Meet the Sullivans: January 2014

January 31, 2014

Five on Friday

Morning everyone! Let's get straight to the point! I'm linking up with the sweet and fabulous ladies behind The Good Life, Carolina Charm, A. Liz Adventures, and Hello Happiness for 5 on Friday today!
one
My tickets for BlogHer '14 have been purchased! A while back when they announced it would be in San Jose (a short drive from home) I was so excited to go. Then I got side trakced and started to think I would feel out of place there, etc., but then I was talking with my good friend Nicole and she encouraged me to go. I started to feel like I would really be missing out on a great opportunity (when will another big blogging conference be so close to home for me?), so I talked it over with Keith and purchased my ticket that night! I have no regrets and I'm SUPER excited for July to arrive. Any one else going?

two
We're having a bunch of friend and some family over to watch the Super Bowl on Sunday. As you may know, I'm not all that interested in football, but I do love the socializing and food that goes along with it! We'll be serving up a load of food and here is some of my inspiration: (clockwise from top left - Fiesta Chili, Spinach-Artichoke Dip, Classic Buffalo Wings, Crock Pot Chili Dogs, Football Shaped Bread Bowl (with the spinach-artichoke dip inside) and Chocolate Covered Strawberry Footballs.

three
Owen has been into painting and even gets his paints and supplies out on his own, so I think this cute little Valentine's Day blossom tree is in our near future! But first we must finish our Valentine's!

 four
PopSugar always has all the newest pop news, and they keep popping up in my Facebook feed with updates about the Fifty Shades of Grey movie. I am still undecided on whether or not I will go see the Fifty Shades of Grey movie when it comes out. I can't even imagine how they can make the movie without it being totally out there, and I would probably be embarrassed to be there. I would definitely need to go with some friends, or drag my husband. I read 2 1/2 of the three books, and I have to say I did not love them, but felt like I needed to at least try to finish the series (I am notorious for reading the first book in a series, but never moving on to the 2nd or 3rd...), but couldn't. So, did you read the books? Are you going to see the movie?

five
I finally jumped on the maxi dress bandwagon last year and I'm already on the hunt for some great ones for this spring and summer. I saw this Dip Dye Maxi on Asos this week and I'm in love with it!

Happy weekend, friends!

January 30, 2014

Day in the Life

A couple of weeks ago I asked for suggestions about what you (the readers) would like to see from me, or see more of, and a few people suggested a Day in the Life style post. I've always loved reading a Day in the Life post, and I really love reading back on my own (like this one from when O was only 7 months-old!), so I was GAME!

Here is what our day was like on Tuesday, January 28th 2014...


6:30am I wake up as I hear Owen on the monitor calling out to "See mommy now!". I run downstairs to get both of our morning refreshments together (and grab my laptop). Coffee for me (Starbucks Veranda blend k-cup + International Delights Coldstone Sweet Cream creamer) and 1% milk for Owen.

6:45am After changing Owen's diaper and opening up his shutters we go into our room. We sit in bed drinking our "babas". I check emails and read a few blogs, and Owen watches one episode of Cailou.


7:15am Keith returns home from his workout and comes in to say good morning to us before heading to the shower. This prompts Owen and I to get out of bed and start our day too. Owen follows Keith into the bathroom and finds some of his cars in there. He comes back into our room where I've just finished making the bed and we play cars for a while. 


7:45am Owen and I are downstairs now and he is keeping busy with his cars still, so I make us both breakfast. This morning Owen is having a mini bagel toasted with butter, cantaloupe and a chicken breakfast sausage. I opt for a mini bagel toasted with peanut butter and a sliced pear, and more coffee.

8:00am Owen is still eating his breakfast and playing a bit, so I take the opportunity to empty the dishwasher, pick up around the family room, glance at our agenda for the day and start a load of laundry. This is also when I prep the diaper bag for or morning outing.


