It’s Martin Luther King Jr. day here in the US and I’m grateful to be spending the holiday with family, easing into what will likely be a challenging week (what, with the Inauguration and all). I was reading through old posts inspired by Dr. King (including this one about my visit to Memphis, the Civil Rights Museum + the Lorraine Motel) this morning and couldn’t help feel both lifted and distressed.
Dr. King’s words (and the example he set through his actions) about service to one another, unselfish leadership, peaceful vigilance, and creative resistance have (for better or worse) such application today. Whether or not you have the day off, I hope you have a few minutes for quiet contemplation about the days ahead, and the person you can be for others. Oh, and I highly recommend blasting James Taylor’s Shed a Little Light and Patty Griffin’s Up to the Mountain. Grace and I spent a solid half hour dancing in the kitchen, singing along.
Is it weird to go from that to talking about this week’s meal plan? Probably. Sorry. I’m having trouble coming up with a graceful segue. Here’s a salad.
MEAL PLAN FOR THE WEEK of 1/16
I’m on such an arugula kick lately. We stopped by the Orleans Winter Farmers’ Market Saturday morning and picked up several bunches. I love that peppery flavor.
After a relaxing, snowed-in weekend at the Cape, we are back in the city + I’m pretending to be ready to take on the week.
Salad is from, um, my fridge… wooden pineapple is from Homegoods.
The laundry’s done, the gas tank is full, workouts are scheduled + I even blocked out some time for painting this week. I apparently only imagined I did the dishes and I have lost all motivation to unpack… but hey. Can’t win ’em all.
I found last week’s meal plan was really helpful in my efforts to not eat Cheez-It-type-things for dinner. It motivated me to try a few new recipes and revisit some old favorites. So here I am, avoiding the dishes and cooking up this week’s meal plan.
I know some people prefer to plan meals for specific days (and maybe one day I will be that organized slash maybe one day my children will keep a reliable routine lasting longer than three days), but for now a more flexible approach seems to work well.
I like being able to look at a fairly limited list (as opposed to searching through an entire cookbook, or the entire internet, or my entire memory of anything I’ve ever made or eaten), assessing what I have time and energy for, and making whichever option makes the most sense. This generally indecisive lady is all about limited (yet delicious) choices.
Plus… taking the guesswork out of what to make each night leaves me with just enough extra time to, you know, come up with an excuse to not do the dishes.
Baby Nick and I broke from our usual routine (mid-week shopping at Whole Foods) and hit up Wegman’s on our way home from our first Mama Beast workout of the year. He was very interested in the samples and the train set that is suspended over the hummus area. I was mostly overwhelmed by the crowds and had trouble finding, basically, everything. True Life: I am intensely a creature of habit.
Here’s what we picked up.
Produce: Baby spinach, 2 seedless cucumbers, 4 apples, 2 lemons, 1 lime, cilantro, flat leaf parsley, 2 sweet potatoes, shredded carrots, normal carrots, riced cauliflower, 3 bell peppers, raspberries, strawberries, bananas, spring mix with herbs, cherry tomatoes, 2 avocados, garlic, yellow onion, red onion
Frozen: Brown rice, Ezekiel bread + tortillas
Dairy: Milk for baby Nick, Stonyfield organic yogurt for Nick and Grace, unsweetened vanilla almond milk for me, Chobani yogurt dip, fresh mozzarella
Grocery: 2 cans of organic black beans, Cheerios for the babes, Erewhon g/f rice cereal for me, dried lentils, apple sauce, almonds, walnuts
Random: Lemon + dill hummus, 1 salt bagel (see also: shopping while hungry), g/f pretzels for me, pretzel sticks for Grace
Meat: Grass-fed beef for Nick
And here’s what I plan to make this week…
Cauliflower rice + beans (made this tonight — super easy and satisfying): sautéed cauliflower with a tsp of olive oil, plus salt + pepper, topped with black beans, sautéed onion + garlic with Cajun spices, cherry tomatoes + cilantro.
Happy Halloween from a very reluctant lobster (Clark), a “dancey dancey unicorn” (Grace), and a penguin that more than one person mistook for a pigeon (baby Nick). Oh, and two grown-ups who sort of wish our children came home with a bit more candy. Sort of.
CURRENTLY OCTOBER 2016
October has been a very full, happy month. And not just because I’ve managed to keep my plant friends alive.
This salad (mixed greens, dried cranberries, sliced pear, walnuts and bleu cheese) over and over
Baked oatmeal (in an attempt to give breakfast its proper due)
Photos from baby Nick’s beautiful baptism day, spent with our parents and siblings. The priest took one look at him in his little white jumper and said “Well, aren’t you a surprise?!” I still don’t really know what that means. But I like saying it to him every now and then. He didn’t make a peep during the sacrament, but did try to splash in the font a bit.
Grace’s sense of humor. She’s started telling “jokes” lately… which are really just lies. But hey.
Cold weather tea, especially David’s Tea The Spice is Right
Progress on the Cape house! We’ve made a few day trips and had our first little family sleepover down there this month now that the basics are set up (beds, wi-fi, snacks). I’m looking forward to lots of summer fun on the Cape, but underestimated how much we’d enjoy the off season as well.
Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World by Julia Rothman – This is such an awesome book! It is beautifully illustrated and full of interesting information. Grace and I have been reading a few pages together each day (she is very into bats at the moment). She’s always asking me questions about how things work (tides, sounds, the sun… you know, easy stuff…) and reading books like this has been such a great tool for learning together.