Tag Archives: meal planning

Diet Blues and Meal Planning

And by diet, I mean what I eat. I don’t do actual “diets.” Only before our wedding did I actually restrict certain kinds of foods. And I was quite successful in dropping a few pounds so that I could feel light and confident in my beautiful James Clifford wedding gown. (SEE!)

How’s that for a cheese?! That’s what you get when you don’t eat any for a month! Or junk food, or sugar.

Anyway, since we had a pretty big and quite successful Superbowl party here on Sunday, I didn’t have the time nor the energy to food shop or even cook actual meals this week. With all the leftovers in the fridge we’ve certainly had enough to eat, it’s just been potato salad for dinner and 7-layer dip for lunch. Uh. My intestines are frowning just thinking about it.

SO, now that this week is finally over, it’s back to my meal planning and back to eating healthy.

Last month, I mentioned that I was starting to meal plan and the first four weeks went smashingly! Never did I have to wonder what we were going to have for dinner come meal time, and we hardly ate out unless it was scheduled which means more money in our pockets and less calories in our bellies! Two weeks ago I even managed to only spend $75 for the week of groceries. That included clothes detergent and a few other cooking staples we were out of. I’d call that a success!

I thought I’d give you the run down of how I do my meal planning and show you an example.

First I open my spreadsheet where I keep everything neat and tidy.

meal plan

On the left I have each day of the week and what we’re having. On the right I list what we have in the pantry and what we need. (As I mentioned in my previous post, I copied another blogger’s template but I have no idea who that was anymore. I’m so so sorry to whoever you are but if you ever do venture upon my blog, thank you and welcome!)

Under each recipe title I link to where that recipe is located so I can easily jump to it when I’m ready to cook. These fish taco and pot pie recipes both came from Allrecipes.com.

Meal_plan_link

I save every week on a separate sheet and title it with the date of the Monday of that week. This is so helpful when deciding what to cook. I can easily go back and see what we’ve already had and the link to the recipe is already there! I also keep an empty copy of the template down there.

Meal_plan_2

I think I’m going to start adding notes under each recipe as well so we can remember if something was good or not. A simple “Woohoo!” or “never again” should do it.

Finally I write the week’s meals on a white board I have on our fridge. The All-Star says he likes this because he can glance at it while he makes his coffee and get excited about what he’s going to eat later on. He’s such a cutey! โ™ฅ

meal plan white board

Next weekend we’re going to Arnold so there won’t be any cooking on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. At least not in this house. That does remind me though, I should probably get the following week started. And I want to call my Aunt Linda. ๐Ÿ™‚

So there you have it. It’s not rocket science. I actually really enjoy doing it. I find most of my recipes on Pinterest or AllRecipes. I also have several cookbooks. This system allows for us more time to relax as well as have a little more variety in our diet. It also makes food shopping a breeze. I downloaded an app called Out of Milk which I’m so far finding pretty helpful but I’m not quite sure it’s for me yet so I’ll save that for another post.

What’s your strategy for meal time? Do you meal plan like me or just wing it??

Laura

Happy Week 2 of the New Year!

Missed me? 2012 was a whirlwind…but a good one. Want highlights? Sure, why not.

Earth and Air expanded to a larger space (which we’re already outgrown!)

I planned a wedding and GOT MARRIED! Eeeek!

We moved to a cutey little cottage near town.

and

The All-Star and I became an aunt and uncle!

Super great year. And now onto 2013, which I believe will be equally as magical!

So how did I start off the New year? Being quite lazy I must admit, accept for a little bit of mouse clicking to satisfy my love of online shopping. But it wasn’t all frivolous, we need a lot of new things for the new place. Okay, we don’t need. But I want! I also want to get organized and stop being so lazy and I believe my purchases will help me achieve that. I also make my home look PRETTY!! ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m not sure if my online shopping obsession is all about the actual purchases I’m making or about me enjoying time spent on my computer. In attempt to validate the latter, last night I put my energies to good use and finally start meal planning. I’d made up a cute template last month ago that I altered from another one that I obtained somewhere (sorry to the person who deserves the credit – I forget who you are. But a lot of my inspiration came from this gal.)

I realized that in order to keep us fed and stocked with food that I would need a better plan than the one we had in place which was essentially…”John (that’s the All-Star. Should I be calling him Mr. the All-Star now that we’re married?), John we need food. Can you go shopping?” And then he goes shopping and we have a lot of food in the fridge but minimal plan on what to do with it and sometimes, I’m afraid to admit, a few items never make it to the dinner table and instead feed the worms that are hopefully helping to decompose that plastic bottle I threw out a few weeks ago because there was no recycling bin at that park. Insert guilty face here. :/

I’ve made a few weekly meal plans before but none this organized and I had so much fun with it that I decided to go ahead and plan the next three weeks, accompanied by a shopping list and also what we had on hand. Those lists may change obviously as we ingest all the goods but it’s nice to have a basis. I personally strongly dislike hate food shopping. If only I could food shop from my couch in my pajamas…

So now it’s Monday and I’ve got my meal plans and my shopping list and I wrote it out all nice for the All-Star, along with the recipe for the meal he will be making tonight since I’m working late, and we are good to go!!

Because I know you want to see it, here’s my plan for this week.

Weekly_Meal_Plan_2013

Sorry if it take a few clicks to get to…I’m new at the whole pdf thing. But check out how I linked the recipes to their source. Oh yea, it feels good!

I’m excited for this new organization of our eating habits. I hope it sticks. At least we know it will forย  the next three weeks!

Laura