Meal Plan Monday!

Oh my goodness. I cannot believe that it is August already! This summer is going by so fast, and we are just having so much fun. I will be sad to see this summer go in just a few short weeks. But, we do have so many activities to fit into those weeks that I am sure by the end of summer I will be exhausted and ready for the comforting routine that the fall always seems to bring us.

And speaking of routine, and being SUPER busy, I am finally back in the habit of weekly meal planning and it has been such a time saver and anxiety reducer. We started weekly meal planning about two years ago to get our grocery budget under control, but the first few months of Emerson being here brought with it so much chaos that we had just been winging it. It caused a lot of stress and Wegmans received a huge chunk of our bank account the first half of this year. I may have just a tiny bit of a control issue, but there is something so settling about seeing the weekly meal plan pinned up on our little command station that makes me think that I just might have an easier week.

Recently, I had a few friends and family members ask me to show them our meal plan and help them to figure out how to get their own grocery budgets under control. It reminded me how overwhelming (and expensive!!) the responsibility of feeding a growing family can be. Some days I go to bed in awe at the number of meals I put on the table that day, and if I had to take time EACH DAY to figure out what those meals would be I am sure that I would never leave the kitchen.

So…

For the next few weeks (or longer if I find that people are finding it helpful!!) I will post our weekly meal plan to help anyone new to meal planning get off to a better start.

Each week (usually over the weekend), I take a look at what we have left over from either stocking up (I try to by milk, bread, peanut butter, eggs and things that we consume daily in bulk as much as possible), or from the previous weeks shopping trip. Then, I create a plan for breakfast, lunch and dinner for each day in my home management binder:

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I used to type up the meal plan each week, but I found some pretty great *free* printables for meal planning on Pinterest. I love this one that I am currently using because it is simple, and I can write the grocery list on the same page!

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Okay! Now on to the actual meals! I will include the links to recipes that require directions! Smile

Monday:

Breakfast – Eggs, Fruit and Veggies

Lunch – Half pepper stuffed with Tuna Salad (Me), Tuna Salad, Crackers and Cheese (Girls)

Dinner – Artichoke Chicken Thighs

 

Tuesday:

Breakfast – Green Protein Smoothie (spinach, frozen fruit, almond milk and protein powder – the girls LOVE this!)

Lunch – Half pepper stuffed with Tuna Salad (Me), Tuna Salad, Crackers and Cheese (Girls)

Dinner – Bean and Avocado Quesadillas

 

Wednesday:

Breakfast – Eggs, Fruit and Veggies (I change between fried eggs and toast for the girls or omelettes!)

Lunch – Green Salad with (precooked and frozen) Chicken (Me), Peanut Butter and Banana sandwiches for the girls

Dinner – Chicken Apple Sausage Skillet

 

Thursday:

Breakfast – Green Protein Smoothie

Lunch – Egg salad and fruit

Dinner – Iceberg Lettuce Tacos (lean ground meat + choice of taco toppings wrapped in large lettuce leaves!)

 

Friday:

Breakfast – Green Protein Smoothies or Cereal

Lunch – PB & J sandwiches with fruit and chips. Egg salad for me (Packed lunch for Seabreeze!)

Dinner – Baked Sweet Potatoes and salad

 

Saturday:

Breakfast: Baked Sweet Potato Hash with Eggs

Lunch: Leftovers

Dinner: Weekend Nachos! (We love to make nachos together on the weekends!!)

 

Sunday:

Breakfast: Oatmeal

Lunch: Turkey Sandwiches

Dinner: Crockpot pulled pork!

 

My girls do love to snack too! While I don’t plan snacks specific to each day, I usually do have “weekly snacks”. This week they will be cheese sticks, granola bars and fruit.

I also don’t plan desserts, but I keep gluten free flour on hand so that the girls can bake something once or twice a week. Every so often we buy ice cream, but our desserts tend to be cupcakes, muffins, brownies and that sort of thing.

Our meals are not anything spectacular, but we try to rotate everyone’s favorite meals so that we are all enjoying our meal time together. I am so thankful that I get the chance to stay home and cook for my family, and I am even more thankful for Pinterest and all the many recipes you can find!

So keep it simple by planning out the meals you already usually make on a regular basis, or get creative and start throwing in some brand new recipes you have been wanting to try!

What are your family’s favorite recipes?

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