So I give a LOT of thought to dinner. Way more than I feel like any normal person should but the fact is that 7 days a week, 52 weeks of the year, my family of four monkeys and one KOJ expects to be fed dinner in the evening hours. Some people just do this so naturally but I feel so stressed out about the whole prospect. I will say that the freezer full of meals was amazing. There was only stress if I forgot to take out a meal (which I admit happened more than once) but for the majority of a month I just dumped it in, turned it on, and left it be. Sigh.
Alas this past month the time to prep just never happened. On top of that I just prefer more variety in my meals. I have a confession to make. In our house my kids eat their vegetables before they eat their meat and most often ask for seconds. In my house the kids and husband would eat spaghetti every day of the week if I let them, or pizza, or tacos, or meatloaf, or lasagna, or crock pot mac n cheese. In my house, wait for it....... I am the picky one. I eat some vegetables, I eat apples and maybe once a year a banana. I love chicken and hate fish, I love all the meals I listed above but I need more variety than that. I like to try new recipes and wow the family (it's quite unfortunate that a 2yr old isn't all that impressed with fancy meals). There have been times when what we're having for dinner just plain does NOT appeal to me. I generally either don't eat it, choke down a couple bites in front of the kids and eat something later, or don't make it at all.
So I'm considering a change in our dinner routine. The thing is I wouldn't eat the same meal every week. I wouldn't eat tacos every Tuesday but I would probably be fine to eat them every other Tuesday. So I think I'm going to make a meal plan that spans a month - 31 days in this case to be covered for the longest month. I'll leave a couple of days blank for trying new recipes. Some will just be general like "baked chicken, with veggie, and couscous" so I can flavor the chicken different ways each time I make it. Whatever we have on hand or are in the mood for.
I took a poll on my facebook the other night to see how others do dinner and the answers were all over the board as far as methods for planning it out. Made me feel better. I think too that it would be ideal to go back to prepping all of our meals for the week in one day at one time. Mondays are going to be that day I think. It takes a lot of energy to prep the meals and do the dishes and honestly I prefer to relax on the weekend and not work straight through and my family likes me better too when I relax rather than work all weekend. It's all one big balancing act in life. I never did enjoy the balance beam but oh well. Maybe someday I will at least be decent at balancing.
Please do leave a comment about how YOU do dinner. I love to hear how others do things that I struggle with because sometimes it's just great inspiration.