Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Four Week Menu Plan

I totally didn't keep up with my Elf on the Shelf blog posts. (Don't worry, I did have a successful elf season. Clyde and Ginger had a great time this year!) I will get all caught up eventually, but today I have something extra for whoever is interested.

Who is sooooo tired of trying to figure out what to make for dinner each night? ME! ME! ME!

Are you raising your hand right now? I know you are. It can become such a tired chore! Then some days you forget entirely and end up going out or ordering in and totally throw your monthly budget off. Well, that's what ends up happening to us now and then. So I decided to do something about it. I made a menu plan!

I've done it before. And it worked. But I also made a few mistakes. I tried to add too many "new, fun recipes" that the kids totally hated or that took 3 hours of prep and 57 ingredients to make. My new plan has eliminated most of those. I say most, because there are definitely still dinners that take some prep time. But if you are prepared then it's not hard. And they taste delicious!

In order to be prepared, I went a step further and created shopping lists for each week. I print out the list for the selected week, "shop" my pantry first and check off all the things I already have, then head to the store and get the rest. Each day I can just look at the schedule and know what's for dinner. If there is any major prep, I can get it done earlier in the day, (when I actually have the energy to do it!), or earlier in the week and stick it in the fridge or freezer.

But don't worry! Some days are easy! I mixed in things like fish sticks, pizza, and mac & cheese. Sometimes chili will be homemade, sometimes it will come out of a can. Anyways...

Here it is! Print it out. Use it. Don't stress over dinner. :)

PS I have Diet Coke, milk, and orange juice on every shopping list. Those are just things we go through every week at our house. :)

Weekly Menu Plan (2 pages)

Week One Shopping List

Week Two Shopping List

Week Three Shopping List

Week Four Shopping List