Shall we make meal planning easy and good?
Let’s be real for a moment, friend. Who has a natural gift for planning meals weeks in a time let alone a single week at a time? Anyone…. I did not think so. We have been married for five years now, two kids in tow and suppers…. well, we would do the same dinners week after week with little variety. I mean, we would eat grilled chicken, sausage, “brunner” (breakfast for dinner), pasta, tofu, fish and repeat. No new recipes or variety. We were starting to go crazy and something needed to change. Does something need to change in your meal planning, or do you just need to start?
I asked a few friends to tell me how they meal plan and we choose a suggestion that we thought would fit our family. I think we have a good plan to eat good stuff for dinner. Let me share how we get our family of four around the dinner table in a timely fashion and keep our dinners from always being the same old thing.
We use two calendar dry erase boards that I picked up. I would start with the beginning of the month and fill in your “go to” recipes over the course of the month. Do you get take out once a week or once a month- add that in there. Do you do pizza on a certain night of the week, maybe if you need to clean the kitchen or house fast because you have activities to run to or host? For us, we always have brunner on Thursday nights since we have small group to go to. It is quick and easy, plus the kids love eggs, english muffins and fruit. Easy peasy.
After the first month of meal planning, we fell off the wagon. Whomp, whomp, whomp. I fell back into my old habits and we repeated the exact menu we had the week prior. We did not have the next month planned so we stalled out. Next, I headed to the store to pick up another dry erase board to use. Life. Saver. We now have two and plan out the next month a week or so before the current month is over. I also do my grocery shopping on Friday night, sexy right, so we use up the quick-to-perish veggies on the weekend and the beginning of the work week. It is not “fun” to go at night, but I enjoy it better than on the weekend. It frees up to head to the playground, zoo, park, clean the house or play outside at home. Plus, hubby finishes putting the kids to bed and cleans up the house while I get this done. Win. Win. All of this helps us have good stuff for dinner with no stress. Please, change as you need to and adapt. Make a good supper without the fluff or guessing.