Skip to main content

What's for dinner?

When Joel and I first got married, we would go to the grocery store and just buy whatever looked or sounded good.  There was no real plan for meals and sometimes we would go to the store, spend a hundred bucks and come back with absolutely nothing for dinner.  It was terribly expensive and I was always finding rotting food in our fridge.  Mainly because we would buy things with the idea of eating them, but with no real plan to eat it.  About a month in, I realized that our budget could not afford this kind of shopping, so I made meal planning into a mental game with monetary benefits.


First of all, I look at the week ahead and see if there are any evening meetings for the family or days that Joel will not be home.  I think about how much time I will have for meal preparation on each of those days. I take a mental inventory of the things I have in the house.

Next, I turn to the sales paper for the grocery store.  I peruse which meats/protein sources are on sale or if there is an abundance in the freezer, I just use those things.  And then I take those meats and think about the various things that I can make with them or that Joel can make if he has the time that week.

So I end up with six or so main courses, I check the recipes, see what I have in our kitchen and then make a grocery list. I throw in a couple of veggies that look good that week or that are on sale and that's my basic plan. 

I have a written list of the six meals with no specific days assigned to them.  Once the week starts happening I cross them off or use the ingredients for other recipes if what I planned sounds bad.

Once the groceries come home, I put away the meat in the freezer unless I plan on using it in the next two days.  I do this because things can change a lot in a few short days for us. Stuff is always coming up to change dinner plans at our house.  Unless I'm feeling extra special, we normally have a main course and one or no side. 

The nice thing about putting things in the freezer is that if we end up having a lot of left overs or going out to eat, then I can just put that main dish idea onto the next week's schedule.  By delaying the meals that way, about every 8 weeks there is no need to go to the grocery store and about every 4 weeks, there's no need to by any meat.

For a family of three (two of us eat every meal at the house) we spend around a hundred dollars on groceries every week.  That includes fresh fruits, vegetables, as well as meat at every dinner not to mention tons of junk food.  That's how much Joel and I were spending a decade ago in Austin to end up with no meals for just the two of us.

What do you do for dinners?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Bottom of the Pool by Andy Andrews

Y'all know that I'm a big Andy Andrews fan, so I was very excited to read his latest, The Bottom of the Pool. The best way that I can describe this book is like sitting down with your friend and they remind you how it is. It's not like Andy is hawking some secret voodoo send me $5 and you'll get $5000 in the mail next week black magic. He's sharing the truth. And the truth is that if you're dealing with an obstacle in your life, there's a big possibility that you're thinking about it all wrong.

This relatively quick read is jam-packed full of good stuff. There are interesting stories about historical figures but the main story that runs throughout the book is one of a childhood friend. Andy's friend did something extraordinary one summer afternoon that illustrates how we can break out of cycles hold us back from achieving what we are created to do. Without telling you exactly what Andy has to share in this book, it might feel like it's some mag…

Saturday Rant: Dominoes

I always find it interesting how life can be very much so like dominoes sometimes. Let's see, my husband went out of town this last fall. I volunteered to preach for him while he was gone. I told a friend about the online copy of the sermon. She forwarded it to a few folks, next thing you know, I'm doing a short testimony at my weekly Bible study. What I'm really wondering it "What next?"

You see, when I got done preaching, and my husband came back into town, we talked about how people reacted to the sermon. Then we talked some more when I was asked to share again. And the question was, maybe I'm supposed to be open to talking more often.

To be honest, I haven't done a lot of talking in groups since I had a really bad experience a few years ago. I was always opinionated, in fact I still am. I have lots of opinions about most everything from how warm my house should be to which way the car should take me from point a to b. But I found myself in a group of …

The Minimalist Home by Joshua Becker

I've been following Joshua Becker's blog for a few years and have read all the things and even put them into action. I was excited to be able to read his room-by-room guide for minimizing your home.

The Minimalist Home systematically goes through every space in your home, including the garage and yard, and talks about how to minimize them. Becker has put thought into which spaces should happen first for the biggest impact and encouragement. Because even though it's wonderful to have a minimalist garage, it may not be the best place to start and get the whole house done.

Our home has been trending towards minimalist in nature for a while now. And I'm happy to share with you that this little book helped us take a few more steps in the minimal direction. I loved all the checklists for the different areas. As well as the facts about living space and stuff consumption sprinkled throughout.  The Notes section is full of great resources for further reading as well.

Here'…