Santa’s Top 10 Favorite Cookies That Can Be Made Ahead of Time!

santas-top-10-pin.pngI don’t know if Santa will be visiting your house anytime soon but I think he just might stop here for a handful of cookies. My kiddos love the tradition of leaving cookies for Santa although I suspect that it may be because they get to help sample the cookies.

This year I was determined to have a little bit less stress around the holidays but sometimes life seems to just happen around you. Our new house has been one thing after another and I really wasn’t sure just what else might happen before Christmas so I really tried to get things prepped ahead of time.

One thing I did was to make a TON of freezer meals, 35+ Freezer Meals In One Day!, and I also worked on adding printable recipes to all of my existing recipes on the blog as well as to the new recipes I’ve been posting. I’ve also gotten all of my recipes from my recipe box scheduled to post and I will continue to work on some of the others I have scattered around and packed up just as soon as I can.

This is so much easier than trying to keep your screen open in the kitchen… I apologize that I didn’t do this earlier! I also went ahead and made a bunch of Freezer Cookies! (Working on that post too!) 

I’m not completely against using store-bought cookie dough but I feel that homemade is ALWAYS better if you can. With these recipes, you CANI normally like to roll most of my cookie dough into small balls and flash freeze to make it easier to only pull out what I need. You may want to experiment with these recipes or divide them into smaller batches before freezing. Check out this article HERE for more information about freezing different kinds of cookie dough!

Continue reading “Santa’s Top 10 Favorite Cookies That Can Be Made Ahead of Time!”

Rice Krispie Treats

These are so easy to make and I know people have been making them for ages but I found the recipe in my binder and thought I’d share it. These also work well for making different shapes and for using when making fancy cake decorations! There are a million things you can add into these to make them a little extra special so let your imagination go… the kids love helping with these too! Continue reading “Rice Krispie Treats”

Rolo Cookies

I haven’t made these in a while but I was reminded of them the other night when I was talking about how much I miss having our Polar Express Parties. Hopefully, we will be able to start this tradition back up soon! Continue reading “Rolo Cookies”

Peanut Butter Cookies

These are great cookies to let the kids help with as they love to make the criss-cross pattern with the fork!

Continue reading “Peanut Butter Cookies”

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

I believe these are the cookies my little brothers had nicknamed ‘Cowboy Cookies’ but I’m not sure. I do know that they are really good and these can be made into gifts by layering the dry ingredients in a jar and attaching a copy of the recipe to the jar with a little bit of ribbon.

Continue reading “Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies”

No-Bake Oatmeal Cookies

This is probably one of the most made cookie recipes in our home as both of my older girls learned how to make these when they were young and they quickly became experts!

These also go by other names such as Preacher Cookies, Beaver Dams, Haystacks, Mud Pies, and Cocoa Quickies but no matter what you call them they are delicious!

Continue reading “No-Bake Oatmeal Cookies”

Meal Plan: June 23 – 29, 2019

This is our basic meal plan for the week. Sometimes we will switch the days around if I forgot to set something out or put something in the crockpot. Please feel free to use this or change it around to suit your family’s needs.

I have started trying to do easier meals on days that I have square dancing obligations. This helps me to be able to put a nice meal on the table without feeling guilty about having some much needed ‘Mommy Time’. Some of these meals may also help with those that have busy or irregular schedules due to work or extracurricular activities.

I do have ‘Snacks/Desserts’ listed as well. I always try to keep a bowl of fresh fruit out on the counter or table for the kids to snack on. Sometimes I will make a special snack or treat for us to enjoy.

We have also been using the Trim Healthy Mama books to try to convert some of our favorite recipes to be healthier. Meal planning really does help keep this tired Momma from completely losing her sanity. It also helps when I can quickly locate the recipe and ingredients I need for grocery lists and meal prep. Don’t worry if you don’t have all the supplements and such that we are using. You can always buy them a few at a time or many of them can be substituted or even omitted, if necessary.

Some recipes are from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table. These will have a link to the product on Amazon as I can not post the recipes online without prior permission. In many cases, I have tried to tweak our recipe to be more in line with THM but I can’t guarantee that they would be 100% on the plan but I can say that they are healthier than their previous versions.

