With Adam coming back soon(ish), I decided to create a monthly meal plan to help make dinners easier. Because, as most “single” moms with deployed husbands know, we consider a bowl of easy mac a successful meal these days. Well, that doesn’t cut it when my husband is back home. I figured I would take some time now to prepare a meal plan, so we can enjoy being with him instead of using all that time thinking about what to make and then preparing meals.
I thought I would share my ideas with you. It’s my first time doing this, so don’t critique too much, okay?
1. Hit up the internet and browse cook books. First, I needed to come up with what we are going to eat. I decided on compiling 20 recipes for the monthly meal plan, because there are always those nights we eat leftovers, go out to eat, or get take- out pizza. And, with it being the holidays soon, I thought 20 would suffice. I went to the trusty, infamous Pinterest to get most of my ideas and filled in the rest with our favorites.
2. Create a word document. When I found a recipe I liked, I would put it directly into a word document. I opened up each recipe that looked good and checked the ingredients because while it may look scrumptious, I know I will only make the quick, easy recipes. So, I would suggest going to the actual website and checking out the recipe first before putting it into your word document. I wrote each title of the recipe followed by the website link directly to that particular recipe. This will make it very easy to open up the document when the time comes to make it and I will be led directly to where I want to be. Quick and easy!
3. Plan. I look at my calendar. I note which days we already have blocked off for date night, squadron functions, or holiday parties. Obviously, I will not be cooking on those nights. I drew up a quick calendar on paper and wrote in what I was going to make and what night. I will keep this and hang it on the fridge for that month so I know (and Adam) what we will be having each night. This also helps for those crockpot meals that you need to prepare before hand or if meat needs to be taken out early to thaw.
4. Grocery shop. You can decide how often you want to grocery shop. Due to our smaller fridge and freezer space, I go shopping once a week. I put together a grocery list of those meals for the week and see once what I need and what I already have.
5. Enjoy!! My goal with this monthly meal plan is to save time, first of all. It will also save money because there’s nothing better than going to the grocery store having written down exactly what you will need for the following week. It helps cut down on last minute impulse buys that I am guilty of.