Making you reconsider having children, one post at a time

Category Archives: Meals

It’s ten after three in the afternoon, the oldest O kid isn’t even out of school yet, and I’ve got dinner in the oven.

This is largely because the beef bourguignon needs to cook for a good three and a half hours, and we need to eat around 6:30.

It’s also because¬†I meal planned this week.

Yes, I know what you’re saying. “Shaaaaaaaa…… you tried this already and not a single one of us were the least bit interested in your meal planning angst. Are you really going to talk about it again?”

I am. If you don’t like it… well, come back tomorrow and I’ll write about something else.

So here’s what I did. I went to Food.com and found a bunch of great recipes. I looked at my calendar and figured out what I could handle where (For example, the four hour extravaganza we’ll be experiencing tonight wasn’t feasible on Monday when we were going out right after school.)

And then I used Food.com’s new Menu Planning feature to drag and drop my meals to the days of the week. No, for real. I don’t need to leave Food.com ever.

I’ve added some of our family favorites that I can’t find on Food.com to my own online cookbook there, and now I can drag and drop them, as well.

Then, I can add all the ingredients to an editable shopping list, and send it to my phone. Or my husband’s phone, which is much more likely, honestly.

Genius. And FREE.

And that’s all I’ll say about meal planning. At least for now.

 

*I am in no way affiliated with Food.com, I just think it’s an awesome site. I’ve received no compensation for this post. Except, of course, the peace of mind that comes from having a plan set up for the week.

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A quick update on The Ending Entitlement Project: We went on vacation recently, and I was worried about how that was going to affect TEEP. It did take a couple days, but we are largely back on track.

In addition to that, Joey has taken on some added responsibility by learning how to do the laundry. Yes, LAUNDRY!

But that’s all for another post.

Because, today, we’re going to talk about my nemesis.

Meal planning.

It seems that I have always been struggling with the “what’s for dinner” conundrum. Before we had kids, my husband and I decided it was just easier to eat out most nights.

We said it was just as expensive to cook, if you’re only cooking for two, because you can’t get two servings of pork chops. (We are liars. And if you’re also telling yourself these things, you’re also a liar.)

And besides, we could never agree on what to eat anyway.

Well, we could never agree on which restaurant to go to. Once we were there, we usually got the same dish.

You’d think, at some point, we’d just make a list of our favorite dishes at restaurants and start figuring out how to make them at home. But no. ¬†That’s not how we rolled.

Once Joey was born, we continued eating out more than not. To be fair, I was deep in the throes of PPD and going out to eat was something I could look forward to.

Yes, it was so bad, I was looking forward to a trip to Applebee’s. Like, all day long. Not kidding.

And then, this crazy thing happened. Joey actually started to eat. And then, suddenly, she started eating enough that it warranted buying her own meals. And THEN I realized “OMG I AM FEEDING HER CRAP AND MACARONI EVERY SINGLE NIGHT!”

And then I started cooking more. Not at all enjoying it, and we were still going out fairly often, but I’d cook.

Then Kimmie came along and something ELSE happened. My BFF, Lianne, came to visit to help me with the baby and the toddler. She brought with her a love of Food Network.

I knew who most of the people were, but I’d never actually sat in front of the TV and watched their shows.

Turns out, watching the Food Network is fairly inspiring. And one day, while Joey and Kimmie were both napping, I found myself nodding along with Paula Deen as she breaded and baked some taters and told me how awesome they’d be.

And then I realized I had everything I needed to make those taters myself.

And suddenly, I was REALLY cooking.

So now I like to cook. I hate to figure out what to cook.

There was a time, for about a week and a half, where I had every meal and snack planned out the day before and that was an awesome week and a half.

I don’t know what happened. Probably, I didn’t get to the grocery store on time and it all fell apart.

And here I am, hoping my husband takes my kids to Fuddruckers while I’m at work this evening so I don’t have to deal with it.

Again, it’s the PLANNING and NOT the cooking that bugs me.

Tell me how meal planning works at your house. Unless you’re like me, and don’t do any meal planning. Because I don’t want to be like us anymore. If you just come here and tell me “Oh, I don’t figure out what’s for dinner till 3:02 every afternoon and then I run to the grocery store to get the goods and cook it up,” NOT HELPFUL.

And I’m not talking about just dinner here, folks. I want to plan out breakfasts, lunches AND dinners. And maybe even a couple snacks. YES I AM SERIOUS.

If you’re like me and don’t want to be like us anymore, stay tuned and we’ll work this out together. If you have advice, there’s a little comments button down there. USE IT.

Also accepting links to sites that spell this stuff out like they’re talking to my dog. Patient and authoritative, that is.