8:15am Keith comes down stairs and Owen insists he make a smoothie for breakfast so Owen can "help Daddy!". Then after Owen has his taste of the smoothie we're off to the front window to watch the garbage / recycling trucks roll down the street. Owen loves garbage day for this very reason. If we were outside we would be chasing them up the block!


8:30am Keith leaves for work and we head upstairs so I can get us both ready for the day. I shower and Owen goes through my drawer in the bathroom and hands me almost everything he finds.

9:00am We're dressed and out the door and on our way to O's gymnastics class! 


9:15am We made it to O's gymnastics class on time! Owen does great in the beginning of the class when the teacher sings songs and gives directions about stretching, etc., but he struggles when it comes to taking turns and sharing the equipment. Luckily everyone else in the class is the parent / grandparent / caretaker of a toddler too, so they get it.

10:00am After class we walk over to the park for some play time and snack. We run into a friend and her son, and catch up for a bit while the boys play. After a little while Owen is ready for his snack, and then we head home to meet up with my sister who is coming over for lunch.

11:15am We arrive home and see that our neighbor is outside with her two young girls who are about Owen's age, so we play around for a bit and O rides his scooter.


11:40 am When Aunt KC comes (aka "Dinny") we head inside for lunch. I prep Owen's lunch first. Today he;s having salami, french bread, fruit and a little cheese. He mainly just eats the fruit and the salami, which is fine with me since at least he ate the fruit, right!? I won't show you my lunch since it included Cheetos, which is kind of embarrassing, but really good at the same time.

(This is when I forgot to keep taking pictures. SO sorry!)

12:00pm After lunch we play for a little bit (with cars, of course) before I take Owen up for his nap. He fights it pretty hard until we get up there and start rocking (without milk, since we're trying to break that habit).

12:30pm He falls asleep quickly once the shutters are closed, the white noise is on and we're steadily rocking back and forth. Kath (Aunt KC aka Dinny aka the girl with too many names) and I take advantage of O's nap and watch some shows. We watched GIRLS, but talked most of the time. This is also when I usually catch up on emails, blog, read blogs, etc.

2:00pm Owen is up from his nap, so we play with toys, read some books and color in his coloring books. Since Aunt KC was here I was able to bring the trash bins in so Keith didn't have to do it when he came home. I'm such a nice wife, right?

3:00pm Aunt KC has to get going, so we walk her out to her car. When we come back in we fold some laundry together and play with flashlights for a bit (one of Owen's favorite things to do!) making shadows on the wall. I don't know where the time goes in the afternoons. We good upstairs, we come back down again, we go in the living room, then back into the kitchen for a snack, etc. We're basically all over the place for the next hour and a half, and somewhere in there I folded a load of laundry.

4:30pm Owen decides he wants to do some painting, so we break out the paints, brushes and paper! I take advantage of his mood and decide to get started on the Valentine's we're crafting. It involves some paint on his fingers, which he had to warm up to, but once he did he was incredibly cooperative.

5:00pm Five o'clock rolls around, which means it's time for me to start dinner. I'm getting together with a few friends for dinner, so I make dinner (Spaghetti and Meatballs, and a salad) for Keith and Owen and then cover it with foil and keep it in the oven on warm so it will be ready to go when they are. Owen has another snack, watches Mater's Tales on Netflix for 30 minutes, drinks a little milk and "helps" me in the kitchen with dinner.

6:00pm Keith is home from work! Owen is always SO happy to see his daddy when he comes home. When he sees him he says "I miss you, daddy" and we all die from the sweetness. Keith gets changed and I kiss my boys good night. Owen is totally fine with me leaving and even says "Bye, bye, mommy!" as I leave. I think he and Keith enjoy their one-on-one Father-Son time.


6:30pm I get to Hilary's house and the girls and I spend the entire night catching up and chatting over, what else?, burritos! I am so thankful to live in an area (or state!) that knows the right way to do a burrito. I've heard there are places in the US where a good burrito is hard to come by and that would just be the death of me! We had talked about watching a show, but who has time for that when we all have so much to say! It was so much fun, and we vow to do it at least once a month.

