Saturday, May 5, 2012

Prepping to meal plan

Getting ready to work on this week's meal plan.


Some of my favourite books on the shelf got pulled for this week:

We have company for the whole week! So I'm excited to actually cook... probably all new recipes too.. since I'll have extra hands with kids.

My meal planning is usually monthly, and my process is:

1. Decide if I'm working out of cookbooks or online (often I do a combo). I find I have all these books on the shelf though, and rarely use them... so I make an effort to use them almost every month.

2. Set everything on the table... and wait.... and wait... until all kids are sleeping, or otherwise busy (preschool, out with daddy, etc).

3. Start flipping through books until something catches my eye (or browsing recipes on pinterest, or my favourite food blogs).

4. I write a general list at first... just write down the recipes, where they were found, etc.

5. Start assigning recipes to days on the calendar (I generally use a full size calendar when doing it by month). As I assign, I know Tues/Thurs I have more time in the morning, so crockpot recipes I do those days, Saturday I know I never think about dinner til it's dinnertime... so something quick those nights, and so forth... (Also great to use a calendar, since you can see any other events you have those days, to accomodate what type of meal you'll want to do).

6. Also good to account for leftovers. I generally don't have leftover nights in my meal plan, since my husband takes them for lunches the next day. The exception is if we have a larger meal on a Thursday or Friday, I'll have left overs Saturday, since they won't be good for lunches the next week.

7. Hang it up! Blog it! :)

I never stress about my meal plan, I completely rearrange it as the month goes on.. sometimes things come up, and you need to postpone a meal for when you have more time... sometimes you get taken out for dinner, etc... rearrange, drop meals that the ingredients will keep with freezing. Meal planning is so stress free! I mean, we love looking at recipes, salivating over them anyway... this just gives you a 30-60 minute scheduled time to do so! :)

Off to tuck the little one in for nap, and send the bigger for quiet time. Will post tomorrow! :)

Happy Planning!