Category Archives: $20 Menu Plan

29 Weeks

We now have a 29-week-old as of today! Yikes! Almost out of the 20’s!

Well, our 29-week-old is definitely on the move! She started army crawling at the end of 5 months, but has assumed that position for most of her crawling. Just this past week, she learned how to go from crawling to sitting back up by herself. That means I sometimes find her sitting up in her crib after her nap. However, it also means she’s a little less frustrated and more content to play by herself.

Eden absolutely adores her Daddy and her big sister. I think she sort of likes her Mommy, too. Hana Kate has a baby to take care of, but it’s babydoll (whose name is either Christa, Kelly, or babydoll, and rarely Eden, depending on when you ask) not Eden who she finds herself busy with. But Hana Kate does want to do just about everything Mommy does with Eden. She even wanted me to make a carrier so she can wear her doll on her back. I’ve found that if I help Eden “play” with Hana Kate, both girls like it, and sometimes are laughing hilariously at each other. This is the type of sister interaction I hope to see a lot as Eden grows older, but we’ll see!

Eden also loves baths and music. I pretty much gave her one bath per week (or less) before she could sit up. Once she could sit by herself, I let her take a bath with Hana Kate. And since then, Eden has protested if she hears or sees Hana Kate in the bath and she’s not in it, too. If I let her go in the hallway, she heads straight for the bathroom. If that door is closed, she heads for Daddy’s office, and if that door is closed she heads for the kitchen! :)

She also love music, and frequently crawls under her crib in search of her piano and is delighted if I pull it out so she can play it. Eden feels the need to sing along. I had her sit in church with us for the beginning of this past Sunday night service. I forgot about her love to “sing.” :) She “sang” along with all the songs we sang as a congregation, but when it was offertory time she still wanted to sing. I saw a few people turning heads, so I headed out with her and let her go to the nursery. But I love that she seems to enjoy music already.

Eden also loves food. So far, I am still nursing almost exclusively, letting her eat some solids for “pleasure” at suppertimes if she appears too distressed that she is the only one not eating. We also let her eat foods using a mesh feeding teether or chew on a water bottle. I have a lot of pics from her “first solids,” so perhaps that will be another post altogether.

No teeth yet! But that’s fine by me. I thought a couple of months ago (when the drooling began) that I saw little buds, but I think it was just the bone structure on the sides of the mouth.

Saturday’s $20 Menu: Chicken Casserole

Chicken Casserole
8 oz. egg noodles (3/4 typical bag)
1-2 cups shredded (cooked) chicken
1 can cream of mushroom soup
shredded cheese
Spread cooked egg noodles in casserole dish. Mix chicken and cream of mushroom soup first, then spread over noodles. Add thick layer of shredded cheese. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
See here for the rest of the week’s menu plan.

Friday’s $20 Menu: Market Fresh Sandwiches

 Market Fresh Chicken Sandwich
Who says a sandwich needs to be boring?
The insides of this sandwich include:
Shredded Chicken
 I love to spread butter on the outside, sprinkle with seasoning salt and cheese, and broil both sides 1 – 2 minutes each.
See here for the rest of the week’s menu plan.

Wednesday’s $20 Menu: Taco Salad

Taco Salad
Tortilla Chips
1/2 lb. ground meat
Taco Seasoning
Salsa or Diced Tomatoes
Salad Greens (we used spinach in our case)
Cheddar Cheese
Sour Cream
Cover bottom layer of plate with tortilla chips. Prepare ground meat with taco seasoning and add to plate, along with salsa/tomatoes and corn. Cover with cheddar cheese. Turn oven on broil, and place plates under broiler for 1 to 2 minutes until cheese melts. Add fresh greens and sour cream.
Additional notes:
I had originally listed salsa in the shopping list, but when I went to our pantry I decided to use diced tomatoes (from the food yardsale!) instead, which would have been less expensive on the list I provided. It was probably much friendlier to my 7 week old’s stomach, too!
We’ve also tried this with dorito style chips, as well, and like the additional flavor.
We watered down the sour cream, which is probably why it looks so “soupy.”.
For menus for the rest of the week, go here.

Tuesday’s $20 Menu: Chicken, Rice and Mashed Potatoes

Chicken and Rice
Mashed Potatoes
(I originally said Tuesday’s menu would be chicken and potatoes, but as the author of this menu and in an effort to stretch that chicken, I’m adding a bit of rice to the mix.)
Whole Chicken
4 red potatoes
1 cup rice
(flour for gravy)
Rinse chicken. Place in crockpot with desired seasonings and potatoes (cut into large cubes for easier mashing). (If you don’t want skins in your mashed potatoes be sure to remove them before adding them.) Add enough water to reach 1 inch. Cook for 3 to 4 hours on high, or 6 to 8 on low (low for a more tender meat).
One half hour before serving, remove enough liquid to cook rice. Cook rice in juices according to rice instructions (substitute juices for water called for in recipe). Remove potatoes, which should be ready to mash. Add salt and milk/water to make mashed potatoes. The chicken juices had plenty of greasiness, so I didn’t use any additional oil or butter with anything. Use the remaining chicken juices to make gravy for the potatoes if desired. Serve chicken over rice.
Remove remaining chicken from bones to use in later recipes. Save those bones, too–you can use them in your soup later this week!
Remove approximately1 cup of juices and add to sauce pan. In separate bowl, mix flour (start out with 1/2 cup) with enough water/milk to have a thick liquid. Add to sauce pan and cook over low to medium heat. Keep over heat until gravy thickens. Add seasonings such as salt and pepper. Add juices and flour as needed to adjust to preferred consistency. (If your chicken or turkey includes giblets, add them for additional flavor.)
Simple Glazed Carrots
Brown Sugar
This can easily be done in the microwave. Cut desired amount of carrots or simply place baby carrots into microwaveable bowl. Add 2 tablespoons water and 1 tablespoon brown sugar. Heat on high for 3 to 4 minutes and serve.
Fresh Fruit Salad
The list provided included oranges and bananas. Since I had some apples from previous weeks and frozen raspberries and blueberries, I added them as well. I usually add a little lemon juice to keep the fruit from turning brown and then add enough sugar to counteract the lemon juice.
The recipes listed should provide enough for at least 4 servings.
To see the entire week’s menu, go here.