9:45pm I'm home from Hilary's and Keith has had a successful evening with Owen, who is asleep in bed. We talk for a bit and I watch the last part of the Warrior's game with Keith before we head up to bed. I sneak into Owen's room to give him one last kiss and to make sure he has his blankets. He looks so sweet when he's asleep I almost want to pick him up and bring him in out bed to snuggle... But I don't, because I'm tired and I need a good nights sleep!

10:00pm Lights out! Good night!

This is a pretty standard idea of what our days are like. We don't have a class every day, but we almost always get out and do something fun for Owen (play dates, the park, a museum, etc.) in the morning, and lately we've been running our errands in the afternoon. And of course I am usually home at night, and not out with friends, so of course that's a little different too.

Have you ever written a Day in the Life style post? If so, leave me the link so I can read yours!

January 28, 2014

[Recipe] Fresh California Salsa

There are so many great things about making your own fresh salsa! You can control the ingredients and the amount of sodium, you can make it as spicy or as mild as you like and it can be made in very large batches. And of course, everyone knows how great a fresh salsa tastes on a tortilla chip, but it also jazzes up any salad, taco, burrito or chicken dish. Can you tell we like salsa here in our house?



I use our Vitamix whenever I make a salsa, pureed soup or smoothie, but for this recipe you can also use a food processor or a regular blender.
Ingredients



1/2 a medium onion, peeled
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and membranes removed
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
6 ripe Roma tomatoes, quartered  
 
Directions
  1. Place onion, jalapeño pepper, cilantro, lemon juice, and six of the tomato quarters into the blender or food processor container in the order listed and secure lid.
  2. Start at a low level.
  3. Turn machine on and slowly increase to medium.
  4. Blend for 15-20 seconds, pausing to use a spatula to make sure everything is being blended into the blades.
  5. Blend for 15 seconds more before adding the last of the tomatoes.
  6. Blend for an additional 10 seconds or just until desired consistency is reached. Do not over mix, leave chunky. Serve with tortilla chips. 
Last night I used this salsa on our Mexican Quinoa and it was fantastic! It completely pulled our healthful, yet delicious dinner together!

January 26, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up

We had a great weekend over here with lots of time with our little family! It thankfully has seemed like a really long weekend, which is probably because we've packed so much fun into the last few days. And can I just say I watched the Grammy's last night and I was not all that impressed. I only watched until right after the Chicago / Robin Thicke peformace, which was maybe the best thing I saw. Am I really that old now that I don't get the performers?

Anyway, onto the fun!


The weekend started for us with a really fun play date with our playgroup at the park. I look forward to getting together with our friends in our play group, and try to get to the meet ups as often as we can. I always walk away from our play dates wishing we could get together more often. There is nothing as good for mama's soul as having time with her mom friends! When we came home I made a smoothie for lunch (Owen had real food) that was really good: mango, pineapple, banana, almond milk and a ton of ice.


Our little friend Amelia had her 2nd birthday party Saturday morning and invited us all over to celebrate. Amelia's mom threw her a sweet, simple, but incredibly FUN birthday party at home. There is nothing little kids love more than getting to just PLAY and they totally got to do that to their hearts content at the party. Owen especially loved pushing Amelia's little stroller around with Elmo in it. He was such a good daddy to Elmo too, stopping to check on him and offer him milk.


After we came home from the party, Owen had his nap and Keith was done with work we went to the park with my mom and sister. The weather has been so great here lately (although incredibly DRY), so we've been enjoying the park to the max. O loves digging in the sand with his "sand shovels" as he calls them. I know that's the correct name for them, but I want to remember that he likes to call them that too.


Saturday night we had burritos (duh, right?) and Owen finally got his own. I usually just give him chicken from my salad and some chips and fruit, but this time I thought he might like a real burrito like daddy gets, and he totally did! I think he just loves being like his daddy, and he looked too cute holding that giant bean and cheese burrito that was half the size of him.


