I haven’t resorted to meal planning for ages. But this little beauty is inspiring me this week. No set days, simply meal ideas to use the ingredients I have in abundance. Leeks, potatoes, spinach, fresh veg, free organic bones gifted us and incorporating a variety of protein. I’m aiming to make big enough batches and have lunch leftovers each day. (And it be yummy enough to want to revisit) then it’s only two fresh meals a day to contend with and hopefully little waste. Phew. Sometimes it’s an epic mission just procuring some nourishment and other times it comes effortlessly.
I’m blessed to be a mama at home presently with time to put into our meals so I’m refocusing.
With my goal to provide fresh, wholesome, nutritious meals every meal time, it can get overwhelming at times. Then it’s good to remember my friend saying, lovingly cooked eggs on toast is more nutritious than resentfully cooking an elaborate meal.
I used to tease a certain sister about her meal roster, until I was exhausted in the second baby days. I could not think straight about much or cook without burning something while I made the rest or come out with some weird uninspired dishes. The other trap is gastronomic boredom with the same five meals in rotation. I was losing a lot of weight and interest In eating and really needed a shift.
Really hard times that I’m sure some of you can relate to. Whether its a challenge from grief, anxiety, depression, exhaustion, overload, overwork, busy family life or other factors keeping our bodies well nourished can be a hard ask, which is essential to look at for good health and mental health.
I made a list of dishes I could make easily. Plus 10 I wanted to eat that where from friends or books. Plus jesses handful of dishes. Wrote them onto scraps of paper with blank backs for future additions and popped them into a jar. A lucky dip ensued and there pinned on a weekly chart was my meal ideas. I didn’t have to think about what was coming in the kitchen next. Phew!! So easy So clever so smart. Easy to shop once or twice a week. Easy to change or skip meals around. Easy to prepare legumes or grains in advance. I enjoyed tHe liberation of the day without “what the heck am I going to cook tonight ” looming over me all day. It was a step in realizing organization can free up more energy and time for doing other things!
So at this time of transition back to a big house, school rhythms, work rhythms and town life I look to these little tricks which help me keep up with myself and make my days a little more free and enjoyable.
Even if I don’t use it, I feel supported by a fall back plan!
What are some meals you would put In Your jar?
If you are the main cook in your home, what helps you keep inspired about your task?