Monday, January 18, 2010

Menu Plan for the Week

So, with Sr gone until the 30th and my two bird-picking little boys, using up the storage is proving to be difficult. My appetite, thanks to a illness I can't seem to shake, is not what is could be as well. I froze half of the red beans and rice and served the other remaining half tonight along with the rest of the sloppy joe mix from Saturday. Oldest boy (7) ate it all, but littlest (2.5) kept saying, "I don't like, I don't like..." I finally got him to taste a little and he ate a couple of spoonfuls. Sigh. One day they will eat me out of house and home, right?

My chalkboard is working out so well! I wish I had hung it up sooner. I still need to add a photo of it here (I have no idea why I am lazy about photo posting!)

I basically just list ideas of meals for the week then constantly move the ideas around to accommodate leftovers or busy schedules. I started using it on a weekend and I haven't updated all the way to next weekend yet, but here are my plans for the week (subject to change):

Monday: Leftovers
Tuesday: B: (me) Take grapefruit to work, boys will eat oatmeal or cereal
L: Leftover rice & beans (kids eat at school & in-laws)
D: quesadillas and fruit
Wednesday B: Grapefruit/cereal
L: Out for work retirement party/Kids eat school/in-laws
D: Chicken (crockpot), green beans (HC), and bread
Thursday: B: Maybe eggs (I might try these muffins)
L: The muffins if I make them
D: White chicken chili
Friday: B: grapefruit/cereal & yogurt
L: Leftovers
D: Leftovers
Saturday: B: pancakes or waffles, yogurt
L: leftovers or PB sandwiches
D: Pizza with HM WW crust (I am trying to implement a tradition of sorts)
Sunday: Not sure yet...

Planning out meals seems to be easier than I thought (I resisted for so long!) I can anticipate what I need to thaw out or use up. It really doesn't even take very long! I have never been one to stick to a strict "to do" list, so I keep it flexible and move things around quite a bit, but I think having the meal ideas in front of us is making us more likely to use our stockpiled food.

(Although, truth be told, I have been also taking a bag of items to church every Sunday for the Catholic Food Banks to help use up this mass of food I have hoarded the past two years before it goes bad.)

Next month, I plan to continue this adventure until I leave for schooling on the
20th. If I am able to drive (as opposed to fly depending on cost analyse and which my employer will grant approval), I will pack some items from the pantry to use up there in a crockpot. I would really like to make a goal of not using any of our grocery budget as I have still been spending (well under $80 budget so far not counting the discount day at the Amish bulk store on the 2nd, but it is getting close). I have been tracking every item bought this month in a spreadsheet and recording sales and coupon use to study where our money is going. What are we buying?
Sadly, with Sr gone again and living remotely he is spending a lot. He went through fifty dollars in three days (because the man does not know how to budget or shop wisely in any shape or form). I had to transfer another fifty to him, but I told him that was it until the weekend. I do not spend like this and I too spend time away from the home (in travel status for work).

He claims to be keeping all his receipts so we can look at them together and figure out his habits (the really bad, expensive ones he doesn't seem to realize he has). I've read blogs where people get by on $1-2 a day (he obviously needs lots of work to ever even get close to this starting with finding a successful way to get him to stop smoking-an unbelievable amount of money is spent on this disgusting, selfish habit).

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