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5 Ways to Simplify Family Meals

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This conversation is sponsored by aera, which is a modern home fragrance diffuser that I use and adore! 

Hiiii! It’s me, your local midwest mom who seems to be THIS.CLOSE to losing her mind every day staying home with her children. (Is it wrong to say that?)

Right or wrong, I’m all about simplifying life where we can these days.

I love to talk about food. (You know this!) And making meal times easy. And also, making the life we have a really good one. Because those little touches can really be the difference between barely surviving and thriving. Which sounds a tad dramatic, but I think it’s true! Sometimes it really is the little things that can make life feel good. For me these are things like a great pair of jeans, a bright lipstick, afternoon ice cream at the park with a giggling toddler, and a house that smells inviting, luxurious, and not like diapers.

About Aera:

The Aera diffuser is the modern way to ensure that your home smells great, all the time. The scents are simple and fresh, and the strength can be adjusted based on how strong you like it and the size of your space. I’m LOOOOOVING the Citrus scent, part of their new simplicity scent line. It’s clean and bright, but not too sweet, which I find many fragrances to be. Each capsule lasts for about two months (1440 hours!) and you can easily swap them in and out whenever you want to change up the scent.

Are you ready to simplify? Join in on the #AeraSimplicityChallenge by sharing how you’ll simplify any aspect of your life! Their giving away a diffuser each week, but you’ll also be entered to win a MAJOR prize package, valued at over $1k. (I really wish I could enter because I want everything on the list.)

So let me tell you 5 ways to simplify family meals.

5 Ways to Simplify Family Meals

Buy veggies that are already cleaned and prepped:
Yes, it’s a tad more expensive, but usually, your time (or sanity!) is worth much more than the price difference. They help speed up the dinner process AND can ensure that a veggie makes it on your dinner table! 

Roasted broccoli is one of our favorite side dishes, here’s how to make it: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim any extra-large pieces of broccoli so they are all similar in size and drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes until soft and slightly charred. Kids can drizzle olive oil (just help them spread it around!), and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 

mom with broccoli

Cook once, eat twice:
This has quickly become one of my favorite ways to maximize time in the kitchen because it’s just plain smart. Cook up a big batch of a protein (chicken, beef, pork, etc.) in the slow cooker and turn it into two different meals. (Check out my buffalo chicken idea!)

Choose simple foods + flavors:
Meals don’t have to be made from gourmet ingredients purchased from a speciality store. This simple lemon vinaigrette  takes two minutes to pull together, but will add bright, fresh flavor to salads or grilled veggies. When I say I keep mine really simple, I mean it, try it out for yourself!

In a small jar, combine the juice from one lemon + 1 tsp. dijon mustard + salt + pepper + 3-4 Tbsp. olive oil. Shake away until blended together. Drizzle over salad greens or grilled chicken! 

Figure out your go-to meals:
These are the meals that come together in a few minutes, and can be pulled together with ingredients that you usually have in the pantry. Ours is usually pasta + pesto or a fried egg sandwich. Sometimes there’s a veggie thrown into the mix, sometimes we go without!

Don’t stress:
And most importantly…DON’T STRESS! Sometimes we put wayyyyyy too much pressure on ourselves to make everything from scratch, buy everything organic, and never let sugar touch our kids lips until they are five. Every meal doesn’t have to be perfect. Sometimes an afternoon ice cream cone means your kids aren’t hungry for dinner. And that can be perfection in itself.

orchid and notebook with glasses


Use my promo code: MYEVERYDAYTABLE15 for 15% off until June 30, 2018 (Hint, hint MOTHER’S DAY!!!)

Thanks to Aera for sponsoring this conversation and thanks to YOU for supporting the brands that help support this site. 


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