10 Kid-Friendly Back to School Weeknight Dinners

10 kid friendly weeknight dinnersSorry folks, but I had to do it. I had to tell you school is coming.

For some of you it may already be here, which is why I feel okay with posting this today! You need me! You need this list to help you through your crazy week, right?! I know I would. If we were back to school. Which we aren’t.

But we will be…ugh. Knowing we are late in getting back still doesn’t help me. I feel overcome with organizational challenges! And still so many summer projects that I want to do! Well, fine. At the very least, my menu plan will be in order! Here it goes and chock full of lots of great ideas  that are tried and true by me, for kid-friendly meals to go along with it! You are welcome! {wink}

Cola Marinated Steak Tips with Baked Potato Fries {grill night}

Cola Marinated Steak Tips | Hardly A Goddess

Sweet Potato & Corn Chowder with Popovers {comfort food}

sweet potato corn chowder

Easy Weeknight Sheet-pan Pork Loin with veggies {easy}

pork loin filet

Spaghetti & Meatballs {crowd-pleaser}

Healthier baked italian meatballs

Oven Baked & Breaded Pork Chops with Mashed Potatoes {easy}

Oven Baked & Breaded Pork Chops

Game Day Crockpot Chili  and Grilled Cheeses {crock pot}

Crockpot Chili

Barbecue Chicken Mini-Meatloaves with Roasted Sweet Potatoes {cute-food}

BBQ chicken mini meatloaf

Homemade Chicken Nuggets & Vegetable Platter Dippers {classic kid-food}

Crispy chicken nuggets

Homemade French Toast Sticks & Oven Baked Bacon {Breakfast for dinner}

freezer french toast sticks

Stovetop Double Peppered Pork Chops with buttered noodles {stove top skillet dinner}

Double-Pepper Pork Chop


So that should help, right? I hope so! We need all the help we can get around here anyway! Some of these are recipes that I literally make every week! And most are in a regular rotation, so I know we can either adapt them to what each kid likes or we all enjoy them together. Enjoy and best of luck as you get your people off to school now or later!

Cleaning the Car Without Chemicals: E-cloth Review

So many of you know how much, I love my E-cloths for use inside my house, and if you read this blog, you may have seen my review for them a while back. This post was updated in August of 2017 for links and deleting giveaway content.

I agreed to review….{drumroll please}…. the Interior Car Kit for ecloth. Win. Win! And by the way…these little cloths aren’t only for your car- you can use these to clean your bikes after a long outside ride, or your boat if you are a boater (duh) and probably any outside toys that have chrome to polish and grime to clean!

Full Disclosure: I received a free Interior Car Kit from E-cloth in exchange for writing a review on the blog. However, and as always, any and all opinions are genuinely my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you order from one of the product links, I’ll receive compensation. It does not affect your price at all. See my full disclosure page.

e-cloth auto

If you follow my blog, you know that I have been running a Clear the Clutter Challenge this month. While a lot of my clutter-clean up is focused on the inside of my house, you all know the garage is the palace (I did NOT mean to write ‘place’) of clutter for the outside…and the cars with all the shuttling to and from soccer practices, basketball, or road-trips can get pretty knarly themselves!

Before I get ahead of myself though, I have a few tips on tidying your cars before we even look at the dirt and start cleaning them and testing out the new cloths!

DeCluttering the Car:

#1– Get some bins to keep in the car. These can be bags or boxes or anything that will keep items from rolling around your trunk or under-foot as you drive (danger!)

#2 – Make an emergency kit- Both first aid and also think about what you need if you break-down. Make sure you have wiper fluid in the upcoming winter months, and a blanket if you have no heat for a while, as you wait for roadside assistance.  Keep kitty-litter in the trunk as it helps the tires get traction on slippery roads.

#3 – Get some winter floor mats.  These are made of rubber, so the salt and dirt on your boots won’t wreck the carpet in your car.

#4 – Have a permanent garbage bin IN the car. Instead of stuffing tissues in the side-pockets, maybe put them in a receptacle.

#5 – Put the toys in one of those bins (see #1).  Instead of books and markers flying all over your car floor, keep them all in a car-only toy place, that will be a busy-box of sorts for the kids to have.

organize the car


That’s it. Now on to the cleaning.

#1 – Take everything out.

