Menu Plan Monday

Last week there ended up being a couple of changes to the menu for a couple of different reasons, but both meals that we didn't make, i have pushed to this week so it all works out!! And let me tell ya...the brown sugar chicken was AMAZING!!! It was soooo good...a big hit with the whole family!!

This week, hubby's work schedule is changing and he will not be home in the evening's. This is a huge adjustment and so our menu is filled with very simple, quick dinners that make very little mess! This way i can make the necessary adjustments w/o being overwhelmed by a time consuming dinner menu! One more benefit of menu planning......i was able to cater the menu to my family's needs for the week!!!

Monday: Chicken Nuggets w/ mac-n-cheese & mixed veggies

Tuesday: Easy Chicken Parmesan (see recipe below)

Wednesday: Taquitos w/ corn & pinto beans

Thursday: Candied Sausage w/ rice & broccoli

Friday: Baked Potatoes

Saturday: Grilled burgers w/ baked beans & asparagus

Sunday: Take-out/leftovers

Like i said, this week's menu is far from inspiring and not even all that interesting, but it is just what i need for a week like this! And now i will share my dirty little secret for my easy chicken parm!!

Easy Chicken Parmesan

frozen breaded chicken patties

spaghetti noodles

jar of spaghetti sauce

shredded parmesan cheese

*cook chicken patties according to instructions on package

*boil spaghetti noodles and drain

*warm spaghetti sauce over med heat

*layer noodles, chicken, sauce and sprinkle w/ parmesan cheese!!

Ok...so maybe its not dirty and maybe not even really a secret but it is super EASY and the kids LOVE it!!

And as always there is lots of meal time fun to check out over at orgjunkie.com so head on over and be inspired!! Hope you all have a fabulous week!!



I can't think of anything that melts my heart like the friendship between these two handsome lil men that i am blessed to call my sons! I worried early on that because of the 4 year age difference that they wouldn't get along. And all of that worry for nothing. The love between these two stops me in my tracks sometimes. I love to stand back and watch them together when they aren't aware of my presence. The bond between them is unmistakable and wonderful. I am truly enjoying watching this irreplaceable love grow. My heart swells when i catch them in moments like


and THIS......

and THIS.....

They are buddies, pals, the best of friends. And i treasure the time i have to watch the bond between them grow. A bond that is truly remarkable! I believe Brayden says it best when he says "we are bestest brothers" and indeed they are!


Menu Plan Monday

I am LOVING menu planning. It is amazing what a difference having such a seemingly minor decision already made for me each day can make!! We did make a minor adjustment to the menu....on saturday we were going to have company over which is why i had planned to make beef burgundy, but those plans changed. So we opted to have leftovers because we had so many and I am doing the beef burgundy this saturday when our friends come over!! Otherwise we stuck to the plan and it was fabulous!! So here is the Miculka Madness Meal Plan for this week.....

Monday: Western Mac

Tuesday: Homemade Pizza

Wednesday: Brown Sugar Chicken w/ rice and broccoli

Thursday: Candied Sausage w/ cous cous and mixed veggies

Friday: Grilled burgers w/ baked beans and corn on the cob

Saturday: Beef Burgundy over noodles

Sunday: take-out/leftovers

Don't forget to head over to orgjunkie.com for lots of meal time ideas and inspiration!! And just in case you are wondering....our family favorite of the new recipes we tried last week was the crock pot bbq chicken!!! It was FANTASTIC...easy and delish...a big hit with all of us!! What is your family's favorite meal?? I would love to hear about your family fave so please do share!!

Western Mac

This is a casserole that my Mom made alot when i was growing up!! It was a family favorite then and has become one of my own little family's favorites as well!! It is so simple but soooo good!!

1 lb ground turkey (or beef)
1 onion chopped
1 box mac-n-cheese
1 can tomato paste
1 can corn ( i actually use the frozen steam packs!!)

Cook the meat and onion together until the meat is no longer pink.

Mix the tomato paste and 1 can of water w/ ground turkey.

Prepare the mac-n-cheese according to the box.

Mix meat mixture, mac-n-cheese and corn in a casserole dish.

Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.


