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Monday, January 3, 2011
Mondays with Nonnie: Planning Ahead -- Our Dinner Menu for 2011
It was Wednesday by the time I realized I had missed posting on Monday last week! I LOVE VACATIONS!! This week I put together our family's menu for this year. It really is simple, but it works for the stage we're in (four kids 9 and under, plus a hard working, hungry husband). I make one meal plan for the month and cycle it through for the year with occasional changes for Holidays as well as changing things up a little seasonally. This plan has many benefits for our family by taking out the stress of 'What's for Dinner?' Also, I'm excited to put the Hip to Clip Ladies tips and advise to good use as I now know what I'm shopping for this year (food wise) and can better plan for saving as well!!
For example Mondays-Pasta (wk 1 spaghetti, wk 2 lasagna, wk 3 zitti, wk 4 cheese ravioli, wk 5 (extra) I chose a meal from a new recipe book I received for Christmas and will try a new dish each 5th week. Tuesday- Chicken (five different chicken dishes for each week), Wednesday- soup/bread/salad for the Winter and Fall and sandwich/salad for Spring and Summer ( I have a different recipe for each week from a easy and yummy soup/salad/sandwiches recipe book I bought a few years ago in the checkout line in Spain). Thursday- Casserole Dishes (my kids least favorite at the beginning of the year but by the end of the year they are so used to the dishes, and have their favorites, that they ask what Thurs we are on! Friday- Homemade Pizza; they make their own pizzas in the Fall/ Winter and in the Spring/Summer we have hamburgers/tacos/ hot dogs bars, Saturday- Fish Night (my favorite:), they only like fish and chip night, however, salmon is coming in a close second. Sunday is when we usually have guests over and that is when we have our nice meat night, ie roast, brisket, ham etc. As far as breakfast is concerned I plan those out as well Seasonally (hot meals during the school year and lighter ones during the late Spring/Summer!) Lunch is pretty open since they are not always home for lunch and when they are I let them 'assemble' their own as long as they follow the chart on the fridge...I'll save that for another Monday! Happy New Year, Happy Eating, Happy Shopping, and Happy Breathing Easier where meal planning is concerned!!