Saturday, January 16, 2016

Meal planning - my take

I a, seeing fifty page meal planning books on the Internet.    I'm f I had to fill out fifty pages, it wouldn't last very long time no! loL. I don't have that kind of patience.   Id rather spend my time on the front end of shopping,  planning a trip and making sir you have a good feel for prices is more important in my opinion.   I essentially get paid for shopping , not for cooking or planning.  

Everyone has their favorite meals.   We tend to eat th Mesa,e 7 or so meals over and over.  I try to shake things up and add some hing new, esp cially because we have a toddler in the house that needs to be subjected  to different tastes.  

I have a matrix for meal planning that helps speed things up.  We don't always fo,low it to the ,ether but it is a good jumping off point.   I made a work sheet that has two columns , one for what we have, highlignited needs to be used soon, and one what I need to purchase to fill in the meals. The left side of the paper  has seven boxes for dinner plans and one box with my matrix.   It makes meal planning a quick and easy project.  

I cook protein ( meat) as it comes home from the store of appropriate or soon thereafter.    It means that I can portion control it and freeze ot so we aren't eaten me the same thing four days in a row.  
The plan is to buy one loss leader per week, and bulk buy it and batch cook it.   Ot saves time, and more importantly, it saves precious time at the dinner hour.   Last night I cooked Mac and cheese from scratch and we had broccoli.   I cooked it at dinner time because I had a long list of things to get done yesterday.   I really wanted to take a nap.   Lol

This week I bought a foster farms chicken from Safeways for .88 (RBP) a pound - dove pounds and two pork tenderloins for two dollars a pound ( five dollars).  In order to stay  within a snap budget ( or less) dinner needs to average five dollars for four people.   This is really believeable and you can eat a variety of meals if you watch prices and portion control.

I saw a blog, ( nothing but love) on u tube where she made meals from the dollar store.  She states that things r made in the USA.   ( things made in China will have a 471 or 6 beginning) they do have gnocchi made in Italy.   I'm not impressed with the meat.  The stir fry peppers weren't the quality I would like, stir fry veggies are 1.29 at Winco.    I do like some seasoned fries they carry for 1.00 for 1.5 pounds ,     I couldn't find them last time.    Some brand name things are cheape r and most of the time they have the same pull dates as the other stores.    I don't buy much from the dollar store, but I can see if you really needed to put food on the table and had no money, it is doable.  She spent twenty dollars and got four meals for four and a couple of lunches.   Some things are cheaper at regular grocery stores.  

Yesterday I

  1.  Rearranged and took stock of the pantry, no one what we had plenty of, and what we were short of.   
  2. Made black and white rice crispy treats    
  3. Took down and stored away the winter decorations so I can out up Valentine's Day soon. 
  4. Made twenty ( actually thirty) milk carton boxes for Valentine treats for granddaughters preschool class    
  5. Grocery shopped two stores.   
  6. Put everything away, checked Ibotta 
  7. Made dinner from scratch 
  8. Made two new card cuts.   
It was a full day.   

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