It is so important to include meal planning in your daily rhythm. When you review your two weeks on the daily time tracker I provided yesterday, you will undoubtedly notice you spend time preparing meals regularly! Why not make this part of your day by planning for it?
There are so many meal planning resources on the internet that I won’t try to add to them with explanations or printables of my own. Instead I will share some of the sites for you to click to and explore which might work for you along with a few tips to meal planning.
Basics of Meal Planning
For some, meal planning may be as simple as including a space to write in a meal on a day planner. Others might need help coming up with meals in order to prep for them effectively by making a grocery list or setting enough time aside to properly make the meal. Some may struggle with making sure their meals are well-balanced.
Many stay-at-home-moms with little ones prepare several meals each day. It may include writing out three meals a day for each day of the week on a Sunday night. Moms with school-age children might find it beneficial to plan out lunches including specific items, set aside a place in the cupboard for non-refrigerated items and include the children’s involvement in the packing of lunches.
I simply use a board on my refrigerator and sticky notes for the evening meal. It’s not the prettiest thing in the world, but it does the trick for me! Do a quick search on Pinterest and you will find many ideas for meal planning!
Why meal planning as part of my daily rhythm?
There are so many simple ways to make meal planning part of your day. Along with the other ideas I have shared about developing a daily rhythm, take your time and try a few ways to plan ahead for meals, possibly even prepping for them early in the day. I have found that planning out my meals in advance helps me to spend less on groceries, serve meals my boys like, and eat healthier (rather than leftovers or take out!)
Simply put, I’m encouraging you to think about integrating meal planning into your daily rhythm rather than leaving it as an afterthought – something that makes the rhythm stop flowing before meal time in your home, causing stress and cranky kids (and adults).
OK – here are just a few resources to get you started thinking about meal planning and how you can integrate it into your daily rhythm ~
Pepperplate – Pepperplate helps you meal plan by managing your recipes, create meal plans and create shopping lists. I haven’t used this personally, but am wanting one place for all of my recipes and be able to create meal plans at the drop of a hat! Once you create a free account you can use it on the web, iOS, Android, Nook, and Kindle devices, so its easy to have at your fingertips in the kitchen.
Plan to Eat – This costs $4.95 per month, with a free 30 day trial, but the reviews are great! It seems so simple and straightforward and like a great resource to planning healthy meals for your family.
Paprika – Paprika is an app for download, which helps you “organize your recipes, make meal plans, and create grocery lists.” At the time of this post, it costs $4.99 in iTunes.
Tip Junkie has a multitude of links for all sorts of meal planning printables from weekly calendars to budgeting for groceries.
Organized Home has such simple printables and this weekly menu planner includes Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.
The Nourishing Home has several printables as well as a free video course for Mastering Meal Planning.