I do still have a lot of recipes that I need to convert so this will be a bit of a process for us as well. Some recipes are better as they are and we will try to make them work as best we can. I know the kids need a few extra calories and nutrients so we do usually have a few extras (like bread and rolls) that us grown-ups will need to exercise caution with but other than that it has been pretty easy to follow along with this plan so far. If the meal happens to be something that I feel is not on the plan I may choose not to eat part of it or make a big salad and top it with whatever protein source everyone else is having.

I know the THM plan says that you may not see any weight loss at first but that your body will be healing from the inside. I know that we are eating much healthier than we were before and I’ll try to be content knowing that we are getting healthier one meal at a time.

I also love to utilize the grocery pickup services from Walmart and Sam’s Club not to mention that Amazon Prime Deliveries can make life so much easier as well.

Scroll to the bottom of the page for Meal Prep Ideas to make this week a little easier.


Sunday 

Breakfast:

Good Grub Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p. 64

Fried Eggs

Lunch:

Personal Pita Pizzas

Dinner: ++

Crockpot Taco Soup (Double Batch**)

Rice

** This will make enough for a meal plus leftovers. Use the optional ingredients and don’t eat with rice.

Snacks/Desserts:

Basic Muffins 

-or-

Baby Frap from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook


Monday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal

The Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table both have some great ideas for cereal alternatives you can make at home.

-or-

Orange Smoothie (Creamsicle Shake)

Lunch:

Soup & Salad

Dinner: ++

Salmon & Okra 

Salad

**(This is usually a fairly quick meal to put together as we have a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cupcakes (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)

-or-

Cinnamon Butter Bundt Cake Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p. 380


Tuesday

Breakfast:

French Toast

-or-

Fat-Stripping Frappa from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook

Lunch:

Tuna Salad Sandwiches & Veggies

-or-

Salad w/tuna

Dinner: ++

Leftovers

-or-

Crunchy Chicken

Cheesy Squash Casserole -or- sauteed squash

Mashed Potatoes -or- Super Yummy Caulitaters

Snacks/Desserts:

Fruit

Baby Frap from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook


Wednesday

Breakfast:

Basic Muffins 

-or-

Try a new muffin recipe from Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table 

Lunch:

Hot Dogs

Veggies

-or-

Soup (Use leftovers)

Dinner: ++

Creamed Spinach and Bacon-Smothered Chicken Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table  p. 219

Salad

Quick & Easy Garlic Bread or Garlic Cheesy Bread

Snacks/Desserts:

Boiled Eggs

Leftover Muffins

-or-

Collagen Berry Whip from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 375

Root Beer Floats… try this recipe: ROOT BEER SHAKE


Thursday

Breakfast:

Protein Power Pancakes (3 variations) or Trim Healthy Pancakes or Waffles (E) p. 259

Blueberry Syrup (with healthier options) or Pancake Syrup (FP) p. 480

-or-

Fat Stripping Frappa Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 418

Lunch:

PB & J Sandwiches & Fruit

-or-

Cottage Cheese Salad Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 190

Dinner: ++

Daddy Can’t Wait Casserole

Mashed Potatoes -or- Super Yummy Caulitaters -or- Baked Sweet Potatoes

Salad

Snacks/Desserts:

Popcorn

-or-

Celery with Peanut Butter


Friday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal -or- Can-Do Cereal – Quick Version Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p.349

The Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table both have some great ideas for cereal alternatives you can make at home.

-or-

Creamy Grains Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook  p. 253

Lunch:

Leftovers

Dinner: ++

Free Day

**(This is usually a fairly quick meal to put together as we have a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cookies (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)

-or-

Sopapillas

Baby Frap from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook


Saturday

Breakfast:

Protein Power Pancakes (3 variations) or Trim Healthy Pancakes or Waffles (E) p. 259

Blueberry Syrup (with healthier options) or Pancake Syrup (FP) p. 480

-or-

Big Boy Smoothie from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 414

Lunch:

Ham & Cheese Perfect Stuffed Wraps

-or-

Salad in a Jar Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 188

Dinner: ++

Mississippi Pot Roast

Mashed Potatoes -or- Super Yummy Caulitaters -or- Baked Sweet Potatoes

Vegetable Casserole or add some chunked veggies to the pot roast if desired.

