lot better than you expected. There are some steps you can take to make the care of your baby a little bit easier. I chatted with several of my friends and added my own input to compile a few tips from experienced mothers and fathers on looking after your new little addition to the world.


Menu Plan Monday :: 2.8.2016

Monday, February 8, 2016
This week we are celebrating my youngest's 10th birthday. We are so excited for her. The birthday person always gets to choose the restaurant for dinner on their special day. Until then, this is what we'll be eating this week.

Monday - Veggie shrimp orzo

TuesdayBlack beans and rice

Wednesday - Buffalo Caesar salad


Friday Fresh Picks: My Latest Discoveries

Friday, February 5, 2016
Why, hello Friday. It's nice to see you!

This week kicked my butt. It started out strong, but I hit a snag mid-week when my oldest was home from school sick. I think I'm a fairly flexible and adaptable person, but when my kids are home sick, it takes me half the day to adjust.

Needless to say, I am ready for the weekend. Harper and I have a mother-daughter day tomorrow when Emma will be at church all day for a retreat to prepare for her Confirmation. The Hubs will be with her for part of the day, and we will return to attend mass with her at 5:00. But prior to that Harper and I are going out for breakfast and then going to (finally!!) see Star Wars: The Force Awakens. We cannot wait!!


Best Online Reads

Thursday, February 4, 2016
The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Here's who will sing the National Anthem at Superbowl 50 via LA Times.

2. A photo tour of a Virginia-based wedding planner's gorgeous home office via Inspired By This.

3. Do not Instagram another picture of food until you read this via Domino.


The Things No One Tells You About Pregnancy

Kim Kardashian recently said that she hated being pregnant. Pregnancy is a beautiful gift, right? You should enjoy the whole experience because the result is well worth it. But was she really so far off the mark? Many women love being pregnant, but even they can recognize that there are some unpleasant moments you have to deal with.

A lot of things happen to your body as it plays home to a baby. It's important to acknowledge all the changes that occur and to resist the urge to fight them but rather embrace them. After all, they are temporary. Before you know it, the baby will be here, and you'll be presented with a whole new set of issues and concerns.

Ten things about pregnancy no one tells you:


Valentine's Day Gifts for Girls

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Sweatshirt | Locker | Book | Boo | Chalkboard Placemats | Make-Your-Own Snow Globe | Sweater Dress | Hat & Glove Set | Fox Cosmetic Pouch (sold out but similar here) | Necklace (similar)

I don't go crazy with gifts, but I do like to get each of my daughters something small for Valentine's Day. It could be a stuffed animal or a book. They like iTunes and Bath & Body Works gift cards, too. It doesn't have to be fancy. I wrap the gifts in some cute wrapping paper (I love this one!) and top it off with a simple bow or sweet card (this one is so cute and let's you tell your kids just what you love about them).

Happy February ~ Letter From The Editor

Monday, February 1, 2016
As I type this, it's hard to fathom that it's February already. As long and as tedious as these winter months can be, they often have a way of sneaking by us quickly. Since we've had our fair share of mild weather, it hardly seems like winter at all. Well, except for that nasty snow storm we had last week.

I am so excited to kick off February with a new blog design. In last month's Letter From The Editor, I hinted at a few cosmetic changes coming your way. The original plan was for a few tweaks, but what fun is that? I decided to go big with a complete makeover. You wouldn't keep the same hairstyle for years, right? So why should your blog stay the same for years?


Menu Plan Monday :: 2.1.2016

If you are new here and coming over from I'm An Organizing Junkie, welcome! If you've been here before, do you notice anything different? Yes! I had my site redesigned last week. What do you think? I love it and hope you do as well. New look but still the same great content you've enjoyed in the past.

On that note, here's what's on the menu for this week.

Monday - Tuscan bean soup

Tuesday - Pasta Puttanesca