Are you tired of hearing about how overwhelmed I am?

I don’t know, y’all. I think the deployment may just be getting to me. And I was too lazy to go down to CYS to sign the kids up for free deployment daycare so I just… I’m just overwhelmed by the day to day. The two schools plus the baby (he’s not a baby), the soccer, the football, everything else! This is such a crazy time of year.

The first thing to go is always dinner. Sometimes it’s just seems like it’ll take way too much energy to stand over the stove. The kids are perfectly fine with PB&J but we can only do so many of those before all that dreaded mom guilt hits.

So I’ve been trying out the Reynolds Oven Bags for dinners. I’ve had some in my cabinet for years (literally since we moved to Colorado) but I assumed they were just for ginormous turkeys at Thanksgiving.

I used one of those Reynolds Oven Bags for this Balsamic Pot Roast. All you have to do it put all the ingredients in the bag, tie it up, and bake it for a few hours. You know how pot roasts made in the slow cooker have that awesome texture where they pretty much just fall apart? That’s what happened inside the bag! I’ve never had an oven roast turn out so well.

I wish I’d added potatoes to the bag so I definitely recommend you do that. The carrots and onions were so tender and delicious and the sauce created by everything was perfect on rice!

The best part, of course, is that there no cleanup. You throw the bag away. And you’re done.

Reynolds has a bunch of easy, weeknight Oven Bag meals on their website, like mushroom risotto! Or you can go super simple and make Sausage and Peppers just by putting sliced sausage and roughly chopped peppers and onions in the bag. You cook until the sausage is tender and serve it with fresh bread!

Fun fact: I had a guinea pig named Pot Roast once. I got her after Hurricane Katrina when we were still without power but I still had to go into work everyday. I shop my feelings. Or in this case, I adopt rodents my feelings. Or something. But anyway, I was on the phone with my BFF afterwards and she suggested I name her Pot Roast because she was eating a pork chop that she thought was pot roast. Yep.

Years later, my sister-in-law adopted Pot Roast and another guinea pig who she named Spud. They were very happy together.

Click for the full recipe

1

I don’t really like to talk too in depth about my kids on this blog – mostly because there was a time in my life when I would’ve been absolutely mortified if someone had googled my name and stumbled upon my mom telling the story of the time I bit a hole in her shower curtain.

But I had to share this one.

Okay, so, we have 4 sports practices a week. They’re all early evening which… is rough. I have 3 kids, we’re on month 6 of deployment – you’re lucky if I show up anywhere after 3 pm. I’m pretty much done by then. So I’m easily aggravated at these practices and yesterday one of my kids was just driving me insane. Purposely, of course. Because he enjoys it.

It was bad. It was one of those fits that causes you to get close to their face and whisper, “If you don’t cut it out RIGHT NOW, when we get home I’m going to take all your stuffed animals outside and set them on fire”.

So after an hour of that, we were driving home and I asked them if they’re ready to have this Cheeseburger Mac for dinner. Two of the kids were all “YEAH!” and then my trouble maker said, “Uhh, did you make it with water? Because I don’t like things made with water.”

You guys, I’m surprised I didn’t crash the car.

The rest of us really enjoyed it, despite the water. It’s supposed to be like Hamburger Helper but it’s a million times better than Hamburger Helper. And it’s all cooked in one pot so you can spend your night watching Dance Moms reruns instead of washing dishes!

Click for the full recipe

10

One reason I’m not 100% convinced my children are actually mine is that they don’t like tacos.

A few weeks ago – you know, when we were 2 hours early for a fair that’s an hour away and were in a town that literally only has a general store so we had to drive 20 minutes to find the nearest restaurant – we went out for Mexican and while I had delicious Tacos Al Pastor, all 3 of them ordered…

Corndogs.

Yeah, this is my life.

So making anything that even slightly resembles a taco is always risky.

We made these Walking Tacos last week mainly because I required a margarita (coming tomorrow!) for Big Brother and I can’t really have margarita without a taco. My kids LOVED them. They literally walked circles in the living while eating them. Because why sit with your Walking Taco when you can walk circles?

We ran out of Fritos after the first night so the next day, they put the rest of the taco meat on Cool Ranch Doritos.

These are super simple and are perfect for feeding a crowd. If you serve them with plastic utensils, you’ll have no clean-up to do!

Click for the full recipe

4

Umm.

I’m sorry for clogging your arteries first thing in the morning.

See, this is why I stick to pretty basic stuff on the blog. Because when someone gives me permission to go nuts, I do.

This is all Kita’s fault. She has been hosting an epic Burger Month and literally said to us “Make it epic!”

So. Much. Pressure.

I don’t know if Colorado Omelets are actually a thing or just a thing that IHOP created to have something else on their menu but basically it’s an omelet filled with beef, bacon, sausage, green peppers, onions, cheese and then you cover it in salsa.

I love them.

I love them so much that I made them into a burger.

So the burger has the beef in the burger (duh), the bacon, sautéed green peppers and onions, white cheddar cheese, and a yolky egg on top. And then you pour salsa all over it.

(I had sausage links cooked up but decided I needed to rein myself in.)

It’s messy and delicious and as someone who believes that more is more on burgers, I was a big fan. A big, messy fan.

Check below the recipe for a fun giveaway!

Click for the full recipe

12

I’ve really been failing at dinner since my husband deployed. My seven year old actually asked me why I never cook anymore.

To which I said, “What are you talking about? I made 6 kinds of ice cream last week!”

Apparently ice cream does not count as real cooking.

I go through this whenever my husband is gone. When he’s here, I know that whatever I cook, it’ll get eaten. When it’s just me and the boys, we always have leftovers for days and then I still end up trashing stuff. And that’s really frustrating to me. We end up doing sandwiches and Cheetos for dinner just about every night.

So I made this pasta for dinner to prove to the kid that I actually still know how to cook. It was a HUGE hit. I don’t go for cottage cheese in pasta dishes usually but no one really noticed it in this. It melted and got super creamy. And I have been eating nothing but ground turkey for months so actual ground beef?

I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. But that is besides the point.

Sour Cream Noodle Bake

Ingredients

1 pound lean ground beef
1 (15 ounce) can Tomato sauce
1 (8 ounce) can Tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
8 ounces Egg Noodles
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/4 cups small curd cottage cheese
1/2 cup green onions, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Brown ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat, breaking it up as it cooks. Drain grease if necessary and return to pan; add the tomato sauce, salt and pepper to skillet. Stir mixture and reduce heat to low. Let simmer for about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, boil egg noodles in a large pot of water until al dente. Drain water. Set noodles aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, stir together sour cream and cottage cheese. Gentle stir in cooked egg noodles. Sprinkle with a little black pepper and gently stir until noodles are coated. Stir in green onions.
  5. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan with non-stick spray. Layer half the noodles in the bottom of the pan, spread out evenly. Spread half of the meat mixture over the noodles, sprinkle with half the cheese. Repeat layers again, with remaining noodles, the rest of the meat mixture and then ending with the cheese.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/06/17/sour-cream-noodle-bake/

11