**if you use the steam pack of corn then steam it before mixing it in!!**


Could it be???

Just thought i would share a picture that proves that these two are following in their momma's footsteps!! haha! Hope everyone is having a fabulous week!!

ps...check out my menu plan monday post below....i linked to recipes for cornbread casserole and beef burgundy!! I'm very much loving this menu planning business!!


I'm on a mission!

I have a confession to make. Since making this move i have yet to really get into a daily routine. I mean we have our morning routine and that takes us up till we drop Colby off at school but then....there is no schedule or routine until bedtime. And it is driving me nuts! Before the move i had certain chores i did each day which made keeping up with the house cleaning easy. Now...not so much. I just kind of pick and choose something to do each day. I am craving that routine. That organization. So i am on a mission to get my mojo back!!

The first thing i have done is assigned chores for each day of the week! This way I will stay caught up without ever being overwhelmed! And it takes the guess work out of it....each day i will know exactly what needs to be done! So my weekly cleaning schedule is:

*Monday ~ Laundry

*Tuesday ~ Dusting, Vacuuming, & treat Colby's room (because of his allergies i have to deep clean and treat his room each week)

*Wednesday ~ Bathrooms

*Thursday ~ Mopping

*Friday ~ Laundry and i will rotate doing windows and cleaning cabinets

My kitchen is something i have to do each day because it will drive me crazy if i don't! So i sweep atleast once a day and clean countertops, stovetop, sink, etc. each day! I feel better already just having a plan! It will be so nice to have this routine back!

The other thing i am going to do starting this week is Menu Plan Mondays! I've seen other bloggers do this and it has caught my attention and then last week my bloggy buddy, Erin @ Haute Plates, started and it gave me the extra push to see what it is all about! Each week this fabulous trend is hosted by "I'm an Organizing Junkie"{click here to see what its all about} and hundreds of women share links to their menu plan for the next 7 nights!! So not only does it take the guess work out of the good old question "whats for dinner??" but there is an endless amount of inspiration and new ideas for meals! I'm going to attempt to post my family's menu plan for the week each Monday and throw in recipes from time to time as well!! Be sure to head over and soak up some meal time inspiration @ orgjunkie.com and if you decide to join in the fun let me know!!

And so here it is! The first Menu Plan here at Miculka Madness!!

Monday~ Tuna Casserole w/ bread and butter

Tuesday~ Spaghetti w/ garlic bread and salad

Wednesday~ Garlic Roasted Crock Pot Chicken /w brown rice and broccoli

Thursday~ Cornbread Casserole

Friday~ Crock Pot BBQ Chicken w/ Cornflake Cheesy Potatoes & Corn on the Cob

Saturday~ Beef Burgundy over pasta

Sunday~ leftovers or takeout!

I have linked to a few recipes i got from Erin @ Haute Plates and i will be posting a couple of other recipes i'm using this week soon!! I'm excited to be planning and working at getting my mojo back and sharing it with all of you! Don't forget to let me know if you decide to join in and be sure to check out all of Erin's recipes at Haute Plates!

Beef Burgundy

At my bridal shower all of the guests brought a favorite recipe to get my recipe collection started! It was so fun and so many of those recipes are ones that i use regularly now!! This recipe is the one that my Meemi (my grandma) decided to give me at the shower. It is so dang good and i love making it when i have company coming over! Although there is alot of prep work it can all be done and cleaned up before guests arrive! And as an added bonus the house smells AMAZING when my guests arrive!

12 oz bacon, cut in squares
3 lbs round steak, cubed
1-2 lg carrots, sliced ( i usually use even more!)
1 med onion, chopped
3 tbsp flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 can beef broth
2 cups burgundy cooking wine
1 tbsp ketchup
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp thyme
2 bay leaves
1/2 lb (or 1-8 oz can) mushrooms

In a dutch oven, cook bacon until crisp. Remove from pan.

Brown beef in bacon fat, and remove.

Saute the carrots and onion and take out.

Blend in flour and seasonings. Add broth.

Cook, stirring constantly until slightly thickened and smooth.

Add the wine, ketchup, garlic, thyme and bay leaves and stir well.

