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
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
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
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
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!