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Meal Planning: One Month At A Time

Posted By Jessica Fisher On November 29, 2009 @ 11:43 pm In Meal Planning | 7 Comments

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At this time last month I made three decisions that have drastically changed my life for the better.

  1. I started going to bed a lot earlier [4].
  2. I filled my freezer [5] with several weeks’ worth of prepared meals.
  3. I planned our menus for a whole month [6].
While the month of November certainly hasn’t been perfect, it has gone a lot more smoothly, particularly with illnesses, birthdays, the holiday, and out-of-town travel and all its packing and unpacking. Not to mention just life in general. In fact, I can’t imagine doing anything differently for the month of December with its birthdays, holidays, out-of-town travel and all its packing and unpacking. Not to mention just life in general.
If you haven’t made one of these three things your habit, I highly suggest giving one of them a try. For help in creating a month-long meal plan, check out these suggestions [6]. And, join MoneySavingMom [7] and I this week if you’d like to learn more about preparing make-ahead meals [8] to save time and money.

Obviously, #2 and #3 kind of go hand in hand. This weekend I spent some time planning and shopping so that I can cook up a veritable storm this coming week. Not only did having a long term plan save me time and money this past month, but it also added more variety to our diet. I’m hopeful that we’ll see similar results in December.

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Here’s our meal plan for December:

1. Roast Turkey and all the Fixings
2. Beef Ragu, Pasta, Garlic Foccaccia, Green Salad
3. Beef Taquitos, Beans, and Rice
4. Pizza [10] and Salad
5. Macaroni and Cheese [11], Steamed Veggies
6. Turkey Enchilada Casserole [12], Beans and Rice
7. Shredded Beef [13] and Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Squaw Bread
8. Turkey Pot Pie [14], Green Salad
9. Spaghetti and Meatballs, Salad, Garlic Bread
10. Tamales, Beans and Rice
11. Pizza [10] and Salad
12. Asian Stirfry, Rice
13. Pasta with Red Sauce and Sausages [15]
14. Nachos [16]
15. Shredded Beef Tacos [17]
16. Peanut Butter Chicken [18]
17. Turkey Enchilada Casserole, Beans, Rice
18. Pizza [10] and Salad
19. FAMILY XMAS Dinner
20. Roast Turkey and the Trimmings
21. Boules de Picolat [19], Boiled Potatoes, Green Salad, Baguette
22. Burritos
23. Fajitas, Rice and Beans
24. Summer Rolls [20], Rice, Potstickers [21]
25. Pizza [10] and Salad
26. Swedish Meatballs, Mashed Potatoes, Steamed Veggies
27. Macaroni and Cheese [11], Salad
28. Chimichangas [22]
29. Ragu and Pasta, Salad, Foccaccia
30. Whatever Our Kansas Visitors Want to Eat
31. ALL SORTS OF FUN SNACKY FOOD

What have you got cooking this month? Visit I’m an Organizing Junkie [23] for more meal planning inspiration each week.


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[2] free updates via email: http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=lifeasmom/oGdA

[3] Image: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_89L9ZoBsR08/SwLHEOqpnQI/AAAAAAAAGio/Fr0N9K5pr2g/s1600/GCE+Photos+151.jpg

[4] going to bed a lot earlier: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/11/get-good-habit-going-challenge.html

[5] filled my freezer: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/11/freezer-cooking-day-2-end-result.html

[6] menus for a whole month: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/11/meal-planning-planning-more-than-one.html

[7] MoneySavingMom: http://www.moneysavingmom.com/

[8] preparing make-ahead meals: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/11/freezer-cooking-day-reminder.html

[9] Image: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_89L9ZoBsR08/SooH1SqjVGI/AAAAAAAAF8k/GgNtmACSed4/s1600-h/2009+Blog+142.jpg

[10] Pizza: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/07/basic-homemade-pizza.html

[11] Macaroni and Cheese: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/01/recipe-swap-comfort-food.html

[12] Turkey Enchilada Casserole: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/03/urs-hot-and-spicy.html

[13] Shredded Beef: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/06/shredded-beef-filling.html

[14] Turkey Pot Pie: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/09/ultimate-recipe-swap-favorite-fall.html

[15] Pasta with Red Sauce and Sausages: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/03/urs-pasta.html

[16] Nachos: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/09/ultimate-recipe-swap-better-for-you.html

[17] Shredded Beef Tacos: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/06/good-cheap-eat-shredded-beef-tacos.html

[18] Peanut Butter Chicken: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2008/05/frugal-friday-stretching-meats.html

[19] Boules de Picolat: http://www.lifeasmom.com/2009/03/urs-freezer-friendly-recipes.html

[20] Summer Rolls: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/10/summer-rolls.html

[21] Potstickers: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/11/potstickers-with-dipping-sauce.html

[22] Chimichangas: http://www.goodcheapeats.com/2009/05/chimichangas.html

[23] I’m an Organizing Junkie: http://orgjunkie.com/category/menu-plan-monday

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