Happy unofficial first week of summer! The weather around here certainly looks like summer for the week ahead. I tried to add in some fun summer dinners you can make all season long. We spent the weekend at barbeques with family and friends. I think the rest of my days need to be filled with green smoothies to detox from all the extra deliciousness I indulged in this weekend.

Did you notice something a little different around here this week? I updated the Random Recycling site a bit and cleaned it up. You will find I’ve pulled out a lot of the ads as I just didn’t love seeing what I’ve been recently searching for all.the.time. I thought maybe some of you didn’t want to be reminded of them either. What do you think of the new look?

Halibut Fish Taco Recipe

On to the menu plan for the week…

M- BBQ with friends…which is why this is arriving on Tuesday.

T- Morro Bay Fish Tacos. This recipe just looks pretty doesn’t it (image above). And tasty. And just a little healthy which we all need right now.

W- New BBQ Chicken in the crockpot recipe. Going out on a limb and trying this paleo/whole 30 friendly recipe. The sauce is made with dates…so curious to taste the end result.

T- C.O.R.N. (also known as Clean Out Refrigerator Night)

F- Pre 100 mile Best Buddies Bike Ride for Jim. I’m offering moral support and Chicken Piccata and pasta. Plus some lemony green beans on the side.

S- Someone turns 2 on this day. Our littlest guy will get pizza for dinner, his favorite.

S- Birthday gathering for Connor. BBQ to round out the first week of summer to use up lots of our cow still frozen in the deep freezer.

Which recipe is going on your meal plan this week?

Weekly dinner meal plan

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.

This week’s meal plan focuses on vegetables. As the weather heats up it feels like the right time to make veggies a bigger focus on our plates. Plus it makes it easier to serve the kids a wide range of colors from the rainbow at each meal. They have been getting a little picky lately and the dinners this week are some of their favorites.

On a personal note, we recently shared with friends that we are moving to Canada. Toronto in fact. As we start sorting through our home, I found myself looking through my cookbook collection. There were some old favorites tucked away and I look forward to enjoying some recipes from them again. Which cookbooks are the must haves in your kitchen?

Weekly dinner meal plan

On the menu this week…

Monday: Veggie Fajita Tostada Bowl (recipe from Iowa Girl Eats )

  • Everyone will get the same bowl and maybe this time our four year old will eat avocado slices

Tuesday: Roasted Shrimp with White Beans (recipe from Cooking Light)

  • Serve over a bed of mixed greens
  • Remember to soak the cannellini beans overnight!

Wednesday: Thai Chicken Salad (recipe) from Gimme Some Oven

  • Such a winner topped with a peanut butter dressing. Switch to a seed butter for nut allergy households.

Thursday: Fajita Chicken Kebabs (recipe from Well Plated)

  • This will be a great recipe to use up any of the vegetables we have leftover this week.

Friday: Pizza Night

  • The timing for making your own pizza dough…start making it around 3:30 and then it will be ready after 4:30. Let it rise a little longer for a lighter crust.


Enjoy the week ahead friends. Thanks for stopping by.
Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.

I hope all the mothers reading this had a lovely Mother’s Day. We took off for the first beach day of the season. On most Mother’s Day we are wearing jackets and just walking the beach but we were all surprised with hot sunny weather yesterday. We could barely get the kids out of the water!

This week’s dinner meal plan has some fun new recipes. After getting breakfast in bed and having some quiet time to read the newest Cooking Light magazine, the meal plan came together rather quickly!

Rainbow Veggie Pizza

On the menu…

Monday: Over the Rainbow Pizza. Keeping my fingers crossed the kids will love these! (recipe)

Tuesday: Meatball Bake with caesar salad. (recipe from June’s Cooking Light)

Wednesday: Chicken Tortilla Soup (slow cooker recipe). (kid-tip–> strain the broth and just serve the shredded chicken and veggies.) I’m using a recipe from my favorite slow cooker cookbook, but you can also head over to Pinterest and get some easy ones to follow.

Thursday: Thai Basil Chicken stir fry with basmati rice. (again, June Cooking Light)

Friday: Pizza night with bread maker pizza dough.

Saturday: Grilled halibut with lemony green beans and couscous.

Have a great week! 

p.s. Check out the latest smoothie recipe post the kids are loving!

Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.

Happy May to all! Spring has finally sprung. (and May the fourth be with you for my Star Wars friends) This week’s meal plan will be easy for me with my mother-in-law lending a hand with the kids. The dinners are very kid-friendly so no one should be giving Grandma any problems. Right?

On the menu…

Sunday: Grilled chicken and zucchini with salad.

Monday: Leftover chicken tossed into quesadillas, with sliced avocado and corn on the cob.

Tuesday: Cinco de Mayo! Ground beef tacos are always a winner, plus a special side treat of guacamole and chips!

Wednesday: Teriyaki chicken in the slow cooker (recipe from Not Your Mother’s Crockpot Cookbook) with steamed broccoli and a test run of the Horizon Organic Mac n’ cheese.

