I've seen some of the AWESOME decorations everyone has done on their christmas tree. They've helped provide ideas on how to accessorize mantles, entries, foyers, bathrooms... you name it. The women are a WEALTH of resources. Decorating isn't always my thing so I tend to just read and be inspired. However, today someone posted requesting information on meal planning.
Hey... I CAN HELP!
I don't know why I haven't ever shared it on here, but I have a pretty good system and even led a class about it at the Grapevine, Colleyville, Southlake Mom's League.
I believe information is power so the more we share, the more powerful we all become.
Thus, here is my information download for you all!
Meal Planning - 101
- Because I’m busy
- Because if you fail to plan, you plan to fail
- As a mom, I feel a responsibility to feed my family fresh, wholesome REAL food… focusing on removing the processed garbage from our diets
- With a plan in place, we eat out less… which means I know what is IN the food we are eating
- We ALWAYS have on hand what we need for the recipes.
- We waste so much less food because we don’t buy more than we need
- Less dinners delivered out of a window in a sack, less waste means more money in your wallet!
- You will eat a VARIETY OF MEALS
- Your FAMILY HAS A SAY in what you are going to eat that week -kids are more likely to eat what you have cooked for them, since they may have requested it
- TIP: Let them pick the meal that corresponds with THEIR birthday DAY of each month
- AVOID THE ANNOYING "WHAT'S FOR DINNER?"
- Work around ALLERGIES (like wheat, soy, etc)
- Can PLAN FOR BUSY DAYS
- LESS STRESS – no pointless staring at the fridge and cupboards "What the heck am I going to make?"
- LESS TRIPS TO THE GROCERY STORE
Menu planning may seem like a daunting task but you do it just the same way you’d eat an elephant, one bite at a time.
- You need your calendar
- You need a designated time to do this each week.
- You need recipes.
- You need something to meal plan WITH.
- ALWAYS start with your family's favorites -- ALWAYS!
- Pinterest (I'm on Pinterest, I'm a Pinterest whore. I'll admit it. Follow me for lots of yummy recipes. If you see "PTE" on any of my recipes, you'll know that I've added them to my Plan To Eat software (discussed below) so if you 'friend' me on PTE, you have access to these recipes too!
- Meal in a box --- (NOT the Justin Timberlake kind) boxes in the pantry in case your plan fell through… meals that can be made in 15 minutes.
- spaghetti (sauce, noodles, mushrooms, diced tomatoes, frozen meatballs) - BAM instant meal
- quesadillas (flour tortillas, canned chicken or precooked and frozen or frozen meat or even meatless), beans, Mexicorn, cheese, green chilis) - BAM instant meal
- tacos (precooked frozen meat, crunchy shells, tortillas, lettuce, tomato, cheese, sour cream, guacamole, salsa) -- BAM instant meal
- fajitas -- everything frozen -- BAM instant meal!
(I feel like Emeril when I say "BAM"!)
- Breakfast - ALWAYS double up batches of waffles, pancakes and french toast. They freeze well
- Bacon -- make too much? Crumble it up and save it in the freezer for fresh bacon bits
- Double your entrees and you’ll ALWAYS have a home cooked meal ready in the freezer.
- Typically I will pick ONE set of days every month where I will create a list of “freezer meals” I want and I will list and shop one day. The second day I will prep. THIS is another way I have a back up plan.
First and foremost, THIS is my go-to source:
- Plan To Eat
- 5 dinners in 1 hour
- Mesa de Vida
- Saving Dinner
- No More To Go
I certainly hope this has given you some ideas on how to start!