UT Gardens Knoxville, Tennessee

listening to | I was working on a logo design last month and the client asked if I wanted him to share a playlist that meshes with the aesthetic he was going for. I was thrilled because I find that sort of thing super helpful! It was extremely helpful but I kept catching myself thinking, "this is what kids are listening to these days?!"in a very.. feeling super out the loop kind of way πŸ˜‚ I found a few new songs I really loved which is always great!

Here's what I've had on repeat lately: Nascar Aloe - American Wasteland /// Khruangbin and Leon Bridges - Texas Sun /// Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks - Little Fang /// Omni - Wire /// Solid Gold - Who You Gonna Run To? /// The Vacant Lots - Fracture /// Deep Cuts - Chemicals /// Brandy - Baby /// Willie Colon y Ruben Blades - Plastico

wishing | That coronavirus was gone and we could see family again, for sure. If I had to choose something that doesn't relate to that in any way.. I'd wish for us to deep into homeschooling right now and it be going really well. I'm so worried about it!

eating | Steamed rice with sesame oil, sriracha, and gf soy sauce. It's so good! I also made this noodle dish a couple of times and really enjoyed it.

thinking about | How I need to be better with managing my time! I'm trying out the pomdoro technique again which I've always been successful with in the past. I just have to push through once the novelty wears off. I can do it!

crushing on | I'll just share some of my favorite IG accounts right now:

 - glutenfreeveggiehead - all sorts of great food ideas for vegans with Hashimoto's!

- solacilike - I love her art! It's bright and beautiful.

- apple.cheeks - super cute illustrations!

- candycoloredhome - colorful and fun home inspiration.

watching | I've been watching a lot of day in the life videos on YouTube. Right now it's usually The Seoul Search. I'd love any recommendations if you all have any for similar channels! 

Today I am rearranging some furniture and things to create a homeschool space for us. I also dusted off our shredder and am getting rid of some of that paper clutter that it starting to takeover. I hope you all are having a nice weekend and take care ♡

2020, wtf dude?

UT gardens - knoxville, tennessee

What a year. I really thought that we were going to be able to make it through the other side in one piece, but then May hit us with the death of my MIL and job loss. We are doing okay and I know that we will be able to work through it, but wow.. it has been a lot all at once.

Dealing with the very valid and very big feelings my almost eight year old is having has been tough too. We have been very strict about staying at home. She hasn't left the house since the end of March, unless it has been for a drive around the city or to walk around empty public spaces. It's been tough on her. 

I decided to pull her from school since I didn't feel comfortable sending her back in person. That brought a lot of feelings out as well. She has gone to a different school every year and this was going to be her second year at her current school. I feel awful about it (and about how she has gone to a different school each year) but it's just too risky as cases are really starting to rise here.

My planner shop has been doing pretty well so I have really been focusing on that. I have also picked up a few freelance design jobs so I am very thankful for those. Work is really difficult when I'm trying to do a project and also be present as a mother. I never feel like I can do both well and work has to take priority for a bit with the money stress going on. 

I'd been thinking lately that I miss how blogs used to be. People shared everything and you really got to know the person behind them. I can't stand these post now (and I'm totally guilty of them too) where it's all sponsored, vague, and/or a list of random tips or link roundups just for the sake of a blog post and not really anything useful.

I sound so crabby but dang! I miss reading about people's thoughts, seeing their days, and real recommendations. I 100% understand - and support - if you're sharing something you found truly useful and use an affiliate or referral link. But just this linking any and everything that you don't actually use? I'm over it.

Anyway πŸ˜… I sat down the other day and wrote out what hobbies I'd really love to focus on and work at. They were rollerskating, blogging, and making planners and printables. I miss blogging and want this space to be like the old time blogs. Just sharing my days, random photos, and not all positivity because that's just not working for me this year haha

Some things that have been going on and will steer the direction of my posts: my Hashimoto's diagnosis in April. I went off gluten and dairy and when I tried to reintroduce gluten in June I got so sick. I felt hungover almost and couldn't keep my eyes open from this insane exhaustion.. I was in bed for an entire day! I didn't even try to reintroduce dairy after that.

So, I'll be posting a bunch about gluten and dairy free cooking. I was a vegetarian for 20 years, but started eating tuna again. Like, a serving a month. But that and honey are the only animal products I eat now.

