Monday, April 22, 2013

Meal Plans? Why We Won't Go Back

About a year ago, I had started reading in blogs where the writer(s) would mention about making a weekly meal plan. Some went so far as to make a monthly one. I thought that they were....well, odd. How on earth can I plan a week's worth of meals when hubby can't decide from day to day what he wants. I started thinking about it though. Okay, the Lord kept nudging me.

Sooooo I tried it. It worked. For about 3 weeks. Then hubby went on a 4-month long business trip. I tried to keep it going for just me. I did. I could not do it for just lil' ole me. I did make casseroles and eat on them for a few days. But the weekly thing? Nope. Not after the first two weeks. Didn't happen.

Hubby returned; holidays came and went; the new year arrived. I was nudged again to start them back. So I brought the idea to hubby again. He remembered us doing the plans last year and liked the idea of not having to decide and shopping on an almost daily basis. Sooooo we started again. It has worked so far....for the most part. We have a large board on our freezer that is half cork and half white board. The right half of the white board is our meal plan with the dates on top. We try to meal plan on Friday or Saturday for the following Sunday through Saturday.

I've just been thinking that that has not really been working. Why? We figure out through Saturday. Sunday is church. Then we try to figure out on. the. day. what to do for that night. BAD idea. Well, live and learn. Hmmmmm....Time to change for this coming week.

Anywho. What was I.....? Oh yeah. We currently plan for the week on Friday or Saturday when we're scheduled to be home (Friday is grilling night :-) ). We plan the following week's menu and I'll do the shopping on Tuesday. It was Monday, but can't buy cold stuff perishables when you're not going to be going home (to a fridge) for 3-4 hours because of a Bible class. Sooooo that leaves Tuesday for now.

Our plan is that we have certain things we prefer on different days. Sunday is usually up in the air or something easy like nachos or breakfast. Monday I'm gone, so hubby's on his own for that day (it's our DIY night). Tuesday is an Easy Day (it's errand day for me). Wednesday or Thursday is New Recipe Night (I have TONS of recipes pinned on Pinterest. We also have a recipe binder, about a dozen recipe books (we got rid of over half of our books), and a stack of loose recipes. Oh! We also have a drawer that was once a part of the old card catalog (bought at a bazaar about 2-3 years ago) that holds index card size recipes. So we have plenty of inspiration. The other night is either a pantry meal or something I've done before that we like. Friday is Grilling Night. Saturday is New Restaurant Night. We have tons of restaurants around the area we haven't tried and we're running out of time, so this is our way to remedy that. {More info: We're moving from where we are now back to America somewhere (hubby's work will tell us next month sometime) in either September or October}

Here's our Meal Plan for last week (April 14-20th)::::

Sunday: Steak 'n Eggs (I had a steak leftover from the night before that we finished cooking all of the way through (it was half raw) and used it as a side for eggs and toast)

Monday: DIY

Tuesday: Loaded Taters (quick, easy, and toppings made to your own specs)

Wednesday: Chicken Marsala over white Rice (found on

Thursday: Leftovers (change from what we were planning b/c of the excess in the fridge)

Friday: Chicken Fried Rice (fried rice with chicken grilled by hubby, broccoli, and mushrooms)

Saturday: Friend's BBQ

--I take a picture of the menu each week, so that if we're stumped we can look back at previous weeks and get an idea.
--We write the menu in dry erase because well, life happens. We'll plan a week and then mid-week we have someone's going away that we choose to go to or a friend's BBQ they decided (or announced) at the last minute.
--I never take a picture of the week's menu until after the week is over.
--Having Pinterest and Allrecipes makes it a bit easier to keep the menu from the same-ole-cookbook that we have to flip through

I love the meal plan idea. We're rarely undecided on what to make because we've already figured it out. PLUS it's a whole lot cheaper buying food twice a week (we get the "weekend" stuff on Thursday so it won't go bad) as opposed to like before. And saving money is always a good thing :-)