It's been a hectic last couple of weeks. I had to do a super short post last week because my son's girlfriend came to visit and we were in the car most of the weekend. She lives four hours away, so we had to drive to meet her parents to pick her up on Saturday, which happened to be my birthday. We took the kids out to eat at at Hinode, a Japanese steak house, for dinner. It was really fun because Hannah had never been to one before. Then, we went to the Blue Man Group show. I think everyone had a good time.

Unfortunately, Corey happened to get sick this past week. We thought he just had a cold, but by Monday evening, he started running a fever and was just a mess. He ended up missing this whole week of school. This weekend I've been with my mom. It was her second to last treatment. Only one more to go! But, these last ones have been pretty rough. I can't wait until she is finished so that she can finally feel human again. Corey is still running a fever, so it's been a pretty rough weekend. Sick mom and sick son makes for a sad me. :(

With another busy week ahead of me (I have my family reading night, some extra after-school obligations, and Corey has Academic Team and a math contest), I'm hoping my meal plan will save me from stressing over what to feed my family each night. I plan to do some pre-cooking as always once I get home this afternoon. My hubby already did my grocery shopping for me, so I think I'm ready to go. One thing I always suggest to people when they ask me, "How do you have time to make dinner each night?", is do some pre-cooking on the weekend to make your week much easier. If you can just take an hour or so on Sunday to pre-make a couple of recipes for the week that you can just reheat when you get home, it makes things  pretty easy. I always make a soup to eat for my lunches each week as well. For example, this week I will make the recipes for Monday and Tuesday today so that all I have to do is reheat them on the days they are needed. I will also go ahead and cook the ground beef for my taco pizza.

Here's this week's menu. Enjoy and have a great week! Be sure to follow me on Facebook to get fast updates from the blog. :)

Sunday - Saucy Bacon Apple Chicken (new), Broccoli, Salad, Strawberries

Monday - Crockpot Salsa Chicken (served in tortillas), Green Beans, Salad, Peaches

Tuesday - Ott's House Casserole, Broccoli, Salad, Applesauce

Wednesday - Taco Pizza (new), Fruit Salad

Thursday - Eat at Family Reading Night

Friday - Leftovers

Saturday - Slow Cooker Roast and Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Salad

For more menu ideas, visit
Our local Godfather's Pizza makes a great taco pizza that is my son's favorite when we splurge and go eat out there. I've decided we can probably make the exact same thing at home for much less cost. Here is my version.


For the crust:
1 tbsp active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degress F)
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 1/2 cups flour

1 small can enchilada or taco sauce
1 lb lean ground beef
2 T homemade taco seasoning
1/2 cup diced onion
2 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
2 oz shredded cheddar cheese (I use reduced fat cheeses)
shredded iceberg lettuce
1 tomato, diced
1 oz shredded cheddar cheese

Brown ground beef in a large skillet. Drain. Add onion and spices and cook until onion is softened. Set aside. 

To make the crust, dissolve the yeast in the water. Add the rest of the ingredients in and mix. Dump onto a floured surface. Knead into a smooth dough (five minutes or so). Roll out and press down onto a greased pizza pan.

Spread the enchilada sauce over the crust. Top with the ground beef/onion mixture. Top with the 2 oz of cheddar and 2 oz of mozzarella. Bake at 450 degress F for around 12-15 minutes until the crust looks crispy and lightly browned.Remove from oven.

Top the pizza with the shredded lettuce, diced tomato, and remaining 1 oz of cheddar.

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 large onion, diced
1 apple, peeled, cored and diced
7 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 can reduced fat cream of mushroom soup
4 slices Oscar Meyer center cut bacon
1/4 cup dry white wine
4 oz reduced fat sharp cheddar, shredded


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a microwave-safe glass baking dish with a layer of paper towels. Place the bacon slices in the prepared pan and cover with another layer of paper towels. Microwave on high for 3 minutes or until done. Set cooked bacon aside for later use.

In a large nonstick skillet misted with olive oil, brown the chicken breasts on both sides (takes about two minute or 3 minutes per side). Remove the chicken breasts from the pan and place in a 9 x 13 baking dish.

Add the diced onion to the nonstick skillet and cook until they begin to soften. Add the sliced mushrooms and cool for about three more minutes. Add the diced apple to the pan and cook for about three more minutes. Add the wine and cream of mushroom soup to the pan. Stir until heated through. Add the cheddar cheese and stir until melted into the sauce.Crumble the bacon and add to the sauce.

Pour the sauce over the browned chicken breasts in the baking dish.

Place the uncovered baking dish in the preheated oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is bubbly.

Serve over cooked spaghetti noodles or rice if desired.

This is a truly rich, decadent dessert. Beware!