#2 – Clean it. Test out the e-cloth. I used the Interior, e-Auto Car Cleaning Kit.  It comes with:

  • one 20″x16″ Glass & Chrome Cloth, one 12.5”x12.5” Car Cleaning Cloth, a Water Atomizer, and a laundry and storage bag.car kit
  • Glass & Chrome Cloth (grey) cleans inside windows, outside windows, all metals
  • Car Cleaning Cloth (orange) cleans dashboards, armrests, spills, inside doors, fabric upholstery, leather upholstery, outside windowscar kit

#3 – And finally: Only put back the items you must have, into a bin or some type of container: Toys, Snacks, Emergency Kit (may or may not include a trunk potty- mom’s you know you need this!)  You are done.


 The e-Auto Kit: What do I think?

Just spray the water and wipe. Can’t be easier. I am not sure you can’t do this with any little cloth and some water, but the beauty and difference of the e-cloth versus any old cloth in your house, is the e-cloth itself. No lint, and for whatever reason, it picks up the dirt unlike any rag I have.  You can check out their website for more info. on why they work so well.

I used the chrome & glass (grey) cloth for all the windows and the mirrors…and the glass parts of the dash. No streaks and no lint. It is way easier than window spray and paper towels- plus better for the environment.  Now, I am not saying that child labor laws don’t exist for a reason…but- using the e-cloths is a great and SAFE way to have your kids help you clean the inside of the car with just water and a cloth. You don’t have to worry that the twins kids will spray  each other in the eyes with chemicals or wash the windows with the leather-care cleaner. Not that this has happened, but it is definitely not happening with e-cloth! One of the many reasons why I really like this product. See what I did:

e cloth

before is pretty gross…I am not too thrilled about sharing that.

And this:

ecloth

I had to keep going…I love my new clean car!

Once I was done cleaning, I put both cloths in the bag and threw them in the washer. I wash them just like regular cloths, but you have to remember not to use fabric softeners – which I don’t use anyway. Even if you forget and use the softeners, just run them again in a hot-water only wash and then they are fine again. Actually, these are guaranteed for 300 washes just like the rest of the e-cloth line. Easy.

Now that I have a dedicated set of e-cloths for the cars, I can store them right in the little bag and keep these in the garage on a hook, so I can find them right where I want to use them…always thinking, my friends!

Anyhoo…Now it’s your turn to try the e-Auto Car Kit! Check them out here!

e-cloth auto

Check out more on e-cCloth:

W: www.ecloth.com
F: www.facebook.com/eclothUSA
T: @ecloth


This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you order from one of the product links, I’ll receive compensation. It does not affect your price at all. See my full disclosure page.

Weeknight Chicken Parmesan Burgers

weeknight chicken parm burgers

So I have been grilling a super ton this summer. So many burgers.

And burgers, fresh corn, and tomatoes are probably one of my favorite  meals- but it feels like it’s been a long summer of burgers and to be honest, I am getting a bit sick of them. My other favorite food is Chicken Parmesan. But it feels heavy for a summer night. Making it into a sandwich though…Is just perfect.

weeknight chicken parm burgers

*This post may contain affiliate links- see my full disclosure page.

Yep. You know you’d love this. Your favorite Italian food made into a healthy chicken burger for any ol’ weeknight! Boom!! You are welcome.


Chicken Parmesan Burgers

Makes 4 burgers
1 lb. ground chicken
1/2 cup italian bread crumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg white
1/4 each of dried basil, oregano, garlic powder, pepper
2 Tbsp. fresh basil
marinara sauce
mozzarela cheese slices
buns

Directions: Mix the chicken, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, eggs, and spices together. Form into 4 patties. Grill or pan-fry over medium heat until no longer pink and totally cooked in the center. Top each burger with marinara sauce, fresh basil and cheese. Place back on the turned off grill or if you are pan-frying, leave them in the pan, and cover. Burgers are done when the cheese is melted completely.


See?! Aren’t these easy?! Perfect for a weeknight dinner that is different enough to make it interesting and not the same old grill night, but easy enough to make in a pinch. If your kids don’t love this idea, just give them pasta. Again. This one is for you too, my friends. Enjoy it!

weeknight chicken parm burgers

My pictures just don’t do this justice! These were a new recipe that I created and now we LOVE them and this will definitely be in my rotation on the grill (or grill pan- this is the one that I use) year-round!

Happy Weeknight!

*This post may contain affiliate links- see my full disclosure page.