This Week With Dee – where I share our menu, my planned home tasks for the week, what I’m reading, self care plans and more. I hope it will give you some ideas for planning your own week or at least a glimpse of one homemaker’s life.
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THIS WEEK WITH DEE
Hello, my friends! I hope if you are in one of the many areas experiencing winter storms that you are safe and warm. It’s gotten down to 2 degrees overnight here in Oklahoma which is not very common for us. We are staying reasonably warm with a continuously running heater (heat pumps are great most of the time but not so much when it’s this cold), a fireplace, blankets and socks. I’m just grateful that we didn’t get ice and snow.
Speaking of snow…
I prefer burgers cooked on the outdoor grill but not in this weather! I have a Le Creuset grill pan and that will do just fine. My mom bought it for me several years ago. I can’t find the exact one on Amazon but it’s basically a round version of this one.
- french fries
- salad or coleslaw
- refried beans
- chips & salsa
I ordered a head of cabbage on my grocery delivery last Thursday and I swear it’s the biggest one I’ve ever seen! In fact, it was too big for my overly full fridge so it’s currently sitting on the counter. After I rearrange and use a couple of things I’ll be able to fit it in there after dinner tonight. I’ll likely only need about a fourth of it for this casserole, though.
- cabbage/potato/smoked sausage and noodle casserole
- brioche rolls
- Eggs Creole (I saw this on a YouTube channel and it looked good.)
- sautéed spinach
No, it’s not Thanksgiving but I love the turkey tenderloins from Aldi and they are so easy to prepare. Plus, I’ll have leftovers for the weekend.
- turkey tenderloin
- mashed potatoes
- green beans
- cranberry sauce
- yellow rice and black bean casserole
- salad (or maybe coleslaw!)
IN MY HOME:
REVIEW OF LAST WEEK
I did a grocery order and took my mom’s items to her. She’s doing pretty well following her hospitalization but we don’t want her driving just yet. For our dinner I kept it simple. I took some homemade soup from the freezer and heated it up. I served it with grilled cheese sandwiches.
I normally wash sheets on Mondays (or occasionally on Sunday) but since I had to do a grocery order yesterday and go to my mom’s, I decided to postpone it until Tuesday. I had a Zoom call with the Retro Homemakers group my daughter runs. These monthly chats are always enjoyable. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll get the info for you.
For dinner I made a new recipe – Chickpea Potato Curry. It was really good. I served it with rice (the recipe calls for cooking the rice along with the curry but I did the rice separately in the rice cooker), sautéed spinach, toasted naan bread and chilled apricot halves.
This was Chris’ 40th birthday. I made a favorite dish for him – Sour Cream Green Chili Enchiladas. I served it with Spanish rice, chips & salsa. For dessert I made his request – Cherry Cobbler. Earlier that afternoon, David and I ran several errands together. We are both enjoying the flexibility he has now that he works from home.
With severe winter weather on the way I needed to do another grocery order, primarily to make sure my mom was covered for the next several days. I placed an Aldi order via Instacart and also ordered a few things from Walgreen’s. As soon as my Instacart shopper got started I headed to town. Part way there, and after my shopper had selected about a dozen items, I received a text from Instacart. I pulled over and read that my shopper had had an “issue” and my order would be done by the next available shopper. I’ve never had that happen before and I just hope she’s okay.
I picked up my Walgreen’s curbside order and then just killed time until a new shopper picked up my Aldi order. There were a LOT of items out of stock – potatoes, onions, bread, ground beef… I decided to run into Braum’s quickly to see if they had bread, primarily. My mom really needed some. Fortunately I was able to get what I needed there. I then drove to Lisa’s house where my groceries were delivered (we live outside the delivery area). Usually we chat awhile when I do a pickup but it was starting to get chilly. I headed home, put everything away (except that huge head of cabbage!) and started making mashed potatoes.
Earlier that afternoon I had started dinner in the slow cooker. I will be sharing the recipe here on the blog tomorrow or Wednesday. I made sweet and spicy meatballs which were SO GOOD served over mashed potatoes. In fact, David and Chris liked them so well they offered to clean the kitchen without me if I would go write down how I made them while I still remembered. It’s an ongoing joke around here that I’ll make something really good but never fix it again because I don’t recall what I did. I tend to cook by feel and inspiration in the moment.
I cooked a huge pot of soup/stew so I could bring some to my mom. I also made her favorite Golden Touch Green Beans as well as candied yams. She and I are the only ones who like those so I split a small casserole dish of them with her. I had made extra mashed potatoes the night before so I could give her some. I scrubbed two russet potatoes that she could pop in the microwave. I packaged all of these things up along with the groceries I bought her the night before then David and I took it all to her, along with 2 cases of bottled water and three 12-packs of 7Up. We picked up her insurance payment and took it to town to drop off for her at the agency. Then we stopped by Matt and Joy’s house because it was Matt’s birthday. Of course we also had to play with Charlotte a little while.
