Thoughts on planning meals

I forgot how simple making dinner was each night if I just have a plan.  It's not like this is an entirely new concept to me.  I did it this way for years, but these past couple years it's been more of a struggle.  The girls were more demanding of my time during that dinner-making hour (and- let's face it- all the other hours, too!  ;)), so meal-planning become more sporadic.  I cooked, and we ate- but meals were thrown together, last-minute, and we were relying more-than-usual on others (hello Papa Murphy's, Trader Joes, and take-out Thai food!) to make our food for us.  ;)

Also, summertime is always a little more challenging for me to think up meals, so autumn is a good time to get reorganized.

Just writing it down and posting it where I can see it throughout the day is enough.  That posted plan serves as a reminder to me.  My children, too, will see it and say, "Oh!  We're having _________ for dinner tonight?" And I think, Oh yeah.  I should take that meat out right now while I'm thinking about it.

I'm three weeks into this new system and I'm thankful.  Thankful for the food God provides, thankful that I am able to cook for my family (and enjoy it so much), thankful that I can bless Mark by having a hot meal ready(ish) for him when he comes home from work.

Here's what my list looked like this week:

Monday | Tortellini -from Costco, we add pesto & parmesan cheese.  (I was gone, Mark did dinner.)
Tuesday | Chicken fried rice, sliced apples and almond butter, greek salad (peppers, sundried tomatoes, cucumbers, some greek yogurt, lemon juice, and feta cheese)
Wednesday | Butternut Squash & White Bean soup, cornbread
Thursday | Shipwreck Casserole
Friday | Italian Chicken Soup (Pioneer Woman), a side that I will come up with when inspiration hits
Saturday | Breakfast (my list says: waffles? sausage? omelettes? yogurt biscuits?)
Sunday | Pot roast with carrots and potatoes

My goal is to start posting either our meal plan or a recipe once a week.  I really enjoy seeing other peoples' meal plans or links to recipes, as it helps me get fresh ideas.

I hope you all have a great day!


  1. This makes me smile! :)

    We are a month or so into our "Wednesday = meal-planning and financial team-work" nights and I cannot even tell you what a HUGE difference this had made for me! I love doing the grocery shopping on Thursdays with the boys now BECAUSE I HAVE AN ORGANIZED/PURPOSEFUL LIST AND A PLAN!!! :) I feel a zillion time better throughout the day when I already know what I am making for dinner that night! LOVE IT!! why in the world did i ever stop planning my menu for the week???!!!??? My meals aren't quite as creative (and probably not always as healthy)....but that is what I will toward next. baby steps, right? :)

  2. That squash soup looks amazing! (And I'm quite in favor of meal plan and recipe postings.)

  3. Hi Stacey,
    I've been into crockpot cooking because it's Autumn. This might give you some ideas too and a lot of the recipes use frozen meat!! Hooray, no extra prep of defrosting :-)


  4. Michelle~
    YOU ROCK. Good job!

    Mmm! It was good. We topped it with parmesan cheese and bacon and it was delish!

    I've been on that blog several times-- whenever I'm looking for a new crock pot recipe! Isn't that amazing she has *that many* crock pot recipes?! Love it!

  5. I am very blessed by all the delicious meals you have been making. You are such a great cook -- (even when you throw something together)!

  6. i totally agree! i love having meal planning done ... it is so satisfying, to know that meals are planned for the week, that i will be preparing good, nourishing food for my family. i can totally relate to having seasons where planning didn't happen ... and typically during the summer i fall off the map. for some reason, i am just not as inspired and struggle to think of good meal ideas. bring on the fall! :)


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