I am also starting homeschooling on August 17th. Diving straight into it. Luckily, I have a friend that has been homeschooling her son forever now so she gave me some great advice and pointed me in the right direction. I'll be posting and sharing a lot about that because it will be a huge part of our lives. So, I'm sorry (and understand) if that's of no interest. I wanted to make sure and give a warning though πŸ˜‚

So yeah. Just sharing a lot about our days which aren't very eventful since we don't leave, but I'm happy about it! I kept leaving blogging because I felt I had to make those posts to get traffic and I would get so disinterested because I felt that I had to put on that positive all the time front but now I just.. don't care about that. Everyone is hurting and has real problems going on. I understand that those types of blogs are a good distraction from everything, but I'm not good at creating those types of posts and it's just not real life over here.

Okay, goodness.. that was all over the place. I just wanted to share what I envisioned for this space and what was going on over here. Thank you to those who are still reading and I hope that you all are making out okay during this time. I can't do much, but I am a great listener if anyone needs to vent.

I started a new Instagram that ties in with this blog if you all prefer to follow along or get in touch that way. Take care ♡

This Week's Grocery Order + Meal Ideas

I thought I'd be able to drag my next grocery trip out a couple of weeks, but my daughter must be going through a growth spurt or something right now because she's eating a lot more snacks/meals right now. Plus, with all of us being at home 24/7 we tend to hang out in the kitchen and graze all day. I placed an online pickup with Wal-Mart and picked it up this morning. Here's what I got:

  • 2 packs tofu
  • loaf of gluten free bread
  • grapes
  • bananas
  • box of whole wheat spaghetti
  • tortilla chips
  • salsa
  • tomatoes
  • canned kidney beans
  • canned chili beans
  • canned black beans
  • canned refried beans
  • bag of dried red beans
  • bag of dried black-eyed peas
  • bag of white rice
  • kiwis
  • lettuce
  • sugar snap peas
  • avocados
  • two bags of gala apples
  • 2 bags frozen sweet potatoes
  • oreos
  • 4 frozen cheese pizzas
  • siete almond flour tortillas
  • lemons
  • limes
  • red bell peppers
  • green bell peppers
  • cantaloupe
  • frozen peas
  • frozen corn
  • parchment paper
  • spring mix
  • frozen riced cauliflower
  • 2 frozen cauliflower pizza crusts
  • pack of lime sparkling water
  • 2 packs smoked salmon
  • gallon of almond milk
  • flamin' hot doritos
  • 3lb bag of potatoes
  • pasta sauce
  • 2 packs of seaweed
  • 2 packs beyond beef crumbles
  • lucky charms
  • string cheese
  • dog food
  • bubble bath
  • 2 boxes annie's mac n' cheese
total: $174

I spent a lot, but I was so surprised to see dried beans, rice, frozen pizza, and canned food back on the app that I grabbed a few extra things to have on hand. I also made a Whole Foods delivery order that arrived on Friday morning and here's what that had in it:

  • bag frozen corn (my daughter eats frozen corn straight from the bag so I keep it on hand πŸ˜†)
  • smoked salmon
  • gluten free bagels
  • soy sauce
  • frozen black bean burgers
  • coffee
  • canned black beans
  • 2% milk
  • bag of mixed nuts
  • bag of cashews
  • bag of plain potato chips
  • limes
  • sweet potatoes
  • bananas
  • romaine
  • garlic
  • turkey bacon
  • eggs
  • avocado
  • canned tuna
  • tortilla chips
  • bag of onions
  • grape tomatoes
  • 2 bags baby carrots
  • oat milk + rice crisp dark chocolate bar
  • frozen gluten free chocolate chip cookie dough
  • bag of broccoli
  • annie's cheese pizza bagels
total: $143.17 // which brings my grocery total to $317.17 (that includes the delivery tip and $17.63 in tax for both orders - our food tax is 7.25% here and 9.25% on all other items)

I went back and forth on if I should post prices since I wasn't sure if it seemed tone deaf with everything that's going on. Usually my rule is if I can't decide if I should or not, then don't do it. But I'm keeping this as a record since I want to see how long groceries last, if I can do better to keep my costs down, what worked and what didn't. I also wanted to stock up a bit because they are starting to reopen businesses in my state this week and I'm worried about it.

I'm trying my best to keep prices low because things are so uncertain at the moment - it has been hard. Me being newly gluten free has complicated things a bit as I'm buying more convenience items because I'm stressed and food is comforting right now. 

