combating “I dunno”

meal planningI struggle to plan meals out more than a day or two in advance. Combine our dietary preferences, restrictions, and choices with a desire not to waste what we purchase, and I believe you’ll understand the challenge.

I’m still playing with how best to plan out what I need to purchase and what those goods and the contents of our pantry will create. I found that without a doubt 3×5 index cards work best for me. I’ve used a few different formats to track meals, groceries, and staple items to purchase. They work because i can fold one up into my wallet and thus remember to bring it to the store, and then I can attach it to the cabinet door so it’s in front of me as I stand near the stove.

I need to leave more room for more than the main dish in the planning. I once put a slab of tofu in front of E and didn’t even realize until it was on the table that I only had part of a complete meal. I’m not saying I need segmented plates for protein-starch-greens-dessert, but my planning shouldn’t forget other aspects of a healthy and balanced meal.

Once I settle on the best layout, I will create a proper template and share it if anyone is so interested.

I try to leave a margin of flexibility into the planning. For example, I don’t even remember what was originally scheduled for tonight, but I returned home late after a client visit and we needed to do last minute Rosh Hashanah preparations. Thus, gnocchi was served. Quick easy and gluten free.

How do you plan to combat both the “I dunno” meals or my other fear of falling into a rut of serving rice with tofu and veggies every single night for weeks (not that it would be bad…)?

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One Reply to “combating “I dunno””

  1. One dumb question (because I don’t have any answers at all): if Thursday can abbreviate to R (I picked that one up in college, myself), how come Sa & Su were both plain S? (That front sheet in the photo)

    As far as meal planning, my kids are fairly well set on a weekly rotation, but the adults end up doing “scrounge in fridge” way too often. Esp. since DH’s version often involves eating half his daily caloric intake in cookies or chips while waiting for me to finish putting *someone* to bed. Even if there’s real food waiting in the fridge/pot/whatever. We need a better system, for both kids going to bed on time, and big people dinners.

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