Ah, Sunday – a much-needed breath of fresh air after a long week.
Today, I’m starting with my usual black coffee and a clear headspace – unfortunately, accompanying my weekly dark roast is a huge box of tissues and a never-ending glass of water. The cold that’s been going around the Philly area hit me like a freight train, and I’m still slowly recovering. It’s been a rough couple of days, complete with time off of work and a cleared social calendar, but I think I’m finally on the winning side. Phew.
Cold – 0, Me – 1.
If I’m not totally under the weather, out of town, or otherwise running around like a crazy person, I use my Sunday mornings as an opportunity to reflect on the week before, and plan for the week ahead. Admittedly, I do less reflecting than I do planning – although I’m working on evening that dynamic in the future. It’s just so hard to find the time to think about what’s happened, when the future is happening now. (Or something like that.)
I’m trying harder to be – not just feel – thankful for the blessings that have come my way in the previous week. (To me, this is an important distinction – the difference between thought and action. More often than not, these days I’ll think to myself, “That was nice.” I want to get better at saying aloud, “That was nice,” and making sure that others know that they’ve positively affected my life. Like I said, this is a constant work in progress.)
But right now, planning is at the top of my mind, especially since I lost a couple of days’ worth of organization to a swollen face and clogged-up sinuses.
Planning means updating our shared calendar of activities for the week (which we keep in the kitchen, where each of us can be found, every morning), and downloading about who’ll be where for dinner. This is particularly important to me, since Sundays are usually the day that I plan our dinners for the week.
Because Pat’s an omnivore (-borderline-carnivore) and I’m a vegetarian, it’s absolutely crucial that we take the time to create dinners that we’ll both enjoy. On weeks we don’t, we end up eating out a lot – nothing I can think of/want to eat appeals to him, and vice versa. In those moments, we throw up our hands and go somewhere that’ll accommodate both of our taste buds. It’s not the most budget-friendly way to operate, so I’ve been doing my best to create a week-long menu and run it by my husband for his yays or nays.
Three of our easy favorites that accommodate both meat- and veggie-eaters’ palates:
- Semi-homemade pizza: For a beyond easy meal, I take a pre-baked crust, and add our favorite toppings and veggies. You can make this as healthy or as decadent as you like. Our favorite hearty combination for the winter months includes a low-fat Alfredo sauce in lieu of tomato, topped with roasted butternut squash, kale, and goat cheese. (Trust me, it’s delicious.)
- Pasta: I don’t have an age-old marinara sauce recipe to turn to, so I usually – gulp – use store bought. But pasta’s versatility makes it easy for me to add green peppers and onions, while Pat can add baked chicken or meatballs. Serve with a side salad and – voila! – a meal that leaves us both satisfied.
- Stir fry: A personal favorite in our quasi-vegetarian home – stir fry veggies, take half out, then add pre-cooked meat to the remainder of the veggies. No need to prepare separate meals, or even cook in two pots (or woks) – super easy, and super delicious. Just find the right teriyaki or stir fry sauce, and you’re good to go.
At least one of these three will make it on our house’s menu this week — I’m leaning toward having a “Stir Fry-day.”
Well, I’m off to finish my coffee and get ready for the week! Stay healthy.
‘Til next week,