Now add the meats, carrots and onion to the pan.

Cover and place in preheated 375 degree oven for about 2 hours, or until meat is tender.

Add mushrooms during the last half hour.

Serve over rice, pasta or mashed potatoes and ENJOY!!! (i always serve it over pasta!)

Like i said.....there is alot of prep work involved but it is SOOOOOO worth it!!

Cornbread Casserole

I found this recipe in a casserole cookbook that i'm sure i don't even have anymore but it quickly became a family fave!!

1 lb ground beef ( i use turkey)
1 sm onion
2-3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
2 pkgs (8 1/2 ounces each) corn bread/muffin mix
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 can cream style corn
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs, beaten
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided

In lg skillet, cook the beef, onion, and peppers over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain and set aside.

In a medium bowl combine the corn bread mix, salt, baking soda, corn, milk, oil and eggs.

Pour half of batter into a greased 9x13 baking dish. Layer with half of the cheese and all of the meat mixture. Top with remaining cheese. Spread remaining batter over the top.

Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. ENJOY!


Goin' for a Ride

The last couple of weeks we have had a little boys dream in our garage! Our good friend, Seth, went out of town and we "babysat" his bike! The boys were beside themselves when they went in the garage and saw it!! I've never seen two kiddos so excited to sit on something.....i'm pretty sure they sat on the motorcycle atleast once a day the whole time it was here! Then on Sunday, Seth came to get the bike and took the boys each for a ride!! They could hardly contain their excitement! Selfishly i was hoping it would scare them and they wouldn't ever want to ride one again but of course that wasn't the case! They both LOVED it! Here are a couple pics of our little motorcycle fanatics!!

Of course they just went around the neighborhood so they didn't go very fast but i'm sure either of them would have happily gone faster! I do believe we have two lil men with NO FEAR of speed which makes the forecast for their teenage years just a little bit SCARY for me!! Thank goodness i have a few years before i have to face that fear!! As much as motorcycles scare me as a mom i loved how much fun they had!

Seth~thank you so much for being such a wonderful role model for these little guys of ours who adore you! They loved their ride on sunday and are looking forward to seeing you again soon!!

ps~just in case you're wondering....i do realize that i totally over use the exclamation mark!!!! =) i guess i'm just an excitable girl cause a period just doesn't do the sentence justice in my mind. haha!



Laughter. Lots and Lots of Laughter. Talking. Very Little Sleep. Junk Food. Fast Food. Sonic Limeaides. Lots of Sonic Limeaides. Memories Made. 5 Finger Discounts and Lost Cars. Shopping. More Laughter.

Sarah's visit was all of this and so much more. There just aren't words that can tell the story of what a blessing her visit was to me. God is so good and this time with Sarah was just the pick me up i needed. I laughed more in those 3 days than i have in months! It all started when i picked her up at the airport Saturday morning w/ starbucks in hand! We went strait to Target and then the mall. We sat at the food court for probably an hour just talking and enjoying each other's company. Then we went to Gap. I found a couple of shirts i wanted to try on so i held on to them while we chatted and looked around some more. And then we WALKED OUT. And walked ACROSS the mall before i even noticed that i still had those 2 shirts. HA! We almost peed ourselves laughing. And the best part was that NOBODY even said anything. Its not like they were hidden at all! We were just busy talking and catching up or maybe i'm just an airhead but either way it was HILARIOUS!! And of course we had to have a picture so here i am right before going back into Gap to actually try the shirts on!

After the mall we landed back at the casa for a pit stop and so that Sarah could say hi to the boys and John! We relaxed for a few hours and then headed to Kohls. Let me start by telling you that the parking lot was EMPTY when we parked. So we shopped and then we walked out to leave and the car was NO WHERE to be found in that empty parking lot. And what do any sensible chicks do when they realize the car seriously is NOT there??? We laughed. UNCONTROLLABLY!! And about the time we realized that we might actually have to call the police because the car was GONE....Sarah looked over and realized that we were on the wrong side of the parking lot. And then?? We really lost it laughing. I would have loved to be a spectator watching all of this take place. I don't think i will EVER be able to look back on either of those memories w/o giggling. Laughter truly is the BEST medicine!