Here are all the meals I can make with what I bought:

  1. burritos // using tortillas, dried or canned beans, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa
  2. nachos // using tortilla chips, beyond meat crumbles, beans, veggies
  3. salads // add baked tofu or beans for more protein
  4. black bean burgers + fries // using the bag of potatoes to make fries
  5. sweet potato hash with fried eggs // I use the frozen cubed sweet potatoes if I don't have fresh
  6. tuna salad sandwiches
  7. chickpea salad sandwiches // I have tahini and capers in the fridge already
  8. lemon + tomato roasted potatoes
  9. instant pot beans + rice
  10. sweet potato bowl // using what ingredients I have on hand as you don't need all of them
  11. pizza
  12. cauliflower + walnut taco filling // for burritos or nachos
  13. BLTs + chips // using the turkey bacon or making my own version with tofu
  14. stir fry // frozen veggies, tofu, soy sauce/sugar
  15. breakfast potatoes // I'd also put these in tortillas like a burrito
  16. bagel + egg sandwiches // add turkey bacon
  17. spaghetti + marinara
  18. seaweed wraps // using the nori sheets - fill with rice/salmon/tofu/veggies
  19. veggie chili
  20. baked potatoes // sweet or russet - top w/leftover veggie chili
  21. veggie stew // I have broth concentrate and spices already
  22. egg sandiwches
  23. mac n' cheese // for my daughter
  24. smoothies // also for my daughter
  25. potato soup
  26. toast with avocado, tomato, salmon
  27. black beans + rice
  28. carrot soup
  29. black bean soup

I went to my favorite recipe sites and looked through to see what would work with what I bought. There are a lot of options here so it's good to have this so I can reference back to it when I'm not sure what to make. I usually do a weekly meal plan, but lately we have just been going by what we are in the mood for when dinner time rolls around.

For snacks, there are all sorts of options. When I get home I immediately wash and cut up the fruits and veggies. That way they are ready for recipes or my daughter can just grab whatever she wants out of the fridge and it's ready to eat. There's also oreos, cereal, chips, nuts, hardboiled eggs, and string cheese. 

It's freezing and dreary here today so I am headed to the kitchen to watch some reality tv while I meal prep. That usually cheers me up πŸ˜†

take care everyone 

What I Ate | gluten + dairy free

frothy almond milk + coffee

Here is a day of food from earlier this week. I'm currently gluten and dairy free because I was diagnosed with Hashimotos (my immune system is attacking my thyroid) awhile back. I was also vegetarian for twenty years, but have added tuna to my diet recently to see if it helps with my symptoms any. It's the only animal product I can eat without feeling sick. I tried smoked salmon the other day and the texture made me gag. There's no way I can go back to beef, chicken, etc. I'm looking for ways to up my protein and see if this is doable. It has been really tough! 

I started my morning with coffee and almond milk foam. I got this milk heater / frother (not an affiliate link) and it is amazing! It works really well with almond milk, so the foam would be even better with regular milk or half and half.

I had my first meal at noon so I guess this is considered lunch. I've been waking up at 8:30am, taking my thyroid meds, and then have to wait an hour to eat or drink anything but water. I usually workout while my daughter does her morning school meeting. Then I have coffee - finally - around 10am and get so wrapped up with homeschool that I haven't been eating until 11/12.

On this day I had roasted sweet potatoes (trader joe's chili spice mix + cumin), beans, avocado, and hot sauce. I had this for dinner the night before and woke up wanting to make it again. It was really good!

Another cup of coffee. My daughter had a lot of school work to do which meant I needed coffee to help with second grade math 😜 I learned how to this a lot differently than she is being taught, so I'm having to catch up on some new ways to do things.

I made us some of these cookies for an afternoon break. They are small, but very good! I also had a banana.

I've been having an apple with almond butter everyday. That almond butter is the best!

We went outside to play and ended up out there for three hours riding bikes, playing, walking the dogs, picking flowers, etc. I had to include this photo. We were playing badminton and Ginger grabbed the birdie and took off with it. It was hilarious watching her run around the yard like this πŸ˜‚ She was zooming all over the place trying to get away from us so we wouldn't take it away from her.

For dinner, I made red curry noodle soup based off this Instagram video recipe. It was okay. The first bowl was really good, but the second was super salty. I guess from the rice noodles soaking up all the broth? I don't know.. it was weird!

