Let’s talk about last Thursday, okay?
Last Thursday, Elsa was three weeks old and still mostly oblivious to the world. Last Thursday, Owen woke up with a recurring rash once again all over his face. Last Thursday, I cried when I saw Owen’s returning rash and ate a cookie for breakfast.
We were in week six of the War of the Rash and the rash was totally winning the emotional battle. So, after my cookie, I got on the phone and calmly explained to the nurse on the other end of the phone that my son needed to be rid of this face rash….today.
I think she could probably smell the cookie on my breath because after explaining our saga of impetigo-excema-impetigo-excema, she got me a dermatologist recommendation and an appointment made for later that day.
Feeling like progress was ahead, I went about the rest of my day. I called Eric about six times, asking if he was sure he couldn’t leave work early and come to the doctor with us because, see, I hadn’t left the house with both kids on my own yet, and I was a little nervous about it.
He just couldn’t leave. So during Owen’s nap, I methodically packed the diaper bag with more provisions than most early settlers of America brought with them from their homelands. I timed my feeding of Elsa as best I could so that she’d be asleep during our excursion. I had another cookie.
When Owen woke up, I got him ready to go and started the car to get it warm. We left the house only two minutes after my goal departure time, and had I not accidentally pulled into the wrong parking lot, we would have gotten to his appointment early.
As I parked the car (in the right parking lot), I was feeling really good about myself. Not only were we on time but I hadn’t even forgotten anyone at the house.
Then, I removed Elsa’s carseat from the van…went to the other side to let Owen out, and with diaper bag slung across my shoulder, I proudly began walking towards the clinic with the kids.
I smiled at a man coming out of the clinic, and as we crossed paths, this happened:
Man: “Is there someone still in your car?”
Man: “Oh…well your car door is open.”
Me: “Oh…um…thanks…(nervous cough), you see, this is the first time I’ve left the house with both kids on my own, and my baby’s only three weeks old…and yeah, just well, thanks.”
Man: …(no response)…
Red faced, I walked back to the van. And the door was wide open. Not even partly shut.
A little less proudly, I turned once again towards the clinic. I hobbled across the parking lot as the carseat banged against my knee, and I was more than little out of breath by the time I reached the receptionist’s desk.
But we made it. And we were only two minutes late. And we got some hopefully final answers about the recurring rash. And then, all three of us sat in a ton of rush-hour traffic on the way home, and I sang every line of the Wheels on the Bus at least three times.
By the time we got home, it was dinner time. For all of us. As I sat, couch-bound, and fed Elsa, Eric popped these made-ahead Sloppy Juffins in the oven, and we were eating this comfort food meal like a bunch of champions less than a half hour later.
Guys, these are good. Really good. This recipe comes from the fabulous Amy at This HeArt of Mine. I have loved actually getting together with Amy and her littles a few times this past year; she is incredibly sweet and gifted and driven – a master at organizing some great collaboration. Please, please check out her blog and ooh and ahhh at how artistic she is, and then make something from one of her handy-dandy tutorials and send it to me, okay? #notacraftyboneinmybody
When we made these, Eric immediately dubbed them Sloppy Juffins, because they are basically sloppy joes in a muffin form. You just press store-bought biscuit dough into cups using muffin-tins, and fill it with the easiest sloppy-joeish filling, and top it with cheese. Seriously, what could be more appropriate to eat after a long day, a cold day, or day that started with cookies for breakfast. This is comfort food at its best – and super easy to make-ahead and freeze for a quick dinner any night – the perfect addition to our Make-Ahead, Freezer-Friendly Meals series.
And now, if you’ll go ahead and add these ingredients to your grocery list and then kindly leave a comment below telling me about a time when you metaphorically “left the car door open,” I’d be much obliged. Ready? Go.
(recipe from This HeArt of Mine )
(yields 12 "Sloppy Juffin" cups)
This super-easy, make-ahead, freezer-friendly recipe is basically a sloppy joe in muffin form. Such comfort food that your whole family will love.
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 c. diced tomatoes, very well drained (1/2 c. is about half of a 14-oz. can*)
3/4 c. ketchup
1/3 c. barbeque sauce
3/4 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tbsp. canned, diced jalapeno peppers**
3/4 tbsp. liquid from canned jalapeno peppers
1 tube refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (8 count)
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
*You can freeze the remaining half can to use in pasta or pizza sauce!
**The original recipe called for pickled jalapeno peppers; I couldn't find these in the grocery store, but regular canned jalapenos worked fine.
Brown the beef and drain it.
Stir in very well drained tomatoes, ketchup, barbeque sauce, Worcestershire sauce, jalapeno peppers and liquid from the can. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes until any liquid is gone.
Prepare Cups: (see images below recipe for help!)
Preheat oven to 375*Grease a 12-cup muffin tin.
Take a biscuit. Divide it into two pieces - one piece should be 2/3 of the biscuit; the other piece should just be 1/3. Set the 1/3-sized piece aside.
Take the 2/3-sized piece, flatten it with your palms, and press it into a cup shape in the muffin tin.
Do this with the remaining biscuits.
Then, combine two of your 1/3-sized pieces by rolling them together. Once combined, flatten and press into a muffin tin. Do this with the remaining 1/3-sized pieces until all twelve muffin tin cups are filled.
Fill each cup with a few spoonfuls of filling. Bake in preheated 375*-oven for 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on them to ensure that biscuits do not get overly brown. Once the biscuits are cooked through, top with cheddar cheese and return to the oven for 2-3 minutes to melt the cheddar.
Carefully remove each sloppy juffin from the muffin tin and serve immediately.
Once baked, remove the sloppy juffins from the muffin tin. Cool completely. Place on a wax- or parchment-paper-lined baking sheet and place in the freezer. Once totally frozen, sloppy juffins can be placed together in a freezer-safe bag or container. To cook, bake in a preheated 350*-oven for 20-30 minutes until heated through.
P.S. I’m including these images from Amy’s original post because they were so, so helpful, and I knew I couldn’t do a better job explaining how to split and recombine the biscuit dough.