Everyday Mom's Meals: August 2022

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Second Week Busy Week

 Have you settled back into the school year routine? Are you struggling to find your groove? Either way, I see you. I feel you. I would say we are somewhere in the middle. 

Having one entering his senior year and all that comes with that, and the other beginning Kindergarten and the immense changes that brings has made the past two weeks especially busy and hectic.

For those wondering, the little guy rocked his first week of Kindergarten, and was more brave than we could have ever imagines. Yes, there were some tears (from both him and mommy) but at the end of every single day when I picked him up, he was smiling and full of stories. We couldn't be more proud of him!

His big brother is filling his days with classes, studying, theater and working. I keep telling him to try to savor as much of senior year as he can because it will go at the speed of light. 

This week we add in two meetings at the school, picture day, and a few other things. Like I've said before, I don't anticipate our schedules slowing down any time soon. 

Enter a simple, hearty pasta bake supper that can be on the table in about an hour. It is filled with cooked chicken (use some leftover or make it the day before!) Alfredo sauce, and broccoli. Yep, making sure the kids get some green stuff on their plate for that brain food they need! Oh, and let me make your day even more! The pasta and broccoli both go in the casserole frozen, saving you even more time on a busy day.

Baked Chicken Tortellini Alfredo will be one of those meals you make now because it's quick, and then again and again during the fall and winter months for comfort food on a cold day. 

If your back to school schedule has you pulling your hair out, stop stressing when it comes to dinner time. Take a breath and know you can still get a delicious meal on the table to enjoy while listening to all those stories from their day!


Baked Chicken Tortellini Alfredo

1 (19 oz.) bag frozen cheese tortellini

2 (15 oz.) jars Alfredo

1 (12 oz.) bag frozen broccoli florets

2 cups cooked, shredded chicken

1/2 cup chicken broth

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1 tsp. dried parsley

Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 425. Lightly grease 9x13 baking dish. In a large bowl combine chicken, frozen pasta and frozen broccoli. Add Alfredo sauce, broth, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and stir well. Transfer to baking dish and cover tightly with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove cover, top with mozzarella cheese and sprinkle with dried parsley. Bake 10 minutes until cheese melted and top is lightly browned.

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Back To School

As much as I have tried to ignore it for weeks, the joy that is summer vacation is coming to an end and back to school time is officially here. For our family, it's actually a two week process, and mommy is not handling any of it well.

This week my first baby embarks on his Senior year of high school. I'm pretty sure we just went to freshman orientation last week, so it's not quite clear how that happened.

The next day my little baby turns 6! Again, we just brought him home from the hospital, so that went quickly. Then the following week, he is off to Kindergarten, which is going to be a huge adjustment for both of us. 

We are so happy with our school choice, his teacher is amazing, and I get the joy of being classroom mom. All of these things make sending him off a little easier, but the fact that my sidekick won't be here every day is a bit hard to swallow. For him too. During his check up at the doctor last week, when asked if he was excited about school, he replied with "Not really. I don't want to leave mommy." 

That sums it up for Max. He has spent the last 6 years with me, all day, every day, for the most part. We can tell him how much fun he's going to have, how much he is going to learn, and how awesome Kindergarten will be; but right now he can't see past having to leave my side. 

Like all hard things, this too shall past. We will get him through the anxiety of the first few days, or even weeks, but for now, I'm going to keep snuggling, hugging and enjoying these last few moments of just us time. 

And don't think for one minute by going on and on about the little one, seeing the 17 year old leave for his last year of high school is any easier on this mommy's heart. Oh, and did I mention he turns 18 next month? Seriously, it is a lot, all at once. I burst with pride for the man he is becoming, but melt inside knowing he is getting closer and closer to leaving the nest. 

Anyway, enough blubbering on, the whole point of me diving into the back to school saga was to share this super simple, 3 ingredient, Crock Pot recipe that is perfect for those busy school nights filled with sports, meetings, activities and more. 

Crock Pot Salsa Chicken is filled with flavor and can be used for tacos, enchiladas, burritos, nachos or just served over some cooked rice! On those evenings when everyone has to eat at different times, it is as good for the last person as the first. 

If you are dreading sending your kids back to school like me, I send you love and hugs. We can get through this...one day at a time...and count the days until fall break! 


Crock Pot Salsa Chicken

4 boneless chicken breasts

2 cups mild, chunky salsa, divided use

2 1/2 tsp. taco seasoning

Fresh parsley, if desired, for garnish

Grease Crock Pot insert with nonstick spray. Lay chicken inside and sprinkle with seasoning. Pour 1 cup of salsa over top. Cook on LOW 6-8 hours. Shred chicken and mix with remaining cup of salsa. Cook 10 minutes until heated through. Serve or keep on warm. Garnish with parsley if desired.