Get it Together: Menus and Market Monday

After two years of taking college courses alongside my husband and having our children at home for school, I have a lot of systems that need to be tweaked for our family. I often hear from others how organized I seem, however, this does not mean I always do what I know I should do.

Our family has many routines in place from years of working the FlyLady system (I highly recommend her). What I needed was different weekly plan. Then I attended Relevant and Courtney reminded us of the weekly schedule she posted on her blog.

I think the best thing about this schedule is that days and duties (mostly) start with the same letters. Kids of almost all ages and husbands who want to help but feel overwhelmed with our demands can all remember this. This means they are better able to help me.

Mondays – Menus and Markets

TuesdaysToilets, Tubs and Towels

WednesdaysWash Day

Thursdays – Dust (well, they both have the letters d, u, s, &t)

FridaysFloors

Instead of just sharing the schedule with you, I thought I would pass along challenges, successes, questions or tips for each day this week. This is my third week of working with this plan. I have yet to do a full week on the scheduled day.

Mondays – Menus and Markets

I usually pickup a Sunday paper after church and pull out the coupons and grocery ads. You may hate the idea of using coupons. Fine, just skip that part. If you want to use them but do not know where to start, I highly recommend Money Saving Mom’s series on improving your grocery budget. What I think many of us are missing is the menus part of Menus and Market. In fact, our house has been missing this part for some time.

After a little bit of effort this weekend, I now have dinner planned through December 18th. We will probably swap some nights and there will probably be days where I throw in the towel and eat out. If we hit our goal 90% of the time though, we will save a ton of money and be more aware of what we are consuming. Did I mention the money we will surely save?

I have had several requests for my menu list. Ours includes page numbers to recipes we like in our cookbooks, has no dietary restrictions your family may have, etc.  Making this work for you is actually quite simple.

IMG_2236

1. Write down whatever you do have for dinner for at least one week. Even if you are going to order pizza tonight, eat fast food burgers tomorrow and go to the local Mexican place on Wednesday, just write it down. What you are eating each night is your plan, no matter how good or healthy it is at the moment.

IMG00101

2. Stop right now and write down three things you would make for dinner if you had nothing planned and it were 6pm in your kitchen with the entire family standing there cranky and hungry (I may be the only one who has experienced this, so just imagine with me if necessary).

3. Once you have at least seven meals, you have a week’s worth and you can repeat them every week for a month if necessary. If you feel like you would be making the same thing all the time, you would only eat the same meal four times in a month.

4. Now you can decide if you want to have more variety. Try one new recipe per week, incorporate some you have tried in the past or make a double batch of something to stick in the freezer for another night.

Do you or your family members have a favorite meal? What would it mean to them if you made it for them this week?