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Hello and Welcome to Lesson 2 of
Our Free "Meal Planning 101" eCourse

Hello, and welcome to your second lesson!  This week, you’ll write your first Meal Plan and fill out a Shopping List.  When you are done shopping, staple your grocery receipt to the back of your Meal Plan – this comes in handy later.


Lesson Two; The Easiest Meal Plan.

The easiest meal plan is a copy of the one you used last week.  Read the notes you wrote on last week’s Plan and adjust it accordingly (i.e. if no one liked your chick pea stew, replace it with something else OR if the kids didn’t eat any melon at snack-time, put another fruit on the plan for this week). 

To make it less obvious that you are serving the same meals again this week, change the days you’ll serve them on (i.e. if Monday was spaghetti and Wednesday was roast beef last week, have them switch places this week).  If you think you need to, put a different meal or two in, but stick with easy, tried and true favorites to make the planning easier for you.  Personally, my family wouldn’t mind the same meals again as long as they were meals they liked and frankly I doubt they would even realize it was the same plan as last week J

Tonight, print out your Blank Meal Plan and the Shopping List, find a comfy spot, and write out the easiest meal plan you can get away with.  This is your first one (with time you’ll do this very quickly) so make this as easy for you as possible.

Since you are planning ahead this time, you need to start out by noting, in the appropriate meal/snack space, anything unusual planned for that time/day.  For example: whether you will you be home (if not, pack a picnic or plan to get take-out); will a spouse or any kids be away; will you have company?  These things can all affect what you’ll serve.

Of course you’ll also need a grocery shopping list. I find it is easiest to write out the Shopping List as I fill out the Meal Plan.  As I add an item to the Meal Plan I write the ingredients I’ll need on the Shopping List.

If you are unsure as to whether you have an ingredient on hand, put an asterisk/star beside it.  Before you go shopping, go to the kitchen and check on the ingredients you’ve put an asterisk beside – cross out the ones you already have.

You’ll see that the Shopping List is divided by the sections you’ll find at most grocery stores.  This should make grocery shopping a lot faster.  You'll also see, at the bottom of the list, some blank lines.  On these lines, note any other stores you need to go to.  Under the names you can list what you need at each store.  I usually have Costco and Wal-Mart listed here.

Using some of your down-time for planning ahead will be worth it, I promise, so keep sticking with us.  After all, all you have to lose is stress and wasted time fumbling in the cupboard, and we can all use less of that!



Again, all the sheets are in PDF format which means you need to have Adobe Acrobat to see it.  If you don't have Adobe, click here to download it – it's fast and free.

The Blank Shopping list is available online here

The Blank Meal Plan comes in two sizes

  1. Letter paper size - you'll also find this version online here.

  2. Legal paper size - you'll find this version online here.




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