I got around ~45 grams of protein on this day. I'm trying to do better so I'm going to track food again for awhile. I've been using the Fooducate app to track for a couple of days which I really like because they layout is by time rather than breakfast / lunch / dinner / snacks.

Here is my day so far today - it also keeps me on track with water! I thought I was drinking way more than recommended buuuut.. not the case πŸ˜… Since I'm rarely eating meat and have now quit dairy, I went to my absolute favorite vegan nutrition source, Bonzai Aphrodite, and read up on supplements.

She's not blogging anymore, but her posts are still all there and they are such a great source for information. Very thoughtful, well researched posts that explain things in an easy to understand way. So with what I researched, I'm now taking Vitamin D, B-12, and the DHA/EPA Omega 3 drops she recommends in her post. I also take a multivitamin here and there along with an iron supplement occasionally.

Hopefully I'm on the right track to getting rid of these symptoms - brain fog and fatigue are the big ones for me - and starting to feel better again!

take care everyone 

My Favorite Artists on Instagram

mute0n / jw butts
@mute0n // When I first moved to Chattanooga, I would walk around downtown a lot and kept seeing all this awesome street art everywhere! I eventually found out who created it and instantly loved all everything I saw, especially this series he did on found photos and paintings. I was able to get a print of his and it's one of my favorite pieces of art in my house :] He sells a lot of originals through his Instagram so check those out if you're looking for some fantastic art for your home.


@mwanhala // I love her work so much! The colors and line work are just incredible. It's so different than anything I've seen before. She occasionally sells originals for an amazing price so keep an eye out if you enjoy her work too!


@eradura // Look at this gorgeous hand embroidery! I really love the desert color palette and imagery she uses.

memorial stitches

@memorialstitches // Look at the detail in this hand embroidery! Seriously.. just beautiful! I love everything she makes, but especially the ones with women/hair. And her bats are wonderful too :]


@artbyangie.jpg // I just love her work because it feels so dang cozy! I've always been a fan of miniatures and dollhouses, so I especially the love the little scenes of rooms hiding inside of random items. So sweet :] Here is her etsy shop where she sells all sorts of art and stickers.

I hope you enjoyed this post and found some new artists to follow! ♡


practicing hand lettering in procreate
listening to | Ariel Pink - Baby /// Human Tetris - Things I Don't Need /// Motorama - Heavy Wave ///  Boy Harsher - Pain /// Silvio Rodriguez - OjalΓ‘ /// Janet Jackson - That's the Way Love Goes /// Lebanon Hanover - Sadness Is Rebellion /// Solid Space - Tenth Planet /// Ginuwine - In Those Jeans /// The Whispers - Rock Steady /// Faith No More - We Care Alot

wishing | The weather would warm up a little bit more! We got spoiled with a week of incredible weather, so I got into the habit of eating meals on the back porch. I need that back plzzz.

eating | I've been working on making Pad Thai that tastes like this one that I still dream about from a place we ate at in St. Petersburg, Florida when we visited a few years back πŸ˜† I've almost got it down! But I ran out of tamarind today and it will be a few days before I grocery shop again. I started with the pad thai recipe from the Just Egg website (just the sauce part) and have been experimenting with ingredients and ratios each time I make it.

I add more sugar πŸ˜…, lots of sriracha, and a few drops of fish sauce instead of the soy. It's getting there, but I feel that it's missing something and I don't know what that something is! I'll figure it out and be happy eating the test dishes in the meantime. :]

thinking about | How beautiful this tree outside the kitchen window is. All the color and sunshine is making me happy :] Also thinking about how incredible this house looks. Love that floor and all the dark jewel green accents everywhere! 

crushing on | I've been loving these Instagram accounts lately: Damfino (love her style and cosplays) // Jas @ Just Seconds (amazing rollerskater!) // The CCL World (love her digital planning time lapses) // Go Clean Co (cleaning tips!) // byclairee (really pretty paper planning) // Tips for Artists (drawing tips and tricks) // Trey Tylor (celeb photos/stories you probably haven't seen or heard before)

watching | I haven't been watching any movies and the only tv shows are old reruns of Parks & Rec and Kitchen Nightmares while I am cooking or cleaning the kitchen 😜 

Hope you all are well 

Recent Workouts

leslie sansone walk at home calorie burn

I reached a point where I told myself that I have to start moving again. There were a few things that got me in gear:

