Dinner time. Ugh! Why do these people need to eat every day? The plague of mothers everywhere – what’s for dinner? In my house, the solution has been a six-week rotating menu. My family sometimes gets tired of certain foods, so six weeks keeps things from getting old.
To begin, I made a list of every meal we regularly ate. I had my husband and kids help me think of things, including meals we hadn’t had in a while. I also included new dishes we wanted to try.
Next, I sorted all those meals. We’re meat and potatoes people, so I organized by type of meat – chicken, beef, pork, fish, other. I tried to spread things out so we weren’t eating three pork meals in a row. We enjoy having “Taco Tuesday,” but I wanted to switch that up, so I have beef tacos, chicken tacos, chicken fajitas, beef enchiladas, pork carnitas, and tortilla soup. I gradually filled in meals in pencil on a spreadsheet, then moved things around as needed. I have a few repeats but not many. There are three scheduled days that don’t really change: Friday is pizza night, Saturday is my hubby BBQing, and Sunday is leftover pizza from Friday. So I really only had to come up with 24 meals – four days each week.
Now that I have this menu set up, a little planning at the beginning of the week makes dinner time easy – shop for the whole week, keeping in mind any meals on the list that can be made in bulk and frozen. I no longer have to think, “What will I make for dinner tonight?” It’s all planned out, and I can run on autopilot.
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Vera is a Christian homeschooling mom to 3 boys and a baby girl, and her past life included a degree in Electrical Engineering and a job as a software developer prior to having kids. She started homeschooling January 2010, halfway through her oldest son’s first grade year. She lives in Alabama and has a small farm of horses and goats, aka nature’s lawnmowers. Her days involve wrangling boys, vacuuming German Shepherd hair, sewing, knitting, and computer programming.