Found a broken printable link? Check my Free Printables page. All the links there are redirected and fixed.

Monday, March 14, 2011

One Year to a {More} Organized Life, Week Eleven

Menu Draw Pile

I have a nasty habit of preparing the same meals over and over again. I don't like it, but seriously, I physically and mentally cannot come up with meal ideas 95% of the time. I'm not good at it. At all. Period. The End.

I keep thinking I should come up with a draw pile, per se... a list of meals I know my family enjoys (not counting the picky one who simply eats because she is commanded to... well, ok, so it's not that bad, but some days it feels like it).

Reagan... I love that name; reminds me of the Reagan I went to first grade with... anyway, Reagan commented about the 30 Meals plan.
Basically you pick out 30 of your basic go-to meals. You put them all together, make a master list of ingredients & then keep your pantry stocked with those items so that you can make any one of those 30 meals at any given time. The most brilliant part of this for me was that then I only had to look for coupons for those items. I didn't worry about cutting all the coupons or even going through & cutting what I thought might make a good deal. Just stick to the ingredients on your master list. If you find coupons for those items.....bonus! Makes couponing, grocery shopping, menu planning & spontaneous meal making so much easier.

I'm really thinking of doing this. It would still require the work of menu planning and grocery shopping (darn!), but it would be simplified because I would have a pool to fish from for ideas and it would keep me from getting into a rut.

I'm also throwing around the idea of monthly cooking, such as Jackie posted about. But I'm not so sure I'm ready for that yet. The result sounds inviting, but the process is freaking me out. Seriously. I hate being in the kitchen all day. I hardly have 30 minutes of uninterrupted-by-kids time to fix dinner. One long day of cooking sounds painful... not to mention the planning. How would I know how to do it? Maybe I'll save that for a summer project when the 3 older kids will spend most of their days outside.


This week's assignment is to begin to create a list of meals your family enjoys. This may be something you might have to continue to add to as time passes. If you already have a running list, what are your family's top five meals? I'd love ideas.

If you're really wishing for an orange based sheet to list them out on... here ya go.


  1. Playing catch up yet again:

  2. chicken Alfredo with broccoli, ravioli, philly subs, cold subs (my daughter loves that she can make it all by herself)ham and potato bake, tacos, pizza, stuffed hot dogs, lasagna (freeze left overs for an easy meal later on), shepherds pie, beef stew, beef stir fry, chicken fried steak, and mac'n'cheese bake