Snacks/Desserts:

Boiled Eggs

Cake from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook or the Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table 

Baby Frap from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook

++I have a few kids who seem to be going through growth spurts right now and are always HUNGRY. I have been keeping a pot of beans, blackeyed peas, or another vegetable as a side. I also have been buying a few extra snacks like fruit, veggies, yogurt, etc. 


Meal Prep Ideas

  • Buy a rotisserie chicken or cook a few chicken breasts and shred for salads
  • Make your own bagged salads
  • Make some The Easiest Boiled Eggs Ever! for meals and snacks
  • You could also mix up the pancake and muffin batters the night before to make your mornings a bit easier.

**This post does contain affiliate links to products and/or services that we use. We may earn a teensy-weensy small commission (at NO EXTRA cost to you) if a purchase is made through these links. These links help to support our family, our blog, and our homeschooling mission and allow us to continue to post FREE articles, recipes, and tips.

 –Thank you!

Meal Plan: June 16 – 22, 2019

This is our basic meal plan for the week. Sometimes we will switch the days around if I forgot to set something out or put something in the crockpot. Please feel free to use this or change it around to suit your family’s needs.

I have started trying to do easier meals on days that I have square dancing obligations. This helps me to be able to put a nice meal on the table without feeling guilty about having some much needed ‘Mommy Time’. Some of these meals may also help with those that have busy or irregular schedules due to work or extracurricular activities.

I do have ‘Snacks/Desserts’ listed as well. I always try to keep a bowl of fresh fruit out on the counter or table for the kids to snack on. Sometimes I will make a special snack or treat for us to enjoy.

We have also been using the Trim Healthy Mama books to try to convert some of our favorite recipes to be healthier. Meal planning really does help keep this tired Momma from completely losing her sanity. It also helps when I can quickly locate the recipe and ingredients I need for grocery lists and meal prep. Don’t worry if you don’t have all the supplements and such that we are using. You can always buy them a few at a time or many of them can be substituted or even omitted, if necessary.

Some recipes are from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table. These will have a link to the product on Amazon as I can not post the recipes online without prior permission. In many cases, I have tried to tweak our recipe to be more in line with THM but I can’t guarantee that they would be 100% on the plan but I can say that they are healthier than their previous versions.

I do still have a lot of recipes that I need to convert so this will be a bit of a process for us as well. Some recipes are better as they are and we will try to make them work as best we can. I know the kids need a few extra calories and nutrients so we do usually have a few extras (like bread and rolls) that us grown-ups will need to exercise caution with but other than that it has been pretty easy to follow along with this plan so far. If the meal happens to be something that I feel is not on the plan I may choose not to eat part of it or make a big salad and top it with whatever protein source everyone else is having.

I know the THM plan says that you may not see any weight loss at first but that your body will be healing from the inside. I know that we are eating much healthier than we were before and I’ll try to be content knowing that we are getting healthier one meal at a time.

I also love to utilize the grocery pickup services from Walmart and Sam’s Club not to mention that Amazon Prime Deliveries can make life so much easier as well.

Scroll to the bottom of the page for Meal Prep Ideas to make this week a little easier.


Sunday 

Breakfast:

Soaked Apple Cinnamon or Cherry Almond Baked Oatmeal Recipe (A Make-Ahead Breakfast!)

-or-

Banana Creamy Grains Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook  p. 253

Lunch:

Hot dogs

Veggies

-or-

Perfect Stuffed Wraps

Dinner: ++

Slow Cooker Baby Back Ribs

Potato Salad (with cauliflower alternative)

Land Your Man Baked Beans

Snacks/Desserts:

Basic Muffins 

-or-

Muffins from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook

Salted Caramel Baby Frap Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook


Monday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal

The Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table both have some great ideas for cereal alternatives you can make at home.

Choco Secret Big Boy Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p.415

Lunch:

Leftovers

Salad w/cucumbers, tomato, feta cheese, black olives, and an oil and vinegar dressing

Dinner: ++

Red & White Pasta

Salad

Quick & Easy Garlic Bread or Garlic Cheesy Bread

**(This is usually a fairly quick meal to put together as we have a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cupcakes (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)

-or-

Magic Salted Caramel Cupcakes Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p. 378

 


Tuesday

Breakfast:

French Toast

-or-

French Toast in a Bowl

Lunch:

PB & J Sandwiches

Fruit

-or-

Soup & Salad

Dinner: ++

Fish w/Honey Mustard Sauce

Baked Sweet Potatoes

Salad

Snacks/Desserts:

Fruit

Pudding Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 350


Wednesday

Breakfast:

Basic Muffins 

-or-

Blueberry Muffins with Lemon Glosting Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p. 364

Lunch:

Ham & Cheese Sandwiches

Veggies

-or-

Salad topped with cooked shrimp, chicken, or other meat

Dinner: ++

Crockpot Tortellini Soup

Buttered Bread

Snacks/Desserts:

Boiled Eggs

Leftover Muffins

-or-

Muffin in a cup recipe from the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook or the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table.


