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Time -Saving Meal Plans

Time -Saving Meal Plans

Q: Now that I started a part-time job I can't find the time to plan, shop or make meals for my family.  Any suggestions?

A: Kudos to you for going back to work.  The term 'working mom' has always been a bit of a contradiction to me since I believe, every mom works!! When you combine it with paid work then you have a mom working double time.

Here are some ideas that have been helpful in our house:

-Use one day to plan out meals for the week (Sunday worked for me )  

-Once you have your meals planned out- use your recipe cards to help you create your weekly shopping list to avoid missing an ingredient.

-To save some time in the store, write up your shop list in the order of how the grocery store is laid out. Attach coupons with a paper clip to the list and you're ready.

-When possible, double a recipe and freeze for another week. Or, store in the fridge and plan a "leftover night".

-Pull out your crock pot!  It's the closest thing to having a chef in the house.  There are thousands of recipes online- my favorite website is www.crockpot365.com

-Search the internet for recipes that are "quick" or have "5 ingredients or less".  

-Spend a little extra time one day to chop all of the veggies you like in your salad (cucumbers, peppers, onions, skip the tomatoes). Store them in an air-tight container.  Add a little bit each night to your salad bowl. Putting a salad together just got faster and easier. 

-Recruit some help from your kids where possible. 

-Consider designating one night a week for a favorite easy meal.  At our house, it's tacos. 

-When there is a day that does not go as planned, I like having a few staples on hand for a fast  last minute meal. Frozen burgers(veggie or beef) and buns. Home made tomato sauce and pasta. Soup and grilled cheese.

-When you have created 4 weeks of meals, repeat. Using a blank calendar template will help you keep track.  Or, record it all on your electronic calendar.

Getting Your Life in Order!

~S

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