hi sisters!! (cause i don't think the men-folk, other than my hubs, read this.) so i am nearing the end of the second week of enjoying the ease that was brought on by my epic cooking day. several of you have asked how it's been going, so i'm here to report.
first off, we'll address the OCD/list maker tendencies that i have. i'm not proud. a few years ago i found a weekly menu form (breakfast/lunch/supper) on the Cheap Cooking website that i use to plan out our menus every single week. now, before you think i'm a good mom, let me preface this by saying i'm not a breakfast cooker, so that column looks something along the lines of pop-tarts every other day (because my kids would eat them every day if i'd let them) alternating with something else (usually cereal or muffins or cereal bars.) i'm not really a breakfast eater and they are way picky, so...ya know. lunches vary as well. luke has his own lunch menu schedule (which helps micah, who is the one who packs it) and the other two kids usually eat hotdogs or sandwiches and me, just whatever i can find. (that is also an area i need to reign in a little better.) next, i printed out a blank march calendar from my microsoft program. (we typically have a copy or two lying around somewhere because with having kids who refuse to share, we put everything except the toilet on a rotation schedule. forced sharing is total win, justsoyaknow.) Then I sat down with my inventory list and tried to make the best mix/rotation of foods that i could, and still accomodate the baseball schedule. (is it any wonder i am #1. insane, #2. unreachable by phone, and #3. completely out of touch with what is going on in my friends' lives.--Hey Lindsey! I didn't know you moved or that you were homeschooling!--Hey Darby! Thanks for the book rec of The Mission of Motherhood. It's the first book that i paid for on my Kindle.--Hey Tara M.! Thanks for the info on "farm shopping.")
ok, where was i? oh yes, under a mound of lists. see, i like to be able to see everything at a glance. I also like variety, so having an inventory list, a master monthly menu and then a weekly one (for general grocery shopping and so that the kids know what we're having) works well for me. it really is organized chaos. I'd let micah take a picture of me doing this, but i'm fairly certain that i don't actually show up on film. so, in my week, i do plan an out to eat meal once a week. i thought about doing sunday lunch, and occasionally we will, but i'm thinking that it may vary between saturday night and sunday. still working on what works best for us on that one. there have been some days that i had my menu all planned out and then that day, i just wasnt' feelin' it. the good thing is that it didn't matter. i had several other things that i could choose from b/c they were already waiting for me in my freezer. problem solved and it didn't come down to a last minute, "let's just go pick something up."
i still have plenty in my inventory for the moment. this is a pay week, so i'm going to pick up some ground hamburger/turkey and make and grill some hamburgers and then freeze them. i mean, they sell them already cooked in the freezer section. surely i can do it and make them healthier, right?
another thing i might suggest is browsing some of the menu planning sites that are out there and giving one of their 3-month subscriptions a try. they usually give you a shopping list and a prep list along with the menu suggestions so that it takes the guess work right out of it. If nothing else, it will give you a few items to add to your repertoire that you may not have had or thought of before. it helps break me out of the cooking the same ole thing every week or two rut. try e-mealz or 5Dinners1Hour.
thanks for the interest while i get it figured out. any mom on the go should give it a try for sure!
oh, question for my SAHM friends...if you had a job outside of the home before you had kids and now stay at home, do you ever plan on working outside of the home at a later time? i'm just curious.