The Weekly Mess || Week 4

We have another great weekly menu of gluten free meals, but first I have some things to tell you. Last week was CRAZY, which is why I am 2 days late posting this weekly journal! It shouldn’t have been seeing as though 2 of my family of 5 were traveling, but it was. It felt like the wheels fell off midweek and it was every man for himself around here for a few days. If you’re a parent, you know how that goes! It can get pretty messy, especially when you are outnumbered by kids while your spouse is away.

A girl with long blonde hair in a yellow tank top is dancing wildly. Her hair is all around her face so you cannot see it. There is colorful art on the wall behind her
Photo by Emma K. Morris

My cousin and I were texting the other day about her toddler’s first public temper tantrum and she said something that really stuck with me.

She said ” I felt like I had a sign on my forehead that says ‘ROOKIE!'” I know I’ve felt like that SO many times – but not just with my first kid as a new mom, but with 2, and even now when my kid’s are almost 8 and 17… There are SO many situations that come up that I do not feel like I am prepared for.

Case in point….

Photo by Emma K Morris

Last week, we had more mortifying mom moments! This time not from my son, but from my teenage daughter and her friends who decided to give themselves poke and stick tattoos, YES folks, this is a trend. My take on it when I realized she had given herself 2 small ones was this:

A.) I secretly thought that she actually did a really good job. (Don’t tell her I said that!)

B.) She is expressing herself and there could be WAY worse ways for her to do that. It’s her body, she is almost 18, and if she wants to poke and stick tattoo herself there isn’t honestly a whole lot I can do. I mean, after all she is the one that has to live with it. Plus, poke and stick tattoos, unlike professional ones, fade with time, so eventually they will both start to fade away anyways.

However, when my artistic, expressive kid starts a trend with other local kids it then obviously becomes a bigger problem. I think we can agree that this whole situation is one that was never written about in any parenting handbook. I had to wing it, but in that moment I too felt like a “rookie”, 17 years into this parenting gig. As for the other upset parents that probably currently loathe us, I’m sure that they will eventually get over it, or they won’t. There’s not a whole lot that I can do at this point. However, if a little poke and stick tattoo is their biggest issue with their teenagers they should probably be thankful like I am. There are WAY worse ways for your kid’s to express themselves.

A girl with blonde hair in a yellow tank top sits on a grey couch in a modern house. there is lots of colorful art ob the walls, a live edge wood coffee table and a black and white rug.
Photo by Emma K Morris

Ahhhh, parenting! It never gets old and it is definitely never boring! It is most certainly, at times, exhausting though. So, if you’ve had some moments where you feel like you are in over your head, just know that we’ve all  been there and will probably be there again no matter how many years of parenthood you have under your belt.

Have you had a “rookie” parenting moment? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below! It always helps to know I’m not alone in this parenting journey over here!

See ya next week!




Our modern family table seats an eclectic bunch of eaters and I am tasked with feeding them all breakfast, lunch, and dinner! While there are only 5 of us gathering at the table each evening, between us the dietary restrictions and preferences can be a bit overwhelming and finding the answer to the question “What’s for dinner?” a bit nerve wracking. Over the years, I have developed a system that combines meal planning and big batch cooking throughout the week. It works for us, it keeps me sane, and we’re all VERY well fed with homemade meals that are all gluten free!

A sheet pan is filled with sliced 4 sliced teriyaki chicken breasts and has broccoli, slice carrots, and pineapple around the chicken.
Photo by The Recipe Critic

Enjoy these simple weeknight gluten free meals!