Sunday night we took O to his very first Golden State Warriors games and it was pretty successful. He enjoyed cheering on his team and shouting "Defense!!" at all the right times, but he ALSO wanted to be court side. I don't blame him because that would be really fun, but yeah, not happening. So we ended up only staying until halftime.


Check out that boy clapping along with all the other fans! He totally does what I do (because I just can't stay focused and pay attention to the game) and just claps when everyone else claps! This totally fullfilled one of Keith's fatherhood dreams by the way. I think it was a big night for the both of my guys! 

And can I tell you I've been watching the Grammy's this whole time and so far I am not all that impressed with the performances, so we're off to bed to watch True Detective.



January 24, 2014

Owen is TWO!!!

As you may know, our sweet, curious, bright-eyed little boy turned two this weekend! Keith and I were discussing how the first year went by quickly, although the adjustments in the first month or two made those months feel slow, but the second year went by really really fast. Owen's second year was so much fun! He went from being a baby boy to being a "big boy", as he calls himself. With all the changes that happen in the first year, the second year would seem on paper to be less thrilling, but that couldn't be less true. In his second year Owen has become more curious, a better communicator and has developed quite the personality!

And now as he has moved into his third year of life there are a few changes for this big boy!


Stats: weighs 27lbs 14 oz and stands 35 1/4 inch tall. Wearing size 7 1/2 shoes. Although most 2T things still fit really well, he is growing out of them, so we're buying mostly 3T now.

Watching water flow down the creek at the park. Could have stayed right there all evening.
Loves:

Playing outside in the dirt, with sticks, building houses for Darth Vader out of dead grass on hikes, watering the plants with the hose or watering can, etc.

Books

Watermelon

Toy Story, especially Woody

The park

Garbage trucks

Sparkling water aka "Owen's soda" as he calls it.


Says: 

So many things! The other day at the bookstore he finally introduced himself to another child (we've been encouraging this for a while). He saw a little girl around his age come toward where he was standing near the books and he said, "Hi, I Owen!". I was so proud of him! If I drop something he'll say "Oops, silly mommy!", which is pretty cute. And if he see's me cutting something with scissors of a knife he'll say "Careful, mommy!". It seems like he's is picking up a new word, phrase or two each day.

Dislikes:

Not getting to do things HIS way. He is not easily distracted from his own personal goals, so sometimes this results in a tantrum in public when we can't / don't / won't let him have his way. 


Eating: Owen has been doing much better with his eating lately. He is trying some new foods, and still likes apples, watermelon, carrots and sometimes broccoli or shaved brussels sprouts. Still loves baked chicken, deli turkey, peanut butter and almost any kind of chip or cracker. He has been known to steal my sandwich from time to time or if we're eating burgers he always wants mine. He's also developed a love for sparkling water, which the doctor said is fine. Owen calls it his "soda"!

Sleep: Sleep has always been an issue for Owen, and right now we're trying to undo some of the damage we've done by letting him always be rocked to sleep with a bottle (or the breast, when he was BFing still). This is the only way he knows to go to sleep unless he is riding in the car or stroller, so we're trying to teach him he can fall asleep on his own without milk and being rocked. We didn't want to take away all of his comfort at once, so right now we took the milk away, and in a few weeks we'll try to let him fall asleep in his crib. I'll probably do separate post on this since there are so many details, etc. I have been trying hard to (for once!) keep him on a schedule to encourage good eating, sleeping and drinking habits.

Health: He's been a healthy boy with only one little cough that went away in days.

Dear Owen,

Every time I hear Rascal Flatts My Wish I think of you and how quickly you're growing into a big boy. Someday (but not anyday at all soon, thank goodness) you'll be on your own and I hope we're doing a good job of making sure you know how loved you are, how important you are to this world and that even just your sweet smile can make all the difference in someone else's day.

