Meal Planning: Not Always According to Plan

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Last week, I shared with you our meal plan for the month. And with many of my plans, not everything went according to schedule. Case in point:

Sunday evening I got sucked into the vortex called Walmart. By the time I made it out, my husband called to say they were starving. (It was 5 pm, but that time change was not kind to us.) Rather than wait the extra hour before I was home and could get dinner prepped, we chose to make that night our take-out night.

So, Monday we had both the 7 Layer Nachos (a freezer meal) and the Tri-tip. Yes, we felt fat and happy that night.

Tuesday was FishBoy10’s birthday. He chose KFC for his dinner. Easy on the prep, heavy on the fat count for the week.

Wednesday’s Spaghetti and Meatballs were great. Easy freezer meal to pull together.

Thursday my parents were here. My mom just makes me relax and so instead of cooking, I replaced that dinner plan with an impromptu Sandwich Night.

Friday night we had tacos as planned. Saturday, I had a major chicken thawing fail. So, I landed on my old stand by – pasta with red sauce. Not quite according to plan, but not take out either.

FishBoy10’s birthday cake

Not sure if it will go the way I think it will, but here’s the week’s plan:

14. Birthday Dinner – Costco Pizza
15. Roast Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Cranberry Sauce, Green Beans
16. Meatloaf, Rice, Green Salad
17. Spaghetti with Red Sauce, Salad, Garlic Bread
18. Field trip day — eating out
19. Pizza Night
20. Tacos

Do your meal plans go the way they want them?

About Jessica Fisher

I believe you can get great meals on the table -- and still keep that pretty smile on your face.

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  1. Angela Shrader says

    My last 3 weeks have been haywire…if it could go wrong it did. Last night a quick meal was scrambled eggs and ham. I would’ve normally done biscuits and gravy too, but it was LATE. But the good news is…my landlord gave me 2 huge bags of turnip greens (yay) I just have to bag them for the freezer (I cleaned and cooked them yesterday) and….my hubby bought a used upright freezer for $50!!! I’m so stinking happy. This week we’re going to get a freezer alarm, and now I have 2 fridges (with their respective freezers), a small chest freezer (for my deer meat), and now my upright! I am ready to get busy!!! Before I could do OAMC, but not stock on meats when they went on sale. Now I can do it all!!! WOOT WOOT!

  2. Do my meal plans always go according to plan? HA! That’s why it’s called a ‘plan’… that’s what I tell my family anyway. 🙂 But as you so wisely stated, no plan at all = big expenses and usually unhealthy choices. So better to have a plan that is flexible than to be at the mercy of what happens each day.

    BTW, Love the cake. My youngest son (also ten) is a Lego fanatic too.

  3. Thanks so much for keeping it real! We’ve also had some problems with sticking to the plan this month. Must be that time change!

  4. My meal plans rarely go as planned. Case in point – this past week. I was supposed to make Grilled Pork Chops with Maple-Apple Glaze but instead my son had ramen noodles while my husband and I nursed a bad cold on canned chicken soup. I did make the Teriyaki Seseme Chicken Wraps as all the work took place in the crockpot so it was easy peasy. We dropped the Friday pizza night plan and had more chicken noodle soup. Saturday’s plans failed as we couldn’t take the sickness to hubby’s grandma or my new grandbaby – I was feeling better though so I made the Pork that night. Lucky for us we had plenty of chicken soup on hand…this week I gotta restock that.

  5. Just this afternoon I went grocery shopping with my oldest son and it was sooooooo packed that we spent 2 hours there! Needless to say lasagna gave way to Wegman’s pizza! The time change was hard on us too, I think we finally adjusted this weekend. Also, I think they don’t put windows in Walmart and Target so we never leave!! I get so lost inside sometimes thinking of all the things I need/want!

  6. No mine doesn’t go as planned. At least I have a plan. This is my first time visiting your blog. Glad I stopped by!

  7. Awesome Lego truck cake! Oreos and gummies. My 3 year old would love that! Gonna have to keep that in mind for his 4th bday…

  8. Nope, were supposed to have ham, mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts. I put the ham in late though and everyone was starving. I ended up whipping up YOUR easy mac and cheese recipe. By the way, it was a hit. The ham is now in the fridge for tomorrow. Tomorrow I’ll be whipping up 16 servings of freezer mashed tater recipe I found at Momadvice. That way I can have some ready to go for Thanksgiving too.

    • Jessica Fisher says

      @CWALTZ, I was wishing that we had freezer mashed potatoes tonight. Only had 4 itty bitty potatoes. Made rice, but it just didn’t work with the rest of the menu. (We had the Costco pizza at lunch, so stuffed chicken for dinner.)

  9. Cool bday cake!!!! When I talked to him it sounded like he loved it!!! Is that a Lego from the after party party? Cute that he picked finger liking good chicken!

  10. I can’t think of the last week my meal plan went perfectly … It has been a busy couple of months! But I know I do better when I write down the plan! Otherwise it is total chaos … When you work outside the home entering the kitchen without a game plan at night is a disaster!

  11. I keep forgetting to put the paddles in the pan on my bread machine when I’m making pizza dough – so three times now we’ve had to opt for carryout from Pei Wei! Fortunately, they all like Pei Wei, but I always feel guilty dinging the dining-out budget unintentionally.

  12. I have just started using Relish to plan my weekly menus. They even have a freezer plan. I sure wish this had been around years ago! It takes so much of the planning off my list of to-do’s! And I absolutely LOVE the grocery list it generates automatically. Best $7 a month I have spent in a long time! Still homeschooling 4 of our 7 children, I did not spend enough time planning our meals on a regular basis and so “variety” tended to suffer. Now, we are definitely enjoying lots of variety. There’s even a feature where you can input your own recipes and it will save them for use in your weekly menus. (

  13. My menu plan rarely works 100% the way I expected it to… but I am still doing better than I would without it! I am going to have to check out some of your freezer meals — less time cooking means more time for cleaning (though I SO prefer the cooking to the cleaning…)

  14. We were going to have wild rice and shrimp casserole Saturday night…except that the wild rice was taking (even longer than usual) to cook, plus there would be 40 minutes of casserole cooking on top of that when it was finally done. Switched to grilled cheese and sandwiches and tomato soup, and had a head start on Sunday evening dinner. And the grilled cheese and tomato soup were nice for our first snow day of the year! (10 inches of wet, heavy stuff — great for the snowman, bad on the driveway)

  15. cathi carpenter says

    going as planned??Ok…so I’m snickering at myself…the phrase I love comes to mind….”man makes plans and God just laughs…” And honestly, I think I”m God’s very own personal sitcom sometimes…LOL! tonight…ah yes…thank god for a box of mac and cheese and hot dogs…but! Back in the day before I stocked up, stock piled, coupon clipped, it would have been Cheerios for dinner….not that those are bad…but…honestly…you can only go to those as a “go to” every so often! Love your blog!

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