Routines and Meal Planning
I love to cook. I enjoy going to the farmers market once a week. I dislike shopping at the grocery store.
How do I max out my joy factors and minimize the stress when meal planning?
I have a routine.
Saturday morning, I:
look at my calendar for events on the upcoming week
look over my menu chart on the fridge from the previous week
pull out my stash of menus that I like or that I would like to try
determine what I will cook each day – paying attention to when I am taking food over to a friend, days I will have little time to actually cook, days we have to eat early because of evening meetings, days we have to eat late because of busy schedules, days we will eat leftovers
pull the recipes I chose to prepare and make a list of all the ingredients I will purchase – I have two grocery lists – one for the market and one for the grocery store
look at our running list of needed items and add them to the appropriate shopping list
type out the menu plan for the week on my template and put it on the fridge
Now I am ready to shop. I have all the fresh ingredients on the Farmers Market list. I love going there and picking out the exact piece of fish or meat I want, digging my hands down into the mounds of green beans and choosing exactly what I want, looking at the signs that say were the produce was grown so I can choose my vegetables and fruits with that in mind. Next, I am off to the grocery store where I make my run through and grab all that I need for the week.
Back home, I put all the items away and take a rest. One of the items on my list each week is fresh flowers. Those will be in clean vases by the evening. They are my reward for doing the shopping task.
I now know that I am set for the week and have my plan on what foods I will prepare. I have had people question this process by saying, “I don’t know what I’ll want to eat Wednesday evening”. For me, if I have the intention out there and I am looking forward to producing that meal on Wednesday, it will work for me and I know I have everything I need to prepare the meal. However, if another opportunity comes up, I can certainly make changes.
Jonda S. Beattie Professional Organizer