Monday Mantra #4 and Easy Veggie Lasagna

Happy Monday!

I hope your weekend was great and I hope your week is off to a wonderful start, as well. I’m officially out of my quarter-life crisis funk, so life is good. I feel like the good ol’ Heidi I was before and it’s fantastic.

So, I hate to talk weather but I want to just make note of how absurdly warm it is this December. Usually in New Jersey at this time of year we’re experiencing snow and bitter temperatures. However, this year, it feels more like springtime than wintertime! I went out during my lunch break today with Jen and my car told me it was 70 degrees. I’m certainly not complaining, but it sure is weird and it makes it hard to fully get into the Christmas spirit – I don’t usually associate Christmastime with sweating!

Anyways, this weekend was a good one. Lawrence’s cousin and his girlfriend welcomed their baby boy, so we spent a large portion of the weekend visiting and thinking about them. The baby really is such a cutie. It also seems like everyone I know is pregnant or just had a baby. Obviously our friend just had a baby, but one woman in my row just had one, another one is pregnant, and two of my friends are pregnant. It makes me excited to start a family someday, but for now I am pretty content being a cat mom and continuing to navigate this new adulthood thing. Babies in The Sims shall suffice for now!

I know how taxing infanthood is and Lawrence’s cousin’s girlfriend is vegetarian, so I decided to whip up an Easy Veggie Lasagna for them this weekend. I’m silly and didn’t take any “after” pictures besides the one below, but rest assured the lasagna was cheesy and smelled utterly delicious (also my sister makes this same recipe from time to time, so I know it’s yummy!)

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EASY VEGGIE LASAGNA

Serves: 6-10

Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes (20 minutes prep time, 1 hour bake time)

Ingredients:

  • 1 package no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 (14 ounce) cans artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 3 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 (28 ounce) jar tomato pasta sauce
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Supplies:

  • 9×13 inch oven-safe pan
  • Aluminum foil
  • Large, deep skillet or pot
  • Cooking spray

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9×13 inch dish with cooking spray.
  • Drizzle olive oil into large skillet/pot and heat on medium-high. Sauté onion until it begins to brown. Add garlic and sauté a few minutes more.
  • Stir in broth and thyme; bring to a boil.
  • Stir in artichoke hearts and spinach; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in pasta sauce.
  • Spread 1/4 of the artichoke mixture in the bottom of the prepared dish, then cover with layer of noodles. Sprinkle 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese over noodles. Repeat layers 2 more times, ending with artichoke mixture and mozzarella cheese.
  • Bake, covered, for 40-45 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 minutes more, or until hot and bubbly.
  • Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting, then enjoy!

And… one last thing… this week’s Monday Mantra! This one literally fell into my hands today:

Have a great week!

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