All bloggers have heard "Don't write about what you had for lunch. No one cares." There's even a blogging book called "Nobody Cares What You Had For Lunch." I preface this post with that information because 1. I'm totally about to tell you what we're eating for dinner this week and 2. You should know that this post is kind of for me so that some day when life gets really hectic again, I can refer to it.
I miss writing about food. Writing for Food Lush always gave me a reason to think about how I cook, try new recipes, or peruse websites for fun new food-related items. This week, we lived through snowmageddon and, fortunately, we had plenty of food to get us through. That said,we DID end up spending about $90 at Walgreens one day because Publix was closed. We pretty much bought candy and bacon. My unexpected time off work gave me time to purge our fridge and freezer and to do a pretty thorough inventory of our dry goods. On Saturday, I went through what we had, thought about what would go with it, and made a grocery list. I planned meals for the next week and a half--until my next paycheck.
I used to be really good at meal planning and prepping. As life has gotten busier, it's something I stopped doing with regularity, but there's no reason I can't get back to it now. Marcus starts rehearsing at night again next week, so the more I can plan and prep ahead of time, the better off we'll be at dinnertime.
Here's our list of meals for the week. I did not assign a day to all of them, but I did for some.
- Chicken with rice and gravy, Brussels sprouts
- Pork fried rice, frozen dumplings
- Pork chops, rice, collard greens
- Jambalaya (Saturday)
- Pasta with marinara
- Pasta with Parma Rosa and sausage
I had a couple of things in the freezer, like a pack of chicken breasts and a pound of hamburger meat. We have pasta and canned veggies. I bought the other meats, fresh produce, and "fill in the blank" foods we needed. I also take my lunch to work 4/5 days (which is saving a TON of money), so some of these meals will provide leftovers, which will go to work with me.
I feel like I have a good handle on the week, knowing that I'll be able to just grab everything I need from my pantry or fridge, rather than stopping at the store every other day for "just one thing." Those types of trips add up and I almost always end up going in for a container of sour cream and coming out with $60 of food.
Marcus and I worked on prepping this afternoon. I went ahead and chopped a ton of vegetables for the fried rice and tacos. I sliced the pork for the fried rice. I made a big batch of quinoa salad for my lunches, and I prepped things for Dean's lunchbox. He takes his lunch every day (macaroni and cheese in a thermos, string cheese, and either fresh fruit or yogurt-covered raisins) and he also takes a morning snack (usually a Go-Go Squeeze, piece of fresh fruit, or raisins). I have always prepped a lot of his food the night before, but I've started packing his snacks for the week on Sunday. It has made a HUGE difference. Now, he can run over to the shelf, grab what he wants for his snack (he has choices, already packed!), and toss it in his bookbag.
Hopefully I can keep myself on schedule and keep meal-planning for a while. I'm looking forward to taking the guess-work out of dinner every night.