On sunday morning we were blessed to share in hearing a wonderfully challenging and relevant message at church followed by lunch out with the whole family. Then we headed to the beach for some family pictures. I don't know if i've ever mentioned it but Sarah is a photographer! So even though the weather didn't exactly cooperate we figured we would give it a try. It was windy and relentlessly sunny which made for ALOT of shots with hair in someone's face or someone squinting! But we managed to get a few good shots and we had alot of fun! That evening we talked and watched tv and pretty much got lost in the world that is the couch!!

Monday brought lots of relaxing and running a few errands. And of course too much time spent on the internet over analyzing bachelor clips and looking forward to the finale!! After a trip to the store for a junk food refill, sonic for what had to have been the 6th or 7th time in 3 days, showers and getting in our jammies we settled in for the 3 hr Bachelor marathon. And then another hour of talking about it and analyzing it before we decided we better get some sleep before that 4:30 am alarm went off to get Sarah to the airport!

Sarah~ thank you so much for coming! Our friendship is truly priceless and i am so incredibly grateful for those 3 days of memories made. Thank you for who you are-for your forever selflessness and love. I'm so incredibly blessed to have you in my life, near or far! Should we buy lottery tickets and hope for a win so we can be together for the bachelorette finale?? Ha!! Countdown to Times Square has begun so you better be good!!

"A friend is one who strengthens you with prayers, blesses you with love and encourages you with hope."



That title pretty much says all there is to say about how i feel after watching last nights Bachelor events unfold. I dont even know where to start but i guess i will begin with a few thoughts about the finale and then dig into the ATFR special.

The finale was actually good. Even though i knew he was going to choose Melissa it was still enjoyable to watch it unfold. The Deanna bit was all for show and really awkward....a total letdown but whatever! Even after last night's finale i just didn't see it with Molly. Were they attracted to each other? Absolutely. But was there much beyond that?? If there was than the producers did a fabulous job of not showing it. I thought the proposal was really sweet and it was fun to watch them all together afterwards. I just really wish that it would have all ended with that!

But it didn't. And the after the final rose was sickening. Do i believe that the whole thing was scripted?? No. I truly don't. I think it was all just Jason changing his mind. With that said there is absolutely NO reason to do something like that on tv. He completely disrespected Melissa and i lost all respect for him. He could have easily done that in private and they could have done a special where they spoke to them separately and presented the information. Melissa deserves better than someone who would do that to her. My own personal feeling is that Jason didn't even give his and Melissa's relationship a fair chance. He jumped ship the second it got hard and i'm so glad that Melissa called him on that. Of course you still have feelings for Molly.....that doesn't go away over night and when you are watching the show over and reliving that over again i can see where it would be hard to not think about her. BUT that doesn't mean you throw in the towel and go running back. And then there is the whole next part with Molly. I don't believe for one second that he had not been talking to Molly. She put on a horrible surprised act. She wasn't very surprised at all.....and she sure changed gears from utter shock to playing tonsil hockey pretty quickly. The only other thing i am going to say (because i might just go off and say some really ugly things if i don't just cut this off!) is that i dont see it with Molly. I will not be the least bit surprised to hear of their break up. Maybe tonight's 2nd part of the after the final rose will sway that thinking but i'm doubtful.

To sum it up i'm disappointed. I'm disappointed that ABC thought it acceptable to allow that kind of humiliation for Melissa on national television. Did she sign on for a reality tv show? Yes. That does not mean they had to handle the situation the way they did. And most of all i'm disappointed that Jason just isn't the sweet, sensitive dad they made him out to be. There was nothing sensitive AT ALL about the way things were handled. While maybe he can't help the way he feels he CAN control how those feelings are played out.

What are everyone else's thoughts?? Shocked? Ok with it? Not so ok with it?? What are you thinking???? If the rumors are again true tonight, then they will be announcing that Jillian is the next bachelorette! Will you be tuning in for that if its true?? I'm gonna miss the tuesday bach chats!! Can't wait to hear what everyone is thinking!

ps...Sarah is on her way back to seattle. =( What a blessing this weekend w/her was....i will be posting about it soon!