Thursday

Breakfast:

Protein Power Pancakes (3 variations) or Trim Healthy Pancakes or Waffles (E) p. 259

Blueberry Syrup (with healthier options) or Pancake Syrup (FP) p. 480

-or-

Fat Stripping Frappa Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 418

Lunch:

Tuna Salad

-or-

Tuna Wraps 

Dinner: ++

Easy Bean Tostadas

Brown Rice (Make a double batch and use leftovers for tomorrow)

Salad

Snacks/Desserts:

Popcorn

Lemon Cake

-or-

Sheri’s Chocolate Cake


Friday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal -or- Can-Do Cereal – Quick Version Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table p.349

The Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook and the  Trim Healthy Mama’s Trim Healthy Table both have some great ideas for cereal alternatives you can make at home.

-or-

Creamy Grains Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook  p. 253

Lunch:

Soup

Grilled Cheese

Dinner: ++

Crockpot Cream Cheese Chicken

-or-

Creamless Creamy Chicken Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 78

Brown Rice

Pan Fried Green Beans

**(This is usually a fairly quick meal to put together as we have a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cookies (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)

Orange Dream 


Saturday

Breakfast:

Cheese Danish

-or-

Low Carb Cheese Danish

Fruit

Lunch:

Leftovers

-or-

Crispy Salmon Siesta Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook  p. 80

Choco Chip Baby Frap Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p.421

Dinner: ++

Free Day

-or-

Chicken Stir Fry (I usually just buy the HUGE bag of veggies and add some cooked chicken  or steak to it)

Chinese Fried Rice with Veggies, Brown Rice, or Cauli Rice

Snacks/Desserts:

Cake

Tummy Tucking Ice Cream Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook p. 363

++I have a few kids who seem to be going through growth spurts right now and are always HUNGRY. I have been keeping a pot of beans, blackeyed peas, or another vegetable as a side. I also have been buying a few extra snacks like fruit, veggies, yogurt, etc. 


Meal Prep Ideas

  • Buy a rotisserie chicken or cook a few chicken breasts and shred for salads
  • Make your own bagged salads
  • Make some The Easiest Boiled Eggs Ever! for meals and snacks
  • You could also mix up the pancake and muffin batters the night before to make your mornings a bit easier.

**This post does contain affiliate links to products and/or services that we use. We may earn a teensy-weensy small commission (at NO EXTRA cost to you) if a purchase is made through these links. These links help to support our family, our blog, and our homeschooling mission and allow us to continue to post FREE articles, recipes, and tips.

 –Thank you!

Granny’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

**This post does contain affiliate links which help to support my blog and my family.

Chocolate Chip Cookies are always a favorite around here. Did you know that August 4th is National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day? Be sure to share a link to your favorite recipe in the comments below. Continue reading “Granny’s Chocolate Chip Cookies”

Haystacks aka Noodle Cookies

As promised I will share the recipe for the cookies we made earlier today. These are super easy to make and I had made two batches, or about four dozen cookies, in less than 30 minutes.

I’ve always called them haystacks but Mr. Awesome knows them as Noodle Cookies. You can probably add other ingredients, desired or maybe even swap the butterscotch chips for chocolate ones.

Mr. Awesome likes them without marshmallows but with plenty of peanuts. The kids like them with marshmallows. That’s how I ended up making two batches.

Haystacks aka Noodle Cookies

Haystacks aka Noodle Cookies printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 11-12 oz bag butterscotch chips (you can also use semi-sweet chocolate chips)
  • 3/4 c. Peanut butter
  • 10-12 oz Chow Mein Noodles
  • 1/2 – 1 c. Salted peanuts, optional
  • 3 1/2 c. Mini marshmallows, optional

Directions:

Line two baking pans with wax paper.

