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Meal Planning : It’s Whats On The Menu

Meal Planning: It's Whats for Dinner

The cool thing about having a family is that you get to learn a whole ton of new skills that you never thought you’d need. Meal planning is one of those skills that you’d think is a no brainer but it actually takes a lot of brain power. And when you are a busy mom, sometimes brain power is in short supply.

Storing, preparing, and shopping for meals with three rambunctious kiddos puts me into a cycle of panic. Meal time involves the sweats, anxiety, overspending, lots of guilt over eating out and massive kitchen messes. I have spent countless hours looking up recipes, meal planning and shopping worksheets. I have inventoried and prepped and stored. It can often be overwhelming and stressful and I needed a better solution. Many moms and blogs have ideas and tips and while these are all fantastic, they are abundant and one can get lost in the search for a solid plan.

My first solution comes in the form of lists. I am the queen of making lists! My lists consist of an inventory of the cabinets and fridge, so I know what we have what we are running out of and what we use but need. For me when I slow down and map out two weeks of meals at a time, I find that I can break down shopping and meal making into manageable chunks.

When meal planning I keep a few helpful hints in mind. Lunches for the kids and Hubby can vary, from leftovers, to a strict planned and supplied small meals. Sandwiches and salads, or tortilla and fruit bites. My kids love snacks and having many on hand would help keep them from needing giant and planned meals all day. Breakfasts for both my Hubby and the kids can be similar and pre planned. My family likes oats, eggs, breakfast bars and yogurt. These ideas work well with a side of fruit and milk or coffee in my Hubby’s instance. For Dinners there are also a few things that I keep in mind. Once a week at least, vegetarian meals are a great idea inspired by my cousin whom has recently converted. And Once a week having a “Left Overs Night” can help with clearing out the fridge. One final hack, I have found recently is using a grocery shopping service. I have used it once a week and it can save me all the stressful trips, and return-trips to the store. I have recently tried Instacart { } and I really enjoyed it! Try my code: VMCCARTHY1A11E4

{I plan on giving a more in depth review on another post, let me know what you would like to hear too!}

When it comes to planning meals for your family what tools and hacks have you found that work out the best ? Let me know in the comments if you have any great tips for family meal planning.

#Planning #Groceries #Food #Family #Instacart #MealPlanning

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