My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,
Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.


xoxo,
Mommy

January 22, 2014

How to Prepare Lunch in a Jar

You might remember that I'm an "expert contributor" (I'm not really an expert in anything, but they so kindly call me that along with the other actual experts they enlisted) to Learnist, and every once in a while I like to share some of my most recent boards. Today I want to share with you one of my personal favorites of all the boards I've created for them, How to Prepare Lunch in a Jar!

A while back Keith and I were sitting on the couch and he was patiently listening to me go on and on about some of the neat things I had found online recently. One of them was a recipe for how to prepare a salad in a mason jar. As I told him about it he actually seemed to be really interested in what I was telling him -- shocking, because my Internet finds are not always of the greatest interest to my husband. It goes both ways though... the latest NFL news or NBA trade are not my jam either.

Anyway, in the new year we all start off with goals to be a better, healthier, thriftier version of ourselves. Keith remembered those salads in a jar I told him about and asked if I would put them together for him last week for lunch. He usually takes leftovers from dinner the night before, a protien shake or sometimes a Amy's Organics frozen burrito. I happily obliged, since cooking for my family is one of my favorite things to do.

Last week we went with Chicken Taco Salad, which included (from bottom to top) dressing, black beans, diced tomatoes, sweet corn, shredded chicken and lettuce.


Then last week I made him BBQ Chicken salads, which included (from bottom to top) light ranch and BBQ sauce as the dressing, black beans, cherry tomatoes, corn, shredded BBQ chicken, lettuce and a lime slice.


And this week I made Chicken Caprese salads, which include (from bottom to top) light balsamic dressing, fresh mozzarella, whole cherry tomatoes, diced chicken breast, chopped fresh basil and romaine lettuce.


Please take a few minutes to check out my How to Prepare Lunch in a Jar board on Learnist, where you'll see lots of other recipe ideas for salads you can pack in a jar, dressings to liven them up and info graphics that will help you figure out how to layer your salads when making your own concoction. My biggest tip is to keep your dressing as far away from your lettuce as possible -- no one likes soggy lettuce!

I'm thinking of doing either an Italian Chopped salad or a version of my favorite Factory Chopped salad (without the avocado) for next week! Any other ideas?

January 21, 2014

Choo-choo Look Who's TWO!

Thank you so much for the suggestions yesterday! A few people suggested a day in the life style post, and I haven't done one in quite a while, so I'll definitely be documenting a day this week and put it together! Thank you for all your suggestions!

Now on to bigger things, like our BIG boy Owen, who turned TWO over the weekend! We celebrated at home with family Saturday night with a Train themed party. I wanted to keep things simple this year, as we had a big party with lots of friends and family for his 1st birthday. And honestly, after Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's I am kind of burnt out, so simple was the only way to go this year.



For the favors I made simple roll out sugar cookies in the shape of trains, threw them in a bag and tied them with a train ribbon from Michael's craft store and a tag I made using a graphic I bought on Etsy. Cute and simple, and DONE! 

Last year I had a poster board cut out in the shape of the number 1, so this year I wanted to do something a bit different to show all the fun things O did this year. I actually got the idea from my friend Stephanie who did a Bucket List for her daughter showing all her travels, etc during the year. It was a fun and easy way to show what Owen has been up to this year.

For a centerpiece I used some of Owen's trains and tracks he got from Santa for Christmas and some pretty flowers in a vase. The other decorations were really just green and blue streamers, and green / red/ yellow / blue / green polka dot balloons.

For snacks before dinner was served we had a little "snack train" out. I ordered the engine on Amazon and then cut out little "wheels" from blue card stock using a 2" punch. This was definitely the most crafty thing I did for the party, if you can call it that!

I made homemade veggie lasagna and meat lasagnas for the main course, my sister-in-law brought a salad and we bread sticks and french bread. Like I said, SIMPLE! 

Before everyone came we got out front to take a few pictures of Owen in his cool train birthday shirt we had made by Leah of Simple Made with Love. Isn't it adorable? Someday I'd love to make all of his applique shirts into a quilt or something. I'd have to buy and learn to use a sewing machine first though...!