Place the chips in a medium to large size bowl. Microwave on 50% for 1-2 minutes or until mostly melted.

Stir in the peanut until smooth.

Add other ingredients and stir until well coated.

Drop by spoonfuls onto the prepared pans.

Cool in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes.

Enjoy!

Haystacks aka Noodle Cookies

(‘Cooked’ version)

Cooked Haystacks aka Noodle Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 11-12 oz bag butterscotch chips (you can also use semi-sweet chocolate chips)
  • 1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 3-oz can Chow Mein Noodles
  • 1/2 – 1 c. Salted peanuts or almonds, optional

Directions:

Line two baking pans with wax paper.

In a heavy saucepan, over low heat, melt the chips with the sweetened condensed milk.

Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, combine the noodles and nuts.

Stir in the melted chip mixture until evenly coated.

Drop by spoonfuls onto the prepared pans.

Cool in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes.

Enjoy!


kids learn to cook


**This post does contain affiliate links to products and/or services that we use. If you happen to click through a link and make a purchase we may earn a teensy-weensy small commission (at NO EXTRA cost to you) if a purchase is made through these links. These links help to support our family, our blog, and our homeschooling mission. This means that we can keep bringing you great recipes, ideas, and tips for FREE! Click HERE for a full disclaimer.

 –Thank you!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Wheels

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Wheels

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Wheels

Continue reading “Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Wheels”

June 18 – 24, 2017 Meal Plan

This is our basic meal plan for the week. Sometimes we will switch the days around if I forgot to set something out or put something in the crock pot. Please feel free to use this or change it around to suit your family’s needs.

I have started trying to do easier meals on days that I have square dancing obligations. This helps me to be able to put a nice meal on the table without feeling guilty about having some much needed ‘Mommy Time’. Some of these meals may also help with those that have busy or irregular schedules due to work or extracurricular activities.

I do have ‘Snacks/Desserts’ listed as well. I always try to keep a bowl of fresh fruit out on the counter or table for the kids to snack on. Sometimes I will make a special snack or treat for us to enjoy.

Sunday 

Breakfast:

Cinnamon Muffins, scrambled eggs, fruit

Lunch:

leftovers

Dinner: ++

Alice Springs ChickenBaked Potatoes Salad

Snacks/Desserts:

PB Crackers/Pineapple Upside-Down Cake


Monday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal

Lunch:

hot dogs, mac n cheese

Dinner: ++

Impossibly Easy Pizza Bake, Salad

**(This is a fairly quick meal to put together as Momma has a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cupcakes


Tuesday

Breakfast:

French Toast

Lunch:

Egg Salad Sandwiches, veggies

Dinner: ++

Fix It and Forget It Crockpot Chicken30 minute Rolls

**(This is a fairly quick meal to put together as Momma has a class/dance in the evening)

Cookies (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)


Wednesday

Breakfast:

Basic Muffins

Lunch:

PB & J Sandwiches, Fruit

Dinner: ++

Fish w/Honey Mustard Sauce, Baked Sweet Potatoes, veggies

Snacks/Desserts:

Muffins


Thursday

Breakfast:

Pancakes

Lunch:

Scrambled Egg Sandwiches, veggies

Dinner: ++

Bacon Wrapped Pork TenderloinMashed Potatoes, Veggies

Snacks/Desserts:

Fruit


Friday

Breakfast:

Cereal/Oatmeal

Lunch:

Pepperoni pockets,  Salad

Dinner: ++

Crockpot Tortellini Soup, Buttered Bread

**(This is a fairly quick meal to put together as Momma has a class/dance in the evening)

Snacks/Desserts:

Cookies (** I will try to make a few extra to take along for refreshments at the dance.)


Saturday

Breakfast:

Cheese Danish, Fruit

Lunch:

Soup (probably leftover soup), grilled cheese

Dinner: ++

Crunchy ChickenMashed Potatoes, Cheesy Squash Casserole

Free Day

Snacks/Desserts:

Apple Crisp in a Crockpot

++I have a few kids who seem to be going through growth spurts right now and are always HUNGRY. I have been keeping a pot of beans, blackeyed peas, or other vegetable as a side. I also have been buying a few extra snacks like fruit, veggies, yogurt, etc.