Monday, January 2

menu plan monday v.2.1

i'm a little ocd, so i LOVE that the new year started on a sunday. it makes me so happy that routines & things like menu planning coincided so well with the start of 2012!

i know, i know -- simple minds, simple pleasures...

anyways, this year, i'm re-instituting some past goals regarding menu planning.

1. plan a month at a time.
2. reevaluate the menu weekly & make a shopping list.
3. post the menu each week so shaun knows what's for dinner, what's free game for lunch leftovers, & what i'm counting on for another dinner.
4. bake something every week.
5. add lots of new recipes for ya'll over at the casteel cafe.

my monthly plan is usually done in front of the television one evening with a pile of torn-out-magazine-page recipes, a couple of favorite cookbooks, & of course, pinterest. [gotta love pinterest!] i make a list of recipes i want to try, foods i'm craving, & shaun's requests. i list the month's days/dates, & fill in any plans falling on those dates. then, i fill in whatever makes the most sense, based on time available to cook, recipes grouped by similar ingredients [to minimize waste], & sometimes even considering the weather! [we love cozy foods on cold &/or rainy nights.] it's really not that complicated, & i do it all while enjoying old episodes of favorite shows on netflix. my note page usually looks something like this:

[my projected january menu]

as you can see, here's this week's agenda, as always with links as needed:

sunday -- holiday leftovers with the family
monday -- [traveling] eating out all day :(
tuesday -- no earthly clue -- whatever's in the pantry or freezer!
wednesday -- italian quesadillas [with lunchmeat, mozzarella, roasted red peppers, olives, etc.]
thursday -- [shaun & i each have meetings] f.f.y.
friday -- sweet potato gnocchi with sage brown butter sauce
saturday -- white bean & bacon soup

baking -- buttermilk cornbread [to go with soup on saturday]

f.f.y. = fend for yourself!

another great place to find lots of menus & recipes is over at the organizing junkie blog -- i link up there every week. i hope ya'll consider menu planning if you don't already. it's one of the easiest ways i bring a little extra sanity to our home throughout the week, & home should be a place where you can get a full belly without stress!

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