Out of focus, but his expression is so happy and full of life I just had to share!



 
Owen was really interested in his cake this year! Probably because he helped me pick it and it had Thomas the Train on it! As you can see he is wearing a few bandages, but don't worry he only had an ouchie on his knee from when he fell in the backyard running around with his cousins, his nose is fine. And that is frosting on his knee, not blood! Sweet guy loved having everyone sing him happy birthday this year, which was much different from last year when he ended up crying after the cake was cut. He sampled each color of frosting on the cake and said "Mmm" after each taste test, and of course he wanted to "Help mommy" cut the cake. 

I really think this simple, low-key party was perfect this year. Owen still had a blast with his cousins and family, and we all got to celebrate our sweet little man! 


January 20, 2014

What Can I Say?

Sometimes I get to a point in writing this blog that I don't know what else to say. Yeah, there are always more recipes to share, and Owen is always keeping us on our toes with antics, which I get to tell you about... but I still get stuck sometimes and I just don't know what to say!

So, I'd love to know if there is anything YOU would like to hear? Any questions I can answer or things you'd like me to write about? You can email me at colleenpsullivan@gmail.com if you'd like to stay anonymous, or just leave your suggestion in the comment section below! You'd be doing me a huge favor!

Now onto a few pictures from the weekend:

We celebrated Owen's 2nd birthday at home with family on Saturday night with a Train themed party! We all had a great time celebrating our energetic, silly little boy! I'll be recapping his party later this week!

Sunday morning I was exhausted after all the party prep on Friday and Saturday, and then the actual party Saturday night, followed by a not so great night of sleep. I guess two year-olds don't sleep any better than one year-olds? Keith took Owen out for a hike, and when I woke up Owen had left me flowers by the bed. Sweetest thing ever to wake up to. He told Keith when he picked them that they were "pretty flowers for mommy". Melt my heart!

I have so many magazines. I get more each month than I could possibly read in the month, but I still don't want to give them up! I tried to flip through some of them during Owen's nap yesterday, but barely made a dent in them!

This sweet TWO year-old fell asleep in our bed for his nap yesterday. Doesn't he look soooo comfy? If we had a bigger bed I would probably just bring him in our bed every night when he woke up.

Now we're off for some family fun time!! Happy Monday!!

January 17, 2014

FIVE on Friday

Good morning! Tomorrow is our sweet little guy's 2nd birthday, and of course, I can't believe it! Keith and I were reminiscing over our Friday morning coffee in bed about what we were doing two years ago... we had checked into the hospital 24 hours earlier and they had started my induction. Right about now we were really anxious for the contractions to start and to see if we were having a son or a daughter. Things were still going smoothly at that time and there was no pain, yet!

I'm linking up with the sweet and fabulous ladies behind The Good Life, Carolina Charm, A. Liz Adventures, and Hello Happiness for 5 on Friday today!

 one
Owen is not into riding in his stroller on walks lately, but he has let me pull him around the neighborhood in the wagon. Let me pull him in the wagon, doesn't that sound kind of funny? Like he's doing me a favor? Hahaha. Anyway, we both love it and enjoy our little walks, complete with snacks and juice for the little prince. I just wish there was a park within walking distance, or just anywhere to walk too. We live in a .5 mile radius of just houses. 

two
Last Sunday night we took Owen out for a little date-night with Mommy and Daddy! We took him to  La Petite Playhouse again for a little fun, and then to In and Out for burgers, fries and a chocolate shake, which he dropped all over the floor. Before joining my guys at the play place I ran over to Party City to grab a few things for Owen's birthday. While I pursued the aisles I saw this Darth Vader mask for $1.99 and I knew Owen would love it! And he really, really did! And no, the theme for his party is not Star Wars!

 three
We attended our first gymnastics class this week and I can't get over this picture of Owen on the balance beam. He really was so proud of himself for walking it on his own. I can't wait to see him learn more! It warms my heart to watch him learn new things and be so proud of himself.

