monday goals and menu plans {yard progress pics + nesting to-do lists}

It's a much different Monday than I'm used to here! :D

Instead of my usual living room, this is my view:

The kids are at VBS this morning, and my amazing husband is watching the youngest so that I can get some Starbucks time. :) {thank you, honey!!}

VBS means this week is going to be a little different than our normal summer week, but I really wanted to use the extra time I have to plan out a summer schedule for the kids. The first couple of days out of school they had no idea what to do, but last week they finally caught a little groove of play, eat, and swim. :) I wanted to let them go free for a couple of weeks before we did anything too structured each day.

This weekend was productive- we had the chance to get some work done on the "redo entire yard" part of my list! :D When we bought our foreclosure a few years ago, we knew the big yard needed lots of work. It's been decently kept, but it really needed some tlc after all the years of being rented/let go. 

Here's what this deep forest-like corner looked like when we started {or maybe worse, since this was a few weeks back!}:

And after many hours of hard manual labor {on the part of my husband and boys- I was the water bearer!}, here's the progress we made, which is exciting! 

They spent hours and hours digging up trees and even had to use the truck to pull out some of them- the overgrowth was so dense! I am so amazed at how much they did! Next up, we are raking and pulling out the borders to plant grass and put in a new fence. 

So the pre-baby to-do list is getting shorter. :) I'm excited about our progress- even though the baby won't care one bit what's done when he comes, I feel like it all has to be done before he gets here in 6-8 weeks! {It's insane and unreasonable, I know, but somehow it feels so necessary! Did I ever tell you I have a REALLY patient husband? He's such a good sport to deal with his nesting wife. :D}

here's the baby list progress:
  • make quilt/bedding
  • make 1 wall decor piece for over the bed
  • paint crib and dresser {still working on this, but mostly done}
  • wash baby clothes
  • buy diapers, wipes, and nursing supplies {bought a package of newborn diapers/wipes two weeks ago!
  • wash car seat + bouncer covers
  • hang curtains
  • order or find a pack n' play travel lite on Craigslist
and more we have to do:
  • redo entire yard {many hours spent here already!}
  • build a new fence
  • mulch and plant flower beds
  • host birthday party for Avalie {planning is this week!}
  • finish painting house
  • redo/finish girls room -needs 2nd coat of paint, and a bed makeover is waiting to happen in the attic
  • redo boys room- paint/reorganize
  • finish the stairs
  • add light fixture to bathroom
  • find a new-to-us washing machine to replace our 10 year-old one

So here's my to-do list for this week:
  • plan Ava's first party
  • make a loose summer schedule
  • list two more items on Craigslist
  • figure out house payoff schedule/timeline
  • wash baby clothes we have, figure out additional clothes we will need to buy for his first few months
  • work on planting grass in the corner
  • make wall decor for baby room
  • write a love note to my husband
  • write a love/encouraging note to my oldest 
  • take the kids swimming and to the library
  • go to midwife appointment {every 2 weeks now- which means we are getting so close!}
  • arrange Father's day plans/gifts :D
  • buy summer homeschool books for each child
  • make lots of dinners at home {I was super busy last week, and we ate out a lot!}

And here's our meal plan for this week:

 {keeping it SO light and easy- I don't want to do much cleaning...or cooking...hahaha!}:

east texas caviar {above} + rice
ground turkey tacos
turkey spaghetti + salad
sandwiches + chips
quesadillas + black beans
beans and rice
brown rice +/- lean beef {me}
zucchini pasta with homemade marinara {I hope I can find good zucchini at the store now!}

Summer is so different! :D I'm excited to try to attempt to hit all those goals this week!

What are your goals for the week? {if you say none, I don't blame you one bit! :D enjoy your summer days!}

Do you like zucchini pasta?
I had never tried it until last year- and I fell in love, hard!

Do you do any schoolwork/bookwork in the summer?
We've never done any before, but I think the kids will be bored shortly. :) They've been told they would do some new school work in their upcoming grade, and they were actually excited. We'll see if that sticks when the work is here! :)


  1. I am wondering what a summer schedule for your kids might look like. I also want to set up some kind of schedule for my kids, so it'd be helpful to get ideas from other moms. Nothing would drive me more crazy than a bunch of kids ambling aimlessly around the house! :)

    1. I'm with you! :D I think it will be a combo of play and chores, and reading time- as soon as I get something together, I hope to post it here too. :D here's a great article on it in the meantime:

  2. Do you thinly slice zucchini for your pasta, or do the spiral cut thing? Or, is there a special zucchini pasta that has been hiding from me?! haha! I have been REALLY trying to push extra healthy eating for my family. We use eggplant, or spaghetti squash, but I have been dying to try zucchini!

    1. I use a mandolin slicer to make noodles of mine- here's a pic of what it looks like: It's wonderful with garlic salt and olive oil! :D

  3. Is that a picture of your house on your computer desktop in the first picture?

    Because that is a beautiful house!

    1. I think so too! It's not mine, it was my inspiration for painting/remodeling our house- it's on houzz, and it's gorgeous! :)

  4. We had our baby two days ago so summer, for now, is lots of resting but I like the idea of making some sort of schedule or plans for the kids, even if they're just things to do at home. I've been on "babymoon" in my room and can finally venture out tomorrow. The kids have been bored while Daddy has been playing Mr. Mom, LOL!

    1. ahhhh!! that's so exciting- I LOVE his name- Ava was almost Silas Daniel!! {she was a girl instead, so Avalie it was} I am so glad it all went so smoothly for you! wohoo! and you look amazing!! congratulations- I'm now even more excited after seeing your little one! :D eee!

  5. I have plenty of goals for this week! Wanting to get all the baby clothes washed and put up and get must of my lesson planning done for the year. We are starting school the end of June. I have never retired zucchini pasta but certainly want to as I have a load growing on my patio garden!

    1. oh- great job on getting ahead and lesson planning! :D I wish we lived close- I would love to buy some zucchini from you! :D

  6. Nesting has hit me hard and I have been running around like a crazy woman wanting to get everything done before baby comes. I have cleaned out my entire cellar and gone through all of the bins that I store clothes in. Rented a dumpster and got rid of so much junk that I feel slightly embarrassed. Knitted two hats in two days for baby. Started socks for baby. Finished painting fence in the front of the house and moving to the garden fence which is sooooo big. Still have two closets to haul out and organize. Have to get baby clothes washed and arranged. Bought three new diaper covers and hauled out all the cloth diapers to wash and fold. (Love cloth diapers)
    We are doing math, writing, and of course reading for the month of June then we will have a break. My kiddos need some schedule for the summer and they always help me plan it. :) July is for swimming, fishing, and kayaking at my parents lake house. Then I can have this sweet little baby. :)


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