"Meal planning" has become something of a buzz word in mommy circles. And understandably so - it's a necessary survival skill for a mom with three little kids. Mutiny is a real possibility if I have no idea what's for dinner by 4 o'clock. I tried e-mealz for about 6 months and liked it, but ended up canceling my subscription because I got tired of being told what to cook. I liked having all the week's recipes in one place and with an accompanying grocery list, but I actually like to cook and wanted to cook more of my family's favorite meals.
After Blue Eyes was born, life slowly settled into a routine and now (that he's almost 1yr old) I've finally found something that works for us. It revolves around this list:
Our family's favorite meals. I don't know about you, but my mind goes completely blank when I sit down to make a grocery list or walk through the aisles of the store. Having this list reminds me where to start and prompts me to think of other things when I'm at a complete loss. I usually cook 4 nights a week; we always eat leftovers or frozen pizza on Wednesdays and Sundays when we have small group or church and the kids have a sitter. That leaves one night a week for going out or having friends over...something outside the norm. So this list gets me about 6 weeks with no repeats.
How do you figure out what's for dinner? Do you find it necessary to meal plan and if so, what does your system look like?