It’s almost here! My schedule this week

With Christmas less than a week away, Jeff and I are both just a little tired. Hence, the lack of posts for about a week (so much for NaBloPoMo this month!). The last two weeks have been filed with Christmas parties and get togethers. I think we are pretty much past that part of the season. Now, on to what I call clean up week.

Generally, I take off the week between Christmas and New Years because I can catch up on a bunch of things I need to get done around the house before tax season starts. My birthday is also that week so I generally do something fun with Jeff. Before I get to that though, I need to make it through this week.

Today’s schedule includes running to school for an interview and attempting to get some grading done. Then I am running to a friend’s house to make Apple Pie Liqueur. I had some of this at a party a few weeks ago and it is amazing. It really does taste like apple pie. I’ll post the recipe. Tonight, I need to take a diagnostic GMAT exam so I can get my study plan together for the next month. More on that soon.

Tomorrow, I have to go to school for a class on a piece of software I am beta testing next semester (why do I sign up for these things?). Then, hopefully, I can finish my grading for the semester. Tomorrow night is my first meeting back on the Board of Education. Need to be there at 6:30. Those meetings can go really late so I don’t think I’ll get any studying in.

Wednesday, I need to make sure grades are done and posted. I also need to get some studying time in. Hopefully, by Wednesday the last of the Christmas gifts will have arrived and I can get wrapping finished. Did I mention that we still haven’t finished decorating the tree? We’ll have to fit that in somewhere, too. A bunch of the lights we had aren’t working so Jeff is off to get some today. Need to ship some things last minute as well.

Thursday, I’ll decide what Jeff and I are going to have for Christmas dinner and I will go shopping. I got a little hint about one of my presents thanks to Jeff using my Amazon account to do some of his shopping. Who knew that they sent out emails with the item name in the subject when the item is shipped? Oops! Therefore, I think we are having an Italian Christmas dinner. In the afternoon, I need to pick up my niece in Massachusetts and bring her to the train station in New Haven. I’ll do my shopping on the way home.

Friday is my final wrap up day. I have to make sure all the gifts are wrapped and ready to go for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. I also want to make some toffee for last minute gifts, plus I promised to get my recipe together for an old friend from high school. This will be the day I realize that I have forgotten to get a gift for someone and I’ll run around like a lunatic.

Saturday is family and friend day. We’ll drop off gifts and visit loved ones on Saturday morning, then to mom’s house in the afternoon and my aunt and uncle’s house for a big party in the evening. If we can make it through all that, Sunday will be a breeze.

Christmas Day is the easy day. When Jeff and I first got together, we ran around like lunatics on Christmas Day. Jeff’s parents gave us some excellent advice when we got married: start your own traditions now! So that’s what we did. We were so tired of running around to half a dozen places on Christmas Day so we decided that Christmas Eve we would do our running around and Christmas Day would be our day. We open up the house for visitors and always have tons of food but we don’t go anywhere. We have really enjoyed Christmas since we started this tradition and we will continue it this year as well.

I can’t wait for Christmas. How does your week look this week? What do you have planned? Are you ready for Christmas?

Quicktip: Cook and freeze meals

I think it’s safe to say we’ve all had nights where we didn’t want to cook. How nice would it be to pull something out of the freezer and just heat it up? I’m not talking about those store bought frozen dinners. I’m talking about a real home cooked meal. I bet you’re thinking, who has time for that? You might, if you think about it.

  • When making sauces, like spaghetti sauce, make a huge batch and freeze portions in gallon sized freezer bags. When the sauce has cooled, put it into bags and get out as much air as you can. Then lay the bags flat to freeze so they take up less room in the freezer.
  • If making a soup or casserole, make a double, triple or quadruple batch. Freezing the leftovers means a quick meal down the  road.
  • Consider a food swap with some friends. Have eat participant make one meal which can be frozen for each member of the group. If you have  5 families participating, that’s four new meals for you!
  • Consider cooking one a month. This site shows meal plans and instructions to get you going. The recipes look awesome.
  • Keep cooked hamburger and cubed chicken in the freezer to make meal making faster. Consider prepping veggies when you get home from the store to save yourself time during the week. Not really a freezer tip but it saves me a lot of time when I get home.

Jeff and I have a meeting tonight right after he gets out of work. To discourage us from going out to eat, I cleaned up some chicken this morning and put it in a bag with BBQ sauce to Marinate. I put a can of baked beans on the counter and I’ve got frozen corn in the freezer. I should be able to have dinner on the table in 15 minutes after we get home. I love quick dinners.