MONDAY || Sheet Pan Teriyaki Chicken with Vegetables from the Recipe Critic + Jasmine Rice

Since Todd and Salome, our 2 vegetarians, are out of town this week I’m taking full advantage by trying out this chicken sheet pan dinner I’ve been eyeballing for a while. To make it gluten free I subbed in Tamari for the soy sauce. This recipe was super simple to follow and made a lot, so we had leftovers for lunch the next day. It was a bit too salty for me…maybe I’ll cut down the Tamari next time I make it, but other than that it was a solid home run meal that will definitely make our weekly meal plan again soon! 

a large dutch oven filled with meatballs and tomato sauce topped with green herbs is sitting on a table with a plate, napkin, and a bunch of citrus fruit
Photo by Half Baked Harvest for Camille Styles

TUESDAY || Sunday Meatballs from The Half Baked Harvest Cookbook featured on Camille Styles + gluten free pasta

Oh yes, you read that right! I made a recipe titled ‘Sunday Meatballs’ on a Tuesday and we LOVED every single morsel. I substituted the bread that is called for in the recipe with my go-to gluten free bread and it was a total home run. Bonus: my house smelled like the most 

WEDNESDAY || Gluten Free Meatball Grinders + Root Vegetable Chips 

OMG! I hadn’t had a grinder in so long, I had forgotten how much I loved them! I used the leftover Sunday Meatballs from last night’s dinner and our go-to gluten free hot dog buns to make the repeat main dish feel like something new. All I did was toast the buns lightly then, filled them with meatballs and sprinkled with mozzarella cheese. I cooked them under the broiler in the oven just until the cheese was melting and bubbly.  The kids LOVED these and so did I! The root vegetable chips were healthier side option for us than potato chips, but I won’t judge you if you paired these decadent sandwiches with a scrumptiously salty kettle cooked potato chip…mmmm…

A bowl of creamy tomato soup loaded with greens and white beans and garnished with a drizzle of oil and a sprinkle of flaky salt and cracked pepper sit son a large plate that has 2 grilled cheese halves that were cooked in a waffle iron. There is a black linen napkin on the table.

THURSDAY || Simple Tomato, White Bean, & Greens Soup {BIG BATCH TIP: This soup is super easy to make, so I double the recipe and store the leftovers in individual mason jars for grab n’ go lunches.} + Waffled Grilled Cheese

I LOVE using my waffle iron for ALL sorts of things in the kitchen. These waffled grilled cheese were an Instagram sensation, raking in almost 18K likes, when I shared them on the Pompeian feed last fall ad for good reason. They’re fast, easy, completely customizable AND they have the most perfect crispy little wells that make them perfect for dipping in our favorite tomato soup! 

bowl of brown rice with red lentil coconut curry and cilantro chutney drizzled on top

FRIDAY || Red Lentil Coconut Curry with Cilantro Chutney from Pretty Simple Cooking (BIG BATCH TIP: This recipe says 4-6 servings, but we can easily serve all 5 of us dinner & have leftovers for the next day.) + Brown Basmati Rice

Todd and Salome returned home today after both traveling all week and I knew that after both of them experienced the frigid temperatures of the polar vortex that they would both be in need of a hearty meal. This curry from A Couple Cooks cookbook is hands down our favorite curry in this house. Everyone, even Kash likes it and it makes enough for leftovers the next day. 

Gluten free desserts for gluten free meals!

TREATS || Raspberry + Rosemary Jam Bars from Cooking Light + Homemade Cider Spiced Applesauce + Gluten Free Olive Oil Brownies

I baked more than normal this week and with multiple family members traveling throughout the week I was the lucky one that reaped most of the rewards! I substituted my favorite all purpose gluten free flour for the whole wheat flour in the jam bars and the results were INCREDIBLE! While Todd, Eliza, and I loved them the rosemary flavor was a little too much for Kash, so I think I’ll try it again next week without the herb and see what he thinks. I’m working on a 4-minute Instant Pot version of my applesauce recipe and I’m SO excited to be able to share it with you soon. In the meantime the stovetop version may take longer to cook, but it tastes heavenly! The brownies were a result of a preschool spat Kash and I had about getting out of bed and getting dressed. I lost my cool, so I made it up to him with a pan of chocolaty brownies. Sometimes parenting is hard isn’t it?! Thank goodness there is always baked goods to help us get through!

If you’ve tried any of these gluten free meals, I would be so grateful if you would rate them. Let me know what you think in the comments below. I just love hearing from you, and your reviews and comments really help others that visit This Mess is Ours!

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