I have been accused of being OCD for planning my meals the way I do (and for many other things, as a matter of fact). But I have to say that meal planning is therapy for me. I don't do it because I am a super-wife by any means, I do it because if I didn't I would go to the grocery store and come home with half the ingredients I need, none of which would add up to make anything worth eating. I must say that my method works great for my family. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is having the after-work-cooking-blahs.
I have shared this process with my CORE Group gals and am now bravely opening it up to the blogging world with the knowledge that I will catch some slack for it. But if one family's dinner time is saved by reading this, my purpose has been served! (insert sarcasm here)
1) I usually choose 10 meals to cover a 2 week period. As many of you may know, there are actually 14 nights in 2 weeks. But we have date nights on Friday nights and eat with our CORE Group on Sunday nights. Hence, the 10 meals. I make a menu to help me see what I have chosen (I am a very visual person) that looks something like this:2) I pull out recipe cards for each and every dish on my list from my master recipe book (blog on this at another time) and write down all the ingredients.
3) I go through my cabinets and cross off everything that is on the list and already stocked in my kitchen.
4) I make a new list from the remaining items according the aisles they are in the grocery store. I keep a count of how many sticks of butter I will need, how many, bananas, etc. Trust me when I say that this comes in handy when you get to the store and think, I know I needed onions, but how many will I need?
5) I head to the the local food provider with my handy list and husband in tow. We work our way through the list from top to bottom and head home knowing we will have everything I need for all our meals in the next 2 weeks. No more midweek grocery store runs for the banana I forgot to pick up!
Wives note: your husband's will enjoy this method because he can look at the menu and say, tonights I think I shall like Enchiladas for dinner. Makes him feel special...