four
We've been needing another lamp in Owen's room for the table next to his rocking chair, so when I saw this cute gold one (Xhilaration Stick Lamp) at Target yesterday I snatched it up. It was the last one of it's kind! It actually fits really well into Owen's room without looking girly, since his room is made up of neutrals. I don't think the photo truly shows how pretty it is! And it was only $19.99!

 five
Courtney and Julie (The Chirping Moms) shared a cute collection of 10 Things To Do with a Heart Cookie Cutter that is really fun! They always have a great ideas for fun things to do with your children, so if you haven't checked out their site, you really should!

Today Owen and I are off to my sister-in-laws where O will play for a couple hours while I run all around buying all the stuff for his little birthday party this weekend. We're keeping it simple, and just invited immediate family, which is still 20+ people. You can expect a recap next week and a full OWEN IS TWO! post too! Happy weekend, friends!

January 15, 2014

Blue Apron Meals Review

As you may know I am a foodie. I love cooking food, finding new recipes, trying something new, and of course eating it when I'm done! So I'm really excited to be sharing our first experience with Blue Apron Meals with all of you!

I first learned about Blue Apron Meals last year on Instagram. A few friends of mine had been posting pictures of the amazing meals they had made with the hashtag #blueapronmeals, and I got really curious, so I decided to check them out. 

Turns out Blue Apron Meals is even more awesome than I imagined. The idea behind BAM is that you get the pleasure of cooking new and exciting meals a few days a week without having to search for the recipes, make a trip to the store or do much of the prep work. All of their recipes are originals, created to be 500-700 calories per serving and use seasonal ingredients that you can't find on your own. All you have to do is follow the simple directions (with pictures!) and enjoy your creation! They even share free, original recipes with you each week if you sign up for their email newsletter.


When our box arrived I was surprised by the amount of food inside as I unpacked it. It didn't seem like enough to make three meals for two people, but it turned out to be plenty. Usually if I needed a single stalk of celery for a recipe I would buy a whole bunch of it, even though I only needed a bit. BAM sends you just what you need, no more, no less. I really liked knowing that nothing was going to waste and that our fridge wouldn't be packed with food we'd never eat. This is also how they keep the cost of the service so low too -- only $9.99 per person, per meal.


In addition to the neatly packaged ingredients they also give you big glossy cards (about the size of  standard piece of printer paper) for each dish with a description, photo of the finished product, ingredients list AND a visual of the ingredients. Talk about easy-peasy, right? On the flip side of the card there are step-by-step directions and coordinating photos. I wish all recipes came this well thought out!

The week we were sent our meals these delicious items were on the menu: [one] Tai Coconut Shrimp Soup, [two] Skirt Steak Tacos, and [three] Turkey Meatloaf, Sautéed Spinach and Roast Potatoes.

I learned a few things from all the fun food we cooked last week too: 
  • I now know we like Thai food, and I can cook it at home. We usually just stick to our comfort zone of traditional America, comfort food, asian or mexican. I'm excited to try some other Thai recipes too! 
  • Sauteed spinach is a great addition to a meal and it can be healthy and quick too! 
  • My husband can cook a great meal! Keith cooked dinner the night we had the tacos and he did a great job. I may be handing over the spoon and knife reigns to him a little more often now!
There is nothing I loathe more than spending time chopping and prepping, or rushing to cook dinner at 5 o'clock. The meals are simple and quick enough to prepare so that even if you've been at work all day and get home at 5 o'clock you can still have enough time to prepare a delicious gourmet meal! 

Blue Apron Meals makes a really great gift too! Perfect for newlyweds who are just figuring out their way around the kitchen together, great for empty nesters who now only need to cook for two now, or even new parents who might not get out for a date night, but who can stay in an enjoy these delicious and fun recipes together. 

So if you're curious about these meals, or just in a recipe rut, I highly recommend you check out what Blue Apron Meals has to offer! You can thank me later! 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.