  1. I was diagnosed with Hashimotos at the beginning of March. I've felt bad for a long time and finally having a diagnosis was a relief because that meant I could make a plan and work towards feeling better. I'm going to write more about this soon. The biggest changes I've made have been completely cutting out gluten and dairy. I've been 100% without both for a week now. 
  2. Visiting a relative in a nursing home earlier this year and seeing how important keeping up strength and staying in motion is. 
  3. Just a general feeling of unhappiness and anxiety and knowing that exercise always helps put me in a better mood. I think the blah feeling is related to Hashimotos a bit as well - definitely the low energy I've had. But a lot those feelings were from not moving much during the day and scrolling through my phone way too much. That's hard to admit. But I'd check one app, go to the next, then go back to the first since it constantly updates and I wanted to see what was new, then obsessively searching for coronavirus news, and repeat. It was too much! 

I told myself that I was going to ease into it with walking. I decided that I'd do a Leslie Sansone video in the garage while my daughter had her morning school meeting on Zoom in the kitchen. It was kind of hard to get myself going, but I did it. And then again the next day, and the next. I built my endurance back up and have felt so much better! I feel myself getting stronger and my mood improving which is such a nice change.

Here's what my recent workouts have looked like:

4/10 Friday | Burn Body Fat 2 Mile Walk // This is my favorite walking workout! I just find it to be the perfect amount of time and I like all the moves - it just flows well. I use 5lb dumbbells for the first half of the video then no weights for the last half.

4/11 Saturday | rest day

4/12 Sunday | 3 Mile Walk // I didn't enjoy this workout as much as the others. I like Leslie best when she's on her own in videos for some reason.

4/13 Monday | Burn Body Fat 3 Mile Walk // Love this one! I felt really great this day and wanted something longer and a little more challenging. I used 5lb dumbbells for the first half and then nothing for the last.

4/14 Tuesday | rest day

4/15 Wednesday | Walk Fast 20 Minute Workout // I felt blah this day and wasn't feeling a workout, so I searched for a 20 minute one. I promised myself to do it for five minutes and if I still wasn't feeling it, I would turn it off. I finished the entire thing and was happy I did it. This was a good video to do when you're not in the mood to workout, but just need to move for a little bit!

I'm wanting to add more strength training in soon, but I'm really happy with walking for now! It may seem like it wouldn't be challenging yet it really is. I definitely recommend these workouts if you're looking for a something to do indoors!

Link Roundup | workouts, recipes, free classes + more

almond milk latte - k brew knoxville

I have been saving a lot of links lately to things that looked neat and fun or were helpful, so I wanted to share them here. It has been really great to see so many people and businesses work to share their tutorials, videos, and services for free or at a discount right now. If there are any you are loving, please share in the comments! Hope you all are doing well ♡

// free classes //

» Nikon is offering free online photography courses for the month of April.

» Milk Street Cooking School has made all of its online cooking lessons free through the month of April.

» Coursera is offering all sorts of free classes right now. Some of them even offer a certificate when you're finished which is awesome.

» Here is a list of 12 free online cooking classes going on right now.

// workouts //

» Kara Duval Pilates is hosting free classes on Instagram Live.

» Megan with MC FIT is also doing live workouts, but also has them saved in her feed. I've done her workouts before and they're fantastic!

» One of my all time favorites, Keaira LaShae, is also doing live workouts on her Instagram page!

» Here is a great list of free fitness classes - there are a ton to choose from!

» If you're looking for something low impact, try one of these walk at home videos from Leslie Sansone. I've been doing these all week and they're great!

» My favorite rollerskater is teaching virtual classes twice a week! I haven't cleared out enough space in the garage yet to be able to take a class, but I hope to soon!

// cooking + recipes //

» Mama Eats Plants is blogging again! Her blog is my favorite and I'm so happy she is posting again. I make this minestrone soup recipe of hers all the time - highly recommend!

» Cookmind will generate recipes based on what you already have on hand.

» A chef from a local Thai restaurant shared how to make drunken noodles. I thought it was sweet of her to share so people can make it at home :]

» These enchilada stuffed sweet potatoes look really good! I've been keeping a lot of sweet potatoes on hand because they keep so well in the fridge.

» Yotam Ottolenghi is an incredible chef and has been cooking and sharing recipes on his Instagram. I love his recipes because they are so simple but so full of flavor - it's amazing!

