It’s a cliche, but life does have its ups and downs, doesn’t it?

Since last month’s meal plan was posted, we’ve had some great ups: The kids’ school musical! L. accepting a big scholarship for summer camp! Great times with friends and family!

We’ve also had some tremendous downs. We lost our beloved sister-in-law, who I wrote about at Thanksgiving time…as it turns out, she never did get well, friends, and while I want to say something grand and serene like “she’s at peace” I also want to say that cancer sucks and cancer that leaves behind three children really sucks and damn, damn, damn. After losing my grandmother last September and my mom in December, this was another hard blow that none of us needed. But you don’t get to choose what life hands you; all you can do is figure out what to do with the burdens once they’re yours to carry.

So we’re carrying ours forward. It’s a bittersweet entry to summer, but so well-timed because goodness, do we need some distractions. The boys have some fun things planned for the next few months, we’re going to try for a tiny little weekend getaway as a family at some point, and when I blink and it’s August already, we’ll be readying ourselves to send L. off to MIDDLE SCHOOL — What? He was a preschooler when I started this site! — and P. will be transferring to a new elementary school, so life will be just a little bit different, with less recognizable patterns, than before.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

My brother-in-law said, at his wife’s funeral (God, what horrible words to write), that the gift they had been given was many years of not knowing when the end would come, so they just lived every day as fully as they could and with gratitude for the time they were given. I think we all want to do that, really, but worrying about the day-to-day gets in our way, and we get stuck. J. and I have been trying harder to follow the example his brother set, though, and while I could be thinking endlessly about the past 6 months and what we’ve lost, or about August and all the changes to come, instead I choose to focus on today and on June and on the buds on the trees and the good fortune of being me, right now, today.

That’s a lot of heaviness to pair with a meal plan, but nevertheless, here’s what we’ll be eating while we live in the present this month.

June 2018 Meal Plan


Friday, 6/1: Cornflake-crusted chicken, homemade macaroni and cheese and broccoli
Saturday, 6/2: Fish cakes and vegetables
Sunday, 6/3: Pasta with pancetta, peas and goat cheese; salad
Monday, 6/4: Swedish meatballs, egg noodles and vegetables
Tuesday, 6/5: Grilled citrus chicken, vegetables and barbecued navy beans from my freezer stash
Wednesday, 6/6: Risotto with tomatoes, basil and mozzarella; salad
Thursday, 6/7: Chicken or vegetable fajitas, rice and beans


Friday, 6/8: Pizza burger patties, roasted potatoes and vegetables
Saturday, 6/9: Fresh seafood
Sunday, 6/10: Sunday Roast Chicken dinner
Monday, 6/11: Mozzarella in carrozza, cold vegetable salads
Tuesday, 6/12: DIY Salad bar
Wednesday, 6/13: Slow cooker apple barbecue pulled pork with rice, beans and slaw
Thursday, 6/14: Pasta e ceci, salad


Friday, 6/15: The kids’ last day of school! We’ll celebrate at a Food Truck festival near our house.
Saturday, 6/16: Having my brother-in-law and his kids over for dinner. We’ll probably grill some steaks and seafood, but I’m staying flexible!
Sunday, 6/17: Father’s Day! Hoping maybe we can be fancy and do lobster, or maybe go old-school Italian and make veal parmigiana. Depends how the plans for the day shape up.
Monday, 6/18: Pasta with spinach pesto and roasted vegetables
Tuesday, 6/19: Teriyaki chicken, rice and stir-fried vegetables
Wednesday, 6/20: Poached eggs with chickpeas and prosciutto, homemade pita bread
Thursday, 6/21: BLT Panzanella


Friday, 6/22: Date night for me and J., so no cooking!
Saturday, 6/23: Fresh seafood
Sunday, 6/24: Chicken milanese, risotto and salad
Monday, 6/25: Omelettes and roasted potatoes
Tuesday, 6/26: Sheet pan nachos
Wednesday, 6/27: Pasta with roasted vegetable romesco
Thursday, 6/28: Lemon chicken, couscous and vegetables


Friday, 6/29: Burger night! We’ll probably let the boys pick some recipes from their Bob’s Burgers cookbook.
Saturday, 6/30: Fresh seafood