I thought I'd spend a little time this week talking about food (a topic I usually leave to the food blogs). Particularly how to feed your family. I've realized over the years that I much prefer having a solid plan of action rather than opening the fridge at 5 PM trying to rustle up some dinner.
You can read about my approach to meal planning over on Design Mom today. You can even download my grocery list. It's a simple system that really works for me. You plan four meals a week, Monday through Thursday. (Friday is date night, and Saturdays we eat pizza during Movie Night.. Sundays are usually dinner with my extended family or friends and require their own shopping if we're hosting.) Because I buy different things at different stores, I have sections for 4 stores on my grocery list. The biggest section is our main grocery store (where we buy most of our packaged foods and cleaning items) and the other sections are Trader Joe's (we love their milk, their premade pizza dough and their healthy snacks), Costco (for fruit and some types of meat), and Henry's (where we buy most of our produce). If you frequent different stores, you can download this editable grocery list and type in the names of the stores you shop at.
We'll start with my approach to meal planning and later this week we'll talk about my favorite cookbooks (you can see a few in the pile above). And I'd love to hear about the things that work for you. How do you approach meal planning? How do you manage to eat dinner as a family despite busy schedules? Any tips for getting my 5 year old to start eating everything on her plate?