Brownie Layer
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1 cup unsalted butter
1 & 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325°. Lightly butter a 9″x 13″ baking pan. Line with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
Melt chocolate and butter in a double boiler or in the microwave. Set aside to cool.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla.
Pour chocolate mixture into egg mixture, whisking to combine. Add flour mixture and stir just until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan. Spread evenly.

Cheesecake Layer
16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 & 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 large eggs
1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Add eggs, 2 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in vanilla.
Pour cheesecake mixture over brownie layer. Sprinkle evenly with chocolate chips.
Bake for 1 hour & 15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Cool completely on wire rack before cutting into bars. Store brownies in refrigerator. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Recipe Source - Bake or Break
This is going to have to be a quick post. I will come back and edit later.

Here's this week's menu. Enjoy and have a great week! Be sure to follow me on Facebook to get fast updates from the blog. :)

Sunday - Steak, Cheddar Potato Strips, Green Beans, Salad, Strawberries

Monday - Tacos, Salad, Peaches

Tuesday - Grilled Bruschetta Chicken, Broccoli, Salad, Applesauce

Wednesday - Chili (from freezer), Salad, Peaches

Thursday - Leftovers
Friday - Mom's Choice
Saturday -  Spaghetti, Broccoli, Salad, Applesauce

For more menu ideas, visit
I don't know about you, but the last thing I want to do on Valentine's Day is go out to eat at a restaurant. They are usually so crowded that you have to wait forever to eat, and it ends up not feeling very special with all of those people around. I prefer to stay at home and have a nice meal with my family. One of my favorite dinners to make for special occasions is my version of surf and turf - Steak with Manhattan Sauce and Bacon Wrapped Scallops. This is what we will be having tonight. I got a really nice sirloin from Harter House that my hubby is going to grill, and we splurged and bought some HUGE scallops that I will broil up to go along with them. Asparagus was on sale this week, and I found some amazing strawberries (also HUGE) at Sams. I made a Chocolate Chip Pound Cake the other day, so that will top off our meal. I hope you have a fabulous Valentine's Day with your family and loved ones!

Valentine's Day Menu

Grilled Sirloin with Manhattan Sauce


I'm a bit behind on things this weekend, so I'm going to need to make this a short post. This was my weekend to take care of my mom, so I've been gone the last few days. Good news is that she only has two more treatments, so we will be done in early March. Bad news is that they are just really knocking her down hard and fast. No fun, but she is a trooper.

We are looking at our first potential snow day of the year tomorrow. They are calling for snow and freezeing rain - yuck! We'll find out in the morning. Here's this week's menu. Enjoy and have a great week! Be sure to follow me on Facebook to get fast updates from the blog. :)

Sunday -Slow Cooker Roast and Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Salad

Monday  - Chili, Sour Dough Bread, Strawberries

Tuesday - Valentine's Day Surf and Turf - Steak with Manhattan Sauce, Bacon-wrapped Scallops, Grilled Asparagus, Salad, Strawberries

Wednesday - Spaghetti Chili, Salad, Peaches

Thursday - Eat at book club (boys have other activities as well)
Friday - Leftovers
Saturday - Happy Birthday to me! Going out to eat and to see the Blue Man Group!

For more menu ideas, visit
It's Super Bowl Sunday, and how am I spending my evening? Making the meals for the week. :) I know that may sound un-American to many of you sports fans, but I'm honestly happier hanging out in the kitchen. I'm just not a sports fan, and even the commercials don't hold that much interest for me. It is the first year in quite a while that we haven't had friends over to watch the Super Bowl, but then again, it isn't a typical year for our family. We have enjoyed having some down time together this weekend. We did make a fun dinner to "celebrate" Super Bowl Sunday - we made our own version of In-N-Out burgers, some great oven fries, and chocolate shakes.

This week the boy has a couple of extra academic activities - a big math test (AMC 12) and an academic team meet, and the hubby has some extra work obligations. It helps so much to cook ahead for the week when evenings are full of activities. It's also helpful to have meals that you know will make leftovers (i.e. Lasagna Spaghetti - or as my husband calls it - Spasagna). I will be spending the coming weekend with my mom. Only three treatments left! I know she is very much looking forward to the end of this stuff.

Here's this week's menu. Enjoy and have a great week! Be sure to follow me on Facebook to get fast updates from the blog. :)

Sunday - Super Bowl Sunday fun food - In-N-Out Burgers, Oven Baked Fries, Chocolate Shakes

Monday - Chicken Pockets, Green Beans, Salad, Peaches

Tuesday - Lasagna Spaghetti, Broccoli, Salad

Wednesday - Leftovers

Thursday - Grilled Salmon (I just marinate in Italian dressing and throw it on the grill), Grilled Asparagus, Salad, Applesauce

Friday - Mom's choice

Saturday - Honey Roasted Pork Tenderloin, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Salad

For more menu ideas, visit