Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Busy Busy Busy!!

 Busy is one way to describe how September has been!  I think I need to write the whole month off from trying to get anything done.  It's been hectic with getting 3 kids ready to back to school.  This week even Little Boy Bacon took his first ride on the bus.  He was quite excited for his first day of preschool.  Last week was just as busy when we celebrated Bacon Bit's first birthday!  I'm not quite sure where a year went but some one told him my baby could turn one.  We had a great day celebrating him and he enjoyed his cake as well.  Like every birthday we have here, I made a special cake.  The kids and Mr. Bacon helped pick out Bacon Bit's cake and the cow won over the owl cake I found.  So cow cake it was!  Even a smash cow cake for Bacon Bit.  And as you can see from the picture, he didn't do too bad demolishing it either!

Other things keeping me busy are getting lunches packed and ready for the school day.  With Bacon Jr. going to school every day and Little Miss Bacon going every other, I have a lot to keep track of.  Packing snacks and lunches is no longer done in the morning, but started at night and assembled into the bag in morning. I just haven't had enough coffee to think straight, much less manage to send a good lunch while getting hair and teeth brushed and shoes tied before they are headed out the door.   I think I need more of that mommy magic Mr. Bacon always tells me I must have in order to get everything done.

I picked up a few helpers to keep my days going a bit easier since back to school started.  One was our lunch menu.  Each day before bed the kids have to let me know what they would like for lunch and snack the next day and then go pick out clothes.  We've always made a list of the things the kids would like to take for school lunches and let them pick what they would like.  But we ran into the problem of not always having what they want for lunch from the list on hand in the house.  And you know we don't make extra trips to the store around here!  My solution?  A dry erase board!  I found these tucked in the dollar spot at Target the other day and picked up two of them.
 The first one is for lunches, one side lets the kids know just what we have in the house to make for lunches.  They pick one choice from the first column, 2 choices from the middle and 1 again from the last.  Works like a charm and the kids like this 'resturauint' style ordering for their lunch.  The back side I list the snacks we can pack them for school snack time.  Keeps everything in one spot and I can easily add what I bake or erase what is used up from the list. 
 I liked the idea so much I took the other board I bought and made our meal plan on it.  One side for week one, the other for week 2.  Now the kids can stop asking what we are having for dinner tonight since it's right on there!  Also it's staring me in the face every time I walk in the kitchen so I know what I need to make for dinner and can plan my day. 
As you can see, last night was curly chicken & peas.  I've had a few readers ask what it is and many more request the recipe.  I had thought it was posted on here already since this is one of our standard easy go-to meals, but I guess not.  I love this one because it's an all in one meal that can be done in 30 minutes or less. Here is what you need:

Curly chicken and peas
(If you are wondering about the name, Bacon Jr named it when we created the meal when he was 3!)

1 lb chicken breast- cut up
favorite seasoning- I use Mc Cormick's garlic and herb
1tbsp olive oil
2.5 cups uncooked pasta(we use rotini)
1.5-2 cups frozen peas
1/2 stick butter
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

First start your pan of water to boil.  Then saute the chicken with oil and favorite seasonings. 
 Once the water is boiling toss in your noodles and peas. Let the water return to a boil and then turn it down to med. heat and let the pasta cook until tender. 

 Do you notice anything in the right picture?  Did you spy my mystery noodle?!  Mr. Bacon recently started this when making dinner.  Our kids sometimes seem opposed to eating certain noodles, so he thought a game would be fun while we eat.  When we cook our pasta, we toss in a few of each noodle we have in the house.  As we spoon dinner onto the kids plates, they have fun searching to see what kinds and how many mystery noodles they got.  And they have fun eating them and deciding if they taste different from each other. Little Miss Bacon swears they do. 

Once both the chicken and noodles are cooked it's time to assemble it.  Drain the noodles and peas an then dump them in with the chicken (ok plan ahead here and cook the chicken in a big enough pan to hold the cooked noodles too).  Add your butter and grated cheese to them and toss until the butter and cheese are melted.  You can adjust the amount of butter and cheese used to your liking.  Just try some after it's melted and see if it's enough. 

Looks pretty good to me! A super quick dinner for those busy nights. I bet it takes less time than waiting in the drive-thru line too!  Well at least it will taste better and be cheaper than the drive-thru food.   Enjoy!


  1. This was great and everyone liked it . My only problem is I don't like the tri-color noodles . (Everybody else does though ) Next time , I'm buying plain or whole wheat ones . Thanks for a great recipe and awesome blog .

  2. I'm glad everyone enjoyed it. As for the noodles, you can use any kind you like. That's what is great about this, you don't need to have a certain kind. We used regular rotini as well as bowtie, egg, shell, or a combo of them if that's all I have on hand and want to use up what is left in the box.

  3. You think you could make this curly chicken with broccoli instead of peas? I have one child who will barf every-time we serve peas....

    1. I made it with broccoli tonight. It's a hit!