I have a friend who swears she would read my blog everyday if I put a post up to tell her what to make for dinner. The trouble with that is, I don’t know what I am having for dinner, so how could I possibly write that for her. I’ve been thinking, and I think I might have a solution for me and for her.
There was a time, when I faithfully made my dinner every morning after breakfast, from a menu I created every Saturday night, with ingredients I purchased at the grocery store from a well-planned grocery list. Somewhere along the way I got sidetracked. The problem is I really, really, really like to cook, and I have some fussy eaters, and I enjoy food so much, that I wanted my kids to have the same great experience. A good meal for us, and my oldest son, and plain stuff for the others. As a result, I started making separate meals for each one. I know, the cardinal sin Mothers are never supposed to commit. It’s not as bad as it is for some Moms. But look what happened. I burned out, and now I freeze when I walk into the kitchen. And, despite the prayer, dinner time just brings back so many … painful …. memories.
I’m getting braver about saying no, and saying I guess you’ll just have to go hungry. And slowly, it seems to be sinking in. I’m not afraid of the dinner table so much anymore, and they are starting to eat a little better. My biggest weapon is dessert, a little something at the end of every meal. Just makes everything go down much smoother. (And, none of you have the TV on during dinner do you? Including breakfast time?)
Meal planning. Some e-meal organizers have sent me free subscriptions to their services, asking that I try them out, and let you know what I think. Quite frankly, I won’t even bother to tell you who they are, because it was basically a poorly designed database of casseroles. For “after the game,” they suggested a quick salad, which involved cutting and peeling over 10 different vegetables. I will spare you the agony of plodding through that.
But, I did find something we can all use. FoodNetwork, has an awesome page called the weekly meal planner. What makes this one unique, is it involves making one large feast on Sunday (or adapt to any day that suits you), with four to five “left-over” recipes to use throughout the week. On the page, I see four main meals. So, I could probably make two large feasts per week, freeze the leftovers, and rotate the leftover meals throughout the week, so that we’re not having turkey every night. After about two weeks, you’ll have enough variety to keep things happy.
The only drawback I see to the site is this: How often is it updated? Is this a static page? Do they change it by season? I guess I will soon find out.
So, for my friend, I guess I could just put up a little note somewhere on my page about what we’re having for dinner, and refer you to the recipes, and tell you how the recipe went, and how the kids reacted. And maybe my friend could leave a comment about whether she tried it, and how it the whole meal went at her house. Once I get it all figured out, I’ll let you know.
Later, I’ll share my trick for keeping my pantry completely organized and stocked. It’s pretty snappy and easy.
Last year’s Thanksgiving Feast, with all the cousins. Makes me want to sit at the kid table all over again.