Thursday: Grilled steak with broccoli slaw salad.

Friday: Pizza night!

Saturday: Dinner with friends. I’ll bring dessert!

What’s on your dinner menu this week?


p.s. Last week’s Honey Lime Drumsticks were awesome!

Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.

Today was a day for rambling through the woods and enjoying the tiny glimpses of spring coming into our lives. It’s hard to believe May begins at the end of this week. The chilly air continues and the hats and gloves still can’t be put away. At least there is some order in the kitchen as I have discovered the one thing that makes everything easier when it comes to meal prep.

An empty sink.

It’s so simple. As long as my sink is empty and clean, I can get the next meal done. The counters will never be completely clear, but if the sink is clean, another feast can be served. Try it…tell me if it works for you in your kitchen.

Family dinner plan


On the menu this week…

Sunday: Grilled Rib Eye, salad and Back to Nature macaroni (we used to buy Annie’s shells until they got bought up by General Mills, who is actively against GMO labelling. I still miss Annie’s, but I like to think my purchasing power has some leverage. Yours does too.)

Monday: Meatless Monday Omelets. This may be one of Madison’s favorite meals.

Tuesday: Honey Lime Drumsticks (recipe), Corn and Grilled Polenta.

Wednesday: Weather looks good for grilled swordfish, Alexia Oven Fries and salad. (recipe)

Thursday: Coconut Chicken Strips (recipe), Jasmine Rice and Sesame Broccoli. (If your kids don’t like coconut, you can make this mild version of homemade chicken nuggets.)

Friday: An extra set of hands arrive in the form of my mother-in-law as I disappear into the depths of the semi-annual Parent Talk Sale this weekend! Pizza night for the family.

Saturday: Family dinner out

Sunday: Beef chili. We have one more eye of the round roast to use up in our freezer (from our 1/4 cow share). I can’t bring myself to make a true roast so I’ll chop it up and make one last chili for the season.

Honey Lime Drumsticks


What’s on deck in your kitchen this week? Do you have a homemaking tip that makes life easier in your kitchen? 
Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.

Sometimes you get thrown a curve ball and you need to make adjustments to your routine. Having some back up meals can be a huge help. This weekend I was so excited to get back on my bike and ride for the first time this season. Just a few miles in, I feel off my bike and ended up in the ER. A stitch and an X-ray later, I’m recuperating. My apologies on getting the meal plan out a little later than usual as I couldn’t type yesterday with my left hand. Or change diapers, which was the one bright spot in this mishap.

Freezer meals are one of my favorite ways to be ready when our routine gets disrupted. I know I can rely on these meals, or one from this dinner cheat sheet, to get us through a couple days. When you make a large dinner and have a lot of leftovers, pack them away in a freezer safe glass dish. You can then thaw it a bit when needed and pop it right in the oven to reheat. The flavors will stay in tact better than if you microwave it. Easy peasy.

Fish cakes for lunch or dinner

Don’t these fish cakes look yummy?! (source)

On the menu this week…

Monday: Cheeseburger Casserole (from this meal plan). Note- this is going to be in our rotation a lot next winter; it is amazing.

Tuesday: Pork carnitas leftovers, (from this post) cubed for a Mexican salad with avocado, corn, greens, tomato, peppers and cheese.

Wednesday: Chickpea and apricot stew (from here). Serve over couscous which I love since it only takes 5 minutes to make.

Thursday: Fish cakes from Dinner: A Love Story. The dip looks awesome! Plus lemony green beans on the side.

Friday: Pizza night!

Saturday: Arroz Con Pollo, also from Dinner a Love Story. (can you tell which cookbook I picked for my Sunday meal planning session?)

Sunday: Grilled rib eye, spinach salad and Israeli couscous.


What are you making for dinner this week?

Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of posts.


Spring is in the air! It’s been a long wait, but it certainly is delightful. Kids played outside for hours and it was refreshing to watch them explore the backyard all over again. It’s like a whole new world without snow covering it. It’s so nice to plan our dinner menu with a little more variety as the weather improves.

With Sunday’s sunny skies, we finally opened up the grill. I had forgotten that my favorite part of grilling is the clean up. No pots and pans to wash. Happy day. If the weather cooperates, there will be lots more grilling in our future.

Grilled sweet potato fries and burger

On the menu…

Sunday: Grilled burgers, sweet potato fries and coleslaw.


Monday: Slow cooker Enchilada bake. This recipe looks amazing. And easy. And my kids will eat it. It’s a meatless meal that we can put in tacos for the kids or whole wheat tortillas. Last week we tried Mexican quinoa and my picky boys ate  it all up!

Pecan crusted fish sticks

Tuesday: Pecan crusted fish sticks. (recipe-although I’ll use local cod instead of farm raised tilapia.)

Crock Pot Carnitas

Wednesday: Crock pot carnitas. Super easy for a busy night. This will make a lot so we can save half in the freezer for another meal. This recipe is Paleo friendly and has lots of side dish suggestions.

