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My mom has been doing menu planning ever since I can remember.
Almost every week she’d sit down at our kitchen table and write down meal ideas for a week or two at a time. She’d go back and forth from the table to the cupboard, to the table and over to the refrigerator to see if we had any of the ingredients in the home for some of the meals she was planning. My mom would then ask us what we were hungry for, after my dad, of course.
With this example, it is no wonder I am doing this now.
Of course, when I was in High School, this was one of my assignments. I had to plan a week of meals and then make a grocery list for it. For my “final” exam, I had to plan ONE meal, invite no less than four guests, set a date, manage the RSVPs, make a grocery list of the ingredients I’d need, go shopping to purchase them…on a budget no less, I had to make the whole meal on my own, set the table pretty, and serve the meal nice and hot. Let’s just say I did a lot.
My final “grade” was an A. That was nice! Although, I wasn’t exactly done the minute my guests started to arrive…oh, that’s another thing, I had to figure out when to start cooking dinner in order to be done when the guests arrived…the food was good and the ladies really enjoyed it.
I know do menu/meal planning every other week. In my house, I’m in charge of lunches, although I help on occasion with dinners. My mom and I get together at our newer kitchen table and plan our meals for the next two weeks. I actually have come to enjoy this, just because I know what I have to do each day, and I could know around what time I would have to start making lunch every day to be ready for our lunchtime. Not only that, but if you have your menu plan in view of the family, you’ll get less questions of “What’s for Lunch/Dinner?”
Here is what the Menu Planner looks like that you can print and use for your family…
I thought maybe you’d enjoy looking at how it looks like when I have it filled out like I would at home! Here is a peek of what our homes menu plan for one week might look like.
Meal planning has definitely taught me to think ahead, to plan, to have a “calendar” of events for future reference. Not only has this helped me think ahead, it has also taught me to use what we already have in the home, such as, whether or not we have beef in the freezer enough for the meals for two weeks, do we have enough butter for these four recipes, etc.
My mom has also noticed that when me plan our meals out in such a way as what we are currently doing, we save money because we don’t spend our money on everything under the sun or overbuy items that we don’t need. So, in reality, menu/meal planning helps out a lot!
*Disclaimer: Meal planning in advance isn’t easy, but after some practice it comes a lot easier!
Do you meal plan in your family?I will receive commission on any sales made on my blog. To learn more, read my disclosure policy.