meal planning & budget

November 10, 2012

i go through seasons of doing a really good job with meal planning. for the most part, i do plan … and have a piece of paper held by a magnet on the side of our fridge, listing the meals for the week. i feel SO much better with a good plan in place, and a corresponding grocery list created and shopped for so that all the items are on hand.

i struggle with keeping on budget and so i’ve decided this month that my goal is to stick within our budget, no matter what.

{i remember my grandmother commenting that receiving meals after caleb’s birth meant more than just not having to cook; it’s the entire process of planning, shopping and then cooking that’s so burdensome. i agree!!}

and yet, it’s a part of the work i’m called to do as i manage our home … feeding my family!

so here’s what i’ve done:

last night, i lay in bed and wrote up a grocery list for costco. we will go this weekend and stock up on some essentials (big bag of brown rice, cheese, black beans, coconut oil, coffee, turkey bacon, organic ground beef, bread, almond butter, and fruit).

this morning, i went through my (total eyesore, insanely messy) stack of recipes, cookbooks, cooking magazines and binder on my counter ( i am a huge collector of recipes … always looking and finding good ones online, in magazines, you name it).

i took a huge stack to the table and began to draft a list of dinner options. my goal was to create a list of meals for 2 weeks that i would repeat the second 2 weeks. well, i ended up writing about 25 recipes down, and those i wrote i also put in a separate pile.

mid-process … such a mess!

of course, i had multiple interruptions … caleb needed feeding, josiah needed attention, etc! par for the course of a mama, for sure.

finally, i selected meals for this coming week. with hubby going out of town, i selected meals that would be tasty and easy for me and the kiddos and left some of the more hubby-happy meals for the next week.

my goal is to spend $75 per week over the next 4 weeks.

i believe that with careful planning and some self-control, i can do it!

i’d love to know how you all plan meals for your family! what is your process?

{the list of the meals that made my final list? my “tex mex” creation, pot roast, stuffed acorn squash, crockpot chicken quinoa, pizza, quinoa meatloaf, chili, fish, whole roast chicken, beef & tomato stew, chicken coconut cumin skillet, sour cream chicken enchiladas, beans/rice/pico, mexican lasagna, barley & veggie soup, turkey/kale/brown rice soup, and minestrone soup}.

oh! i also wrote down some breakfast ideas … overnight steel cut oats, homemade gluten-free waffles, cereal, oatmeal bake. i typically don’t have a set plan for breakfast although many nights, i will soak and/or do some prep for the following morning.

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One Response to “meal planning & budget”

  1. Leaves Heal Says:

    I buy the staples in bulk, seasonings and spices in bulk… everything we use regularly in bulk.
    Then, depending on what’s in the house– that’s what’s for dinner LOL!
    I admire your diligence in planning ahead. Go, Mama!
    Remember your protein 😉
    Love to you!


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