Meatball Casserole Recipe

Thursday: Meatball Casserole. New recipe that looks great for a rainy day. Steamed spinach on the side, kids will eat it raw.

Friday: Pizza night with homemade dough.

What’s cooking in your kitchen this week? Any new favorites? One last week’s meal plan, the one pot Mexican quinoa dish was a winner. 

Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more dinner ideas, see three years of past menus here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of meal plans every Monday.

Happy Easter and Passover friends. I hope you enjoyed a lovely time with family and friends. After indulging in some holiday fare, it’s time to dive into this week’s meal plan.

Easy weeknight dinners

On the menu…

Monday: Honey Ginger Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs (recipe), Easy Ranch Roasted Carrots (recipe) and Whole Wheat Couscous

Tuesday: One Pan Mexican Quinoa (recipe). This look awesome and I plan to serve it to the kids in tacos with the usual toppings.

Wednesday: C.O.R.N

Thursday: Burgers on the grill (finally!) and Rainbow Salad. (recipe from Dinner: A Love Story

Friday: Sweet Italian Sausage and Mushroom Pizza

Saturday: Date night!


Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more recipes, see three years of past dinner menus here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of meal plans.

What’s your meal planning schedule like? Do you do it a morning for the week ahead? Plan it out for the month? How about breakfast and lunches? There are so many different ways to approach meal planning and there is no right answer. All that matters is you try to carve out some time to get prepared. If you can make the dinner time hour feel less stressful, then you are doing something right. Just think, if you don’t have to run out to the store just before dinner for a missing ingredient, that’s more time you can spend with the kids playing at home. Or pouring a glass of wine to enjoy while you cook dinner. Or both.

We are already excited to make this One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole on Saturday. {source}

We are already excited to make this One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole on Saturday. {source}


Sunday: Basil and Parmesan stuffed Chicken Breasts. Roasted veggies were delicious!

Monday: Spinach Tomato Feta Frittata. {Meatless Monday}

Tuesday: Chicken Nuggets, pasta shells and broccoli.

Wednesday: Tortilla Soup in slow cooker (see recipe below)

Thursday: CORN {Clean Out Refrigerator Night}

Friday: Pizza Night for Good Friday

Saturday: One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole. It says it takes 30 minutes but since it’s a new recipe I’m testing it out on the weekend.

Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe Favorite



Crock pot Tortilla Soup recipe the whole family will enjoy.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican


  • 2 frozen chicken breasts
  • 1 - 28 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 - 10 oz can enchilada sauce
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 - 4 oz can chopped green chile peppers use mild if kids are eating
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 - 32 oz container chicken broth
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 - 10 oz package frozen corn
  • 1 can black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 Tbsp chopped cilantro


  • Place everything into a slow-cooker except the cilantro. Stir.
  • Cover and cook on High setting for 5 hours.
  • One half hour before serving remove chicken from soup and shred using two forks. Put chicken back into soup and stir. Let cook for remaining time.
  • Top soup with sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla chips, avocado slices, chopped cilantro and lime wedges.
Tried this recipe?Mention @emilyroachwellness or tag #erwellness!



For more recipes, see three years of past dinner menus here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of meal plans.

As winter drags on, it’s time to try out some new recipes. This week’s meal plan has a 5 new recipes after catching up on my magazine reading. Cooking Light is one of the few that I still prefer to receive in print so I can easily access the recipes.

The system I use for organizing recipes is to rip out the ones I’m interested in and add it to a folder that stays at the front of my recipe binder. Once I have cooked the meal and decide if it’s worth making again, then it gets filed into the correct section of the binder for storage. Most of the recipes from magazines end up in plastic sleeves so there are no worries about kitchen spills.

On the menu…

Family dinner meal plans for busy weeknights

Sunday: Grilled Rib Eye with shaved carrot and parsley salad. {recipe}

Monday: Pasta tuna salad. I make a pasta switch as the kids don’t care for campanelle. This is a great pantry-friendly recipe that comes together really fast. {recipe}

Tuesday: Seared Flank Steak with Blue Cheese Polenta. Kids who don’t care for blue cheese will get parmesan cheese swirled into their polenta. Sautéed broccoli on the side. {recipe}

Wednesday: Spaghetti and meatballs in slow cooker. Recipe from the Not Your Mother’s Slow Cooker Cookbook.

Thursday: CORN: Clean Out Refrigerator Night

Friday: Mushroom Asparagus and Roasted Red Pepper Pizza. {recipe} Getting creative with meatless meals during Lent. It will be even better with homemade pizza dough.

Saturday: Chicken curry bar. I’ll toss the kid’s chicken into a tortilla with their choice of toppings. Grown ups will have it over rice. {recipe} Are my kids the only ones who won’t eat rice?

Sunday: Mustard Glaze Chicken plus a big batch of roasted vegetables. {recipe} I’m loving the soup idea to make with the leftover veggies!

Which dinner night would be the favorite in your house?

Monday meal plan to help organize family dinner

For more recipes, see three years of past dinner menus here,

my Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of meal plans.