We have a meal schedule. We have to, it is just easier that way. Working full-time and having 3 small children makes impulse dinners impossible! As soon as I pick up the girls, they are digging through their lunch boxes for anything they didn’t eat at lunch time! They manage to survive the ride home without starving to death…but they are in the kitchen within minutes asking about dinner. Because of this ritual I have learned 2 things….the first is that all meals are planned and usually made ahead of time. This way, only heating is required. And the second is to have cut veggies ready to go! I pull them out and make a quick arrangement on a plate, plop it down on the table, and everyone is happy to pick until dinner is ready to eat!
Our meal schedule looks something like this:
Throw Back Thursdays
Fish Stick Fridays
Macaroni does not have to mean pasta with sauce. We do cavatelli and broccoli with sausage, baked ziti, or bake macaroni and cheese. Whatever Wednesdays are really just that…sometimes we have breakfast, burgers, or whatever comes to mind! Throw Back Thursdays are the day I open the fridge and the girls can have whatever leftovers they want! This is probably their favorite day…and a great way to clean out the fridge before the weekend! Add your own spin on the days. They are just a helpful guide line so you don’t have to panic on your drive home.
I even schedule the girl’s lunches. This way I know what to pack for them without trying to be creative or having to think too much at 5:30 am! Meal planning is also a great way to budget at the food store and helps to lessen impulse buys!!
Looking for some great meal planning apps? Here are a few. Find one that works best for you!
Or even just a good old fashion calendar can do the job!! Good luck and happy meal planning! Here is a link to a free printable weekly meal planner.