// misc. //

» If you're having trouble finding toilet paper, cleaners, soap, rice, etc. then check out The Supply Finder. It constantly checks Amazon, Target, and Wal-Mart and shows you what's in stock and the link to purchase.

» I haven't even watched Tiger King, but all the memes have been amazing. This one is definitely my favorite hahaha That song is catchy! πŸ˜‚

» Soundscape is a really neat website where you can build your own music/beats. It has some really nice, relaxing sounds and imagery too.

» Here's a quick video on how to make a no sew face mask out of a tank top/t-shirt and hair ties.

» If you also follow Things I Bought and Liked then you probably already saw where she shared the cleaning account Go Clean Co. and omg.. I have been loving her cleaning videos and tips! The laundry stripping is both helpful and horrifying 😳

» This site lets you choose two youtube videos and it creates a mash up for you. I spent waaay too much time playing around with this!

» Here is an insanely huge list of companies offering free subscriptions due to school closings.

» And here is a site dedicated to sharing free resources and financial relief options to freelance artists.

volcano and squeaky dinosaur dog toy
If you have a dog that needs something to do and/or you need them to be occupied for almost an hour (!!!), then you must get this toy! You hide the six little squeaky dinosaurs in the volcano and then your dog will have an absolute blast trying to get them out. If I need to buy some extra time, I'll sprinkle some treats in there as well and they go crazy!

I was hesitant on buying this because of the price tag, but it is well worth it. It's a good size too so it will work for any size pup. I bought this from Chewy and they also had a couple more hide and seek plush toys to choose from.

This Week's Meal Plan & Planning Freebies

hey hand lettering on procreate
my new hobby is drawing on procreate.
I used to decorate my planner, but since there's nothing to plan at the moment, I do this :)

Re: puppy issues // I had a couple of people message me and say that they had been in the same place when their dogs were puppies. But that they start to grow out of it around a year old or so and to hang in there because it does get much better. That made me feel a lot more hopeful!

I also asked that the puppy duties split more evenly, which has been a tremendous help. It made me feel like I could enjoy her more because I wasn't doing all the heavy lifting. I'm just being a grump about all the added responsibility and constant hovering that means I can't distract myself in the ways I want/need to. Everything has me so anxious lately! I also totally realize and acknowledge that I was acting like a turd person earlier about the pup πŸ‘Ž


Onto this week's meal plan. I went out on Friday to a nearby Wal-Mart market and it was completely different than last time I'd went. There was a one way traffic flow created using a maze of carts which sent my anxiety through the roof! Someone a couple of places in front of me sneezed, but there was nowhere to go in the narrow path that had been made with the carts. They aren't lining people up 6ft apart outside any of the stores I've been to here and there's no limit to how many people are in the store at once. 

Once inside, no one was following the 6ft rule and it was pretty busy. I was so frazzled that I ended up supermarket sweeping it and grabbing a ton of random food in record time. Everything was well stocked except for toilet paper, disinfectant cleaners, bread, and frozen pizza.

I've been grocery shopping every two weeks, but I think next time I am going to shop to last an entire month if I can. Here's my plan with what we have on hand:

Monday » crunchy tacos // everyone can make their own and add whatever toppings they like. I'll set out pico, salsa, cheese, tomatoes, and hot sauce. My daughter will probably eat a plain taco shell and then a bowl of cereal πŸ˜†

Tuesday » nachos // I'll set out all the toppings and everyone can add whatever they want. I add the siete cashew queso, beyond beef crumbles, rice, and then hot sauce on mine. Comfort food.

Wednesday » frozen pizza

Thursday » vegan red lentil stew

Friday » chickpea salad sandwiches for me and spaghetti for everyone else

Saturday » beans and rice

Sunday » make your own burritos with the leftover beans and rice

My grocery trip set up goes like this: before I leave, I put one of those big storage totes on the porch and set a container of disinfectant wipes in it. When I get home, I grab the tub and bring it over to the car. I disinfect each item the best I can and place it into the bin once it's good to go. Then I carry the bin into the house and put things away. It takes time, but I try not to rush it and realize that this is just how things are right now.

I just reread that and realized I called that thing a tote, tub, and bin all in the same paragraph πŸ˜‚ I have no idea what their official name is.

