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Planning Meals

Planning Meals

For years I’ve debated the value of planning our meals ahead of time. Numerous menu schools-of-thought have been tried. I have learned some things along the way.

For example, I’ve realized that planning our daily dinners doesn’t fit my way of doing things. I wake up in the morning, look at the menu and think ‘I don’t feel like cooking that today!’. *Sigh* Much to my dismay, nothing has really worked out for us; or I’ve just not stuck with it.

Until now! More recently, I’ve grown tired of the children asking ‘what’s for breakfast or what’s for lunch?’ and decided to regulate this area of feeding the family. SO…our current plan is that each month, I sit down and plan the breakfasts and lunches for the month. Yep, you heard right. For the month.

Each day of the week has a different assigned food plan and we eat the same thing each week (for only breakfast & lunch). The plan for February is being worked on, but here is a snapshot:
All Mondays breakfast and lunch will be waffles, fruit and OJ/tuna sandwiches, carrots, pretzels
Each Tuesday is oatmeal & toast/bagel pizzas & cucumber slices

We’ve been doing this plan since September and it’s working wonderfully! The children actually enjoy helping me plan. At the end of the month, we change it up and include different items. I keep the month’s menu for future reference and to repeat at some point. It’s allowed me to shop once a month for staple items on the list such as bread, pretzels, or oatmeal (we store the bread in an extra freezer). Then weekly or so I shop quickly for other fresh items and for dinner items.

For dinners, I make a weekly list of 8-9 different things we would like to eat (nothing is assigned to a specific day) and shop for them. I choose one each day to cook and rollover the others to the next week. I keep a little notebook full of each week’s list so that it’s easy to quickly think of meals to make by simply looking back at what we’ve enjoyed. That idea has worked well also. Yes!

It did take some initial planning and thinking through, but the effort has been very worth it. This Mama is happy now. p.s. these are not pictures of our meals. :o)

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  • AnonymousJanuary 18, 2008 - 12:24 pm

    I have been planning dinners for as long as I can remember. I never assigned them to a specific day becuase of your already noted problem of “not that tonight!” I love the bfast/lunch idea…that I might do as Amanda is getting older 🙂ReplyCancel

  • DawnFebruary 1, 2008 - 2:17 pm

    We had a lunch schedule last year that worked well. We really should implement again, because it does simplify that time of day. It was:

    Monday: pancakes
    Tuesday: piggies in a blanket
    Wednesday: spaghetti
    Thursday: mac ‘n’ cheese
    Friday: grilled cheese

    I like your dinner plan. I’m the same way about not being too great at planning a bunch in advance. I like when one meal leads to another and simplifies things: last night we had chili, tonight we’ll have chili dogs from the leftovers.

    Thanks for visiting me. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • SaleemOctober 11, 2015 - 7:53 am

    To: 24th & Bryant is where I live ,You CANNOT be serious, you relaly need to read up more about what goes into staple mexican food ingredients.Almost every single one of the popular taquerias in the mission use chicken stock to cook the rice, lard in the beans, and lard in the tortillas.ReplyCancel

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Daniele Evans