When we grocery shop, it's usually one large trip at the beginning of the month with one or two small ones thrown in for stuff like milk, bread and eggs. While this is a good thing, what inevitably ends up happening is that the last week and a half or so of the month we have a little of this and a bit of that, and none of it adds up to a meal. Which, in our book, sucks. Towards the end of last month I got to thinking that if I had some idea of what the kids might want for dinners in July, we'd be able to shop more efficiently and make sure that we had good meals all month.
This little idea exploded into a list of 15 meals, with desserts, that were spread out evenly over the 31 days of July. I can't even express how fantastic this has been so far. No standing in front of the fridge or pantry trying to decide what to cook, or trying to figure out if all the ingredients needed for a specific dish just happen to be lying around. Granted, this does mean that I can't really be spontaneous with meals, but since we chose a really diverse group of meals, I'm not too worried about spontaneity.
And one of the other great things about this is that it was easy to do. I get a meat package from Jaworski's Meat Market every month. Sometimes it's the #2, sometimes the #3, and if I have enough to spare, I go for the #5. Knowing which meat package I was going to get this month allowed Karina and I to plan meals based on the meat we knew we would have on hand. Then I got kind of crazy and typed up the grocery list in Word, organized the items into groups (with headings), and printed out the list. Karina rolled her eyes at me...she's the list holder when we shop. On the other hand, she's the one who organized the meals/desserts list you see above and put the meal numbers on the calendar.
Our first real "planned" meal was for the 4th: a host of finger foods and an awesome dessert table.
|stuffed mushrooms, hungarian sausage bites, assorted chips, pickled vegetables, various dips, deviled eggs, olives, dilled green tomatoes, fresh vegetables, mozzarella sticks and jalapeno poppers|
|a cake-which-cannot-yet-be-named, mocha cream filled puffs, black forest cherry cake, banana pudding, and strawberry cheesecake trifle|
Seeing these pictures has once again reminded me that I am not a photographer, not even of the amateur variety. I think I'll be taking a digital photography class as one of my electives while I go to culinary school.