Here are some recent meals I've made:


Nachos featuring string cheese πŸ˜‚ I have a couple of blocks of cheese in the fridge, but didn't feel like shredding it at that moment.

aloo matar from vegan richa

I made this aloo matar from Vegan Richa and it was really good. I also made the keema madras with red lentils and it was incredible! It took a long time to come together, but I'll definitely make it again.

vegan caesar salad with roasted chickpea croutons from mama eats plants

I have made this before and was craving it earlier today so I made it for lunch. It's the vegan caesar salad with roasted chickpea croutons from Mama Eats Plants. Super good! My daughter did not like it but tried it at least πŸ‘


Something quick I wanted to share » I've been adding a lot of stuff to my free digital planning files folder, but I also have some printables in there if paper planning is more your thing. Just wanted to share if anyone is interested :]

I hope you all are doing okay ♡ 

Meals Lately » Grocery List » Free Pantry/Fridge/Freezer Printable

Hey everyone, hope you're doing well during this surreal time we are living in. I've been alternating between panic cleaning and panic cooking - and eating - then I remembered this blog πŸ˜… it's a good distraction at the moment and I've really enjoyed reading and writing blogs again and the few minutes of peace it offers.

When all of this started, my mind instantly went to food. As it does in most situations. I think if you've gone through food insecurity at any point in your life, then that's probably the case. I made lists of shelf stable meal ideas, meals I could make and freeze, etc.

Here's what I've been making lately:

- instant pot vegetable stew (pictured above) // I've made this four times in the past couple of weeks. It's so good & comforting! I will say that I haven't actually made it in the instant pot. I've just used the stovetop. I follow the same instructions and then simmer until potatoes are done.

- instant pot chipotle black beans // this is THE dried beans recipe to make. My goodness, it's incredible! I'm going to try this beans + rice recipe of hers next.

- general tso's broccoli mushroom stir fry // this recipe is for you all that have tahini on hand and aren't in the mood for hummus, but need to use it up. I was super skeptical about tahini in a stir fry sauce, but it's legit. I'd use a tiny bit less than the recipe calls for next time I make it though. I also subbed tofu for the chickpeas. But honestly, this sauce with a bag of frozen stir fry veggies would be great. 

Here's what my grocery list looked like last time I went shopping and was focusing on foods with a long shelf life:

- tuna packs
- eggs // hardboiled, add to ramen, in tortillas
- tofu // stir fry, baked for salads, tofu scramble
- almond milk
- blocks of cheese // shredded to top salads, make quesadillas, on baked potatoes/chili/tortilla soup
- tortillas // I got these navy bean ones from Wal-Mart that are really good with a long shelf life
- ramen noodles
- russet & sweet potatoes // baked with chili on top, enchilada sweet potatoes, make fries, potato nachos. sweet potatoes last forever in the fridge.
- tortilla chips // for chili and nachos
- dried beans // nachos, the black bean recipe linked above, burritos, on top of salads
- rice // add to canned soups, beans + rice, burritos, add to chili
- spaghetti & marinara
- hard taco shells + refried beans
- onions // chop these and freeze
- apples + oranges // last a long time in the fridge
- bananas // freeze for smoothies and oatmeal
- oatmeal
- jars of garlic // super cheap at aldi, like $1.29 I believe
- ginger // lasts forever in the freezer and thaws quickly
- tomato paste
- pizza sauce + mini pizza crusts // freeze the crusts! these are nice for kids to make their own pizzas.
- frozen pizzas
- frozen veggies // peas, corn, stir fry mix
- cheesecake // froze a couple because I know I'm going to need them. need.
- popcorn kernels // cheap and a great snack. I had a giant bowl of popcorn for dinner last night πŸ˜‚
- better than bouillon broth // I find that boxed broths taste tinny and thin. I love this stuff because a tiny bit can transform a recipe - it's great! Cheapest at Wal-Mart.
- coffee and tea // earl grey for when I need caffeine but don't want coffee and dandelion chai because it has probiotics and is super good!
- mac n' cheese // for my seven year old

I hope that this is helpful and gives you some ideas if you need any. Our list might look a little different than yours as we only have a toaster oven, stovetop, and instant pot. So I'm not able to bake large meals or anything. Our toaster oven will fit a frozen pizza exactly and that was all that mattered when I bought it πŸ˜‚

I made this pantry/freezer/fridge inventory printable and wanted to share. >> download it here << I've been using to to see what I have on hand, how much there is, and what meals I can make with it. It's helped with the anxiety around food a bit, and I hope you find it useful as well. You can print it or use it in apps such as Goodnotes if you are into digital planning.

Take care everyone ♡

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