December 28, 2012

Kick Off!

My name is Sandra MacNeil.  I’m married and a mom of an (almost) 4 year old girl.  I work full-time, get home after five and typically stand in front of the fridge for at least 5 minutes trying to come up with something healthy to feed my family.  As much as I love to cook this is the most challenging part of my day.  A few years ago my husband signed up for Simply for Life – this was our first intro to meal planning.  I loved having my meals planned for me, one trip to the grocery store, less waste and no thinking involved!   I’ve tried various methods of meal planning since – once a week cooking, planning suppers only and winging it for breakfast and lunch, planning all meals.... each method had their pros and cons and ultimately some planning is definitely better than none but I always seem to lose my steam and fall back into bad habits. 

So I’ve decided to commit to meal planning for the next 52 weeks.  And I thought 'hey, if I'm doing all this work and saving myself time and money, maybe I'll blog my plans and save other people time and money too!'  My primary goal is to save time – fewer trips to the grocery store and less time standing in front of the fridge wondering what to make for supper.  My second goal is to save money – a well planned meal plan means I only buy what I need which also means less waste.  It also results in less eating out but this is in no way a commitment to not eat out for next year!  I love eating out but would prefer it to be for special occasions or the occasional planned treat, not quick trips to Wendy’s because I’m too lazy to cook.
And now for my disclaimer – this is not a ‘diet’ nor am I a trained dietician!   No one in my house has allergies, it’s not gluten-free, dairy free or anything else free – although it is free to follow me!!  It’s not vegetarian and it’s not ‘real’ food – although I do hope that better planning will also result in greatly reducing the processed food in our diets.  We have followed Simply for Life and Weight Watcher Points Plus and have had success with both plans for weight loss.  While this isn’t strictly either of those plans either I do keep the rules for both plans in mind when I meal plan.  Basically we’re lovers of all food so hopefully you’ll find a good variety and can easily substitute when our plan doesn’t meet the preferences or dietary restrictions of your family. 
This is how it’s going to work -- After dabbling in a lot meal planning methods what I find works best for me is planning from Monday to Friday for all meals.  I sometimes include Sunday if I want to big batch something for the week ahead but I like to leave the weekends free so we can clean up on odds and ends.  I’ll post the plan at the end of the week, so really you’ll be following me a week behind.  I find even the best planned weeks end up with some mid-week tweaking – maybe one meal stretched into two, or something I thought I’d have more leftovers of didn’t quite work out, etc... so you’ll get the tried, tested and true plan.
I hope you find this useful!  Feel free to post comments, suggestions or meal ideas!  I’d love to hear your feedback.

1 comment:

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