Dinner can ruin your whole day. Shortly after breakfast you know you need to
plan for it and very often the day gets away from you and there you are at 5:00
without a clue. Then, if you are like
me, you feel guilty because feeding
your family should be the priority but it somehow gets lost in the shuffle of
schoolwork, errands and outside activities.
When I have used the book Saving Dinner it has worked out
wonderfully. The book has shopping lists for each week’s worth of meals. It is
divided by season and there are weekly menus. It’s very well organized and the
food is fairly child friendly. I
recommend using the book for a while to become accustomed to the system and
then use it as a jumping off point for your own lists and menus. The book is widely available and is also in
my library system so I would check there first.
Just as an aside, I no longer buy cookbooks without first
checking them out of the library. I have spent so much money on cookbooks that
didn’t work for my family that I am no longer willing to just buy. I look
first, work with it for a week or so and then make my decision.
So here’s what the plan is. I have kind of snitched it from Dawn (if I do anything right in the organizing it’s because of Dawn , anything
right in the actual homeschooling, it’s Michele and Alice and MacBeth and
anything right in general it’s Chris – I would be lost without my
friends). On Wednesday I will clean out
the fridge and toss anything past its prime. Then each week one shelf will get
a scrub down. That way there is a continuous
cleaning of the fridge without it taking forever. I hate cleaning out the
refrigerator. Then I will make note of any staples that need replenishing. That
will include fruit and veggies not specific to a meal such as apples and baby
carrots and pantry items. I use Peapod
for grocery delivery for things of this nature so I can begin my list then and
schedule an early Saturday morning delivery. Thursday is when I try to look
over the coming week and get a handle on which days will be more hectic.
Traditionally around here Tuesday and Thursday evenings are generally hectic
driving around evenings, Thursday until 9:00pm. Eeek. This coming school year
Monday’s are going to be a little hairy as well. Really every night. Sigh. The VERY hectic
nights need an easy dinner, a crockpot or make ahead type thing. Casseroles are
good since they can keep nicely covered in the warming drawer of the oven. I
would be lost without that warming drawer. Wednesday evenings Dave works late
and eats out so Wednesday can also be an easy supper night. The kids love
breakfast for supper or something simple like grilled ham and cheese or
burgers. So making note of these
things I will make out a meal plan and then add things to the Peapod list as
needed. I can update the list until 4:00pm Friday so that makes it simple if I
forget something. I will note anything not available at PEAPOD, usually a
health food store item or something I want to pick up at Trader Joe’s (which is
a hike from here) on my list of errands.
An example of a September Menu might be this:
See, nothing really fancy. Since on Sunday we are always all together for dinner that might be a fancier meal. Now once in a while Dave might offer to take me out for dinner on a Saturday night :). When that happens I will make the kids a treat meal, chicken nuggets or mac-n-cheese (Annie's) and let them indulge since we will no doubt be indulging as well. Or I might just let Katie cook it for them and really have a night off! In my kind of crazy life I need to be flexible and I need to take advantage of a rest when the opportunity presents itself.
My menu plans will definitely not be fancy Google docs with cute strawberries but will be on the scratch paper I staple into the weekly file folder which I keep in my calendar clipped in with a bull clip a la Dawn. Just read Dawn's File Crate System posts, she has a category in her side bar. It's really how I endeavor to keep my files current but with a few tweaks to suit my family.
So that's the plan. How will this work with the breakfast and lunch plans? Well I will take some pictures to give you a visual soon, I promise. I am working under slightly different conditions this week, which I promise to share soon, all good.
Please continue to leave questions and suggestion in the com box or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (just leave off the spam!) and I will address as much as possible coming up.
Blessings to your day.