It was getting close to 6 p.m. as we headed home. I had planned to make a Greek chicken and vegetable sheet pan dinner but David suggested we eat the soup/stew I had on the stove. My plan had been to freeze the rest for my mom for another time so I had left it covered in my Le Creuset Dutch oven for it to cool down a bit. I liked his idea so I heated it back up and warmed some Hawaiian sweet rolls in the oven to go with it. I must admit, it was probably the best version of that soup I’ve ever made. Apparently David and Chris agreed. Chris and I each had two bowls of it and David had THREE. I had been wondering how I was going to fit the leftovers in my stuffed freezer but all we had left was one serving which David had for lunch on Saturday.
Here is how I made it: I started by softening some diced onion in a little olive oil then added ground beef and minced garlic. I seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and Creole seasoning. After the meat was browned I added a large can of pinto beans, a can of cut green beans, one of corn and one of carrots. I didn’t drain any of these. I then put in a small can of tomato paste and a few cups of water with chicken bouillon mixed in. I think I ultimately added three cups of water over the time I was cooking it.
I normally use a can of baked beans in this to add a little sweetness but was out of them and used the plain pinto beans instead. My mom really likes things sweet so I added some brown sugar along with Worchestershire sauce and Pickapeppa Sauce. I let it simmer for about 30-40 minutes. My mom has called me three times to say how much she is liking this soup. She’s a very picky eater these days so that’s saying something. In fact, this morning she said I should call it “Fussy Eater Stew”. Ha!
Saturday and Sunday…
It was cold and I do mean COLD! Despite running the heater continuously, the house was only 63 degrees downstairs and much colder in our upstairs bedroom and bathroom. Fortunately we had bought a rick of firewood a few years ago and it was still stacked on our covered patio. David’s been keeping the fireplace going and that helps.
None of us did much to speak of over the weekend besides curling up under our blankets watching movies/TV/YouTube, or reading. Chris wanted Jimmy John’s sub sandwiches for lunch on Saturday so he picked those up for the three of us. We each saved half for our dinner so I didn’t have to cook. On Sunday I made the Greek Sheet Pan Dinner I had originally planned for Friday. The chicken was still partially frozen but thawed enough to bake. It was quite good. Here is the recipe I used:
I used chicken breasts rather than thighs. I skipped the olives and used yellow squash rather than zucchini. I would say this recipe is a keeper. I lined the sheet pan with foil for easy cleanup and served with some brioche rolls that I toasted in the oven.
My biggest goal? Stay warm – ha! Honestly I don’t have big homemaking plans for the week other than keeping up with laundry and keeping everyone fed. David has a short business trip the end of the week. If the weather were nicer I’d go with him but I need to stay and keep the home fires burning – literally.
I’ve got several blog posts in the works and I hope to get at least three of them finished and posted. I’ve also got three Zoom calls scheduled this week.
I’m still plugging along in the following but didn’t finish any this past week.
I’m listening to – A Wedding at Mulberry Lane by Rosie Clarke.
This is the next in the Mulberry Lane series. I am truly enjoying these books by Rosie Clarke and highly recommend them if you enjoy fiction set in British wartime as I do.
The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady ~ Edith Holden
An Incomplete Education ~ Judy Jones and William Wilson
Celia’s House ~ D.E. Stevenson
Chris and I are planning to read a few world religion books/sacred texts this year together. We are starting with:
The introduction is quite lengthy and neither of us has finished it yet. Hopefully in the next day or two.
I’m also skimming through this book about Renoir.
David and I still haven’t gotten around to listening to more of Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West, an Audible audiobook we began on our last road trip. We still have 13 hours left. I don’t know if David will want to listen to more on his upcoming business trip or find something else.
If you don’t already have Audible, you can get a free trial here. We’ve definitely been enjoying it on long drives.
I had intended to do a pedicure this past week but didn’t get around to it. It’s on my list again this week.
HEALTH & FITNESS
I regret to admit I have not gotten back on the exercise bike but I am determined to get back into the habit.
I have a lengthy list of “Artist Date” ideas, many of which I can do at home. So there’s no excuse for me not to do one a week, even when the weather is being ridiculous.
HABIT OF THE MONTH (JANUARY)
I didn’t do a single bit of decluttering last week. But with David gone a couple of days later this week, I think that will be a good time for me to tackle a project or two. I did purchase a divider thing-y from Aldi that I think will work in the cabinet where I keep cookie sheets, cooling racks and such. I’ll have to take everything out in order to install it so that will be the perfect opportunity to determine if I have anything in there that I can let go.
If you aren’t already in the group, here is the link:
I’d love to see pictures of your challenge so feel free to share them in the group or on Instagram and tag me:
What’s on your plan for the week ahead? Home tasks? Menu? Fun? What are you reading?
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