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Making The Most Out of My Weekly Meal Plan!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Hi!! Happy Monday! 
Soo...did you watch the big game last night??
Thoughts? 
If I am being completely honest- my husband and I kind of felt like it was a little anti-climatic?!!!?
We were rooting for the Panthers...but it was nice to see Peyton Manning finally win a Super Bowl Game!
I thought the half time show was awesome- I LOVE Bruno Mars!!
Funny little story- my two youngest daughters got out of bed several times last night after we had put them to sleep; one of those times being when Beyonce' was performing during the half time show. Well...I knew the girls were standing on the stairs watching the TV but I didn't say anything right away. All of sudden...my daughter Cora's little voice says, "Why is that lady NAKED?!?" Hahahaha!!!
I did my best explaining Beyonce's "outfit" but Cora was very skeptical- HA!

Anyway...we had a fun time eating some game day food for dinner...including this slow cooker spinach and artichoke dip!! It was SO easy to make and really delicious!

So...now we are back to Monday and I am sure your week is busy! I know our's sure is! 
Our menu plan definitely reflects that it is a week where I don't have a lot of time to be in the kitchen- and that's ok- I have a plan for dinner each night and that's what's important to me!
Before I share what what's on our dinner menu this week- I thought I would talk about how menu plan. 
I am not a huge fan of cooking (I love to bake though!), my kids can be quite picky and honestly sometimes- I am just SO tired that the last thing I want to do is feed my 5 hungry people :) That's why I always make sure to include these 5 things when I meal plan every week:

1) I always plan at least ONE meal that is going to give me leftovers for another meal.
This "strategy" is kind of obvious- but if I am going to all the trouble to make a nice dinner- I might as well make extra of it so I can get more "bang for my buck!" Also- by having leftovers- it gives me a night "off" of cooking!

2) Friday night is ALWAYS pizza night. Is this boring and predictable? Maybe to some people! But- my husband never gets tired of pizza and my girls look forward to their pizza picnic all week long. We use "pizza kits" from Aldi and make semi-homemade pizzas. When I look at my blank calendar for the week, trying to come with up with meals to make, I love that I can always pencil "pizza" in for Friday! :)

3) Like most people, our weekends tend to be busy and dinner time always sneaks up on us! That's why I always try to plan a meal that I don't have to "make" for Saturday night. That could be the leftovers from a meal we ate earlier in the week or it could be hot dogs, carrot sticks and chips for dinner! The last thing I want to do after a full day of time spent with my family is be in the kitchen- so l always plan a meal that requires little to NO prep for Saturday night!

4) My husband is usually not home for dinner at least one night per week and I use this night to plan an "easy" dinner :) An easy dinner in my house is one that ALL of my kids like and that means NO complaining or whining during meal time! SCORE! Usually, for an easy dinner I will make grilled cheese with a steamed veggie and applesauce or macaroni and cheese with peas. If my husband happens to be home on 'easy' dinner night- then he usually will have a sandwich with a big salad or bowl of soup- still well within the realm of an  easy dinner :)

5) I only plan and make meals that require very little prep time and minimal amount of pots/pans. I usually have about 30 minutes during the day where I can prep a part of our dinner and then I have another 30 minutes once we get home from school and the gym to get the rest of dinner made and on the table. I do NOT have time for long drawn out recipes or am I interested in cleaning up a pile of pans used to make dinner. So- if I am looking at a recipe and it requires a lot of steps and chopping- NOT making it! HA! Even if it looks delicious- momma doesn't have time for it!

These "strategies" might seem really obvious- but they really do help me when I am planning out our meals for the week. It sounds totally silly- but sometimes it can be overwhelming to come up with SEVEN dinners to make (every week for that matter)! Having these 'rules' in place helps make the process not so stressful for me! 
And now- really quick- here is what we are eating for dinner this week!

(Isn't this the BEST?? I seriously need to get this made into a print and hang it up in my kitchen!! HA!)

Monday: Leftover pasta and meatballs with steamed green beans
Tuesday: Turkey cheese burgers, steamed peas and french fries
Wednesday: Potato corn chowder and grilled cheese sandwiches + a green salad
Thursday: Burrito bowls made with rice, black beans and ground turkey
Friday: Pizza Night!
Saturday: Grilled hot dogs, mac 'n' cheese and green beans
Sunday: Valentine's Day! Still deciding on our "fancy" dinner- but thinking it will be steak, roasted brussel sprouts and garlic cheese mashed potatoes :)

Do you have a meal plan set for this week??
Tell me what you are making! I would love to know what's for dinner at your house!

I hope you have the BEST day!

I am linking up with Laura today!

4 comments:

  1. I always love your menu plans because they are hearty, well-rounded, but not back-breakingly difficult! I loooove crockpot meals and anything with minimal cleanup. So does my husband :)

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    1. Thanks for your sweet compliment April! I really appreciate it- as I always think the meals you prepare are so simple yet so elegant and delicious! And - Oh I am right there with Ian and you when it comes to MINIMAL clean up. UGH. Who wants to clean up a huge mess at the end of the day!?!

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  2. Love your meal planning strategies!! I plan for M-TH and then Friday, Saturday and Sunday are either leftovers or dinner out. Have a great day!!

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  3. I always LOVE to see your kid friendly, simple, and delicious meals you plan!! And isn't penciling "pizza" on Friday night like the Free space on a bingo card??😜 It is just so rewarding to know I don't have to cook that night and EVERYONE is excited about it?? Keep the Meal ideas coming!!

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I love hearing from you! Let's keep it nice though...ain't nobody got time for anything else!

 
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