First Day Of School

Please note: Picture of the recipe has now been added!

As of this week, we no longer have any children in day care. Yes, both of our boys are now in elementary school. I can hardly believe how quickly the time flew by the past 5 years. I didn't get emotional (strange for me), but was actually rather excited and anxious for both of them. I remember anticipating the first day of school each year and wondering what the teachers would be like and what we would be doing. I have been anticipating the start of school more since I bought the school supplies - don't you just love new school supplies? - and backpacks, lunchboxes, etc. So much preparation to get ready for a new school year.

The bus came right on time, and the bus driver was quite nice about all the pictures the parents were taking. We had a few kindergarteners at our stop, so it was almost like the papparazzi were there! Everyone made it to school and had a good first day, with an assembly to boot! Both boys love their new teachers and are enjoying the afterschool program that is held there.

With a new school year also comes new activities. Both boys opted to take karate this year instead of playing soccer. I can't say this bothers me in the least since they are in the same class and it's always at the same times/days. This makes the running around after work and school much simpler. Of course, since we do have activities it will mean better meal planning and shopping. I will have to break out my pressure cooker more often and plan ahead by prepping any vegetables ahead of time. Can I do this? Well, we will soon see. I hope to make a menu plan each week and try my best to stick to it.

Since we only returned from vacation on Sunday there is no menu plan for this week. Kind of flying by the seat of my pants when it comes to meals. My Husband was nice enough to shop and purchase everything on my general grocery list when we returned. However, I didn't have recipes in mind when I made the list but rather wanted things to get us back to eating healthy after a week of Disney dining.

For tonight's dinner I checked the refrigerator and found some sweet Italian sausage that I had asked My Husband to purchase. I decided that perhaps a simple dinner with some pasta tossed with the sausage and some diced tomatoes might be in order. It's not really a recipe, rather a quick and easy weeknight meal. As I went through my spice cabinet, I realized I had not tried the dried, toasted, minced onions I bought when I went to Penzey's. The scent when you open the bottle is strong, and they suggest cooking them with something that has liquid to soften them (if using for a homemade bread, they suggest letting them sit in water before incorporating into the dough). I really liked the way the onion added a new dimension to my simple sausage and tomato sauce. Almost like a smokey taste to it, that really added more to this dish than it would have been without it.

penne with sausage

Penne with Sausage and Tomatoes
Source: Patsyk

1 package Sweet Italian Sausage
1/2 pound penne pasta, cooked (or whatever small pasta shape you like)
2 heaping teaspoons of chopped garlic
1 can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon dried toasted minced onions (found them at Penzey's)
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning (I used the Tuscan Sunset blend from Penzey's)

Cut the sausage links into 1 inch pieces. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, then add sausage pieces. Turn occasionally to ensure all sides are browned.

Add garlic through Italian seasoning and allow to come to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for an additional 10 minutes.

Looking for more quick weeknight meals? Check out these recipes:

Flank Steak Pinwheels at Everything Rachael Ray
Parmesan and Lemon Crusted Dover Sole with Spinach at Jersey Girl Cooks
Spinach Fettucine with Cherry Tomatoes in Garlic & Wine Sauce at Fun and Food Blog Recipes


Anonymous said…
Wow, you had a busy day! Love your recipes.
Anonymous said…
This resembles one of my stand-by meals . . . and thank you for reminding me that I have peppers out in the carport fridge to use up! I know what I'll be having tonight ;-).

Wow on the kiddos. My stomach does a little flip when I think of Noe starting pre-school next year. She may be ready . . . but I'm not sure I will be!
That Girl said…
Awww congratulations to your babies!!!
Jenny said…
Ahhhh, I love the first day of school. How wierd that we all start at different times of the year. My son is in his 2nd month now. Your dish looks delicious!
Deborah said…
What a great weeknight meal! I love it when meals come together like this.
Prudy said…
Sounds like D world was a ball. It's back to school now and dinner looks grand.
Anonymous said…
This is a meal my big boys would love! Cherish them, it goes by in the blink of an eye.
Jaime said…
looks delicious! and great for weeknights too!

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